She’s So Fine!

Fragrances for Spring 2020 span from earthy florals to juicy citruses.

That bejeweled bottle taking up space in your medicine cabinet could be your oldest beauty buddy. Eyeshadows get crushed, nail polishes separate and hair sprays run out from daily usage. But a fine fragrance can last quite a few seasons and replacement items are falling short in consumer spending right now.

According to Clare Hennigan, senior beauty and personal care analyst at Mintel, women in the US are spending less money on fragrance year over year. Why?
“Legacy fragrance houses are losing share to indie perfumeries and lower-cost scented body care products,” she explained. “Additionally, concerns over chemicals are dissuading consumers from fine fragrances and redirecting them to natural alternatives like essential oils.”

The fragrance retail market is highly fragmented, noted Hennigan, with no single channel visited by more than 20% of consumers.

“Department stores remain a popular destination, highlighting the bigger issues impacting the fine fragrance landscape, as they fail to attract the youngest and most influential age group. Additionally, younger consumers are more cost conscious than their older, more affluent counterparts, which explains their preferences to visit alternate retailers,” she noted.

For some, fragrance can feel like a sensory photo album of their lives.

“A dear friend of mine always purchases a fragrance when she travels to new places. She says it immediately transports her back to that time and place, even better than a photo. For myself, I associate fragrance with people. I will often smell a scent in the most mundane places and immediately find myself recalling the memory of a friend or loved one,” noted Lauren Torres, manager, fragrance category analyst, The NPD Group.

For the third quarter of 2019, fragrance sales were up 3% to $817.4 million, according to NPD. For the year, fragrance sales rose 2% to $4.5 billion in 2019.

According to data from Information Resources Inc. (IRI), women’s fragrance sales fell 4.2% to $651.3 million in US supermarkets, drugstores, mass market retailers, military commissaries and select club and dollar retail chains for the 52 weeks ended Jan. 26, 2020. In this category, perfumes and colognes/body powder slipped 6.6% to $443.7 million. However, women’s gift packs rose 1.4% to $207.6 million. Shaving lotion/men’s fragrance decreased 6.6% to $672.1 million. Shaving lotion/cologne/talc sales fell 4.7% to $488.7 million while men’s gift pack/sets dropped 11.4% to $183.4 million.

Scent of a Woman

Feminine scents will continue to dominate fragrance launches in 2020. For example, luxury beauty brand Valmont introduced two new fragrance collections for 2020, Palazzo Nobile and Collezione Privata, at a January press event at The Plaza Hotel in New York City. With more than 32 years of experience in the fragrance industry, Sophie Guillon, CEO of the Valmont Group, carefully edited each fragrance.

“Fragrance is successful if all the structure and the individual ingredients are in harmony while surprising and disrupting and finally settling in a coherent blend of scent,” Guillon told Happi in a post-event interview. “It has to reach a sense in the soul or the heart of the ‘wearer’ and the success comes from the way of the perfume designer to find out the key to this emotion in the other’s mind or heart!”

The two new collections join the Storie Veneziane fragrance pillar of the Valmont Group. Inspired by Venice, the fragrances stand out for their distinctive compositions, design and ingredients.

With six eau de toilettes, the Palazzo Nobile ($180) collection is inspired by the emotion of memories, according to Guillon. These shared fragrances are light and energizing offering timeless and classic compositions. Inspired by the texture of fabrics and the different women around the world, Collezione Privata ($290) interprets femininity with strength and charm, said the firm. Comprised of three eau de parfums, thee sensual fragrances feature spicy top notes, which are said to complement a woman’s magnetic seduction, according to the company.

Meanwhile, consumers can get lost in a blooming field of wildflowers with Aerin’s latest creation, Wild Geranium, a fragrance due out in Spring 2020. The opening features freshly picked geraniums with nuances of pink pepper and winter lemon. At the heart, a bouquet of dewy green narcisse imparts a joyful, optimistic femininity, according to the brand. Paired with geranium, the distinctive combination evokes an irresistible charm and luminosity, said Aerin officials. Additional notes include orange flower petals and soft, rosy white peonies. The lush, floral signature is made complete through rose centifolia and tuberose absolute. Further, benzoin evokes the warmth and wonder of an endless garden, unveiling a fanciful new world of flowers that can be enjoyed year-round, according to the brand.

