Living in the Pacific Northwest, I’m surrounded all year by the colors, and scents, of greenery — evergreen trees and shrubs, green lawns (even in January). But there are cold-winter greens (often dark colored, dull, and chilled into scentlessness by frigid temperatures), and then there are spring and early-summer new-growth greens — vivid, dewy fresh and fragrant with zingy juices. Call me sappy — give me springtime and summery greens and lots of them.
I’m a big fan of ‘green’ perfumes: I like sharp and punchy pure-green fragrances (full of leafy, stem-y, grassy notes). I like citrus-y green colognes too; even high-pitched floral-green scents appeal to me. And if a green perfume turns ‘soft’ or ‘wilts’ in the dry-down due to a touch of musk, that’s usually OK — as long as the green notes linger a good while, even in a spectral fashion.
Byredo Green, developed by perfumer Jerôme Epinette, contains sage, petitgrain, jasmine, rose, violet, honeysuckle, vanilla, sweet almond and musk. Byredo Green opens with sensational petitgrain, which leads me to the question: where does Byredo obtain its fragrance notes? (Byredo Pulp’s citrus-fruit notes are also vibrant and seem to ‘percolate’ on skin.) After the petitgrain starts to fade, Byredo Green produces a rich green aroma, smelling like a cross between English boxwood and privet flowers. Honeysuckle, or its typical chemical “re-creation,” is certainly discernable and Byredo Green’s mid-development reminds me of Gobin Daudé Sous Le Buis (discontinued) mixed with Annick Goutal Le Chèvrefeuille. Byredo Green’s base notes smell of milky green almonds and the lightest, softest, almost-powdery musk. Green fragrances often ‘give up the green’ pretty quickly, but Byredo Green keeps the green accords going a long while. I’d classify Byredo Green as a ‘green-floral’ but it’s not too feminine for a man to wear; it has good lasting power and “quiet” sillage.
Due to its high price and large size (100 ml of Eau de Parfum is $195), I was hoping Byredo Green would not appeal to me. Unfortunately, Byredo Green is great. What’s worse: it has invaded my consciousness at a time when I get weak-in-the-knees happy and lose all will power — spring is in the air. For buying information, see the listing for Byredo under Perfume Houses.