With most of Jo Malone’s iconic fragrances garnering inspiration and ingredients from nature, it seems fitting that they sow back into the soil some of the benefits that they reap from it.  Announced yesterday on their Facebook page is their partnership with UK charity Thrive who use the therapeutic effects of gardening to change the lives of disabled people.  The British brand are funding the much-needed regeneration of Thrive’s largest London gardening project: the Old English Garden in Battersea Park.

From this…

To this?

Well… time will tell, but the volunteer gardeners are keen to get their green-fingers stuck into the challenge: developing skills, confidence and additional wellbeing along the way under Thrive’s nurturing guidance.  If you want to learn more about the national charity, you can visit the Thrive website to discover more about their current projects.

If you want to follow the progress of the Old English Garden, log on to the Jo Malone facebook page where you’ll be able to see “how does their garden grow” with a weekly update.


This month sees some new additions to the home-scenting range from Jo Malone.  Flanking the ever-popular candles, the British brand have introduced Scent Surround diffusers, room sprays, and limited edition drawer liners and sachets.  Playing nicely on the layering theory when it comes to fragrance, you can now treat your home environment to the same luxuries as you do your skin.

The diffusers and room sprays are available in three iconic Jo Malone fragrances: Red Roses, Lime Basil & Mandarin, and Pomegranate Noir whilst the limited edition items are available in Lime Basil & Mandarin only.

As for the ‘negative’ I mention in the post title… well, take a look at the new packaging for the Home Collection…

Cheekily reversing the traditional Jo Malone style from cream boxes with black ribbon, to black boxes with cream ribbon… talk about double negatives, and we all know what they make?  A positive! *groan*

The idea behind a reed diffuser* is that it will continually fragrance an area of your home for upto 5 months, it’s perfect for families with small children or pets that are liable to knock candles over.  The Red Roses scent smells exactly like the skin perfume, and hasn’t been ‘dumbed down’ into an inferior home scent.

I’d recommend this scent for the more communal areas of your home: the sitting room, hallways and landings would particularly benefit from this delicate fragrance.  I’ve had mine sitting on a shelf in the hallway for almost a month and it still ‘catches’ me with a great first impression everytime I walk through the door.  Shame about the untidiness that greets me visually!

I’m a huge fan of scented sachets, and have friends who laugh at me because I physically get a little bit excited when I’m out shopping and discover one!  I love them because they’re a fairly inexpensive way of creating a sweet-smelling atmosphere!  When Leila was a baby, almost everyone used to comment on how beautiful she always smelled – the secret? yep, delicately-scented sachets scattered amongst her babygros!  They’re also great for putting in foisty suitcases that you’ve dragged down from the loft.  Anyway, I’m completely digressing but I think drawer liners and sachets get a bad rap as a bit of a granny product!

Scent Surround™  Diffusers 165ml £45 / €60
Scent Surround™  Room Sprays 175ml £34 / €45
Limited Edition Scent Surround™ Sachets 3 pieces £20 / €25
Limited Edition Scent Surround™ Drawer Liners 5 pieces £30 / €40

Check out the Jo Malone Home Collection online at www.jomalone.com

* press sample

Jo Malone London Blooms and a very special Mother’s Day gift

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 13 - 2012

Jo Malone have released a trio of floral fragrances this month to celebrate the classically British country garden, a much-loved place (which often exists more in our national pride than reality!) awash with well-cultivated flora grown in haphazard and slightly eccentric ways.  The combination of notes within the three fragrances are purposefully juxtaposed, resulting in a playful take on the classic floral fragrance.

The first thing to strike you about the new collection is the departure from the signature Jo Malone look, the beautifully illustrated, botanically-inspired bottles are quite something and tell the story of the scent that awaits you inside.  With the Olympics and the Queen’s Jubilee, the idea of “Britishness” is something that will undoubtedly feature heavily as the year progresses and Jo Malone are clearly striking while the iron is hot on this score.

I received a sample of Iris & Lady Moore* which at first sniff, is all about the Iris.  It’s a powdery, traditional floral which initially fails to transcend the expected until just a couple of moments later when the Lady Moore (geranium to you and me) slices through the nobility with a blast of spicy freshness that my nose reads as a tingle with a citrus-kick.  All well and good, but then things get truly delightful on the dry down as the vetiver raises its aromatic head.  It adds pungency, masculinity, and earthiness laced with freshly-cut grass and delivers just what is needed to introduce a modern twist to the conventional genre.

I would class longevity and sillage as average and do wish for a couple more hours wear, particularly as the longer it warms against my skin, the more deliciously earthy it becomes.

