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07-28-12 | Posted by

Kate Middleton has wowed the world with her enviable poise, sense of style and dry wit, inspiring young woman around the globe to emulate her every fashion and beauty move. We can now add fragrance to that list of Kate must-haves.

On her wedding day, the princess wore White Gardenia Petals ($150 for 100ML, $105 for 50ML) from British fragrance company Illuminum. Happily for stateside Kate fans, the brand is now available in the U.S. at Henri Bendel. This fragrance – a total knockout – is delicate, refined and strong all at once. It’s a pretty unexpected perfume for a princess in the sense that it’s quite edgy and sensuous too, with a top note of lily, which evokes a tropical seaside location. The middle notes of white  gardenia, muguet and jasmine are all white flowers, and the base notes feature deep amber wood.

Founded by Michael Boadi, Illuminum fragrances consists of 32 scents, each of which uses only 8 notes. The idea behind the fragrances is to combine clear and natural ingredients of the purest quality into a symphonic blend. Crafted in London, the Illuminum family has several fragrance lines including:

  • Vaporizer Fragrances: these perfumes comprise 16 scents in 4 families – floral, citrus, musk and oud. White Gardenia is part of the Vaporizer perfume family of offerings.
  • Haute Perfume: this is the top tier of Illuminum perfumes, comprising 16 perfumes that feature 30% essential oil concentration, thereby making each one a very intense perfume. Each fragrance – like the Vaporizer family – uses an edited cluster of 8 pure notes.
  • Illuminum Candles: these are crafted out of the most environmentally-friendly wax and contain 12% perfume oil. They burn for 40-60 hours on average.
  • Aromarizor: this is a sleek and elegant cube dispersing high quality oils into the air.

Some classify White Gardenia Petals as a fragrance for men and women, but with its floral and sensuous nature, I think it’s more likely to be favored by women. According to Michael Boadi, “The Illuminum collection is for those days when you are in the mood for something exquisitely simple and stylish” – two adjectives that are very Kate. The bottle and packaging are very simple and unassuming – pure elegance and very royal.

From my point of view, these perfumes are extremely refined and very “natural;” they are clean and fresh, with not a telltale synthetic note. They wear well too – a few hours after applying White Gardenia Petals, my pulse points were still beautifully scented. It’s definitely a scent fit for a princess.


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