Perfume Review: Colonia Futura by Acqua di Parma

Colonia Futura

Colonia Futura is a perfume that comes with a loud message of sustainability. This is no surprise, of course, as over the last two years or so, consumers have been demanding more sustainability from their products, and perfume is no exception. There are two key elements to consider when thinking of sustainable perfume; the juice itself, and the packaging – Colonia Futura aims to address both.

So, how exactly is this new cologne from the historic Italian brand sustainable and eco conscious? Acqua di Parma are billing Colonia Futura as their “declaration of love for nature” and in that vein, it contains 99% ingredients from a natural origin. The packaging has also changed to fit this new drive of friendliness towards nature – the traditional Bakelite cap has been replaced with one made from recycled and recyclable plastic, whilst the bottle (excluding the spray mechanism, which can be removed) can also be recycled. Perhaps the coolest innovation is the label on both the bottle and box, which is fashioned from scrap dust from marble quarries. That’s pretty neat if you ask me.

OK, so I am fully on board with the above. I think perfume should be sustainable and its packaging should have minimal environmental impact. I’m totally here for all of that in a big way, so I’m not going to complain. My only bugbear however (OK, I am going to complain, just a little), is the fact that this all seems a bit redundant if not applied to the entire Acqua di Parma range, no? It’s great they’re doing it for Colonia Futura, truly it is, but I see no reason why these innovative packaging concepts cannot also be applied to existing fragrances in the range (of course, going all natural for the existing fragrances is both challenging and unnecessary, so I’m not asking for that). That would have a much bigger environmental impact and it would also make a more impactful statement too. Perhaps that’s on the cards in the future, or should I say “futura”…. (I’ll get my coat).

Anyway, on to the smell itself.

The Notes

Bergamot (Calabrian), Vetiver, Lemon, Grapefruit, Pink Pepper, Clary Sage, Lavender

How Does it Smell?

Whatever niggles I had around the specific-to-this-fragrance sustainability measures instantly disappear the moment I spray the perfume (yes, I’m shallow). Colonia Futura opens with a gloriously bright and tart wave of citrus, with sweet, dewy bergamot, candied lemon and sharp grapefruit. The pink pepper adds a fruity twist that brings a modern vibe to what is essentially, a very classic eau de cologne in terms of style.

Sitting at the core of Colonia Futura is a whopping slug of lavender, presented in all its aromatic, herbaceous glory. It does a good job of moving things rather distinctly into fougère territory, and gives Colonia Futura an incredibly handsome edge. So, where the original Colonia is an easy-breezy Eau de Cologne that feels best when one goes casual, Colonia Futura has a much more ‘dressed-up’ feel, almost as if it would find being paired with anything less than an Oxford shirt to be quite offensive.

As it develops, Colonia Futura becomes more herbal, more green and more aromatic. It has a mossy, earthy character in the base that is rich with vetiver and woods. There’s a slightly warmed/toasted (roasted, maybe?) feel to the herbs as the dry down gets going and it brings a welcome sense of depth and warmth. The whole thing really is incredibly pleasing to wear, right from start to finish.

So, what’s the verdict? I like it a lot. Whilst I’m not fussed whether a perfume is all natural or not (in fact, I prefer mixed media (i.e. both natural and synthetic) because many all natural fragrances smell like soup to me due to the density of the materials….) I do enjoy the naturalistic vibe of the scent. It smells like something Aveda would make and I mean that as a compliment. Wearing Colonia Futura I feel smart, elegant and free, which are good feelings to have. I think it’s going to end up in regular rotation.

Have you tried Colonia Futura? What’s your favourite fragrance from Acqua di Parma? Let me know in the comments below!


Colonia Futura is available in 50ml (£80) and 100ml (£110) Eau de Cologne. Body products are also available.


Images are my own. Review based on a sample (full bottle) of Colonia Futura gifted by Acqua di Parma. I was not paid for this review and Acqua di Parma have had no say in the content.