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Fueling the Market—Fragrance Observations

By: Amy Marks-McGee
Posted: November 5, 2010, from the November 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Portable fragrances are good for on-the-go consumers. In addition to convenience, it allows noncommittal consumers to try multiple products before making a larger investment. A few recent roller ball examples are: Kate Spade Twirl Eau De Parfum Rollerball sold exclusively at Nordstrom; Victoria’s Secret Life is Pink Shine Pink with a collectable two heart charm; and Lilly Pulitzer’s Squeeze/Beachy Rollerball Duo, which uses a dual-ended wand to offer two scents. Solid rings and other spill proof jewelry accessories are trendy, with a multitude of products available. For example, Michael Kors Very Hollywood solid is housed in a fashionable emerald cut cocktail ring while Kat Von D’s solid perfume ring is an oversized gun metal rose with a skull. Sarah Jessica Parker’s SJP NYC solid is available in a gold bracelet cuff with a faceted gem, and Leslie Blodgett’s Perfume Diaries are contained in a pocket-watch compact displayed on a necklace. Fragrance pencils sold with a sharpener is another solid application. Tova’s Signature Platinum Fragrance Pencil is sold through QVC, and Clean offers the limited edition Perfume Pencils in Ultimate, Fresh Laundry and Provence variants.

Eco-friendly products and products that support a cause continue to gain popularity. A Perfume Organic line is “vegan, certified as animal-friendly by PETA and as officially organic by the USDA.” Each fragrance bottle is enclosed in an illustrated “flower seed-embedded box that can be planted after use.” The Thierry Mugler Womanity fragrance bottle is refillable, and the carton is made from recycled paperboard. To create PureDKNY, Donna Karan sourced vanilla from Uganda through a partnership with CARE—a humanitarian organization focused on fighting global poverty, with an emphasis on helping women.

There are a variety of innovative, memorable bottles that reinforce the image of iconic brands on the market. In women’s fragrance, bottles that stand out are Miss Pucci by Emilio Pucci, Givenchy Play for Her and Benefit Cosmetics Second Story Crescent Row trio collection.

The curvaceous Miss Pucci bottle was designed by Ora Ito. It mimics the vibrant Pucci prints with the use of orange, coral and rose colors, and the designer wanted to capture “a kaleidoscopic, stained-glass window” effect. Givenchy Play for Her is the counterpart to the 2008’s men’s Play scent. The bottle is designed to look like an MP3 player, but is pink (eau de parfum) and violet (eau de parfum intense). Benefit Cosmetics Second Story is a follow up to the Crescent Row trio collection. The new trio of scents—Garden of Good and Eva, Lookin’ To Rock Rita and So Hooked On Carmella—follow the same format as the earlier trio. The company used the cocktail-shaker inspired bottles and the outer row house cartons that fold open to create a home interior. Notable men’s bottle designs are Only The Brave by Diesel, featuring a bottle shaped like a fist with a silver Diesel ring; Marc Jacobs Bang fragrance, which is packaged in a silver and black bottle that looks crumpled; and Ralph Lauren’s The Big Pony Collection, with four fragrances each numbered and packaged in a different brightly colored bottle to represent the unique fragrance directions and styles.

Interaction and Education

Industry organizations and fragrance and flavor houses are creating fragrance workshops, exhibits and events to educate the public and connect with consumers about this secretive segment of the industry. In January 2010, The Fragrance Foundation initiated the One Drop Changes Everything ad campaign, and used a variety of multimedia platforms—including the Internet, social media, print, billboards, in-mall digital screens and retail Web links. According to Rochelle Bloom, president of The Fragrance Foundation, the campaign was created to entice consumers back to the pleasures of fragrance.