Sometimes the reaction to a perfume entirely depends on the weather. When I first received this scent, by Liverpool-based brand Essen Minimal, in the boiling Japanese summer, it just seemed faint and prickly, defeated by the dense humidity. In winter, it feels entirely different. Black pepper and pink pepper blended with Calabrian bergamot smell fresh like new neroli, while the stringent, frankincense undertones give a curiously contradictory effect almost like a memory of Narcisse Noir. In the cold weather now, this simple and minimalist scent – clean and resuscitating – feels psychologically appropriate.
In terms of the news, and discussions of Certain People, my brain filament burnt out completely last November in that regard, so I am literally now unable to further discuss it. Watching the footage yesterday, I was wide-eyed, but wordless. Unsurprised. In some ways, to me it feels like a perfect ending (if it even is the end – Lord help us). Horrendous, yes. But a fitting denouement.