Just when you thought celebrity fragrances were dead, one of the hottest stars in music drops a debut fragrance. OK, so celebrity fragrances were never dead and actually, they’re seeing a bit of a resurgence and this revival of the genre is very much in the spirit of ‘we take this very seriously now in order to atone for our past trashy transgressions, OK’. I’m talking about the likes of SJP’s Stash (which could be niche, let’s face it) and even Katy Perry’s Indi, which is not your typical celebuscent either. So instead of every quasi-reality star and their cat launching a scent, real celebrities are doing it and they’re doing it rather well, which brings me nicely on to the subject of Shawn Mendes Signature.
If you don’t know Shawn Mendes (where have you been?!) he is a Canadian singer-songwriter who found fame through the social media platform Vine. At the time of writing, Mr. Mendes is 19 years old, has two platinum albums under his belt, literally millions of record sales, and if the concert I attended as part of the launch is anything to go by, lots of screaming fans. He’s also really handsome and he makes me sick. I joke, I joke! He is actually very talented (did I mention handsome?) and whilst I may have not been entirely familiar with his music before the launch I am now, and you know what? I’m feeling the Mendes vibe.
I’m not the only one either and seeing as he has so many fans, a literal army (#ShawnsArmy), it’s no surprising that Mr Mendes has launched a fragrance. The scent is inspired by Shawn’s Canadian roots, boasting notes of McIntosh apple and sugar maple. It’s an affable and easy going fragrance that was created to channel his “passion for artistry and music” into fragrant from. It’s a fragrance created to embody Shawn’s spirit, hence the name ‘Signature‘. The best part? It’s for men and women. Yes Shawn, check you and your inclusive fragrance game!
Top: Lemon Oil, Pineapple and McIntosh Apple
Heart: Frangipani, Sugar Maple Accord and Rose Petals
Base: Dulce de Leche, White Cedar and Skin Musk
Celine Barel (IFF)
How Does it Smell?
Shawn Mendes Signature starts out relatively sweet with syrupy fruit notes. At first it wobbles a little with a saccharine pineapple note that feels very comfortable in the celebrity fragrance territory (it’s a little bit ‘Britney’ I’ll be honest – never a bad thing, I love Fantasy). Still, it’s quite fresh and luminous. What’s more the deeper, richer, woodier, warmer and more gourmand nuances of the fragrance are clearly noticeable from the outset, hinting that this celebrity fragrance offers something different to the many others on the market, most of which seem to offer the same fruity floral style and not much else.
The most notable element of Shawn Mendes Signature is the sugar maple accord that sits at the heart of the fragrance. This is the link between the sparkling sugary fruits of the opening and the warm, caramel-like woods of the base. Now don’t be afraid by the sweetness here because it feels firmly in check and the general vibe is of golden, toasted sugar amongst accents that are drier and richer in texture. So yes, there is maple syrup, but Signature is far from your average celebrity scent sugar bomb.
The base is where all of the good stuff is lurking and much like Shawn Mendes, who stands over six feet tall, his Signature fragrance feels particularly solid in the dry down. There is an interesting woody thing going on that feels half gourmand and half woods. The overall impression is fuzzy with a nutty, hazelnut vibe and a skin-like heat that evokes the impression of roasted sandalwood (a rather nice image if you ask me). The dry down is really comforting and the good news is that it has good lasting power too – it’s like a long and warm, woody hug. Awww, thanks Shawn!
Now it’s time for the verdict on Shawn Mendes and his Signature. You know what? I like it. Despite the wobbly and slightly worrying pineapple start, Shawn Mendes Signature is a perfectly competent and enjoyable woody gourmand with warmth, sweetness and texture a plenty. I’ve worn it a number of times and it strikes me as the kind of scent that one can chuck on and not think too much about. I think it’s a lot better than it needed to be and I’m sure Shawn Mendes fans are going to love it. But it’s the little touches where this fragrance shines – it’s the guitar string on the lid, the on-brand shade of blue on the bottle (taken from his latest album cover, no less), the plectrum engraved with the singer’s signature, and the touch of home in the notes. It all speaks to a celebrity fragrance that has been created with thought and care. Which leads me to say very well done, Mr Mendes.
Shawn Mendes Signature is available in 10ml* (£10), 30ml (£23), 50ml (£31) and 100ml (£41) Eau de Parfum. *rollerball.
Sample, notes and quotes via Shawn Mendes. Images are my own.