I've had a few people ask for me to give my thoughts on the Christmas scents for this year, so here is an overview of the three fragrances for 2018 with my review. I don't think I've ever mentioned this before, but I am totally independent of the Jo Malone London brand and all thoughts are my own, and reviews are all fragrances that are owned by myself - I am simply a big fan of the brand!
Ginger Biscuit 2018 Christmas bottle. I thought I would start wit the earliest of the fragrances - Although 'new' for Christmas 2018, Ginger Biscuit was actually first released in 2013 as part of the Sugar & Spice collection. It is described by Jo Malone London as Just-baked Christmas biscuits. Spiced with ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon, melting into caramel. Butter-crumbly with roasted hazelnuts. Warmed by tonka bean and vanilla. An irresistible limited edition. Exclusively online and dazzlingly dressed. It became an instant cult classic and has subsequently come back to the Archive collection in the Regent Street Boutique. (It's here that I first experienced and went on to buy Ginger Biscuit, and is in fact the version I am reviewing here.) The 2018 Christmas edition is embellished with a gold lid and ribbon. A really stunning, classic look. The packaging is lovely, but wasn't tempting enough for me to purchase again. There is really little to add to the official description! It really does say it all - Ginger Biscuit is a tray of homemade ginger biscuits fresh from the oven. This perhaps doesn't immediately sound as if it's a wearable scent - But somehow it just works! Especially on it's dry down - Unashamedly gourmand, but somehow deeper than what normally springs to mind when you envision foody scents. Caramel dipped hazelnuts, lightly spiced with the warmth of tonka. The vanilla is a subtle caress, adding to the depth of the tonka rather than a sweetness.
That's very important to note here - Never is Ginger Biscuit sickly. The ingredients are beautifully balanced and evoke warm, fond memories of baking with Nan.
Orange Bitters - Left 2016 Bottle, Right 2018 bottle.
My 2017 Orange Bitters with my Ginger Biscuit from the Archive collection.
Orange Bitters has become ingrained in Christmas tradition, from it's 2016 debut in it's black diamond harlequin packaging, it's 2017 bright orange label to it's 2018 elegant gold, this fan favourite deserves it's place as a yearly Christmas release.
Described by Jo Malone London as The warmest of winter cocktails. Take a dash of sweet orange and a burst of ripe mandarin. Finish with a splash of bitter orange to reveal rich prune and a base of sensual sandalwood and amber. All dressed up for Christmas.
And this is exactly what you get - A fresh burst of bright orange, somehow frivolous with the hint of something more. The orange shifts, almost sour - A swig of an Aperol Spritz cocktail, the sides of the glass dipped in sugar, a slice of orange on the rim. The initial fresh burst is short-lived, the unfolding taking minuets, but it's absence will not be missed - The prune base is warm, fulled bodied but gives way enough for an orange note to peek through. But don't expect fresh now - The flirty opening has given way to a fully sensual warm woody base. The fruit is hinted at, but this makes this scent all the more sexy. This is probably my favourite of the Christmas Fragrances. I didn't buy this years design - I have about half of last years bottle left, and again although this years bottle is stunning, it was not enough to make me want to purchase again. (Though I'm hoping we see this again in 2019, as I will have run out by then!) I did however treat myself to the candle. I've yet to light this as saving it for December, but I am excited about filling the house with this decedent scent.
White Moss & Snowdrop.
My White Moss & Snowdrop with Orange Bitters candles, and a few other goodies I received on the night for the pre-launch event.
And new for 2018 - White Moss & Snowdrop. So far thoughts on this fragrance have been pretty divisive, so it remains to be seen if it will hit the heights of Ginger Biscuit and Orange Bitters and make a comeback... But there is something in me that thinks this Christmas Gem will be a sleeper hit...
Jo Malone describes White Moss & Snowdrop as A fragrant contrast. Snowdrop petals peeking through powdery snow. Greeting forest-fresh moss, iridescent under winter sunlight. A warm touch of golden amber, topped with a luminous burst of cardamom
I deliberated about buying this for some time... I was just not wowed from the initial spritz in-store, and even spraying some on myself I couldn't feel it was special enough to be a Christmas release. But as I was skipping Ginger Biscuit and Orange Bitters due to already owning them, and the fact the bottle is so gorgeous (Photos do not do the iridescent, almost pearlescent finish to this bottle justice) I gave it a go...
I'm actually so pleased I did. I wont lie - This scent still very much sits in the shadow of both Ginger Biscuit and Orange Bitters... But there is something slightly magical, if understated about this fragrance. There isn't much of a journey with this fragrance, though it does seem to pick up a spicier edge on me on the dry-down (a colleague at work remarked how I "smelt like Christmas" and we deduced I was giving off almost a cinnamon note) But what White Moss & Snowdrop does give, is a doorway into a vintage Christmas card - A classic Christmas scene - greenery just poking through crisp snow, with a subtle warmth of winter sun - A jolly Santa and his reindeer included!
Special mention should also go to Pomegranate Noir (Exclusive to John Lewis) and English Pear & Freesia (Exclusive to Selfridges), both receiving a gold glitter ombre bottle for Christmas 2018.