From the first time I went to the beach and my mother covered me in Coppertone the scent of these products has appealed to me. Fragrances have been built around the popular sunscreens since the earliest days of modern perfumery. If there is a secret to their appeal is it reminds me of a day playing in the ocean. Even now a trip to the beach is accompanied by the smell of sunscreen. By Rosie Jane Madie is the latest to take me there.
Rosie Jane Johnston
By Rosie Jane is the eco-friendly line overseen by Rosie Jane Johnston. Over the last couple of years she has broadened her distribution to make her fragrances more widely available. Ms. Johnston is growing a rapidly expanding category of independent perfumers who are designing within the transparent style. This is the current trend which makes it smart to make perfume to cater to it. What sets Ms. Johnston apart is while her perfumes are opaque and simple, they remain interesting. The recent releases have found this balance.
Madie is named for Ms. Johnston’s daughter Matilda. She is described as “a carefree headstrong beach bunny”. The perfume named after her is what I imagine Madie smells like as she heads out the door to the beach.
There have been a lot of perfumes I’ve received in the first part of this year which have started with this ozonic salty accord. I don’t know what has caused it to become so popular, but this is where Madie begins. The heart of the fragrance is that sunscreen duo of jasmine and coconut. It is lifted in an expansive way by that top accord. It gives a lightness of effect that real sunscreen usually does not. It is what makes Madie different from other sunscreen inspired fragrances. Some vanilla and white musks complete things.
Madie has 8-10 hour longevity and average sillage.
If you are not fond of sunscreen style perfumes Madie is so light it might be worth revisiting the genre. It is one of the rare examples of where I have found the transparency to be a large reason why I liked it. Ms. Johnston continues to impress with what she is doing. Madie is another step along the way.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample supplied by Sephora.
Ever since I regularly started receiving samples from Sephora I have been pleasantly surprised at the quality of what I find. There has been a great trend over the last few years of entry level perfume brands using some of the best perfumers. Most of those seem to end up in the fragrance section at Sephora. I think it is great that the style of these artists can be found in any mall. It also makes it fun when I get a new line and immediately think I recognize something. After the perfume has made itself known when I go do my research, I have an “a-ha” moment. This just happened with By Rosie Jane Lake.
Rosie Jane Johnston
By Rosie Jane was begun in 2010 by Rosie Jane Johnston and has slowly expanded its fragrance collection. In the past year and a half Ms. Johnston has begun to position her eco-friendly line with broader distribution. I must admit when I opened my latest envelope a perfume titled Lake seemed to be off by a season, or two. When I read the text to go with it, I was mistaken.
Lake is inspired by an autumn hike around Lake Tahoe in California. This is the essence of west coast fall; there aren’t the changing of colors. Just the chill of the air as you walk through forests of pines. This is the kind of perfume Lake is trying to be. When I tried my sample, I was immediately struck by how well-blended it was for a brand that advertises itself as green. If there is a drawback to that description it is many of those fragrances fail at finding a balance in the perfume. It is what makes the best independent natural perfumers so adored by me. They know how to be green and relevant. As I kept sniffing Lake, I was thinking this smells like one of those. Once I went to find out who the perfumer was. I smiled. That was because Sarah Horowitz-Thran was grinning back at me from my sample. Ms. Horowitz-Thran is one of those indie natural perfumers I was speaking of. To find her behind Lake was a happy surprise.
Lake is a simple breath of fresh air along the slopes of Tahoe. It starts with the chill of autumn air as lime fills the nose, and lungs. A fantastically subtle pine comes next. This is not a Christmas tree pine. This is that scent as the wind blows through the evergreens. It gets woodier and sweeter as sandalwood and vanilla provided the final ingredients. When it all snaps together it is like standing in the Rockies on a fall day.
Lake has 8-10 hour longevity and moderate sillage.
Nothing makes me happier than to know my favorite perfumers are finding a wider audience. With Lake Ms. Horowitz-Thran’s version of Tahoe autumn will make some new fans.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample provided by Sephora.