Photography: Emma Palmer
After dousing myself in the usual olfactory suspects throughout my teenage years (remember Tommy Girl and Muglar’s Angel?), I moved away from florals and musks and onto cleaner scents in my early Twenties, but nothing ever quite stuck. Heady white florals felt overpowering, as did anything too spicy, while crisper, greener scents always left me wanting more. To put it simply, I never quite found my ‘signature scent’.
That was until I stumbled across Maison Margiela Jazz Club Eau de Toilette. It happened by chance when I was feeling wildly confident and trying to buy my boyfriend a new scent for Christmas. A quick sniff turned into a spritz on the wrist and I was hooked. Three years on, I’m still a repeat customer and incredibly chuffed that the brand is now available on Space NK.
The beauty of Maison Margiela’s fragrances lies in not just their unique and intoxicating scents, but the story behind each and every one. Jazz Club is undoubtably one of the most iconic fragrances in the collection and, in my humble opinion, the best.
As I mentioned, every scent has a story and this one starts in a popular jazz club in Brooklyn – the type that’s always busy and is packed with regulars. Think subdued lighting, cocktails flowing, deep armchairs and a luxe interior. That’s the exact inspiration behind this fragrance hence the slightly masculine mix of cigar, leather, whisky and rum aromas.
“To illustrate this ambiance, I used a rum cocktail, vetiver, tobacco leaves and a vanilla pod,” said perfumer designer Aliénor Massene, who created the first masculine Replica fragrance. The lighter, sweeter notes of neroli and pink pepper are intertwined with vetiver, before the scent dries down and the warmth of rum, tobacco leaf and vanilla come through.
While Jazz Club is labelled as a men’s fragrance, vanilla gives it a subtle sweetness that doesn’t feel sickly or cloying. It also helps to balance out the tobacco leaf to prevent the scent from becoming too smoky or too heavy. Jazz Club lends itself much more to a unisex scent. So much so, both my boyfriend and I wear it (when I let him).
Whilst I’d call it an all year-round fragrance, the comforting vibe it creates might draw most people to it as the winter months approach. Just one spritz of this is enough to see you through the day, so it ticks the box when it comes to staying power. Oh, and the minimalistic aesthetic of the bottle means it looks great on my dressing table too…