All about: Aesop Othertopias

I have been a long time wearer of Aesop’s Marrakech fragrance, both in its original incarnation and as the heavenly Marrakech Intense, which was the most beautiful tweak on the original. Marrakech Intense was created in collaboration with revered French perfumer Barnabé Fillion, and their intention was to develop a variation of the original theme, but one that remained true to its original inspirations – the sights, scents, colours and culture of Morocco.
I didn’t think the brand could create a fragrance equally as sublime, then they released Hwyl Eau de Parfum in 2017, and once again I was instantly besotted. A unisex scent inspired by the stillness and greenery of ancient Japanese Forests, Hwyl was created once again in collaboration with Fillion, who has said that his sweet spot when creating the scent came to him when he walked through a 300-year-old woodland in Japan. I’m still a wearer of Hwyl today, and yes, I sprayed it to my wrists when I actually walked in an ancient forest in Japan two years ago!

Barnabé Fillion

But I digress. Fast forward to around a month ago, when I was lucky enough to be sent Filion and Aesop’s newest creation – or should that be creations, as we have now have not one but three incredible and inspired new Aesop scents. And yes, I’m shamelessly obsessed.
The trio of scents, titled Othertopias, are each made up of scent triggers that help to paint a picture of another world. Named Miraceti, Karst and Erémia, they represent the worlds of the boat, the shore and the wasteland. And when you smell them, you can truly begin to build a picture of each place.
Aesop’s long-term fragrance partner, Fillion was once again on board, a perfumer who came to the art by way of botany and phycology— the study of plants and the study of seaweeds and other algae, respectively. His compositions push the limits of perfumery, making him the ideal person for the job of creating Othertopias in particular.

So what are the fragrances like? A warm and resinous ode to seafarers, Miraceti – AKA ‘The Boat’ - evokes water-worn wood and barrels of peated whiskey mix with notes of spice from the captain’s pipe and the enveloping voluptuousness of musk. It pays homage to the serenity and savagery of the sea, with its heady, swirling waves, oscillating horizon, and peaceful yet isolating emptiness. Filion has said the he had a vision from the beginning “of an image of the captain from Moby Dick, and its rage against nature, the force of will and surety that he would lose, but the inability to admit that nature is stronger than his rage”.
The second scent is my current favourite – Karst, a moody yet fresh fragrance reminiscent of cliffside vegetation and the seashore, with mineral top notes and stormy, metallic base accords. Karst - AKA ‘The Shore’ - signals a landscape sculpted by nature’s most skilled architect: water. The rhythmic coming and going of the tides creates a world in which inhalation and exhalation, departure and return, exist in a constant loop—where time is both accumulating and transitory. “Friedrich Nietzsche approached perfume and questioned ‘is the most perfect perfume just the smell of pure air?’,” Filion has said. “So this perfume is about the exploration of what is pure air. What is air, and what is the smell of air?”
Act III in the trio is the stunning Erémia, a vibrant and fresh fragrance with bright, citrus opening notes that prelude waxy florals, powdery musk and concrete after the rain. AKA‘The Wasteland’, it conjures nature’s intelligent force The echo of animals against decaying concrete, the drone of bees as they dance their thoughts, and the silent signals from root to root.
Beautifully unique and naturally unisex, this trio of scents comes highly recommended for a sensorial journey like no other.
Othertopias is available online and in store now.


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