What makes a perfume popular? You won’t find the answer here.
I’ll start this blog post, by saying that it’s just my opinion based on whatever limited knowledge and experiences that I’ve had 😊.
I’ve often found it fun to muse on why certain things become so popular and resonate with so many people, whether it’s Ugg boots, a S’well water bottle, or a hit song. Certainly, marketing plays an enormous role, but it’s more than that, after all there are indie songs that go into the mainstream like Gotye’s song “Somebody that I used to know”, and every company does there best to market their products, but most aren’t massive successes. So indeed, there is always a little “inexplicable magic” behind a mainstream success and every brand or artist wishes they had the “formula”.
This blog is about perfume, so naturally I want to ask the question why do some perfumes become so popular and what are the implications? I of course love perfume and am a collector myself. Whether niche, designer, or indie, it’s all perfume to me, and perfume is art, from the bottle to the juice it’s a wonderful creative expression. I’ll go with one example of the perfume Green Irish Tweed, a massive success of the 80’s, from the niche brand Creed, a brand that’s had about as much success as a niche brand can have. With Creed’s high prices, Green Irish Tweed (GIT) never had the chance of diffusing it’s fresh, green, aromatic scent to the masses. But a few years later along comes Cool Water which smells strikingly like GIT, allegedly they share the same perfumer. It’s important to note that for better or worse you can’t “copywrite” a perfume like you can with music or design, your free to sell your smells as similar to the competition as you can get! Anyway, where GIT was a success, Cool Water took things next level, you can find this fragrance at every drug store, department store and discounter. But the scent profile of our friend GIT didn’t stop there, Cool Water made it mainstream, and now whether you are aware or not you have smelled this creation (or at least an inspiration of it) in any number of cosmetic or household products. I swear it’s the scent of every other men’s hair gel on the market!
So let’s pause for a moment. What’s the point of me writing this blog? This is not a critique on whether perfumes should be “cloned”. Whether you think it’s ok or not to be a copycat, what is undeniably amazing, is that someone used their creativity, artistry and imagination to make a fragrance, never existing before, that becomes part societies mass consciousness. I’m reminded of the scene in The Devil Wear’s Prada, when Andrea Sachs (Anne Hathaway) show’s her indifference towards fashion, remarking of it as “stuff”. Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep) proceeds to explain to her the journey that took place culminating in the very Cerulean blue Andrea wears in the meeting. Maybe I’m a little like Miranda when people tell me they’re not into perfume 😉.
Now, this blog post would not be complete without a selfish plug listing the most popular perfumes from the different houses we carry at The Towson Perfumery.
Comporta: A Olhar Trancoso
Jul Et Mad: Terrasse a St-Germain
Rogue: Mousse Illuminee