A scent to remember
Even the most elaborate outfit is incomplete without the finishing touch of a fragrance; a slight spritz on the wrist and the nape of the neck completes the grooming process whether one is headed to a night out or the supermarket, you never know who you might run into in the cheese aisle.
Fragrance and attraction are linked and lots of people define memories based on certain scents, so it is essential that while choosing a fragrance one carefully make their pick.
There are plenty of bottles in the sea
Not all customers will be able to differentiate an Eau de Parfum from an Eau de toilette, or an ittar from cologne. An Eau de Parfum is not the same thing as perfume, a fact that most customers are probably unaware of. The defining difference in each fragrance category is the amount of essential oil concentration fused with alcohol (cologne being the lowest at 7% and perfume being the highest at 40%). Ittar is a blend of essential oils and extracts that are popular throughout the eastern world and in more recent times is becoming more visible globally. What sets ittar apart is the absence of alcohol, and most retailers of ittar also make bespoke blends for their clients. Regardless of what’s in the bottle, fragrance works hand in hand with the biochemistry of the wearer. That makes finding a fragrance a very personal process and the scent notes a person is drawn to is very reflective of their personality.
Depending on the time of the year and geographical conditions, fragrances can be worn depending on the weather and humidity. Most people like to reserve colognes with lighter notes for the day or for work environments, and full-bodied perfumes for the night and special occasions. Ultimately, the process of selection is intimate and includes not only choosing the intensity of the notes but also genre of the notes itself. More contemporary perfumeries are exploring the unisex fragrance market that leans towards fresh yet impactful combinations that offer a minimalistic modern feel.
Perfume Houses rooted in Indian heritage
For centuries, people from across the world have been drawn to India to source ingredients-jasmine, mogra, sandalwood are only few examples. In recent times, indie fragrance houses have emerged that have taken the fragrance world by storm, causing even the most loyal customers to migrate.
One such company is Byredo founded by Scandinavian native Ben Gorham, Byredo has successfully transitioned from an indie perfumery to a globally recognized brand that is available at almost every major departmental store and digital retailer. The company is about a decade old and was founded after Gorham made a trip to his mother’s hometown in India. Inspired by the local scents of incense and spices Byredo was born, and today has a global consumer base. Some of their exceptionally brilliant fragrances are Gypsy Water, Mojave Ghost and Rose Of No Man’s Land.
Another global perfumery rooted in Indian culture is D. S. & Durga, founded by David Seth & Kavi Moltz in 2007, this Brooklyn based House of perfumes is steadily emerging as a company to look out for. They have already created a footprint across the continents and online, and their interesting blends and gender-neutral fragrances add to the modern, fresh allure of the brand. Co-creator of the brand Kavi Moltz shares what makes one of her best selling products unique and individual,
In Cowboy Grass, we make an accord of a saddle, the rolling sagebrush, and the revolver, so when you smell them together – you smell the wild west and the cowboy.”
Closer to home, a very young perfumery is set up to debut to a global audience. The Bombay Perfumery launched by Manan Gandhi in October of 2016, currently holds eight fragrances, two of which are unisex, 1020 being the bestselling product. The minimalist and clean aesthetic of the company is resonated in the products, which encapsulate local ingredients in interesting combinations. Moving away from kitschy images that are stereotypically expected of local companies, The Bombay Perfumery is (quite literally) a breath of fresh air with its modern approach to creating fragrances with traditional ingredients.
Oftentimes customers limit themselves to purchasing fragrances at duty-free while waiting for a delayed flight, without really taking the time to learn about the fragrance or the company it comes from. A lot of emerging perfumeries offer transparency and uniqueness, making the process of purchasing a fragrance far more personal and accurate.
Byredo fragrances are available at Net-A-Porter.
The Bombay Perfumery line is available at Le Mill in Mumbai as well as direct purchase on their website.