There’s a quiet, peaceful revolution sweeping modern perfumery, a noticeable move toward more sophisticated, artistic creations. After years of fruity, sweet, young-style scents and fleeting trends that are here one day, and gone the next, consumers and brands have recovered their love for authenticity, a job well done, a view that perfume is art worthy of conservation and cultivation.
Niche perfumery has been important in awakening this new desire for higher-quality products, with history, more creative and artistic, which is encouraging consumers to select fragrances hampered by fewer commercial constraints, often creative follies that have been highly inspirational and beneficial to the sector.
Fragrance advertising has also had a role, with storytelling now more necessary than ever for connecting with consumers, who want to know the story behind the perfume, its inspiration, the origin of the ingredients.
Raw materials with a designation of origin
In fact, the source of raw materials has become an essential factor. Consumers are interested in how perfumes are orchestrated, their roots, where the components originate and if they are connected to their community: traditional aromatic plants like sage and lavender have crept back into the perfumer’s palette to give a sense of closeness and authenticity. Classic chords like fougère are updated with savoury, mineral and woody notes, giving rise to unique, modern, masculine chords.
White are back to women’s perfumery
This search for authenticity and tradition also explains the rise of white floral notes in women’s perfumery: tuberose, ylang ylang and sambac jasmine, enveloping, classic, feminine notes that languished for years, are back at the forefront of perfumery, this time brighter, modern, and transparent. They are found in major launches like Gucci Bloom and Gabrielle by Chanel. They share the stage with unfamiliar, exotic flowers like tiger orchids, hibiscus, tamarind flower, never previously used in perfumery that now shine as star ingredients that magic us away to faraway landscapes, enveloped in exoticism and mystery.
At the other end of the scale, local ingredients give us a connection to the community: aromatic plants such as lavender or rosemary, and vegetables like rhubarb or carrot, are back because our connection to the land, to something less artificial and more authentic, and to the sense of well-being that create.
Wood and authenticity in men’s perfumers
Men’s fragrances are also searching for authenticity, resulting in perfumes dominated by woody and balsamic notes. Wild and rustic, vetiver and cedar add the woodiness, and blended with the balsamic notes of laudanum and fir, they give natural, robust men’s fragrances with real presence.
Salty, mineral, exquisite aromas are the rising trend that counterbalances all this. Seaside, aquatic chords with sophisticated seaweed, minerals, touches of salt and ambergris, offer elegant, distinguished freshness.
Finally, unisex chords are proliferating in many olfactory compositions. Coffee, a masculine feature, is now a dominant ingredient in women’s perfumes. The line between men’s and women’s fragrances will fade in years to come.
Lastly, other formats are appearing in the market to please the millennials, a generation that dislikes classic formats and expects to find its favourite fragrances in previously unforeseen products. Haute perfumery is available in convenient solid format and in body sprays, ready to apply at any time, and select and niche scents will come in the form of home fragrances, fabric softeners and other daily products to become part of the fragrance storytelling consumers want.