Wednesday, September 6, 2017

FRAGRANCE | Penhaligon's English Fern: Classic and dependable

halfwhiteboy - penhaligon's english fern EDT 01
English Fern is my first bottle of Penhaligon's.

Despite my penchant for fragrances, I still know very little about them, brands included. Case in point: my discovery of Penhaligon's, which I've never heard of prior to that time I walked into Adora in Greenbelt 5 and caught a few sniffs. I guess the fact that their fragrances are not as ubiquitous as the likes of Ralph Lauren, Davidoff, or Bvlgari explains my ignorance. But just a couple of spritzes and I already fell in love.

Penhaligon's is a very old brand, dating back to 1870. It's also been awarded two Royal Warrants that they proudly display on their fragrances's packaging. With such a wide selection available, it was hard to pick my first bottle. Eventually, though, I settled for English Fern.

halfwhiteboy - penhaligon's english fern EDT 02
Adora's no-tape gift-wrapping only adds to my purchase's premium feel.

The fragrance sports a very classic and elegant packaging--from the nice and relatively thick green box to the bottle's straightforward design, topped by a cap with a cute little ribbon around it. How the store wrapped it only added to my purchase's premium feel.

Even the label's typeface and layout harken back to the highly stylized and cluttered designs of yore. It looks old, yes, but my guess is that the perfumery house is simply embracing its being "old," or it probably just takes pride in its heritage. Penhaligon's English Fern itself has been around since 1890.

English Fern is a bit of a departure from my usual suspects of warm and woody scents because it's fresh and green. It starts off sweet with a slight sharpness to it, courtesy of its floral top notes, but which I don't find cloying at all. I do think it's a little linear, however, as there's not much noticeable difference in the drydown. But I did catch a faint hint of wood before it completely settled down. Overall it remains a fresh scent all throughout.

I have to admit that, much like its packaging, English Fern feels a little old and I don't think it will appeal as much to the younger crowd. That said, I guess my age shows. To some it feels like a generic fresh scent akin to aftershave but I'm loving it nonetheless for some reason. To each his own, perhaps.

halfwhiteboy - penhaligon's english fern EDT 03
Classic and elegant packaging.

Projection is strong in the first hour or two and gradually weakens thereafter, more so in cooler temperatures. But this one has staying power, and it instantly springs back to life at the slightest physical activity or exposure to warm temperatures.

In hindsight, English Fern may feel a little old and even too generic for some, but to me it's a dependable classic green scent that's perfect for warm weather but is nevertheless just as suited for cooler temperatures. Personally it's a great introduction to the Penhaligon's family.

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