I’m writing this in a haze of Juniper Breeze. When Bath & Body Works announced that it was bringing back some of its classic scents this summer—including my own favorite from the ’90s—I hit my local store on the first day, worried (needlessly) that there’d be some Lilly Pulitzer for Target-type ugliness and I would go home without “the fresh scent of evergreens in a meadow breeze with notes of juniper leaves and dewy musk.”
OK, I couldn’t have told you before I read that product description what Juniper Breeze was actually supposed to smell like. To me, it’s more “the fresh optimism of your mid-20s with notes of a new freedom and confidence.” As soon as I got home and doused myself with Juniper Breeze body spray, I felt the ghost of my mid-’90s self. It was my own little Proustian moment, bought at the mall.
There’s a catch to this nostalgic joy, of course. I get to inhale this sweet little scent that I thought I’d never smell again and savor all that it evokes. But I know that the more I wear it now, at 45, the more it will lose its time-traveling magic.
I’ll take the trade-off though. For now, Juniper Breeze recaptures lost summers for me. Maybe it, or one of the other resurrected Bath & Body Works fragrances, brings back some of these same things for you too.
1. Your college best friend visiting
2. Dawson’s Creek
3. Hype Williams music videos
4. Actual CDs…
5. …of Sister 7, Fastball, Spice Girls, Smash Mouth and Sophie B. Hawkins
6. Drawing fashion inspiration from Shalom and Amber
7. Maxi skirts
9. The swing-dancing moment
10. Significant time investments in getting ready…
11. …even for work
12. The pet you had then
13. Waiting to Exhale
14. Being unreachable sometimes
15. Starting to hear about Y2K…
16. …and figuring maybe you shouldn’t worry about retirement till they get that all figured out
17. Ordering from the actual, paper Victoria’s Secret catalog
18. The hand-wringing indecision of selecting the perfect first couch
19. iMac G3s
20. Searching the Web with Yahoo!
21. Buying a book on Amazon
22. Getting that first non-entry level job…
23. …and its glorious first paycheck
24. The short haircut you now realize didn’t remotely channel Winona, Drew or Gwyneth
25. Knowing your friends’ Bath & Body Works favorites as well as you know your own