- Scent: 20/20
- Quality: 20/20
- Aesthetics: 17/20
- Longevity: 20/20
- Value: 14/20
- TOTAL: 91/100
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There’s regular perfume—and then there’s French perfume. The country’s love affair with fragrance has a storied history that dates back to 1533, when Italian noblewoman Catherine de’ Medici married King Henry II and reportedly took a liking to scented gloves, sparking a new trend in perfumery in the region. Needless to say, its perfumers are masters of the craft by now, and any scent to come straight from its capital is bound to be promising. Enter: Béatus, a brand-new Parisian fragrance line inspired by nature and all its whimsy.
Having launched earlier this month, the collection consists of six distinctive, unisex scents (three of which feature more masculine undertones) that take their aroma cues from the forest or a French garden (think florals, such as rose and orange blossom, wood and fruit). I tried out the three more feminine eau de parfums—Gardens, Giverny and Alhambra—to see if they were really worth the hype—and the $180 price tag.
Now, I am not someone who takes my scents lightly. Truth be told, while I’m always happy to try them out, I’m generally left…disappointed. They’re always *too* something. Too musky (Caroline Herrera Good Girl). Too soap-like (Marc Jacobs Daisy). Too faint. Too…“my mother” (Chanel Coco Mademoiselle).
In fact, for all my spritzes and rollerball buys, there’s only one fragrance (Gucci Flora) that I’ve stayed loyal to over the years…until now.
Choosing a fragrance isn’t all about your olfactory senses. Since it’s something you’ll use fairly frequently, if not everyday, presentation is important. Béatus keeps things simple and sleek—a hallmark of French culture—with a minimalistic glass bottle and label, saving the intricacies for the silver lined cap. While it won’t capture your attention in the same way that, say, the aforementioned Good Girls (designed in the shape of a high heel) will, it still looks great sitting out on a mirrored tray—particularly if you spring for more than one bottle, since each scent has it own unique candy-colored hue. For this, I give it a 17/20 as far as aesthetics are concerned.
Now for the pièce de résistance: The actual scent. To say that I am obsessed with this perfume would be a monstrous understatement. While each one is unique (with Gardens, you’re getting a spicy rose base complemented by jasmine, heliotrope and fresh fruits besides; Alhambra, orange blossom, neroli and honey; and Giverny, rose and white florals surrounded by a creamy sandalwood), they all share that certain je ne sais quoi that seems to effortlessly accompany all things French. It’s musky, yet not overpowering. Sweet, but not so saccharine you feel ill five minutes into wearing it. Strong, yet not headache-inducing.
Of the three, Gardens is the lightest, making it a great pick for everyday wear when you want to feel light and buoyant. Giverny, on the other hand, is slightly heavier, but still subtle enough for daily wear. And as for Alhambra? That’s the one to bust out for a night on the town, with its Mediterranean flair. 20/20, all three!
As you might have guessed by glancing at the price tag, this stuff is not messing around in the quality department. And considering that it took founder Gabriel Reboh, Billy Busch (yes, of beer empire fame) and neurobiologist Dr. Jean-François Rumigny, who specializes in natural health products, seven years to create, it’s no wonder. The entire line is made in partnership with renowned perfumery Symrise from raw, sustainably produced materials that the company says are 22 to 25 percent pure perfume. Technically, that makes these parfums—a type of fragrance with the strongest concentration (20 to 40 percent) available, which consequently last longer than others on the market.
Béatus succeeds on both fronts—I still smell it as strongly coming home from an evening out as I do headed out the door, earning it a perfect score in both the quality and longevity departments. A pro tip? The brand recommends holding it five to seven inches away from your body before spraying it onto your pulse points, including your wrists, inner elbows, collarbone and behind the ear.
My one qualm with this line is the fact that it’s a little pricier than I’d like it to be. While it’s true that the bottles are on the larger side and the scent lasts for a good long while after spraying it, saving you from waste, I want to use it every day, which means I’ll be refilling it often (I can hear my wallet crying already). Value wise, I gave it a 14/20 for this reason.
All in all, this perfume scored 91/100. It's the only thing I've worn in weeks, and I'm absolutely dreading the day any of the three scents I've got run out. Sorry, Gucci Flora—I love you and all, but I've officially gone French, and I'm never looking back.