As for the other fragrances, I haven’t had the pleasure of sniffing them yet but have been convinced that I sadly won’t be finding the particular brand of rhubarb that I’m looking for in White Lilac & Rubarb (which by all accounts offers the more acerbic, vegetal kind).  I really should stop procrastinating about it and simply purchase Comme des Garcons Rhubarb Sherbert which has been on my wishlist for a very long time.

Peony & Moss promises a beautiful mix of a delicate floral, with a hint of juiciness from the cassis kept well-rounded with an earthy base.  I hope that the moss adds something a little dirty and damp to counteract the lightness in the floral, that’s a contrast I’d love to smell.

All three of the London Blooms fragrances are limited edition and stock is already selling fast.  They’re priced at £72 for each 100ml cologne.

Before I close this review, I’d like to draw your attention to easily the most breathtaking Mother’s Day gift to grace my inbox this year.  Jo Malone have created a beautifully-presented gift in partnership with Wild at Heart, one of the country’s most inventive florists.  Costing more than just a pretty penny (but worth almost every one of them), you can choose to have your chosen scent (any of the Jo Malone fragrances qualify) cushioned on a bed of fresh flowers.  This is available on the 16th, 17th and 18th March only, instore at Harrods in the Beauty Apothecary Hall.

For such a lavish gift, you can expect to pay £115 – perhaps for only the most deserving of Mums, I suggest deducting £1 for each time your mother made you eat your peas.

* press sample

Valentine’s Day: The Single Girl’s Gift Guide (to herself)

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 9 - 2012

So, I’m an old married… and my husband doesn’t buy me Valentine’s gifts.  Instead, he makes me a minimum of three cups of tea a day, fills the car with petrol when I can’t be arsed, sounds semi-enthusiastic when I regale him with tales of my shopping bargains, and always knows my current favourite chocolate bar.

But it wasn’t always this way and back when we were all shiny and new, falling out because he laughed at a pair of BIG girl’s pants in M&S that looked scarily like a pair of mine, Valentine’s Day was kind of a big deal.

In all honesty Valentine’s Day is about as much for married people as it is for single people, i.e. it’s not.  It’s for sickeningly saccharine types enjoying the first, what — maybe two years of a new relationship?  Which ultimately means that the rest of us should treat V-day as nothing but a big excuse to buy ourselves a present of LOVE.  Because afterall, no one understands how much love (read ” new stuff”) we need better than we do.

01: Jo Malone Red Roses Travel Candle* – The problem with fresh roses is that nine times out of ten, the other half has bought them from the Esso garage.  Go for something a little longer lasting with Jo Malone’s Red Roses Travel Candle.  Burn, enjoy, extinguish – repeat ad. infinitum until you’ve surrounded yourself with the luxurious atmosphere afforded by a blend of seven of the world’s most exquisite roses.  Priced at £22.00 and packaged in the inimitable “Jo Malone way”, it’ll be considerably more affordable and better-presented to boot!

02: Wahanda Valentine Treats – Treat yourself to a Wahanda treat in time for Valentine’s Day.  From £11 mini manicures (and a glass of wine!) at Coco Nail Bar to a £200 overnighter at the chinese-inspired Chuan Spa at The Langham – there’s something to suit every taste and every budget.  Just be ready to bat away the incoming offers from those potential suitors who’ve heard about your bargain!

03: Calvin Klein Forbidden Euphoria – Unashamedly pink and most definitely girly, this new release from Calvin Klein ticks all the right boxes for those who like their fragrances on the fruity side.  Dedicated to the ‘independent woman’, there’s no better way to announce your fabulous presence than with a blend of forbidden fruit including mandarin, passion fruit and touches of iced raspberry.  Priced from £32.50.

04: Elemis Frangipani Monoi Body Oil – Smell delicious from top to toe with this nourishing body oil from Elemis.  This multi-tasker can be drizzled in a hot bath for a relaxing scent-sensation, smoothed onto dry skin to replenish and moisturise, rubbed into cuticles to nourish, and even massaged into your hair to scent and soften.  Worthy of its cult-status, the Elemis Frangipani Monoi Body Oil makes for a great Valentine’s night treat – just keep it to yourself eh?

05: Philosophy Sweet Talk Set – This latest body-pampering set from Philosophy combines the brand’s three-in-one shower gel, body lotion and pink-tinted lip shine in the Candy Hearts flavour: a sweet (with a hint of tart) scent which will capture the hearts of girls across the nation.  Limited edition and priced at £22.00

06: Samsung MultiView MV800 Camera – For girls that have been very good this year comes the latest compact camera offering from Samsung.  Small enough to slip in your handbag with a 3.0″ wide (every inch counts right?) touch-screen which flips a full 180 degrees to ensure you capture spot-on self-portraits every time without getting a crick in your neck.  16.1 megapixels, HD video recording and 5x optical zoom will ensure your Facebook photos are the best on the block.  Just leave out the duck-face yes?  Comes in a range of snazzy colours (it’s gotta be red though right?) and is priced at £249. Unless you’re clever and go to Amazon!

