11.02.2019

The fragrance personality test

Which luxury brand scent are you?

Words: Daniël Geldenhuys | Photographs: Getty

I am extremely picky when it comes to choosing a fragrance. Of course it needs to smell fantastic on me, but that's just the first column on the rubric. I need to feel some sense of affinity with the brand, which usually means I need to enjoy its runway outings, campaigns, and general creative direction. I don't do celebrity fragrances, and if I'm not a fan of the celebrity fronting the luxury brand campaign fragrance, I'll probably hesitate before purchasing. Sorry Dior, nothing against Johnny Depp, but I don't want to smell even a little bit like the actor who so loves portraying Jack Sparrow. 

I'm fully aware that I'm full of it, and that it should just come down to scent. Still, you can't deny that by purchasing a luxury fragrance (the first point of entry into the world of the one per cent before shoes and bags) you're buying into a certain legacy, or as we'd say today: a mood, a vibe. So, which one are you? 

Under the creative direction of Alessandro Michele, Gucci stands for the ultra successful underdog. Responsible for nerd-chic, eccentric, more-is-more style that's been copied by every retailer on earth, the brand is testament to how going against the grain can result in greatness. Michele's Gucci is about celebrating your idiosyncrasies. It's the current standard against which success from a creative and sales perspective is measured: clearly the payoff is major.  

Certain brands have their country of origin strongly integrated into their DNA. A proudly British Burberry is dignified and polished, but still super cool and down for a good amount of fun. Meanwhile, Calvin Klein channels that all-American wholesome girl with a subversive sexual edge. Make no mistake; the CK girl is in complete control of her sexuality, 'shy' isn't a word in her vocabulary. Miss Dior, quintessential French girl, channels that almost magical can-do anything-is-possible woke-up-flawless Parisian spirit. She has an optimistic carefree spirit – the epitome of effortless chic.

Founded in Rome in 1884, Bulgari is best known for its fine jewellery. Think meticulously crafted diamonds and precious stone pieces that only get better as they age, to be passed on from generation to generation. This is old money, not show offy in the least. This is a brand for the considered woman, who carefully curates her life by filling it with beautiful things, enriching experiences, and doesn't feel the need to post about it. 

Stella McCartney has been practicing sustainability, creating environmentally friendly product, since the beginning. It wasn't as 'fashionable' back then as it is now. She loves using technology to find substitutes for materials like leather, fur, toxic glue, and more. Defying corporate expectations, she's found a way to produce all this in a way that's profitable, while raising four children and sustaining a successful marriage. Her brand aesthetic finds a balance between timeless and cool, always welcoming a sense of fun with a light-hearted disposition. She's the woman of the future. 

"If I had to describe my woman she'd be schizophrenic," Marc said to RuPaul on his What's the Tea? podcast last October. She uses fashion, and indeed scent, to channel different aspects of her personality whenever she feels ready. There's also a strong affiliation to fiction (Daisy is named after Gatsby's Daisy Buchanan) in the Jacobs universe. Buying into this world means spritzing your reality with a touch of fantasy. 

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