The Madness of The Perfume Industry {The 5th Sense in the News}


With major perfume launches amounting to $50 million in investment these days, it has become increasingly hard for brands to see profit emerge out of these ventures. Armani Privé 3 years after its launch remains unprofitable but is kept afloat in order to generate an intangible value: cachet.....

The problem might be that marketing executives all think alike; "L'Oréal international brand manager Patricia Turck Paquelier. "How can we invent the next Chanel No. 5 that will last 100 years?" -- please, not that again. It is starting to sound depressingly unimaginative and borderline. Why not the next 1000 years with a perfume called "Hitler", in totalitarian speak? Usually the surest way to replicate a mega success is not to recreate similar conditions of attention to the product that would lead to a comparable popular recognition, but to simply copy the juice of reference. We are doomed.

Why the perfume business is beginning to stink.... 

Related Posts

6 Comments | Leave a comment

  1. they all think of profits before creativity and authenticity. Armani Prive, Tom Ford exclusives etc, basically these imature phonies just want to do what Serge Lutens did with les Salons Shiseido to be succesful right away, they expect to come out of nowhere with highly profitable niche fragrance lines. they 're just too greedy for profits, their only true concern.
    I had the same feeling regarding the Kilian line lately, a very expensive niche line coming out nowhere with a phony cliche concept of scents that ressemble Parfumerie Generale.
    throughout the 90s les Salons Shiseido were not profitable, Serge Lutens and Shiseido had a long term strategy, they wanted to create prestige and knew it would take time, wit, authenticity, patience and that they shouldn 't be obssessed with profits.

    Aline et Valcour
  2. The part of that article that made me the most sad was the part about YSL pulling Nu and M7 - those are two of my favorites! Maybe if they weren't doing all those fruity-floral-flankers, there would be room for classic scents such as those two.

  3. it 's lazyness, greedyness and again a serious lack of long term perspective. these fashion labels need artistic directors who are visionnaires but instead they only have lousy marketing executives who really don 't think outside the box!

    Aline et Valcour
  4. Mme Paquelier's quote to "invent" the next Chanel No. 5 left me fuming! Not create, but invent??? I see why the perfume industry has gone down the drain and lost its sanity. Easier I guess to steal and re-engineer the lastest popular scent from another house. I'd rather see them take a risk, put more money down on cost to create the scent and place less money down on advertising to create a perfume of their own with its own identity. I have no problems either in waiting 2-4 years for something new from their house rather than smelling something mediocre and uninspiring every six months.

    I don't understand why L'Oreal was anticipating a substantial cash crop for Armani's Prive line. Aren't exclusive products the opposite of mass-market?

    I think I'll stop here before I burst an artery or something. :)

  5. Dear Rob,

    What struck me most in this remark is the avowed quest for an immediate formula of success, more than anything else. This attitude can only lead to the blending of formulaic fragrances, of course.

    There is a feverish rhythm in the market, people do not have the time to think. I am sure that Mme Paquelier is under pressure to deliver the goods, hence the temptation to think of shortcuts. Also, not every people who work in the fragrance industry are truly into fragrances.

    As a daily fragrance blog and web-zine offering both commentary and news, I feel that I have both adapted to this rhythm and that I am contributing to it:)

  6. Dear MHarvey,

    I think that they might keep them in the European market, like Féminité du Bois.


Leave a Comment