Inspired by a blooming field of wildflowers, the packaging artwork for Aerin Wild Geranium was created by artist and textile designer Helen Dealtry. Designed to mimic the radiant, carefree notes of the fragrance, the design features a unique abstract floral print in watercolor shades of purple, flushed-red and pink. The signature glass Aerin bottle features a stone-like cap in a pastel periwinkle purple shade with golden detailing and a custom golden Aerin stamp on the carton. The supporting campaign images depict Aerin Lauder in a meadow of wildflowers at Aerin Lauder’s family home in East Hampton, NY, alongside two models representing the youthful, spirited female muses from whom she drew inspiration for the creation of Aerin Wild Geranium.

The launch of Flowerbomb Dew, Victor & Rolf’s second Flowerbomb fragrance due out this season, adds another chapter to this evolving olfactive story. With Flowerbomb Dew completing the Flowerbomb Collection, the fragrance range is complemented with an arc of scent offerings from spanning intensity and the transformational power of Flowerbomb, according the company.

The Flowerbomb Collection offers a “choose your intensity” range with Flowerbomb Dew, Flowerbomb eau de parfum and Flowerbomb Nectar from the lightest to the most intense. From the light floral glow and the delicate drop of a rose with Flowerbomb Dew to the addictive, enchanting floral explosion of Flowerbomb to the intense, burst of bewitching and intoxicating flowers of Flowerbomb Nectar, this union offers the hallmark notes of the iconic scent in a personalized way that is tailored for every Flowerbomb lover in every season.

With crisp, sparkling and succulent top notes of pear accord and bergamot essence, Flowerbomb Dew is said to captivate the senses with a first delicate dew accord featuring its star ingredient of the dewy rose accord, which smoothly opens to a floral, sensual heart highlighted by iridescent, musky addictive nuances from the ambrette seeds absolute. A garden rose from the tea rose family, the Dewy Rose is a hybrid rose conceived from breeding hybrid perpetual roses and tea roses.

Lancôme is adding on to its La Vie fragrance empire with La Vie est Belle, launching in April. At the heart is iris, the emblematic flower of La Vie est Belle. It blends with notes of vanilla pod. Faithful to its characteristic zest for life, it opens with a burst of bergamot, pink pepper and raspberry, then unfurls its floral, sensual and velvety bouquet. Accentuated and enhanced by the iris and vanilla duo, it exudes an irresistible force of attraction, hour after hour, according to the company.

For the first time, the iconic bottle of La Vie est Belle reveals a fragrance with an intense color, said the company. Lancôme describes it as a joyful pink evoking a heart that beats to the rhythm of intense emotions. A color filled with warmth and energy, drawing its strength from the depth of the emblematic crystal smile and radiating to the tips of the wings that adorn the neck, transforming them into glowing flames.

Currently at Coty

Coty heads into spring with numerous launches. Its Daisy Marc Jacobs portfolio is growing again with Daisy Marc Jacobs Daze Editions—each of the classic Daisy collection scents is given a twist with a new peach-colored ingredient. Each fragrance has its own personality, ensuring that everyone can find a Daisy scent to match her spirit, said the company. Products span from Daisy Daze EDT to Daisy Eau So Fresh Daze EDT.

Meanwhile, Burberry Her Intense is described as a bold and refined new scent that embodies the electrifying energy and diverse character of London. The bottle is inspired by an archival Burberry fragrance design and has been sublimated in this darker look. Beginning with a sweet blend of blackberry and cherry, the heart of Her Intense is a combination of intoxicating jasmine and violet accord, which then meets a base of warm benzoin and cedarwood. This irresistible dark and fruity scent transports its wearer to the alluring and contrasting streets of London.

Chloé Nomade Absolu de Parfum is an ode to the ever-wandering heart of the Nomade woman. Nomade Absolue de Parfum is an even more intense getaway into the world, said the company. The fragrance shares the same oakmoss heart as the original Nomade EDP and Nomade EDT. In this intense iteration, sweet Mirabelle plum opens the scent and meets velvety davana at the heart, with its base comprised of creamy soft sandalwood Ariane Labed returns as the face for Nomade Absolu de Parfum in campaign shots by photographer Peter Lindbergh.

All About Calvin Klein

Calvin Klein Eternity for Women Summer Edition opens with a romantic mix of bergamot oil from Italy, violet leaf accord and desert rose oil. These notes meet a refreshing mid of ginger, jasmine sambac and coconut water accord. The solar floral fragrance is grounded in a base of guaiac wood, salty musk and vetiver oil, according to the brand.

