all bot­tled up

Prada’s lat­est scent leaves plenty to the reimag­i­na­tion.

Elle (Canada) - - #Storyboard - BY KATHER­INE FLEM­MING

Health & beauty editor Kather­ine jour­neyed to ol­fac­tory heaven (Prada’s Mi­lan HQ)

be­fore brands launch a fra­grance, they tend to test it against other scents on the mar­ket. You would think they want to launch some­thing unique, but typ­i­cally they want as­sur­ances that their scent is sim­i­lar, ex­plains Em­manuelle Moeglin, global fra­grance and colour cos­met­ics an­a­lyst at mar­ke­tre­search firm Min­tel. “They want the fra­grance to be no­ticed, but they don’t want it to be con­sid­ered too dis­rup­tive,” she says. “It’s a Catch-22.” Prada, how­ever, prides it­self on be­ing any­thing but the sta­tus quo. “Prada is not as driven by con­sumer test­ing,” says Daniela An­drier of Prada Par­fums. “There’s some­thing free-spir­ited in its ap­proach. It re­ally goes for dif­fer­ent things and has more of an iden­tity.” An­drier is the award-win­ning nose re­spon­si­ble for many of Prada’s scent su­per­novas, in­clud­ing Prada Candy and the new launch of a range of six per­fumes called “Les In­fu­sions de Prada.”

Prada first in­tro­duced the “infusion” con­cept back in 2007, when it re­leased Infusion d’Iris—a sparkling flo­ral cit­rus that de­buted as a cap­ti­vat­ing lim­ited edi­tion and in­stantly be­came iconic. Join­ing its re­turn is an un­usual and com­pelling group of fra­grances, in­clud­ing Fleur d’Or­ange (or­ange blossom), Oeil­let (car­na­tion) and Amande (al­mond). Each im­parts a gauzy, gos­samer-light air to its wearer. “You have an im­pres­sion of the in­gre­di­ent, but you’re not over­whelm­ingly fra­granced,” says An­drier. “There’s some­thing very sub­tle yet very present; you can still smell the skin of the per­son wear­ing it.”

The fu­ture of mod­ern fra­grance may in­clude a move to­ward niche per­fumery, which hear­kens back to the “root of per­fumery” and fo­cuses on high-qual­ity raw ma­te­ri­als. This col­lec­tion cer­tainly feels like an ex­clu­sive fan­tasy of non­con­formist notes and nar­ra­tives. “One of the beau­ti­ful things about work­ing for a house of in­ven­tion and cre­ativ­ity like Prada is that it has such re­spect and value for the story,” says An­drier. “It’s some­thing peo­ple for­get when mak­ing a fra­grance: to tell an­other story that isn’t al­ways the same.” n

Les In­fu­sions de Prada Eau de Par­fum Spray in Amande, Iris, Oeil­let, Fleur d’Or­ange, Iris Cè­dre and Vé­tiver ($175 for each 100 mL bot­tle). For de­tails, see Shop­ping Guide.

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