Frédéric Malle feels you coming

Olfactory diagnosis: this is the new fad of a perfume industry which, thanks to the health crisis, has discovered the full potential of online sales (16% of overall sales over the period from January to October 2021, compared to 7% over the same period in 2019). The stake is therefore considerable. But to choose a juice without sniffing it, and to navigate the plethora of e-commerce sites, it is better to be guided. Hence the idea of ​​online consultation.

“It looks more like a child’s treasure hunt than a medical history. »Frédéric Malle

What the Nose boutique, the Guerlain house or the niche brand Ajnalogy offer, the perfumer Frédéric Malle had already imagined more than twenty years ago. When he launched Editions de Parfums in 2000, he wrote a questionnaire to guide customers’ choice. The idea was to offer a tailor-made service, identical to what was developed in his shop in rue de Grenelle.

The tool put online for a few days by the Estée Lauder teams (the American group bought Editions de Parfums in 2014) extends this introductory experience in a way. It consists of seven questions focusing on the shoes you wear, your hairstyle, your favorite mode of transportation and even the style of your iPhone case. A priori trivial questions that allow you in a few minutes to be offered three fragrances from the collection in line with your style and lifestyle.

The Taste of M

It is the latter which is especially scanned in a fairly relevant way. If we concede, for example, a penchant for cycling, sneakers and Italy, we have every chance of being offered Bigarade concentrated and Indelible Cologne, two fresh and light scents. Overall, the diagnosis is fairly correct, even if one obviously cannot expect a completely satisfactory result, the choice of a perfume being by definition a matter of crush and “flair”.

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To avoid any spirit of seriousness, Frédéric Malle asked his friend the painter and multimedia artist Konstantin Kakanias to illustrate this questionnaire in the form of a pop and whimsical collage. The originality of this virtual consultation is that it escapes any technical discourse. “No one knows what patchouli or cedar smells like. Moreover, even if we know it, a perfume is never defined by a raw material, because everything is a question of dosage and assembly. I wanted to speak the language of the customers, not the newspeak of the perfumers ”, explains Frédéric Malle.

The goal is first of all to have fun and to desecrate the relationship to perfume. “It looks more like a child’s treasure hunt than a medical history”, jokes Frédéric Malle. Based on the observation that it is self-service distribution that has damaged perfumery, Frédéric Malle wants to provide advice where it has completely disappeared. And if we are to believe the number of connections (20,000 people had already made the diagnosis on the second day), customers are responding.

Diagnosis available on the site

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Frédéric Malle feels you coming