Product Watch: Tom Ford Fleur De Portofino

Your best memories can be summoned with a single spritz of summer perfume. Make new ones this season while wearing Rachel Marie Walsh’s pick of the best new fragrances.

The Story:

This is the latest addition to Ford’s Neroli Portofino Collection of perfumes, which are distinguished by their turquoise or aqua-blue glass bottles. The booty-centric campaign is causing some buzz ahead of the June 1 launch but a model’s bare backside looks a lot less explicit than Nicki Minaj’s Anaconda cover or even Beyoncé’s Met Gala gown. You know there’s been a cultural shift when a Tom Ford ad just looks a bit cheeky.

The Notes:

Sicilian lemon, Sorrento mandarin, Calabrese bergamot, tangerine, bigarade leaf, violet leaf, mock-orange leaf, honeysuckle, gardenia, Moroccan rose, acacia, mimosa, ambrette seed, vanilla and magnolia.

The Scent:

A warm, heady June evening in Portofino (of course). Fleur is “inspired by the cascades of flowers that spill off the branches of the white acacia trees that line the tranquil avenues,” says Tom Ford.

Ralph Lauren Polo Red Intense, €78/125ml

The Story:

This is a stronger, spicier take on Ralph Lauren’s Polo Red men’s fragrance. Intense is “inspired by the world of racing; it isn’t about the destination, but the intense thrill of the ride,” says the designer. Argie polo star Nacho Figueras smoulders from the print ads like a Jilly Cooper heartthrob (who could conceivably smell of leather and coffee).

The Notes:

Red grapefruit, cranberry, red ginger, red saffron, red sage, orange flower, red wood, red-roasted coffee and red leather.

The Scent:

This is an eau de parfum and ingredient concentrations are high, making an already intense scent linger longer. The coffee, ginger and leather notes are strongest. The overall impression is warm and masculine.

Product Watch:Tom Ford Fleur De Portofino

Salvatore Ferragamo Emozione, €83/50ml

The Story:

Like most fashion houses, Ferragamo farms the production of its fragrance out to experts at one of the world’s major perfume companies. Firmenich’s Amandine Marie and Alberto Morillas are the “noses” behind Emozione.

The pair have more than 50 years’ experience between them and CVs that list best-selling scents for Armani, Calvin Klein and Yves Saint Laurent. Ferragamo’s vision was a classic but modern scent for “a woman who desires genuine things and true moments of plenitude”.

The Notes:

Bergamot, iris, white peach, peonies, Hungarian rose, heliotrope, patchouli, white musk, and suede.

The Scent:

It wouldn’t be my summer fragrance column without something peony-based! The prettiest flower any time of year smells gorgeous with suede and the bergamot and peach top makes Emozione fresh enough for day wear.

Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Eau Fraiche, €67/50ml

The Story:

This is the centrepiece of EL’s 2015 Bronze Goddess Fragrance Collection. Intensify the exotic, lightweight scent with the pearlescent Bronze Goddess Shimmering Body Oil Spray, €42, or the antioxidant-rich Bronze Goddess Whipped Body Creme, €42.

The Notes:

Amber, coconut milk, sandalwood, vetiver, myrrh, vanilla, mandarin, lemon, bergamot, orange, tiare flower, magnolia and lavender.

The Scent:

Reminiscent of a sun-drenched beach, the tropic scent has a creamy amber heart that emanates pure summer.

Van Cleef & Arpels Rêve Enchanté

The Story:

This is a fruity Summer 2015 interpretation of Van Cleef & Arpels Rêve fragrance, a heady white floral scent that took six top “noses” to formulate, which is rare even in a luxury perfume. While everything in the Rêve family is designed to smell like a dream teaming with “fairies, butterflies and lucky charms,” Rêve Enchanté’s dream is specific to a sunny garden filled with clementine and pear trees.

The Notes:

Pear, clementine, neroli, peach blossom, jasmine and white amber.

The Scent:

Youthful and feminine, this is a great day fragrance.

Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Charcoal Mask, €29

This clay-based, irritant-free mask works well on oily and combination skin even if yours is very sensitive.

The formula has an instant mattifying effect post-rinse and greatly enhances a gentle anti-acne skincare regime.

Kaolin and benzonite clays work to make imperfections less noticeable and temporarily shrink pores (regular use of a good cleanser, benzoyl peroxide lotion and a gentle Beta Hydroxy Acid lotion are needed for long-lasting results). Forms of charcoal like these are often used in water filtration systems to absorb bacteria and other impurities but their ability to do so to skin is less well-established. That said, they aren’t harmful and do counteract shine.

Clinique is good about packaging masks in tubes, which keeps ingredients hygienic and stable. The brand’s also added proven antioxidants to the formula, which are rare in an oil-control face mask. This one goes on grey and dries to a comfortable set in about 10 minutes. It rinses quickly and cleanly.


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