We asked our contributors what tickles their olfactory organs. Fresh manure and frying onions, anyone?
Petrichor’s an ugly word for such a divine smell.
Lemon muffins baking in the oven. A frying onion. Not at the same time.
Tinsel. Every Christmas I can’t help grab it and sniff it like a mad woman. You have to get it right to your nose to get the full aroma.
I love the smell of creosote.
Thick felt-tipped pens.
Gabby Hutchinson Crouch
That smell you get straight after a heavy summer shower has passed. The top of a baby’s head. Fresh line-dried laundry.
The smell of my mum, which I’m pretty sure is her perfume and cigarettes. I accept a lot of her old clothes even when I’d look horrible in them because I love the smell.
Body Shop White Musk, Bonfire Night, the cologne my dog wears.
The sweet, sweet smell of bookshops. The secondhand section of Waterstones on Gower Street takes me right back to being a student in London.
Swimming pools, my dog’s snout and paws (I couldn’t place the smell but the internet says it’s Cheetos), paint, Thai food, tea tree oil.
Trevor’s smell is second to none. Some people say he smells like dog. I think he smells amazeballs. Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia genuinely makes me feel happy but it’s second to Trevor’s puppy smell. God he smelt so much like love feels.
And also my husband’s hairy chest crevice where I nuzzle my head every morning. Sometimes it smells horrid – full of lost food bits and sweat. I still like it though. Sometimes of aftershave, sometimes of drool, sometimes just of him. Best ever.
Smells from my childhood home… which can include hyacinths, roses, fresh ironing, bonfires and, er, manure. I grew up on a farm, see. I really don’t mind the smell at all. It’s homely and rustic and real.
Freshly roasted coffee.
I have a really bizarrely strong sense of smell. I was once woken up by the smell of a packet of Doritos being opened downstairs. My favourite smell is a clean man in a leather jacket.
The ocean. But not like a yeechy seaweed ocean, but one which is all crisp and salt-fresh. Or a secondhand bookshop, obvs.
Tomato plant leaves… weird, but lovely.
I don’t have much of a sense of smell. But I’m always happy when I smell ‘warm’. This can range from your favourite perfume to driving past a sewage works on a hot day.
I have a tiny occasional office in a musical instrument repair shop. The smell of violin varnish combined with the bread from the bakery next door makes me feel secure. And Sharpies.
The dog. He often stinks but it’s the smell of something that loves me.
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