Summer has most definitely slipped away, but there are some things I’m not quite ready to surrender; one of which being the scent of fig, which dominates my favourite bathroom products.
Rather than shelving these in favour of traditional ‘winter’ scents, overcast days seem like the perfect time to surround yourself with the musky, green aroma of sunny Mediterranean isles. That said, I think my affinity for all things fig comes from a much less exotic climate; my parents’ garden, where a sprawling fig tree provides the most incredible fragrance – and annual disappointment that their corner of south east England can never quite muster enough sunshine to make a single fruit ripen before it drops to the ground solid and green.
As far as affordable fig ranges go, I don’t think you can beat & Other Stories Fig Fiction range (now available stateside) for a fragrance with notes that have a little more depth than the obvious sweet and fruity heart. I have the hand wash and body spray, the latter of which currently lives in my gym bag. It doesn’t last a particularly long time, but gives me a figgy fix without tearing through bottles of EDP.
Another believable fig scent, leaves and branches included, is Korres Fig Shower Gel. Korres make my all time favourite body washes and I love the whole range, but I buy the fig scent in the double packs that are sometimes available. They feel really gentle on the skin and make the whole shower smell like a greek island.
Perhaps the ultimate in figgy scents, Diptyque Philosykos* is a perrenial favourite. I should add I’m not a fan of ‘fruity’ scents but Philosykos sums up what sets figs apart (apparently, biologically, they’re a ‘false fruit’). Said to be ‘an ode to the fig tree’, it pretty much nails it when it comes to capturing the fresh, pungent leaves, woody branches and milky sap of the fruit. Try layering over a sturdier scent like Escentric Molecules Molecule 01 for a woodier, more rounded fragrance for cooler weather. I also like it over a single spray of Comme des Garcons Wonderwood; the spicy wood notes blend with the green sweetness of Philosykos to make something slightly festive.
A final mention goes to Bella Freud’s ‘Ginsberg is God’ candle which I somehow still haven’t finished burning. Described as fig and tomato, it has a more prominent green note than Diptyque’s Philosykos which counterbalances the sweetness of the fruit. And of course the matte black votive is beautiful too.