07: Clinique Limited Edition Kiss it Better Kissable Lip Set –  Spread the love with a purchase of Clinique’s charity lip set and help raise money to fund research into the causes and treatment of childhood cancer.  In collaboration with the Great Ormond Street Hospital, 50% of the RRP price will be going directly to the KISS IT BETTER appeal. The set of covetable minis includes: a Vitamin C Lip Smoothie, Superbalm Moisturizing Gloss, Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm, and a mini Long Last Glosswear.  Available instore at House of Fraser, priced at £25.

Love yourselves.  The end.

* press sample

Jo Malone Vitamin E Moisturising Day Crème

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 18 - 2012

New out this month is Jo Malone’s Vitamin E Moisturising Day Crème which expands on the original Vitamin E lineup, the brand’s signature skincare collection.  Packaged in a monochrome, heavy glass jar – it displays the sophisticated elements you’d expect from the British brand who have just appointed Charlotte Stockdale, as their new Style Editor.

It’s perfect for this time of year with a thick, emoliating formula which feels unusually light on the skin considering such a rich texture, basically it sinks right in – although, perhaps that says more about the current condition of my dry skin.  I wouldn’t describe this as a heavy-duty moisturiser, though I feel this is about as heavy-duty as ‘normal’ moisturisers get (does that make sense?).  I’d recommend for normal > normal/dry skin types as I’m not sure oily skins would need this much moisture – although because of the light, spreadable formula – it may just mean you only need to use a tiny amount to cover your face.

The cream delivers instant skin-soothing relief, with a cooling after-effect when applied to post-shower, dehydrated skin and gives me no issues with makeup application a few moments later.  It promises to guard against fine lines and wrinkles with the addition of barley extracts, wheat germ, rosemary leaf and grape seed extract – helping to combat free radical damage and strengthen the skin’s barrier to reduce water loss.  The cream also features broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection rated to SPF15, helping to shield skin from harmful UV rays.

I was surprised to find no discernible scent to the cream, I feel there’s something there but it’s so light my nose can’t really detect it that well and although I haven’t been using this for long enough to notice the effects of any anti-aging properties, I’ve been pleased with what is a high quality, luxurious addition to the Jo Malone lineup.  Priced for the high-end market, it fits well with the existing Jo Malone business model and will undoubtedly appeal to JM fans across the globe.

Jo Malone Vitamin E Moisturising Day Crème is priced at £50 for 50ml and available online and instore at Jo Malone.

* press sample

Pink Week: Jo Malone Red Roses Body & Hand Wash

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 4 - 2011

What is it?

Jo Malone are supporting this month’s Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign with their new Red Roses Body & Hand Wash, a delicately scented bottle of roses tinted goodness which co-ordinates perfectly with the emblematic colour of the BCA campaign.

How much is it?

Jo Malone Red Roses Body & Hand Wash is priced at £30.00.

How much of our money goes to supporting PINK projects?

£5 from every sale will go directly to help funding UK research grants.

How do I get it?

Available throughout the month of October from Jo Malone Express Mail Order and Worldwide Delivery Service, Tel +44 (0)870 034 2411 or shop online at jomalone.com

Smells like… Fashion Week?

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 18 - 2011

They say that ‘the devil is in the detail’ and frankly, there’s nothing quite like paying attention to these finer points than when you’ve got the world’s media breathing down your neck.

So much works goes on behind the catwalks at Fashion Week that us mere mortals would never even consider, and it’s some of these less obvious details that are getting plenty of attention this year!

What’s the first thing you notice when you enter a room, the one thing that can instantly add or detract from its appeal?  Scent.

Which is why we’re all supposed to be baking cookies and brewing coffee like demon baristas when it comes time to sell our homes.  It’s all in the name of adding atmosphere to your surroundings and show designers are understandably, certainly up for a bit of that.

Show scenting is big news this year and across the Atlantic, Victoria Beckham chose to scent her Spring/Summer 2012 presentation at New York City Library with a sea of Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin and Grapefruit Candles.

Moving closer to home, the British fragrance company will also be scenting the British Fashion Council Tents throughout London Fashion Week with Jo Malone Orange Blossom as well as Erin O’Connor’s Model Sanctuary with Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin and Grapefruit.

 

One of London’s most established fragrance houses, Penhaligon’s will also be working hard to make the capital smell delicious as they get to work with Meadham Kirchhoff to scent their Spring/Summer 2012 collection for the fifth season together.

The design duo have chosen the fruity floral Artemisia as a celebration of all things feminine.  Described as a tumble of green apples and nectarines, washed with jasmine tea and sprinkled with a luxurious medley of violet, cyclamen and lily petals.

