I first learned about Ex Idolo through an Instagram conversation, which then prompted a discussion on the notes of this fragrance, notes which sounded exactly like what I gravitate towards. And while there’s much I appreciate about mainstream brands, I’m always excited to discover something new — Ryder, is all that … and more. Redolent, smoky, exotic, sexy, mysterious, and even a little posh, this is a fragrance whose sole purpose is to get you noticed. In the best possible way, I might add.
Matthew & Tanya Zhuk, founders of Ex Idolo
Ryder Eau de Parfum (CAN $165.00/30 ml) | There’s a Canadian connection here; founder Matthew Zhuk originally hails from Ottawa, although since 2011 he’s called London, England, home and has the business firmly based there. The fragrance comes packaged inside a deceptively simple brown box, nestled snugly inside a burgundy liner — the better to showcase it, I imagine (EDIT: I actually received this some time ago, so there have been some packaging changes since). The heavy glass bottle has a clean silhouette, the faceted stopper & label with its foiled lettering adds touches of bygone elegance, while the juice is a rich cognac shade. Inspired by the ambiance of exclusive gentleman’s haunts such as the St. James and Mayfair clubs in London, this unisex fragrance channels that smoky/boozy and *almost* illicit. Key notes include:
- Sweet Pipe Tobacco, Aromatic Esters, Resinous Amber, Dark Woods, Jasmine, Omani Frankincense, Olibanum, Tahitian Vanilla
Even though this fragrance may loosely be inspired by a traditionally masculine institution, as more and most of those places now accept women that recognition also seems to be reflected here via the addition of Jasmine. While this scent is firmly in the amber category, it’s a heady boozy scent that starts off smelling as smooth as the most exclusive whiskey. Within an hour of wear it begins showing a sparkling side, giving it an unexpected playful touch. The finish is moody and lip-smackingly delicious, displaying a soft incense-like smokiness that makes those around you want to lean in for more.
Even without reading what the inspiration behind the creation of this fragrance was, I still would have guessed it; there’s an old-world timelessness you immediately pick up with none of the mustiness implied. I love the warmth of the resins and the amber notes and while it’s blatantly sensual, something about Ryder makes me feel empowered — as though I OWN that gentleman’s club (and I would, too). Well within my wheelhouse, I absolutely have a “thing” for smoky, incense-like scents and there’s just enough booziness and vanilla here to keep these intense ingredients to ensure they all play very well together. Regardless, wearing this scent definitely makes me want to be very, very, naughty. But then again, I like spicing things up …
Visit www.exidolo.com for retailers
Kindly provided by Ex Idolo for my unbiased consideration