Pretentious new unisex perfume will literally make you smell like Oxford

This fragrance ‘tells a story over time’

Heady oriental oils: bergamot, amber, oud and vanilla mixed with fresh notes of basil and galbanum. This is the scent of Oxford University, according to master perfumer and Lady Margaret Hall graduate, Ruth Mastenbroek.

Eager to revisit her glory days as a student in the 1970s and after three years in the making, enthusiastic grandmother Ruth is now eager to share the unique scent with the world.


Who doesn’t want to smell like this

In an interview with Oxford Today, she revealed her inspiration behind the new fragrance. Oxford, she hopes, is a scent that captures the thrill of leaving home for university and entering a new, unknown world for the first time.

She said: “That breakthrough moment of being able to express yourself: what’s out there, what am I capable of that I didn’t even know existed? You’ve got a lot of challenges and you’re on your own.

“Making the perfume, I was thinking of something raw and unrefined; that moment of discovery and bold steps forward – for me that was a feeling that I wanted to capture and translate. Then, when I added the sweet notes, I was thinking of the safety net of your family which you have when you’re young.”

The scent of an awakening. Photo: Ruth Mastenbroek via Facebook

The scent of an awakening. Photo: Ruth Mastenbroek via Facebook

Although, she said, people are “intrigued” upon learning of the scent Ruth said the scent is important to her from her time at Oxford because “perfumes tell a story over time.” On her website, she describes the unisex fragrance as being: “The scent of an awakening, the discovery of life’s extraordinary adventures.”

Elegant Ruth studied Chemistry at Oxford, and then perfumery around the world, she created scents for Jo Malone and Jigsaw. After becoming President of the British Society of Perfumers she set out on her own in 2010, mixing blends in her home laboratory in Beaconsfield. Oxford is her third perfume and took three years to develop.