Perfume is often expensive, but rarely natural.
Eden Perfumes are producing vegan and organic perfume without animal cruelty or chemical additives like phthalates. (In studies of rodents exposed to certain phthalates, high doses have been shown to change hormone levels and cause birth defects).
Eden now have two local shops: 69 George Street, Hove, and 69 Western Road, Brighton. I called in at the new branch to meet the founder, Jacky Moya.
Jacky is influenced by her vibrant Mexican-Spanish family heritage and her uncle's involvement in perfume wholesaling in Spain. She loves Brighton and has lived here for years. She’s also an environmental science graduate committed to sustainable ethical sourcing, so do get in touch if you are a local maker.
The Eden team will recreate your favourite perfume by nose, or you can match up some brands from a checklist, or freestyle around the testers to settle on the smell to swoon for.
I quickly found one like Fahrenheit. There are coffee beans to reset your nose for a break, as it can take some time, if you enjoy this sort of thing. I used lots of spritzing slips in my happy quest and my dog loved finding them in my pocket that evening; the perfumes are pet-friendly too.
Every label is tantalising. I chose a complex, heady concoction called 430 by the counter. The top notes are Bitter Orange, Calamus, Cypress, and Labdanum. The middle notes are Jasmine, Rose, Incense, and Cinnamon, with base notes of Benzoin, Vanilla, Cedar, Amber, and Agarwood (this is the Oud part that makes it so special), plus Egyptian Balsam.
Customers are responding well to the Eden range, at a quarter of the price they might ordinarily pay; refills are just £10 for 30mls, so you can really enjoy it every day.
It took three years to get Eden Perfumes on the high street and 95% of ingredients are sourced from Spain, with the exception of the best Agar Wood (from India) and Sandalwood (via Perth, Australia).
I like the way the staff are super-friendly here. The upbeat vibe of the premises is a cross between a cocktail or juice bar and the chill zone of a nightclub. It will be a delight in the summer, as they keep the temperature pleasantly cool, and even use LED lights in the north-facing shop so that the perfumes won’t degrade.