The scent will be used to fragrance the invitations and the venue, whilst each model will receive a liberal spritz just before heading down the catwalk.

 

Finally, lest we forget, London Fashion Week isn’t just there for scenting, it’s for showcasing and what better place to launch a new perfume than off the back of your Spring/Summer 2012 ready-to-wear collection?

Verónica Moncho Lobo launched her first fragrance Verónica last Friday alongside the showcase of her latest SS/12 collection.  The fresh, floral scent employs a bouquet of jasmine and cyclamen at the heart of the perfume.

The fashion designer coupled these spring and winter florals to evoke memories of  her childhood in Argentina.  Classic base notes of sandalwood and white musk promise to add a timeless touch to the fragrance.

 

Do you have a favourite fragrance that you’d scent your show with?

Jo Malone: Wild Bluebell, quintessential English eccentricity

Posted by Lipglossiping On June - 23 - 2011

Jo Malone’s new Wild Bluebell is a four piece collection celebrating one of the most iconic wonders of the British woodland, the English Bluebell.  Synonymous with the ending of the long winter, the flower captures the imagination of anyone who encounters its magnificent carpets across the ancient woodlands of Britain.

image courtesy of Jo Malone

How to bottle that mesmerising sight?  Jo Malone’s Wild Bluebell is a delicate blend of fresh bluebell (engineered) and clove with a heart of lily of the valley and jasmine alongside a base of white amber and musk.

Compared to Penhaligon’s Bluebell (of which I’m a fan for its almost audacious evocation of the surroundings in which bluebells grow), this is a much lighter, easy-to-wear fragrance.  It’s gentle and playful with a hint of juxtaposition from the musk that lingers very close to the skin.  Ultimately, it’s a green floral with a hint of spice… where Penhaligon’s is a confrontation, Jo Malone’s is more a sweet echo.

The launch took place at the end of last month in a beautifully restored Georgian townhouse that demonstrated the spirit of the fragrance beautifully.  I was introduced to Wild Bluebell herself, the fragrance personified… a whimsical character with more than just a hint of the woodland nymph about her.

I’ll leave you with a couple more photos from the launch, the brand had commandeered the global stock of faux bluebells for the occasion, not to mention the scarily realistic bunnies found frolicking amongst the flowers.  It was like stepping through the looking glass!

The Jo Malone Wild Bluebell collection will be available from September and include the Cologne (£36/£72), Body & Hand Wash (£30), Body Creme (£48) and Home Candle (£38).

Outgrowing Yourself

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 14 - 2010

That’s it… that’s all that I have left of my current favourite fragrance after decanting myself a small amount and giving the rest to a friend.

Jo Malone White Jasmine and Mint reminds me of Summer.  It makes me think of cottage gardens and fresh linen catching the breeze on the washing line.

But Mr L doesn’t like it and in all fairness, he has to smell me 24/7 and it’s a scent that truly bothers him.

When I was 17, I bought myself a bottle of Dior’s Hypnotic Poison.  It had just been released and I sampled it in the Duty Free Store on the RoRo ferry to France.  I fell in love with it’s sweet and gentle scent.  Vanilla, almond and sugar… it’s everything a teenage girl would love.  I spent all of my holiday allowance on that one bottle before I’d even got halfway across the English Channel.

Back then, it was new and remained relatively undiscovered for a while.  It was the first perfume I’d ever worn that lasted for hours on my skin, I couldn’t leave the house without being complimented on how lovely I smelt.

I’m now 12 years older.  The oriental and intoxicating scent I used to cherish and adore reminds me a little bit of play-doh.  It’s cloying and childish and admitting this upsets me.

Shall I tell you why?

I met my husband wearing Hypnotic Poison.  I married my husband wearing Hypnotic Poison (along with the matching body lotion) and I gave birth to our child wearing Hypnotic Poison.  Everything about our life has been set against a backdrop of Bitter Almond, Caraway, Vanilla and Caramel.  It’s one of the most comforting scents we know.

The end of a love affair… it’s not tempestuous or exciting.  Like many endings, it’s just sad.

I know I’ll never be without a bottle stashed somewhere in the back of my wardrobe… but I need to find something new, something that will carry me through my 30s and beyond.  What if I fall in love with something else that Mr. L hates?  What if he can’t let go of my signature scent in the way I’m dying to and no other scent compares?

As much as I assert that it’s MY scent, on MY body… it’s not.  It’s ours… and I’m not sure I’d be ready for him to fall out of love with his signature fragrance either.

Perhaps I’m being melodramatic… I usually am.  But of the traditional 5 senses, the sense of smell is a hugely important and often subconscious one.

Do you have a signature scent?  How would you go about finding a new one?

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