New Balance just pulled off its most delightfully puzzling feat yet: perfume. Yes, you read that right. New Balance is now in the fragrance game, and their debut Distilled collection is anything but ordinary.
Forget your typical cologne names—New Balance opts for the straightforward “Original” and “Court.” But don’t be fooled by the apparent simplicity. These scents aren’t just bottled shoe aroma, though sneaker lovers (and anyone with a discerning nose) will undoubtedly appreciate the undeniable whiff of fresh kicks.
Think beyond a mere eau de toilette spritz for your wrist. New Balance Distilled is a dual-purpose olfactory adventure. Wear it on your skin, or use it to elevate your sneakers’ scent profile, transforming even your well-worn favorites into fragrant champions.
But there’s more to these concoctions than just leather, rubber, and suede. Australian scent experts Perfume Playground partnered with New Balance to craft something truly layered. “Original,” for instance, weaves in notes of “cotton socks” and “freshly mowed grass” for a nostalgic scent that’s equal parts cozy and invigorating. Dad shoes have never smelled so dad-approved.
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“Court,” meanwhile, takes a sportier turn. Australian sandalwood, patchouli, and juniper berry dance with hints of basketball rubber and hardwood floor, conjuring memories of gym victories and squeaking sneakers. As Perfume Playground founder Samantha Copland aptly put it, “New Balance’s Distilled fragrances are uniquely versatile: they can be sprayed on shoes to keep them fresh, but also smell beautiful when worn on the skin.”
Copland goes on to explain the clever link between the two scents. Both share a base of leather notes, creating a sense of continuity that sets them apart from other novelty fragrance ventures. This isn’t just a gimmick; it’s a thoughtful touch that speaks to New Balance’s dedication to quality and detail.
Sneaker brands venturing into perfumery isn’t exactly unheard of. Nike and adidas have their own fragrance collections, though they’re more likely to be found gathering dust on secondhand shelves than gracing necks and wrists. New Balance, however, is taking a decidedly niche approach.
Distilled launched exclusively for the first 100 customers at the debut New Balance Grey Store in Australia—a big deal considering the Grey Store’s global rarity. With under two dozen locations worldwide, and most concentrated in Asia, these haven’t just housed stunning footwear; they’ve become coveted sneaker sanctuaries.
It’s a shame, then, that access to these fragrances is so limited. But hey, even a glimpse into New Balance’s olfactory experiment serves as a testament to the brand’s current creative streak. Between zippered patchwork shoes, cow-print kicks, and winter-ready transformations, they’re pushing boundaries while maintaining their commitment to exceptional footwear.
If the world ever needed a New Balance fragrance, it’s now. And while we patiently wait for their inevitable deeper dive into the aromatic realm, let’s raise a toast (or perhaps a spritz) to Distilled: a collection that proves, once again, that New Balance knows how to drop the mic, and, apparently, the lid too.