There’s something about the scent of vanilla that has an element of reassurance, making us feel as if all is right with the world. Particularly great for when the weather turns colder – the comforting whiff of vanilla is like coming home and climbing into a warm bath after a long walk through the snow.
And while vanilla is part of a relatively modern trend for sweeter, ‘gourmande’ scents, its use in fragrance dates back over a century. This mellow spice came into fragrant fashion in the early 1900s, with many of the grand Parisian perfumeries combined it with amber, musks and spices from the Eastern world. Since then it has featured in some of the most iconic perfumes in history, its addictive nature causing the bottles to fly off the shelves.
As well as its soothing and uplifting qualities, vanilla has a more seductive side too. According to old Totonac legend, the vanilla plant was in fact, an incarnation of Xanat, daughter of the Mexican fertility goddess who – unable to marry her beloved – transformed herself into a vanilla vine, to provide pleasure and happiness to all who encountered it. Elsewhere, in North Africa, vanilla is traditionally burnt to attract love, increase libido and sharpen the mind.
When used properly in fragrance, vanilla should be mellow and not overly sweet – but warm and rich enough to withstand the cold weather (when it can be trickier to catch a whiff of any perfume one happens to be wearing).
Sana Jardin’s latest creation, Vanilla Nomad sends the wearer on a spiritual sugar high, with sensual, earthy undertones echoing the burning embers of vanilla lava rocks that founder Amy Christiansen discovered on her travels, while wandering through the souks of Marrakech.
While sources of comfort may have been in short supply over the past few months, the rich, grounding notes of ‘Vanilla Nomad’ should provide a welcome olfactory respite to soothe any frazzled souls and restore equilibrium.
Inspired by Mahmoud Guinia's - Sast Demanio, a Gnawa musician. We get inspired as he plays his healing, primal beat, in a moment of reflection, connectedness and gratitude. It feels as if the rhythm of the earth prevailed above all else.
Click here to discover this scent for yourself.