• Fine Fragrance
or civilization) to help ground them in the
present and better address the volatility of
an uncertain future. Many perfume
launches tapped into the need for reassurance by going back to the very idea of familiarity or classicism expressed four
1. Celebrating long lost traditions like
Serge Lutens celebrating Paris before the
war with Nuit de Cellophane or Tom Ford
reminiscing an old sultry tradition with the
launch of his Musk collection.
2. Re-launching forgotten favorites like
Le Vetiver by Carven, Robert Piguet’s Future, which was first released in the 1960s,
Eau Sauvage which was re-introduced with
an ad campaign featuring French actor
Alain Delon in his youth.
3. Extending iconic classics like Christian Dior Fahrenheit Absolute or Azzaro
Pour Homme Elixir, which claims to merge
elegance, classicism and modernity.
One of our initial finding was that perfume launches were articulated around two
core dimensions, which were reflective of
consumers’ likely reactions to the blow of
• The type of reaction triggered by the
recession with“denial” on one end of the
spectrum and “action” on the other end.
• The type of expression of the reaction
with“brainy” on one end and“loud vocal”
on the other end of the spectrum.
By further segmenting these four mindsets, we identified eight prototypical ways
that consumers are dealing with the aftermath of the recession. These directions will
continue to influence consumer attitudes,
and therefore their personal care purchasing
decisions. As such, they should offer some
parameters for how health and beauty marketers in general and perfume developers in
particular should think about innovating or
optimizing their current product mix.
Two trends—foundations and back to
basics—speak to the initial temptation to
deny the harshness of the recession by
denying its very existence and taking
refuge in comforting values. We will then
analyze how other brands offered to es-
cape the real world through a universe of
abandon or escape (another world and rit-
4. Creating new classics like Yardley
Heritage Collection or Profumi del Forte’s
Versilia Vintage which claims to bring the
“joy of rediscovering things we thought
Probably the most predominant reaction to
the recession has been a focus on traditional values, classical cues and comforting
flavors and scents. As the world as they
knew it unraveled before their eyes, worried consumers looked back to the past
(whether their own, or that of their country
Back to Basics
As consumers learned to make the most
out of their disposable income, they started
promoting a return to life’s bare essentials.
That’s why, over the past few months, we
have been witnessing a re-emergence of
pure ingredients meshed into earthy
blends and yielding to natural territories.
This trend explains multiple perfume
launches under the theme of Mother Nature caring for its children. Hence the
Swiss brand Shantara introducing Shaman
whose scent is supposed to “evoke the virgin forest” and whose packaging design
brings us back to the myth of the Celtic
druids, or Anthropologie, which is introducing a collection of tea-based fragrances
under the name“a rather novel collection”
with each of the six flavors titled after a
tea’s place of origin.