ParfumPlus talks to perfumer Nicolas Beaulieu and unveils how he modernised the magic of the legendary Aromatics Elixir in his recent creation Aromatics In White fragrance for the modern and chic lady
ParfumPlus (PP) : Hi Nicolas, how did you get involved into the world of fragrances?Nicolas Beaulieu (NB) : I believe I was very lucky to know at a very young age that I wanted to become a perfumer. I studied chemistry and applied that to perfumery in ISIPCA, and joined IFF where I studied three years in the internal perfumery school. In fact, I consider myself lucky to have worked with a lot of talented mentors during my younger days.
(PP) : Please tell us the thought behind creating Aromatics In White
(NB) : The creation of Aromatics In White began with an open-ended idea on how to modernise Aromatics Elixir. I wanted to express an architectural feel with this fragrance. The foundation of Aromatics In White is grounded in a complex musk accord from top to bottom. And around this huge musk, which acts like the spine of this fragrance, I built more facets like the rose and orange blossom for the femininity and also patchouli heart and benzoin to enhance the captivating sillage of the fragrance.
(PP) : How long did it take to create Aromatics In White?
(NB) : I worked on this project for about 10 months before I could get my desired fragrance.
(PP) : Normally a brand proposes a concept and the perfumer takes on the challenge to create it. Can you share what it took to translate the idea into scent?
(NB) : In this case the brief was very simple: How to modernise Aromatics Elixir? But Clinique didn’t want a flanker of its classic. The idea was to do a re-invention of the masterpiece. That’s why it was a very impressive and challenging project! Aromatics Elixir has something of a love potion, mysterious and captivating, supported by the overdose of patchouli oil. And I wanted to recreate this sensual yet elegant sillage with the use of a complex musky accord instead of patchouli.
(PP) : Can you tell us your imagination of ‘white’ in this perfume
(NB) : ‘White’ has been a key word for this project since the beginning. But I didn’t want a ‘cold white’. The white I wanted was more of a warm cocooning feeling with a lot of textures. So I worked on my musky accord thinking of white Phalaenopsis Orchids, for their soft texture yet with a very strong personality.
(PP) : What are the key ingredients used in this perfume?
(NB) : One of the key ingredients is an IFF captive musk called Edenolide. Musks are big molecules, very substantive and therefore acting mostly at the back of the fragrance. But this new musk Edenolide has a different molecular structure and is more volatile and playing at the top of the fragrance. It gives Aromatics In White a musky smell right from the top, and gives an incredible bloom to the fragrance.
(PP) : What was the most difficult part of the creation?
(NB) : Finding the right idea when you start! Then it all comes together naturally….
(PP) : Compared to the likes of women from 1970s, what ingredients you think are still preferred by today’s woman?
(NB) : To me the almost raw subversion of overdosed patchouli oil is typical of the 70’s, and the hippie trend. There is something outspoken about it. For Aromatics In White, I wanted a lot of strength, but in a more intimism and in a cocooning way. Modern women deserve comfort!
(PP) : Who is the ideal woman for Aromatics In White? And what about Aromatics Elixir?
(NB) : In a way, it could be the same woman… I mean, either an Aromatics Elixir user looking for novelty, or a new consumer to the Clinique brand! But I believe that the Aromatics In White woman is modern and chic, yet classy and elegant at the same time.
(PP) : On a personal note, what are you passionate about other than perfumes?
(NB) : I think I can say I am the epicurean type: food, wine, family and friends… I am a happy person! I also love travelling. In fact, it helps me seek inspirations.
(PP) : If you associate an ingredient to the city of Paris, what would it be?
(NB) : The smell of coffee! After all, Parisians spend so much time drinking coffee at the terraces of Paris’s bars!