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Scents of Purpose

March 5, 2014

Get a whiff of this: according to new Mintel research, consumers are beginning to express a desire for fragrances that offer more practical, unique benefits—not just a great scent.

According to the market research firm, there’s growing demand for more distinct, non-traditional uses on the fragrance front, with more than six in ten women (64%) and more than half of men (51%) who use any scented item saying they would be interested in fragrances that can be worn at night to help you sleep or refresh your sheets.

“A search of popular fragrance blogs also reveals that it’s not an uncommon practice for people to spray themselves or their bed linens with fragrance prior to going to bed. There could be a variety of reasons that people spritz themselves with fragrance before bedtime, but helping to decompress before sleeping is definitely a key objective,” said Shannon Romanowski, beauty and personal care analyst at Mintel.  “As consumers may be seeking more natural alternatives to sleeping pills or medication, fragrances that are designed to help aid with sleep could be an opportunity for the category. There are very few fine fragrances positioned as ‘night specific’ but there definitely appears to be an opportunity for brands to capitalize on an existing consumer behavior.”

As an example, Romanowski pointed to P&G’s Febreze Sleep Serenity, a new subline that includes a variety of formats and scents designed to help users snooze.

In addition to nighttime fragrances, consumers are increasingly expressing an interest in other added value fragrance benefits as well. According to Mintel, 60% of consumers would like to try a scent that could help relieve colds and headaches, and 48% report interest in fragrances that offer a cooling or heating sensation.

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