Last updated: October 10, 2016
Pros: Scents stay close to you and personalized to create own melody of fragrance.
Cons: Price point is slightly high, and scents are not easy to recognize.
We may all have different ideas of what smells good. Universally, though, we all like for our immediate area, whether at work, at home or in the car, to have a fresh aroma. Some folks burn candles, others spray air fresheners, and plenty douse themselves in perfume or cologne to ensure a favorable fragrance wherever they go.
All of those ideas work for most situations, but also have something in common. After a while, the pleasant scent goes unnoticed. Unlike sight or sound, the sense of smell can diminish over a period of time due to olfactory fatigue.
That's where Cyrano hopes to stands out, thanks to its inventive design, with a variety of aromas ready to keep your nose perked for hours.
The device, what Cyrano calls a "scent digital speaker," is about the size of a chunky scented candle you'd put on your mantle and costs $149.95. It comes packed in a leather-style pouch and a protective plastic container about the size of a standard container of coffee grinds. Along with the main gadget, there is a battery charger and a starter mood cartridge called an "oChip."
Armed with a review copy, I decided to see how Cyrano could, or would, adjust my mood with its melody of aromas. In order to get the scent party started, I had to download the iOS app. That process was quick and easy to follow. All I had to do was press the "on" button on my Cyrano and the app located the device immediately, giving me simple instructions to get going.
From there, I choose one of 12 different scents or "oNotes" to match my mood: a medley of awake, relax, or escape mixes that include vanilla, honeysuckle, lilac, lavender, pine, orange ginger, wingz (a scent I did not recognize…), peppermint, coconut, suntan (lotion, I presume), Venetian Bellini, and guava. There's also the option to create your own "melody." (The company claims the scents are safe, endless, and clean, but I have yet to locate on Cyrano's site what they are made from exactly.)
Each scent emerges from the device for 1:12 minutes—perhaps determined to be the ideal time to enjoy a scent before experiencing diminishing returns. Then there is a 47 second "breather" between scents, although the smell from the prior scent still lingered until the next one hit my nostrils.
I chose to start with the "awake" program, which launched with peppermint. While I have to say the aroma smelled good, it was unlike any peppermint scent I've inhaled before. I had the same sensation with each scent: they smelled fine, some better than others, but none exactly as I would have expected. Put it this way, I couldn't pick any of the scents out of a lineup if I were part of an olfactory crime case.
To better hone in on my sniffing skills, I decided to play one of the games on the app: Cyro Scent. Given four scent options for each question, the game guided me to press play where one of four aromas came piping out of the device. I answered two of four questions correctly, and they were lucky guesses. Normally, I am pretty sure my nose is in working order and have no issues with my sense of smell in other situations. Perhaps each scent should play for longer than the 1:12 in order to have time to fully enjoy and immerse in the aroma.
Cyrano also allows you to create a mood melody, and then send the combo to a friend through the app. The scents are paired with a video on the app so they travel through each scene: kind of like a scent-o-gram.
Living in a studio apartment, I found Cyrano worked well for me, as the scent doesn't travel far beyond a small space. The founders actually imagine the device working in a car for a commute, which I can see, along with potentially placing Cyrano on a nightstand for some scented sleep time.
As for the cost, though, $149.95 is definitely an investment. Each cartridge will need to be eventually replaced, and comes in at $19.95 a clip. Still, with designer candles priced at $40 and above, Cyrano may actually be a longer-lasting option. I'd like to see their scents get more specific—and true to their natural form—but can envision Cyrano taking off as a go-to fragrance device for those looking for some scented variety to their personal space.