You owe it to yourself to look good
October '07

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb
In a marriage of concept and confection, Viktor & Rolf have shown dresses on the runway that practically explode with flowers (the two were working on their first fragrance, Flowerbomb, at the time), play music (with life-sized satin violins decorating their shoulders) or double as beds (complete with pillows). It's been a philosophy of extremes, but this three-tier holiday gift set of Flowerbomb goodies takes the cake. Ingredients include two eau de parfum potions, body lotion and shower gel—all tied with the twosome's trademark bows. It's reason enough to celebrate. $183, exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue (in-store only).
Nude, Fresh and Wild
While grass-sludge whatnot and dredged-pond suchlike have long been banished from today's all-natural beauty regimen, eco-conscious products are anything but luxurious. Until now. Founded by Bryan Meehan, the Willy Wonka of Fresh and Wild (the UK's version of Whole Foods), the Nude skincare line makes everything else in your medicine cabinet look like a big fat jerk. Every ingredient is non-toxic, the packaging is 100% recyclable, the company's headquarters are carbon neutral and every employee is audited to make sure they're not blowing smoke up you know what. We sampled, of course, and bring you the standouts. The gel-like Miracle Mask ($75, 40 ml) sits and ponders its lovely existence before disappearing into the dermis, leaving behind a gift of tingling, brightened skin. The Facial Scrub ($52, 75 ml) is all about tough love, exfoliating with beads of rose quartz. And if you're patient with the Hibiscus Monoi ($68, 200 ml), a moisturizing treatment for anywhere you please, the greasy baby-oil factor gives way to a glow that practically erases your pores. At Barneys in New York and Los Angeles (in-store only). —Liz Armstrong
Prada, Infusion d'Iris
Like the Iris of Greek mythology, a comely messenger of the gods who traveled on the wind, Prada's new Infusion d'Iris for women—the scent of the season—is heaven-sent. While we don't usually go giddy over flower-based perfumes, the essence of iris in this one is so ungrandma-like—because it's "corrupted" by vetiver and cedarwood, says its hands-on creator, perfumer Daniela Andrier—and subtly layered with Sicilian mandarin and incense that a gush is just involuntary. The eau de parfum is Prada's third signature scent, but the first to show the house's original crest (designed by none other than Miuccia's grandfather almost 100 years ago), positioned noticeably off-center, in the way Prada's collections themselves go to the edge. $90 for 3.4 oz, exclusively at Neiman Marcus through October, then available at Prada boutiques worldwide.
Lanvin, Rumeur Intense, Frederic Malle Outrageous, Calvin Klein Man
Who doesn't love an extra juicy dose of gossip? Enter Rumeur Intense, a concentrated and justly pricier ($95, 1.7 oz) version of Lanvin's magnolia-based fragrance that launched last year. Limited to 5000, the bottles—designed by Alber Elbaz himself—debut this month exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue (in-store only)… Perhaps even juicier, from Frédéric Malle—that maestro of fragrance—comes Outrageous! for Barneys Co-Op ($110, 3.4 oz, in-store only). Created by Sophia Grojsman (the in-the-know nose behind such iconic scents as Eternity and Tresor), the unisex brew takes notes of orange blossom, green apple, grapefruit, amber and cedar, and adds Caiprinha and clean laundry. How they managed to extract those last two, we don't know, but we don't mind smelling drunk and fresh at the same time… In the female-dominated world of fragrance, one doesn't often find a men's scent created without a women's counterpart. But the Calvin Klein man has come a long way. Thus, Calvin Klein Man—as an eau de toilette ($65, 3.4 oz, CK stores worldwide), aftershave, wash and deodorant—is a crisp, woody and altogether new standard for men that lives up to its minimal square bottle. —Robyn Dutra
After a bumpy overnight flight to Stockholm recently, we arrived at our hotel—the very grand, old-worldy Berns—completely wrecked and more than a little disturbed. We wanted to cut away the part of our brains that remembered what the flight was like, but wisely opted for a good scrub instead and headed for the shower, where we expected to see the usual sad goops in miniscule amounts. This time, however, we discovered an ample array of bath prods from Byredo, a minimalist new fragrance house we later learned has quite the cult following in Stockholm. We lathered, we applied, we rejuvenated, we rejoiced. But while (the very tattooed) founder Ben Gorham, a graduate of Stockholm Art School, achieves a clean, futuristic design and respect for ingredients, the scents are actually inspired by childhood memories. Take, for example, an eau de parfum called Green, a sage-based scent similar to one his father wore in the 70’s, or Chembur, which takes its spicy scent from a picnic spot in a neighborhood of Mumbai where his mother grew up. For now, it's hard to find the stuff outside Sweden, so we recommend making contact through the site. You'll be glad you did.