Diptyque Philosykos

The beauty of Diptyque's Philosykos lies in its simplicity - a vibrant, unique facsimile of a green fig. As someone who steers away from the gourmand and fruity scents, this was the most beautiful suprise when I first sampled it years ago - there's no jammy, sticky fruitiness - it's the green, dry, rough, almost unripe bounty of a sundrenched tree - a smell of resinous bark, the pulpy, pithy, creamy fruit, and the sunbaked rocky ground around it.

It's a green scent, absolutely, but there's no sharpness or acidity- it's sundappled and bright and soft, and transports me instantly to Durrell's wild Corfu. It's like a snapshot of a precise moment, and what a lovely moment it is. Some people detect a hint of coconut, and I do as well - but it's not a note so much as a texture - the rough, succulent outer of the green fig shares a shadow of a scent with the former.

Wearing Philosykos you're unlikely to ever be asked what your perfume is - it's too subtle and evocative to be instantly recognized as a synthetic fragrance - to me it suggests a feeling of place more than any other scent I've experienced, and smells its very best on salty, sunkissed skin. I tend to wear it in summer because of this, but I like to crack it open every so often in the depths of winter just to be transported to that grove of trees on the rocky hillside, the bright sun beating on my face, goat bells in the distance and the hot dust between my toes. Then I stopper it back up and go put my snowboots on, and slog through another winter, wondering why I don't just pack it all in and go raise honeybees and goats on a Greek island. I may yet.

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