Finding a fragrance you truly love is a pleasurable challenge; making it last on your skin can be a more frustrating situation. A few years back, Angela wrote a post about ways to make fragrance last longer, and it's still popular. More recently she reviewed a perfume "primer" named Canvas & Concrete, a spray-on base layer that helps the fragrance to "cling" and evolve more slowly. I tried Canvas & Concrete, but it gave me a rash, so I've been on the lookout for an alternative method to make my lighter fragrances stick around longer.
Vanacci, a British company that offers men's wallets and watches, has launched a line of "fragrance-enhancing products" including pendants, cufflinks and bracelets. These accessories all incorporate "Lockstone," a "microabsorbent" material that reportedly holds and gradually releases perfume so its scent lasts seven times longer than it would on your skin. I was curious enough to try a Lockstone item, especially since the products have a simple, minimalist look.
For my semi-scientific trial, I've been wearing Vanacci's Solaris Nebula bracelet, which happens to mesh easily with my usual wristful of silver bangles and black leather cuffs. Its shimmery deep-blue beads are the decorative part, and the matte black "planet" beads (one shaped like a mini Saturn!) are the Lockstone section. Following the directions, I sprayed the black Lockstone beads generously with fragrance, allowed the bracelet to sit and absorb the liquid for a few minutes, then put it on and went on my way.
I decided to test Lockstone with two of my most evanescent perfumes. First, I tried Guerlain Après L'Ondée Eau de Toilette, which Robin has described as "an ephemeral experience." Following the directions, I generously applied Après L'Ondée to the Lockstone beads, let the bracelet sit to dry for a few minutes, and put it on before leaving for work. I also spritzed my arm at the same time. As usual, Après L'Ondée's violet-and-iris beauty vanished from my skin in less than two hours. On the bracelet, however, it lingered throughout the day. It didn't radiate from the stone the way it does from warm skin, and it felt a bit "flatter," but there it was, eight hours later. Impressive. It clung to the beads for another two days, growing fainter and fainter until it was finally gone.
Although Vanacci recommends using a different Lockstone accessory for every fragrance, I decided to test the Solaris Nebula with another one once the Guerlain had finally faded away. I got out my bottle of L'Artisan Parfumeur Drôle de Rose, another lovely scent that refuses to stick around for long. Similar results: Drôle de Rose was gone from skin long before lunchtime, but the bracelet still held a muted scent of candied violets and roses for me to enjoy during my evening commute.
In both cases, the fragrance didn't smell quite like it does on my own skin — it felt a little more linear and "matte," if that makes sense — but I enjoyed being able to take a sniff of Après L'Ondée or Drôle de Rose whenever I liked throughout my day. Of course, I could also fill a tiny atomizer with the scent of my choice and re-spritz mid-day, and I do that sometimes, too. But if you want a lower-sillage experience, or you're not in a situation where you can re-apply perfume on a whim (e.g., most workplaces), an accessory like this one might be worth seeking out.
Vanacci Lockstone bracelets (£34.99 and up) are available through the Vanacci website. Lockstone pendants (£24.99 and up) and cufflinks (£24.99) are also available.