Master perfumer, Pierre Guillaume, riffs on the sparkling floral vibe
Powder, aldehydes, magnolia, ylang-ylang, pearwood, benzoin, vanilla.
PG 15.1 Hapyang by Pierre Guillaume lives up to its name of being both ‘happy’ and containing ‘ylang-ylang’. This is an easy to wear fragrance which is light, summery and pretty.
Hapyang opens with a sparkling sprinkling of aldehydes which dance across the surface of the scent like dust motes in sunshine. There’s a murmur of the fizziness of pear, but the aldehydes aren’t brash, dated or aggressive. When testing this, we pondered for a while if there was any metallic feeling in the start of the scent, but if there is, it wasn’t particularly obvious to us and the creamier petals of magnolia and ylang-ylang instead are given more prominence.
The initial phase of Hapyang is short lived, sharper than the scent becomes and more sassy in it’s edge, but pleasant and very much the sort of scent which would work well for a variety of daytime occasions: picnics, days in the office, or days tripping about in a sun dress. There is a general feeling of lightness, cleanliness and optimism about the way that Hapyang starts.
After the bright and sparkling opener, Hapyang does mellow and relax as the magnolia and ylang-ylang come more closely into focus. The petals of these floral aspects feel like they unfurl as the scent moves through its phases, which is a rather lovely feature.
In the heart of the scent is a very pretty and delicate picture that if it was painted would evoke a watercolour of a summer’s day. The floral elements are creamy, almost fleshy and there is a definite touch of plump succulence about the way that they wear from the skin.
Hapyang doesn’t feel like a really complex scent, nor is it one which feels challenging to decipher. Like many of the best things in life, and indeed many things that bring happiness, it’s simple, pure and uncluttered.
The base of Hapyang is warm and sweet with the resinous tones of benzoin and vanilla underpinning the florals. As the scent moves on again, the sparkly aldehydes feel like they come back to add a bit of glitter, and the florals become more powdery in tone which enhances this effect.
Like many of Pierre Guillaume’s creations, the beauty of Hapyang lies in two directions; firstly that it is beautifully balanced. Neither the florals, the aldehydes or the sweet base notes are out of whack at any point and Pierre seems to hit that sweet spot of poise and perfection with the grace of a well-trained athlete. The second factor is that Hapyang gives just enough of what it needs to to satisfy and doesn’t overdo or labour anything. This is a simple and uncluttered composition which shows confidence and craftsmanship. A lesser perfumer may have been tempted to shove in more, but would have ended up with less as a result.
The criticism of the scent, if there is one, is that this does feel like a path Pierre has trodden before. Still, if something is pleasing and it works, I can understand why you might want to keep doing it, especially given the delicacy and beauty with which he has managed to utilise the magnolia – it almost shines in its luminosity.
The other stuff
The longevity of Hapyang is moderate, lasting around four or five hours following an application.
The sillage (or projection) of the fragrance is also moderate, as it seems to project to a little further than hugging distance.
In terms of when to wear this scent, it really feels like the sort of perfume most suited to a spring or summer’s day, perhaps when the temperature is warm rather than blistering. It feels like a daytime scent predominantly and would be lovely when worn to a garden party, shopping trip, or even to the office.
Hapyang sits more towards the stereotypically feminine end of the spectrum, but of course wear it whatever, if you enjoy it.
PG 15.1 Hapyang is available from Bloom Perfumery London, where it is priced at £138 for 100ml EdP or £95 for 50ml.
You can also buy Hapyang from the Pierre Guillaume web boutique.
We were kindly given a no-strings-attached sample of Hapyang by Bloom Perfumery London.