4 December 2013

Jo Loves

Whilst we were tripping round the prettier side of town, we decided to check out Jo Loves, the new offering from parfumiere extraordinaire, Jo Malone. After selling the brand Jo Malone to Estee Lauder back in 1999, Jo moved to America to undergo treatment, before travelling around the world and deciding that she really missed formulating fragrances. She returned to London and set up shop a stone's throw away from the florist she worked at as a teenager, a short walk from Sloane Square on the very pretty Elizabeth Street. 

A flourish of colour amongst the magnolia stone, the shop is a riot of red with huge blossoms in the window and if there's anything to be said about Jo, it's that her branding's definitely on point. Inside, the set up is fairly standard with glass shelves groaning under the bottles of perfumes, candles, body lotion and gift boxes. My mum's a big fan of Jo Malone's Wild Fig and Cassis perfume so we were on the hunt for a future favourite here.

We were taken through the 11 perfumes on offer by one of the lovely girls. She explained that Jo herself is the nose so puts together perfumes that she finds appealing - with some of her fragrances containing almost 200 different essences to get them to that 'just right' stage. If I'm honest, I struggle to get on with the classic Jo Malone fragrances so I didn't know what to expect from Jo Loves. I prefer musky, sensual perfumes with lingering base notes of vanilla, sandalwood or tonka bean so the floral notes of Malone and Loves is just too overpowering for me.

Nevertheless, I was pleasantly surprised by the Green Orange and Coriander combination that was spicy and sexy at the same time. Despite the name, it's actually quite warm with black pepper and smooth with oakmoss rather than overpoweringly citrussy. It would have been a potential contender for the future, but the staying power was much shorter than expected. After a couple of hours wear on my wrist, it had unfortunately reduced to something a little powdery - this is probably down to the ratio of alcohol and essence within the perfume. At £95 for 100ml I expected a little more staying power but maybe the others fared better?

My mum narrowed her choice down to Pink Vetiver which draws on Jo's scent memories of France and A Shot of Oud Over Mango, with Middle Eastern heritage. Less floral than some of the other fragrances, they still pack quite the punch. We left the shop to head for lunch with possible intentions to come back but the lack of staying power meant that the new fragrances didn't quite tear my mum away from her Wild Fig and Cassis classic.

Jo Loves is in its first year, and the shop's only been open six weeks, so I'm looking forward to seeing what the future brings for the brand that's close to everyone's hearts.

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