Blog post by Gwen

Vetyver Incenso – woody and resinous and elegantly virile

Just before the holidays, we decided to renovate parts of our house, so for Christmas, I was given a copy of ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ by Japanese decluttering guru Marie Kondo.

In case you haven’t heard, Marie Kondo is a consultant who helps her clients declutter and organize their homes, transforming them into spaces of serenity and inspiration. In the process, she helps them simplify their lives.

The key to the success of her method is determining whether each possession you have propels you forward or keeps you stuck in the past by asking yourself this question: Does it spark joy? It isn’t about what you want/need/should throw away so much as what you keep. The result is surrounding yourself with possessions that only please you.

I was doing really, really well. Bags and bags of clothes and books were taken to donation boxes weekly until I hit the perfumes. As I held each bottle before me and asked, “Do you spark joy?” I rarely answered “No.” If anything, this process made me go through stored boxes and re-discover fragrances that sparked much joy, like Vetyver Incenso from Italian niche line Farmacia SS Annunziata dal 1561.

Located in Florence, Farmacia SS Annunziata dal 1561 is an apothecary that dates back to the 15th century when it was housed in the Benedictine monastery of St. Nicholas. Today, the Azzerlini family owns and manages the pharmacy, making cosmetics, toiletries and fragrances. Vetyver Incenso was launched in 2012 in two concentrations, EDP and parfum.  For me, it’s the parfum that sparks the most joy and the one I bought for my husband.

It opens fresh and effervescent from lemon, grapefruit and bergamot, warmed with spicy, juicy ginger. It’s an exciting combination that gives to a heart of pink pepper, juniper, vetiver and frankincense. Pink pepper isn’t spicy; it’s rosy and adds a floral dimension to Vetyver Incenso. Aromatic juniper gives it a heady whiff of gin, along with a woodiness that is amplified by vetiver before a note of aromatic incense weaves through it. It all sits on a base of cedar, patchouli, ambergris and oak moss - it smells balsamy, woody, sweet and foresty.

The drydown is soft, resinous and woody.  It’s complex, smooth and refined – not rooty or dirty – and has an elegant virility that sends sparks of joy to all the joy receptors in my brain. 

I am happy to report that all of my decluttering has left me with lots more room for the things that spark joy – shoes and perfumes. I read recently that Marie Kondo has written a follow-up book called ‘Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up ‘with step-by-step instructions and illustrations for folding everything from shirts to socks. Folding shirts and socks? That doesn’t spark any joy for me, so I’m going to quit while I’m ahead.  

Check out Vetyver Incenso in our Shop.