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Recently launched as part of L’Occitane’s ‘La Collection de Grasse’ inspired by the eponymous french provençale town, is Mer & Mistral, a unisex Eau de Toilette.


75ml EDT – £49 from L’Occitane

L’Occitane describes it as “an aquatic fragrance with soft ripples of aromatic notes. Zesty top notes of lemon and mandarin give way to a generous heart of cypress, pine and rosemary, so emblematic of the Mediterranean coast” I describe it as “cheap pine air freshener, emblematic of the astringent smell of the mediterranean apéritif, pastis”.

Mer & Mistral disappoints in every way. From the description I knew not to expect a typical ozonic aquatic fragrance, but having subjected my olfactory senses to this, I dislike this ‘fragrance’ so much that I think I may actually prefer the smell of lynx/axe. I smelt none of the citrussy top notes mentioned, unless I mistook the pine air freshener note for what was actually lemon floor cleaner. This is even more disappointing because I generally like L’Occitane’s products and fragrances – I personally like the Verdon Eau de Toilette.

The bottom-line is unless you’re looking for an expensive household cleaning product, or perhaps need to gift a frenemy, I’d steer well clear.