Why Byredo's Mixed Emotions Perfume Is Worth It

Basically, therapy in a bottle.

Worth it, mixed emotions
(Image credit: Design by Morgan McMullen)

Welcome back to Worth It, a bi-weekly breakdown of the new beauty products I’ve tested and adored: I’m talking that drain-it-to-the-bottom-and-tell-my-friends-I’ve-found-The-One kind of love. If it's featured here, consider this my permission to splurge on it. Read on for the product you don’t want to live without, and catch up on the latest Worth It breakdown here

The Promise

The newest fragrance to join Byredo's olfactory collection is made up of a mix of conflicting scent moods. There's warmth, a touch of sweetness, and some hints of dark wood. Ben Gorham, the genius mind behind Byredo's creations, wanted this fragrance to encapsulate the times we're in, with all the highs and lows it brings. With notes of bright bergamot, soothing papyrus, violet leaves, and earthy maté, to name a few, this perfume is the perfect metaphor for our times, combining comfort, a little malaise, and whiff of spice.

Why I'm Obsessed

It's no secret that this year has been tumultuous, to say the least. With stress at an all-time high, I've been looking at bright spots in my life a lot differently than I used to. A year ago, having a great weekend, filled with friends and activities, would be something to cheer about. Now, putting on real pants instead of pajamas feels like a Tweet-worthy accomplishment. And that's where scent comes in. Like many of us, I haven't kept up with my beauty routine the way I used, pre-pandemic. To avoid feeling drained and lazy all day long, I've been using a spritz of fragrance in the morning to make me feel like more put together, even a little bit fancy. I'm a big Byredo fan, and when I heard the brand was putting out a perfume to honor this chaotic year, I knew it was going to be a show-stopper. Mixed Emotions? Well, that sounds like me.

To be totally honest, at first sniff, this perfume didn't really do it for me. The initial hit was too intense, and carried a hint of something that was reminiscent of tobacco, which isn't my speed. But, after a few minutes, the scent relaxed into something warm and familiar—probably that undertone of black tea that reminds me of my morning ritual—and I found myself dying to reapply it. The juxtaposition of distaste followed quickly by enjoyment brought back so many memories of "normal" life. How many times did I kick myself for making plans, reluctantly showing up, but then completely enjoy myself by the end of the night? Over the past few weeks, as I've continued to use the fragrance, this bottle has landed on my bedside table rather than my designated perfume shelf—a true sign that I'm obsessed. I give myself a light douse before bed, and again when I wake up, and I swear it helps me sleep better. It's comforting to know that even when everything feels uncertain, this little bottle of memory juice will help me recall that even when things don't feel (or smell) good at first, down the line, they might just bring me some much-needed, unexpected joy.


bobbi brown beauty around the clock

(Image credit: Hanna Varady)
Tatjana Freund

Tatjana Freund is a Beauty Commerce Writer, covering makeup, skincare, and haircare products and trends. She's a fan of vodka tonics and creepy Wikipedia pages.