The Diary of a Nose

They say you are what you eat and apparently the same goes for what you pour over – you write what you read. So I’ve been balancing out my Daily Mail ‘Sidebar of Shame’ sessions with something a little more high-brow, Jean-Claude Ellena’s, ‘The Diary of a Nose‘. A year-long look into Jean-Claude’s life as a ‘parfumer exclusif‘ for Hermès where he divulges his inspiration, formula and the processes that go into his vials of work. If he didn’t pen this book at the end of each day while slurping on a rather large glass of vino then I’ll eat my hat. Its thought-process filled verse makes for a relaxing read and sort of makes me want to crack out a glass of the red stuff for myself; and as a newbie to the fragrance arena I’m penning plenty of notes (and yes my pad’s getting pretty full these days with all my beauty-centric scribbles). It’s short, it’s snappy but the wordy pages make for a welcome substitute to my usual glossy reading.

I picked up my copy from Anthropologie where it was in the sale for a grab-and-go price of £8. Engaging, enriching and for the next week or so I’ll be nose deep in it. I’m sorry. I couldn’t help myself.


  • Carrie Ward

    Oh Anna, Daily Mail? Oh no! Looks like a good read will have to check it out. Another good book is ‘Perfume A-Z guide’ by Luca Turin and Tania Sanchez. I don’t actually own it but when I want to know something I try and find it as a reference guide (in my local waterstones)

  • Ooh this looks really interesting, I might have to get myself a copy!

    Louisa’s Notebook

  • I can tell this is a book that I’d just love. I was once slightly addicted to perfumes, and maybe reading this will bring the fire back! xx

  • Charlotte

    This looks like my kind of book, I absolutely love perfume x

  • Clare @ The Blossom Shed

    This sounds fabulous, just up my alley! I dream of working with perfume, it’s something I get so passionate and boring to people about!

  • Hi Vivianna,

    I just finished Jean Claude Ellena’s ‘Perfume : The Alchemy of Scent’, which I really enjoyed. I’ve been hoping to pick up ‘The Diary of a Nose’, so this was a welcome reminder! I’m a big fan of his Hermès perfumes, so it sounds like a must read; I’d love to know more about his inspirations.

  • Pippa Jones

    SOunds amazing sound definitely to check out!