Perfume fans have always known that scent can make you feel good, but can it help you concentrate? That’s the thinking behind the writer from new brand St Giles. It uses rosemary as a key ingredient, inspired by a clinical trial in 2012 that observed the smell of rosemary seemed to increase both speed and accuracy of mental performance.

Fine fragrance, it seems, can do more than just make us smell good. British perfumer Sarah McCartney, of 4160 Tuesdays, uses the stimulating benefits of coffee, as well as citrus fruits and herbal essences, in yellow, a scent from her new Our Modern Lives range. ‘I’m also qualified to teach yoga, and I made the scents to use in my classes,’ she says. ‘ I call them scents with benefits. They can change your mood, in a good way.’

Hermés, meanwhile, has just released its first oil-based perfumes, Musc Pallida and Cardamusc. Created by in-house perfumer Christine Nagel, they are luxurious and refined and their superlight oil feels wonderfully calming on the skin. Musc Pallida mixes relaxing, transporting musks with a gentle note of iris, while cardamusc pairs them with the invigorating scent of cardamom.

If you’re of a more spiritual bent, try Sana Jardin, which bills itself as ‘the world’s first socially-conscious luxury fragrance house’. Its perfumes, created by Carlos Benaim, include the meditative Sandalwood Temple, whose key ingredient has apparently been ‘used for centuries to open the third eye.’ We can sense it working already.

As originally featured in the April 2018 issue of Wallpaper* (W*229)