COMPANY | Ayala Moriel Parfums
NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Grin
NOTES | Agarwood (Oud), Boronia, Galbanum, Green Peppercorn, Jasmine Grandiflorum, Oakmoss, Rose Otto (Turkey), Vetiver, Violet Leaf
As somewhat of a fragrance junkie, I love a lot of different genres of perfume. From week to week I will go from favoring gourmand scents to florals and orientals. With well over thirty fragrances crowding my dresser, I am not the type of girl to have just one signature scent and I can appreciate almost any type of perfume. However, if I absolutely had to choose a favorite, I would have to go with chypres. Fresh, green, earthy aromas have always appealed to me, reminding me of the smell of the rain-soaked forest floor, cut grass, and dewy flowers. I’m from British Columbia and, although it might be a cliche, scents that are reminiscent of nature – the salty ocean waves, crisp coniferous trees, and damp moss – are innately comforting to me and send me to my olfactory happy place. Grin, a delightful chypre fragrance by Vancouver perfumer Ayala Moriel (one of my absolute favorite perfumers), encapsulates everything I love about chypres. A few other favorite chypres of mine, also from Ayala, are Ayalitta and Rainforest.
I have a solid version of the scent ( a gift from Ayala from when I was working with her) and I keep it in my purse for when I need a little pick me up. All fragrances change as you wear them and adapt to your body chemistry but I find that is especially the case with natural essential oils. When I first dab Grin on I find it to be very green and earthy (as promised) with just a hint of spiciness, likely from the green peppercorn, vetiver and agarwood. As the fragrance continues to bloom on my wrist (no pun intended) a soft bouquet of florals become prominent, with notes of Turkish rose, jasmine and boronia leaving a delicate trail on my skin (boronia is the star of the show, at least on my skin). The scent stays true to its chypre roots throughout the scent and the oakmoss and violet leaf keep the fragrance crisp and green throughout the entire experience.
Grin is a perfume from Ayala’s vintage collection and as far as I know is not made in large quantities anymore. The benefit of this is that if you choose to order it, you can bet that few people will be walking around with the same scent. It’s a special fragrance. It’s romantic with a vintage vibe that is utterly elegant and refined. It feels like a fragrance you would find tucked away in someone’s jewelry box, a gift from a past lover that was made especially for them. It’s never overpowering and very intimate. It’s the kind of fragrance that you smell when you lean in for a hug or kiss and that you would associate with a loved one. It’s a favorite of mine that I wear often and I know that when I eventually run out, I will have to order it. I have quite a few of Ayala’s other fragrances (Zangvil, Orcas, Roses et Chocolat, Charisma, Dreaming Parallel, White Potion, Ayalitta, and Immortelle Amour) but Grin is an especially treasured one for me.
If you love chypres, classic florals, and fresh green fragrances, Grin is one scent that you need to try. It’s beguilingly romantic and elegant enough to wear to formal occasions but soft and fresh enough to wear every day. It’s the perfect light scent for summer and one that I wear year round. It’s a beautifully scented ode to fresh flowers and summer greenery.