Candy Crush: Byredo Kabuki Perfume

Candy Crush: Parfum Kabuki by Byredo
Candy Crush: Parfum Kabuki by Byredo

I’m always crushing on something scented or other. My nose knows no limits. Candy Crush is where I showcase the beautifully scented things I’m crushing on right now so you can hopefully develop a crush too.

There are many ways to wear perfume that sit outside the conventional spraying and dabbing of alcohol-based scent. For years one has been able to splash on an alcohol-free aftershave or even rub on a solid perfume. There are even shower gels and body lotions that one can use to extend and intensify a fragrance. So brands are always trying to find new and exciting ways to wear scent and cult Swedish niche brand Byredo may just have come up with one of the coolest, which earns them the honour of being this week’s Candy Crush!

Powder perfumes are nothing new, but they are out of fashion. Historically, many brands offered scented talcum powders or makeup powders that could be puffed on with reckless abandon, but these products sort of fell out of fashion post the drama of the ’80s. Byredo however, has decided that powder perfumes need a revival and they are bringing this method of perfuming oneself into the latest century in an innovative way with their Kabuki Perfume. Fusing the idea of makeup brushes and contemporary perfume, these perfumed brushes allow one to apply a soft powder scent in a more subtle way. Colour me intrigued!

2017-07-31 01.43.35 (1)
A New Way to Wear Fragrance

As the name may suggest, Byredo’s Kabuki Perfume takes its inspiration from the Japanese style of theatre and specifically the brushes used by Kabuki actors to apply their makeup. It adds a new layer to the ritual of applying perfume, making it softer, more tactile, and more intimate. Whilst the theatre may be the inspiration, the Byredo Kabuki Perfume is not big and showy, in fact it’s quite the opposite and it makes for an entirely more subtle way to wear scent.

So how does it work? Well, currently you can pick a Kabuki perfume in three of Byredo’s iconic scents, including Blanche and Bal d’Afrique. I went for Gypsy Water because it smells like an airy lemon pudding which, interesting scientific fact here*, is the nicest smell in the world. The sleek black applicator is simple to use, all one does is remove the cap, draw back the protective cover and press the button at the bottom a few times to release the powder. One is then free to brush wherever the heck they want and the Kabuki Perfume will leave a very fine white powder on the skin that brushes in with ease. I opted to contour the heck out of my beautifully round face whilst also brushing up my arms because I was feeling extra fancy.

Brush On
Brush On

I’ve had my Kabuki Perfume for a while and I’ve thought long and hard about whether it would be something I would personally buy and the conclusion I’ve come to is that I would buy it, but not for me, due to the fact that it doesn’t deliver what I look for in perfume: i.e. a big presence. That may leave you wondering why I’ve decided to bestow the Byredo Kabuki Perfume with ‘Official Designated Candy Crush Status’, which is an actual real thing**, when it’s not something I would buy for me. Well the answer to that is that I think it would make a wonderful gift for someone who doesn’t like a heavy perfume. It’s beautifully presented and delivers a unique (and quiet) way to wear a fragrance, making it a must for makeup lovers and Byredo fans alike. As for me, well give me a Kabuki Perfume in my favourite Byredo powerhouse perfume, the opulent 1996, and I will be a very happy Candy Perfume Boy indeed.


Byredo’s Kabuki Perfume is available in three of its iconic scents; Gypsy Water, Blanche and Bal d’Afrique (£42/7g).


Sample, notes and quotes via Byredo. Images are my own. *not a scientific fact. **not a thing.