Known for its cruelty-free ethos, pared-back stores decorated with vintage finds and loved by celebrities (including the now Duchess of Sussex), Le Lebo has recently opened the doors of its first Scottish boutique.
Founders Edourad Roschi and Fabrice Penot came up with the idea for Le Labo in Grasse, in the French Riveria and opened their first lab in 2006 in Nolita New York.
Within each unique store, or lab, shoppers can look forward to trying one of their core unisex perfumes (16 in total), which, when purchased, are hand-mixed on site to ensure total freshness of scent.
The collection also includes nine soy-based wax candles, body washes, massage oils and lotions, and an old school Americana-style line of men’s grooming products, which include a facial bronzer, beard oil and after shave balm.
But it is the perfume collection where the brand really comes into its own. Each scent, which include the heady Rose 31, summery Bergamote 22 and distinctive The Noir 29, are available as eau de parfum, perfume oil, liquid balm and solid perfume.
Labels are simple, showcasing only the main scent and a number, which signifies the number of ingredients. These range from the simple – Another 13 – to the more complex – Ylang 49.
Sticklers for recycling, like me, will be glad to hear that Le Labo labs offer a refill service when required, which comes with a 20% discount. Perfect for anyone that has often thrown away their empty perfume bottles along with the empty wine bottles.
Labels can also be personalised with purchasing a fragrance, making this an ideal spot when gift shopping.
Inside the Edinburgh lab, the walls – both wallpaper and metro tile - are stylishly distressed and products are displayed on vintage furniture, and on shelves above a retro sink, which can be used when testing out the products. Staff are friendly and knowledgeable (and won’t mind if you want to take a picture or video of them mixing your perfume).
The lab follows the same ‘Wabi-Sabi’ principle as the other stores. Despite sounding like type of sushi, this philosophy is actually a celebration of the beauty of the imperfect, impermanent and incomplete, which is why the walls in the lab look like a decorator left halfway through taking down the wallpaper in your Gran’s house – but in a good way.
For more information or to snap up your favourite scent, head to 46a George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2LE.
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