Euphoria Blush Calvin Klein is a new sensual gourmand fragrance, billed as a seductive iteration of the original fragrance with intoxicating floral notes meeting rich chocolate and raspberry. Sweet raspberry, blackberry and mandarin open the scent and meet a mid of rose, jasmine and orchid. The fragrance ends in a base of white amber, cedar, orris, patchouli heart and chocolate.

Consumers are also looking for natural scent options that offer something for everyone. A concept rooted in self-expression, CK Everyone is billed as Calvin Klein Fragrance’s first clean, gender-free and environmentally conscious fragrance. The scent is formulated with naturally-derived ingredients and naturally-derived alcohol, and is vegan, recyclable and packaged with recycled materials. The collection and fragrance were unveiled in a global advertising campaign, proclaiming, “I am one, I am many. I love everyone of me.”

Created by master perfumer Alberto Morillas, the citrus scent has a top note of orange and a mid of blue tea accord. The base of this fragrance is a cedarwood. This is a vegan fragrance infused with 79% natural ingredients and partially made with recycled materials; the iconic waistband on the bottle can be removed before recycling to be reused as something else, according to the company.

The bottle and packaging were created from recycled materials to honor its purity and simplicity. The ultra-modern transparent glass bottle contains 10% of post-consumer recycled materials and is recyclable with the removal of the pump and the elastic while the folding carton contains 30% of post-consumer recycled materials.

For the Guys

This spring, Ralph Lauren Fragrances is introducing Polo Deep Blue Parfum, a fragrance that provides a wave of freshness at every level. Inspired by the cool deep ocean, the refreshing ocean mist on skin and the lush island scents that fill the air, the scent brings a new level of intensity to the global best-selling Polo Blue franchise, according to the brand.

Top notes include the trademarked Cristalfizz, Hawaiian green mango, grapefruit oil and bergamot oil. The middle features cypress oil, geranium absolute and clary sage oil while the base contains deep ocean accord, musk accord, patchouli oil, fir balsam resinoid and Ambroxan.

Carolina Herrera this season launches an innovative new masculine perfume called Eau de Toilette Bad Boy, billed by the designer as a powerful and sophisticated scent for unique and irreverent men who dare to embrace all of the facets of contemporary manhood. The top notes of this Oriental aromatic include the spicy freshness of red and white pepper merged with the citric vibrancy of Italian green bergamot, according to the company. This magnetic and elegant union shows its true power at the heart of the fragrance, where the cedarwood is heightened by the bright nuances of sage. The secret of the Bad Boy aroma lies at its bottom notes, where tonka beans and absolut of cocoa blend, according to the company.

Men’s grooming brand Reuzel has launched a TSA-friendly solid cologne balm sold in a tin. The wax-based cologne is easy to use, convenient to carry and features a light fragrance of Wood & Spice with notes of lemon and clove.

Up Next

Inter Parfums, Inc. has entered into an exclusive, 10-year worldwide license agreement with German luxury fashion house MCM for the creation, development and distribution of fragrances under the MCM brand. Fusing modern German craftsmanship with the traditional art of French perfumery, Inter Parfums will develop fragrances for women and men that will celebrate the boldness, attitude and essence of MCM which defined the brand since its birth in Munich, according to the company. The long-term collaboration will thrive on innovation with a passionate, tailor-made approach built on a mastery of fragrance expertise. Positioned in the prestige fine fragrance arena, MCM fragrances will fuse luxury with an expressive spirit of originality and optimism. Every detail will enhance MCM’s identity, transcending perfumery with elegance and excellence.

Jean Madar, chairman and CEO of Inter Parfums, Inc. stated, “Since 1976, MCM has been pushing fashion boundaries and redefining luxury leather goods on a global scale through innovation, cutting-edge technology, exceptional creativity and superior quality. We are excited to add this impressive brand to our fragrance portfolio. Our plan is to develop extraordinary fragrances for women and men that capture the creative spirit of MCM, with the first launch targeted for the first quarter of 2021.”

The agreement has a four-year automatic renewal option, potentially extending the license until Dec. 31, 2034.

Other launches from this leading fragrance house include a new scent for women under the Guess banner as well as a duo from Hollister called Canyon Escape. Sky by Anna Sui is also scheduled for release in Fall 2020.

Besides the classic connection of fashion and fragrance, as wellness and beauty become increasingly intertwined, brands must consider how holistic health trends will impact the future of the fragrance category, observed Hennigan of Mintel.

“Although the fragrance market has taken a hit over the past couple of years, opportunities for growth exist among previously overlooked consumer groups,” said Hennigan. “Additionally, product innovations that offer functional benefits have potential to spark engagement, particularly among younger consumers.” 

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