A lot can happen in a year.
It's already damn near the end of April, and I keep thinking to myself, "where has this year gone?" It barely seems like anything has happened since the new year started, but then I think back to what I was doing a this time last year and realize that, yea, a lot has changed.
I used to change my fragrances seasonally, John Varvatos in the autumn and winter, Marc Jacobs in the spring and summer, proving that I have always had impeccable taste. These days, I tend to wear something different every day depending on what volatile mood I happen to be in at the moment. They still tend to be warmer and spicier for the colder months and a more fresh and sparkly for the warmer seasons, so I guess I am still switching my scents by the season, there's just more of them to choose from now.
It's no secret that scent and memory are very closely tied (you knew this was coming) and some small part of me is suspicious that I no longer want any one particular scent to be tied to too closely to a specific time in my life, in the same way that I hesitate to write anything too specific to my life at the time. Even if it's a good thing, or maybe especially when it's a good thing. I can't feel something good without feeling something bad to balance it out. The better something feels, the more fragile it is, and more likely it is to fall through. The less reminders I have to bring me back to a certain moment and break my heart all over again, the better. It's probably not the healthiest when my idea of self-preservation is to downplay my own real happiness in the moment in order to shield myself from pain that may or may not happen in the long run, but I guess self care is different for everyone.
What was I saying about not getting to personal? OMG
Ah yes, so, seasonal fragrances. Not the most groundbreaking idea I suppose, but no one wants to be smothered by a heavy patchouli sandalwood situation while they're sunbathing on the beach in hundred degree temps. Hell no! You want to smell like sunscreen and wine coolers! Don't lie.
Dasein is a line of hand-blended fragrances made in Los Angeles inspired by the four seasons.
I liked the idea from the jump, but as it turns out, I really like the fragrances, too! Some present themselves as a more universal interpretation of the scent of a season, and some feel like a more specific recreation of someone's memory of what a certain season was like for them.
Autumn is austere as it is approachable. Cedar and incense are bossy and make their presence known right away. The pair hits you almost like your grandpa's aftershave, not in the cold, metallic way, but in how it cuts through your olfactory sense like a hot knife, like nothing else exists within two feet of him except that scent.
Autumn quickly warms up, and when it does, it transforms. Notes of amber, coffee, and cinnamon begin to rise off your skin and when they do, the real magic begins. The warm and sweet gourmand notes help to take the edge off of the scent and bring the autumn theme together. The cinnamon is put on display, smelling extremely true to life, not just a mere idea of the spice. Actually, the cinnamon smells so lifelike that it almost translates to a black pepper? It doesn't, but in the same way peppercorns are unmistakable in a fragrance, this note smells straight out of the spice cabinet.
What does winter smell like? NOTHING. Winter smells like the inside of my car with the heat on full blast while I grit my teeth and curse my existence for not having good god damn sense to move away from the midwest during the winter.
I wasn't crazy about the idea of this scent, because no one wants to smell like winter, especially in seasons other than winter. Dasein's version of the season, though, is shockingly enjoyable during any time of year.
Instead of opting for notes that could simply represent the cold, like pepper, ozone, and incense, or notes reminiscent of a holiday by the fireplace like pine and cinnamon, Dasein's Winter paints a picture of a crisp, cold November day in the snow.
It brings together pine, bergamot, spruce, and lavender absolute for a full, fresh scent that is surprisingly sweet.
The pine and spruce are right where you'd expect them, but the lavender absolute is the big stand out here, making for a sweet heart that makes itself more pronounced throughout wear, softens the green edges of the pine, and gives the scent longevity. I'm not a lavender guy in the least, but the sweetness it adds here is not overpowering. It makes the whole scent fun to wear.
Where I thought Winter was going to be the greenest scent of the four, Spring swoops in to fill that void.
Spring is a fresh, green, mature, no nonsense fragrance. Vetiver and violet are the focus of the scent the whole way through, while rose and sandalwood are nice but subtle compliments. The tangy yuzu tries to balance out all of the woody and floral notes, while pepper grounds the scent with an earthiness not found anywhere else in the collection.
Summer is exactly what I want out of a summer fragrance, and a summer cocktail. It's takes a handful of distinct notes and blends them together so they compliment each other without overpowering one another.
Grapefruit and cilantro are the stars of the show, and happen to be two of my favorite scents to wear in the summer. They work together perfectly in Dasein's Summer. The sweet, tangy grapefruit bounces off the green, spicy cilantro for a punchy but balanced scent. Throughout wear, orange blossom, jasmine, and grass enhance the fragrance with a green, floral freshness that makes the two bold top notes more wearable throughout the day.
There are so many fragrances build around the idea of summer. You'll find that a lot of them are too sweet, syrupy, and tropical, which can be fun, but Dasein's version of summer is so fresh that it feels like all of the notes are unfolding right in front of you.
Do you switch your fragrances seasonally? What is your favorite scent for spring and summer? What are you wearing right now? Tell me below!
Tynan smells like summer on Twitter @TynanBuck.