Beauty pampering

Beauty pampering

SINGAPORE - Wandering around the beauty floor in a departmental store or mall these days could land you some super freebies. While there are handouts and samples galore, some companies are upping the ante with treats like mini facials and fragrance consultations. Benita Aw Yeong checks some of them out and tells you about the hits and misses.

Penhaligon's London

What it is: Fragrance profiling

Where: Marina Bay Sands #01- 33/34

My take: The store exudes an air of luxury, with rich purple hues and gold, hinting at the royal clientele the brand has served.

It was a fact the British brand's marketing assistant, Mr Michael Ng, wouldn't let me forget - he kept mentioning the aristocrats and members of the royal family who have used it.

After giving my outfit a once-over and asking me several questions about myself, he proceeded to make conjectures about my personality, so he could find me the perfect match.

"What's your relationship with fragrances? I'm no mind reader, but you don't strike me as the kind who likes to veer too far from your comfort zone, am I right?" he asked.

"It depends," I said, mildly uncomfortable that someone whom I had just met for a mere 15 minutes was trying to suss out my personality.

Throughout the 30-minute appointment he recommended one fragrance after another, taking pains to explain the story behind each scent's creation.

After continual whiffs of five or six perfumes, I finally settled on two I liked. One, which contained peonies, and another, named Vaara, after the granddaughter of an Indian king.

Would I recommend this process?

If being enthralled by the stories behind each scent is your cup of tea, then yes.

Prices range between $210 and $310 for a 100ml bottle. The fragrance profiling can take place by appointment or upon walk-in.

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