Making Perfume Fashionable Again

Coco Chanel once said, “A woman who doesn’t use perfume has no future.” A little dramatic? Perhaps, but there’s no denying that some truth lies in the assumption that a woman who wears perfume daily is someone who spends time and care on their beauty routine. In this day and age, there might be too much of an emphasis on this, as fewer people are choosing to wear perfume.

Believe it or not, perfume was once considered a vital part of one’s everyday beauty regimen, dating back to the Ancient Egyptians. In the 20th century, the typical mentality was that if you didn’t have a signature scent, you were a few steps behind everyone else. The fragrance industry was thriving and picking out a new fragrance was something to look forward to. This doesn’t exactly apply to the present day. While most modern people tend to focus on achieving immaculate hair, cohesive outfits and on-point makeup, when it comes to perfume, a lot of us are guilty of not batting an eye.

Part of this has to do with the lack of creativity on the part of the fragrance industry as a whole. The truth is that the time and effort that once went into of creating iconic perfumes such as Chanel No. 5 and the energy spent on crafting memorable bottles and packages doesn’t exist anymore in the same spectrum. Because of this, the fragrance industry has fallen into a rut, forcing it to turn to desperate marketing measures to dig itself out of it. Hence, the rise of the celebrity fragrance.

Every week seems to bring a new release of a celebrity perfume, and most likely, these celebrities are not even heavily involved in the process of bringing the fragrance to life. Their only role is to slap their name on the finished product. This outdated marketing scheme is starting to grow boring for the general public, who has expressed their disinterest for companies making mediocre and similar-smelling fragrances associated with public figures. It might be working for other industries, but it doesn’t hold much truth for the fragrance industry. Not to mention, fashion designers are continuing to churn out new perfume formulas despite them not selling as well as their most recognizable ones.

Since fragrances are becoming more commercialized and are being marketed unreasonably heavily, the art of creating perfume is coming to its demise. There’s always the same sweet, feminine and expected scents, but where is the creativity? When will something new be done? Taking risks in the fragrance industry is being deemed as a no-no when it’s all that is needed right now. Something new and daring is what customers are asking for, so it’s what they should be given.

Because of these facts, it seems reasonable to argue that these specific perfumes aren’t worth spending money on. However, there are exceptions to the rule. Classics never fail to inspire. The same can be said for perfume scents.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone should spray on Chanel No. 5 every day. If it doesn’t appeal to you, don’t feel obligated to wear it. For some people, the analogy that the type of perfume one wears matters in the same way the style of clothes one wears does is still relevant. Some put in the extra effort to make sure their perfume matches their outfit as if perfumes play a major role in showing the world several aspects of their personality. Others believes that their chosen fragrance is the best way to give a lasting first impression, while others want to use it to be easily recognized. Simply put, perfume, like style, is nothing less than personal.

Let’s not allow the significance of perfume fade away. Although it’s invisible, it’s one of the most defining factors in expressing our best traits.

Sherah Ndjongo is a staff writer. Email her at violetvision@nyunews.com.

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