Liz Earle's first fragrance, Botanical Essence No. 1. Courtesy photo.


If rose perfumes make you think of Grandma, a new scent set to launch this summer may entirely change your mind.

Founded by a former Woman's Journal beauty editor and thirteen-time book author, Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare is known in the UK for its award-winning use of botanical formulations and ethically-sourced ingredients.

And while the brand is beloved by Brits for its holistic skin care staples, Earle is taking her first step into the fragrance category with the launch of the 98% natural eau de parfum, Botanical Essence No. 1.

When we first sniffed the fragrance, we admit to expecting a floral sensory overload - as is the case with most heady rose scents on American store shelves today. But instead, our noses met a sprightly light floral blend, punctuated with damask rose from Turkey, light lavender from France, Italian bergamot and Indonesian patchouli.

Just as promised, the scent dried down and changed throughout the day, as it's meant to capture the elusive quality of a woman. We started out sweet, and slowly changed to a soft floral - and by the day's end, the scent had evolved into a woodier vanilla tone.

"It's amazing how much warmer and gentler a true natural rose smells, as opposed to the synthetic stuff which really smells nothing like a freshly picked rose from the garden. The rose absolute that we used in this blend has a sweet undertone, and is one of the most costliest fragrance ingredients in the world," says Louise Murray, PR Manager for the brand.

You can guess our next question. For $78, you get 1.6 fl oz of concentrated eau de parfum fragrance; not unreasonable for the market, considering the natural sourcing and exoticism of the ingredients.

We also happened upon a new lesson that we never learned in high school chemistry class.

"Heat and light are fragrance's worst enemies. You should keep your fragrances in their boxes, but most are designed so you can't get it all back together once you unwrap it. We specifically designed a keepsake type of box that you would want to keep your fragrance in," Murray says of the petite and beautifully lined box that cossets the bottle.

And we've discovered a little secret for impatient readers: if waiting until the U.S. launch in June is too long, you can already snatch up the new scent on Liz Earle's UK website.