The smell of trend and tradition

ARDA SAYINER @ardasayiner
ISTANBUL
Published 20.11.2015 22:34
Updated 20.11.2015 22:36
The smell of trend and tradition

Smells undoubtedly have a very important place in our lives. Especially the impression they leave on our memories is incredible. Sometimes a smell can take us to the past. Smell is an important factor for our psychology and brain functions as well. You can use the right fragrance for a peaceful night, relaxation and ease before sleep, for better focus and consciousness before a work day and for energizing your senses, cleanliness and refreshment. Fragrances work as weapons in hotels and restaurants for creating an ambiance and being remembered, as it strengthens the brand recognition significantly. Thus, many brands produce their own fragrances today. Although ambiance management happens to be a new concept in Turkey, such differences in venues become the reason for consumers' preference. I hope people like Levent Severöz, who is the very first ambiance manager of Turkey and works at the Bodrum Caresse Hotel, will increase this trend in our country.

On the other hand, when fragrances are mentioned in Turkey, our traditional colognes are often the first to come to mind. I want to write about a few local brands and entrepreneurs that have made these colognes more boutique. One of the most successful examples of the industry in this respect is Eyüp Sabri Tuncer. I recommend you visit the Karaköy boutique shop of the brand, which was created in 1923. It is a small, historical store, however, it has all sorts of colognes inside. It is so beautiful that one even might consider taking a photo. I particularly recommend you try the Altın Damla kolonyası (Golden Drop cologne). Despite not approving of the recent expansion of the brand in the cosmetics sector, I really loved the series of aftershave lotions with their retro design and variety of fragrances.

Another eye-catching cologne producer is Rebul. The story of the brand dates back to the pharmacy opened by Jean Cesar Reboul in Beyoğlu in the year 1895. The application of one of the very first pharmacists of the Republic of Turkey, Kemal Müderrisoğlu for a job in Rebul Pharmacy and the ensuing events carried the Rebul cologne brand to this day. Although they are very promising about the lavender cologne, I consider their Deniz (Sea) cologne their official perfume. I might even go further and say it is very close to the Aqua fragrance of Armani. As for the premium segment, Atalier Rebul Istanbul is quite promising.

When we take a look at the newer generation of cologne producers, the one that catches my eye is Ashk. With its design, durability and price, we can also categorize the product under the fragrance category. In fact, the brand has the most impressive cologne bottle designs I have ever seen. The leather covers on the glass are completely real and are adorned with healing prayers written in Arabic. The designs belong to the famous calligraphist Osman Yılmazer. There are seven different fragrances in total and each of them has a philosophical story as well. I love brands that combine fragrance with philosophy, spirit and belief. Congratulations to the creator of Ashk, Narin Akçelik, for producing such premium cologne. I am sure the product is going to be successful abroad as well. It might be a very unique gift from Turkey when traveling abroad.

Also there are a couple of Turkish cities famous for their cologne. One of them is Balıkesir. If you go to the Cologne Bazaar in the city center you can find a hundred types of cologne made of everything from olive oil to sage. They sell two-and-a-half tons of cologne each month. Mersin is also famous for its banana cologne. It is a kind of heavy but definitely something you cannot find somewhere else. Plus, you should try Isparta's cologne with rose. Light, refreshing and mystic.

Last but not least is the boutique fragrance brand Alaim-i Sema (rainbow), which represents transformation. The creator of the brand, Aslıhan Ekitmen, said the fragrance "is a magician that has the power of making people love a place, person or a product." Alaim-i Sema also offers room fragrances and fragrant candles besides cologne.

Likewise, the green tea and the fig fragrances of the men's wear brand Kiğılı are among my favorite colognes. In addition, the orange cologne that Paşabahçe produced under the Istanbul brand is ideal for those who love citrus fragrances. There are a myriad of choices, isn't there? We used to go to pharmacies to fill our cologne bottles in the old times. The pharmacist used to pump the cologne from a giant cologne bottle. Although I miss those days, my best advice is that you choose a cologne fragrance for your spirit and character this weekend in order to keep the cologne tradition alive.

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