Who: Remy Parisi-Pettier, fragrance creative director of Givaudan Dubai. Remy works with many of the world’s best fragrance companies and has the challenging role of translating a brand’s vision into an olfactive design. For him, when creating a fragrance, everything within the fragrance journey has to make sense, from the brand’s visuals and DNA to the product experience for the customer. Getting all of these elements to work together coherently keep Remy extremely busy.
We caught up with him to discuss OJAR, one of our favourite recent launches and one he was directly involved with. OJAR founder Hind Bahwan worked with Remy to create a beautiful collection of fragrance oils and EDPs, which celebrate Oman’s rich perfume heritage and ingredients history. The brand use six, mostly Oman-based ingredients, rose, frankincense, honey sandalwood, oud and musk, and creates a mini collection around each one, allowing you to deep-dive into your favourite. They are tremendous in our opinion, we also love the innovation happening around the brand, particularly the clever travel and layering applicator. Over to you, Remy….
On my day off, I wear OJAR Kashmir Print layered with OJAR Bella Ciao. Unfortunately for a perfume specialist like me I can’t wear fragrance every day. In fragrance development, we have to be able to smell accurately throughout the day for various projects. Ideally no additional smell should interfere with the creative process, it would become like trying to paint with sunglasses. It is a big dilemma for the fragrance lover that I am, but we end up embracing it, it is totally worth it for being at the heart of the scents that will shape the market.
Fragrance is the one accessory that can make you feel really good. To me, once you have found your personality in your scent, adding this ultimate touch to complete the morning ritual is one of the most satisfying feelings to start the day.
I come from the South of France, from the city of Marseille to be precise. I have a cultural attachment to fresh notes, citruses, warm weather and most importantly the seaside. This is what OJAR Bella Ciao represents to me, a splendid day in April on the French Riviera, resplendent mandarins and colourful blooming hills. Layered with OJAR Kashmir Print, it brings the elegance and the sophistication of musk with a subtle warmth that breaks the codes and blends amazingly well with the Sandalwood of Bella Ciao.
I grew to love Kashmir Print while Givaudan was collaborating with OJAR. On developing these fragrances I was already fell in love with these creations. The specific combination of Kashmir Print with Bella Ciao came later as I kept on trying different options to match together, and it became quite evidently one of my signature scents that responds to who I am and my skin chemistry in a way that only I could own.
Fragrances are my life, so there will be a little bit of a bias any time I address the subject. But it is something that anyone can relate to, I think that smelling is the salt of the moments we live, it is invisible yet we can tell when there is none, it adds depth to our experiences. It is as vital as the need to laugh, learn or vary the pasta sauce.
I came to realise the more I became familiar with the world of perfumes, the more I was tempted to layer fragrances to create my own style. It is something that can come intuitively to anyone by regularly using scents that finally become familiar, we start to understand how they behave as we wear them and feel a bit more adventurous to add a personal tweak over time. This is a mindset OJAR is carrying in its core, actively inviting everyone to explore and better define their own signature.
While I do not have a signature home scent, I do scent my home. I like to vary and bring life to my personal space depending on my mood at the moment.
Not being able to go to the office and the lab to be close to the materials was difficult during lockdown, and using perfumes at home would never make the cut, it was really difficult on that side! Cooking on the other hand was a moment I would be looking forward to, and I used that mean to explore new food experiments at home.
The global pandemic has been the opportunity for us and many other industries to rethink the way we work, and anticipate the making of a new world. While the business during those early lockdown moments massively shifted from luxury to the focus on essential products, it took a very short amount of time for the definition of Fine Fragrance to take a slightly different meaning to the end consumer. Whether people are in or out, ultimately, we will all need that “salt of life” I was talking about, and it is just a matter of time before customers come back to fragrance.
Selling without smelling is the greatest challenge of online retail for fragrances. Sense of smell is this one thing that we still do not have a clue on how to translate efficiently in the digital world. In my opinion it has to be supported by a good sampling strategy. The online interface is also evolving, we see more and more innovative ways of presenting the fragrances, with interactive olfactive descriptions, more accurate recommendations, mood boards and so on, allowing the customers to understand more about the profile of the product.
In the midst of my passion for cooking, I also like to experiment on fermentations of various kinds. Studying the science of “controlled decay” and more importantly experiencing it, is just beautiful, the fermentation process develops any ingredient we think we know, to a deeper level, crude, more raw and complex, hitting that exact borderline repulsion/attraction type of effect. This actually reveals a lot more about the strange relationship we have with the idea of beauty and attraction in general.