My Fragrance Wardrobe: Zoë Taylor
My Fragrance Wardrobe: Zoë Taylor

My Fragrance Wardrobe: Zoë Taylor

In this series, we ask women in the know to share the fragrances they love. First up is SL contributor and make-up artist Zoë Taylor. From the first fragrance she ever owned to the one she wants to be remembered for, here are her favourites.
By Rebecca Hull

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I’ve been obsessed with fragrance since I was young. For me, it’s an expression of who you are and how you want the world to perceive you. I see colour in a lot of things – and fragrance is one of them, which makes it easy to choose a scent depending on my outfit. It’s a lot like make-up – it can act as a piece of armour, and I love the power of that.

My mother taught me how important it was to have a signature scent. Her advice was simple: choose a fragrance that speaks to you, wear it consistently, and only change it when you have outgrown it. At the time, I loved the idea of people remembering me by my unique scent, and I made sure to keep my fragrance choice a mystery. Nowadays, I change it up daily because there are so many fragrances out there and I want to experience as many as possible.

"Fragrance is an EXPRESSION OF WHO YOU ARE and HOW YOU WANT THE WORLD TO PERCEIVE YOU. It's a lot like make-up – it can act as a piece of armour.

Everyone should try a fragrance tapas class. I did this at Jo Loves recently and really enjoyed it. I was almost drunk with fragrance by the end of the session. You learn a lot about what notes work on your skin – and most importantly, the ones you love most. I found that spicy, floral, woody and rose notes are more my thing.

I still have my first ever fragrance. My granny gave it to me – a bottle of 4711. I haven’t worn it for a while, but I always keep it on my shelf. It’s very nostalgic. I still have YSL’s Rive Gauche, too. It reminds me of my mother – the smallest sniff feels like the greatest hug. It’s warm with a comforting musky undertone.

There are two fragrances I can’t be without. Wherever I go, I always take Chanel’s No 19 and Edeniste Rose Fatale. The latter is scientifically proven to boost your mood. I like it on its own but you can layer it with other scents from the brand. It’s rich, woody and has a romantic quality I love. Chanel No 19 is the opposite. Powdery and old fashioned, it’s still so chic. I’ve caught my children spritzing it onto their jumpers when they think I’m not looking. 

Jo Loves Shards of Cedar & Red Thyme is my most recent empty. Fresh, clean and uplifting, it blends notes of thyme and lavender beautifully. If you want something different for the warmer months, this is it. I’ve already repurchased. 

If I could bottle any smell, it would be my children. I know everyone says this, but there is nothing like it in the world. It’s the smell of home. Failing that, I would bottle the smell of warm rain that has hit a sandy beach. Something that is salty and sweet at the same time. I’d throw in some flowers too – why not?

BDK Gris Charnel is my holiday go-to. I love slathering myself in this when I am away. It has a woody, spicy quality that matches a hot climate perfectly. For daytime, it has to be Roger & Gallet’s Fleur de Figeur which is light and fresh – it’s also very affordable. 

My top shelf is full of classics. That includes Diptyque’s Philosykos which I wore throughout my 20s and it still takes me straight back. It’s comforting, fresh, green and grown-up. You’ll also find Chanel’s Sycomore front and centre on my shelf. It was my first Chanel fragrance – a light floral with a woody, masculine quality I love. Another favourite is Byredo’s Mumbai Noise. It’s a busy fragrance – smoky and leathery, it responds nicely to my skin over the course of the day and softens down into a light floral that’s also pretty unisex. Finally, another shelf essential is Dries Van Noten’s Rosa Carnivora. It reminds me of my childhood, with a potent combination of pepper and patchouli.

Frédéric Malle makes such standout fragrances. All of them are so grown-up with a sophisticated, French quality to them. Trust me, you will find something you love in the line-up. My favourite has to be Portrait Of A Lady. It’s one of those fragrances that makes you feel so powerful – I’ve been stopped in the street and on the bus with questions about what I am wearing. It attracts lots of attention, but in the best possible way. 

On a night out, I wear Sisley’s Soir d’Orient. It gives me an immediate mood boost. It’s spicy and intense – no other scent lingers quite like it. It’s rich and luxurious, full of bergamot, lemon, patchouli and sandalwood.

Rose is THE SCENT I’D LIKE TO BE REMEMBERED BY. There isn’t a specific fragrance, but just ROSE AS A RAW INGREDIENT – it’s my favourite.

Dolce & Gabbana’s Light Blue is my latest investment. I’ve been in the market for a fresh, floral fragrance and this is full of lemon, apple and bamboo – with a bit of cedarwood for balance. I also just ordered Floral Street’s Neon Rose because it’s green and juicy, with raspberry and violet for a bit of a twist. Soon I’ll be ordering Liqueur Charnelle by Pierre Guillaume – when I was last in Bloom, my sister-in-law made me try it. I wasn’t sure at first, so I left with a sample. Now, I’m hooked.

Rose is the scent I’d like to be remembered by. There isn’t a specific fragrance, but just rose as a raw ingredient – it’s my favourite. That and Chanel No 19 – I will always go back to that too.

Follow @ZoeTaylorMakeup on Instagram.


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