Story of a scent
God I miss teen heartbreak. You’re lying there, sobbing out The Cure’s Just Like Heaven with a mouth that tastes like one of those wall-mounted public ashtrays outside major train stations, and it would all be quite desperate if you weren’t secretly relishing every second. But once you’ve worked your way through your desolation discography, finished the fags and pictured for the nth time how gratifyingly shocked he would be by your extreme weight loss, it’s quite hard to keep up the misery momentum.
That’s where perfume comes in. In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s what the folk at Dior were going for when they came up with the heartbreak accelerant and general romantic nostalgia prompter that is Eau Sauvage. My first real love (a Parisian model who looked like he’d actually stepped out of a perfume ad) wouldn’t just wear it but bathe in it, and when we split up, he was careful to leave a meticulously spritzed jumper of his behind as a pining aid (something I’ve always done with men since).
When the smell and the heartache started to fade, I bought myself a bottle of Eau Sauvage and, later, encouraged by something Isabella Rossellini had told me when I’d interviewed her about how sexy men’s scents could be on a woman, I started to wear it myself. It smells different on my skin but, still now if I walk past a man wearing Eau Sauvage, I can’t be responsible for my actions. Dior Eau Sauvage, £52