How personalisation continues to reinvent fragrance

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

How personalisation continues to reinvent fragrance
Trying to generate renewed interest in fragrances is one of the biggest challenges for this category, evinced by waning sales of the most popular scents. So how to reinvigorate things?

Fragrance makers have had to come up with new fragrance delivery systems, more potent fragrances, more natural fragrance formulations, fragrances that evoke memories and gender neutral fragrances, just to mention a few of the recent trends that have served to reinvigorate the category.

But perhaps one of the most impactful trends has been the move towards tailored or personalized fragrance products.

Which type of customization suits you?

This can mean many things, from fragrance that are customised to match an individual’s exacting DNA, to fragrances that simply match the exact preference of an individual, as well as producing packaging with personalised touches such as the person’s signature or preferences for specific bottle designs.

Indeed, the big trend for customisation has impacted all areas of the cosmetics and personal care space, reflecting a rising demand for products that match consumers\ specific needs or tastes, but in the fragrance category, it has really seems to have been taken to a much more sophisticated level.

A good market to look at to get an idea of the impact of personalised fragrances is that of the United Kingdom, where interest in this scent category has always been pronounced.

What is happening the US and UK…

According to market research provider Mintel, 61% of UK fragrance users like to wear a different fragrance to everyone else, 54% have a signature scent that they always wear and 40% have tried or are interested in trying out personalised fragrances.

The picture also looks pretty similar in another very important fragrance market, the U.S. Here Mintel’s research show that more than half of consumers are interested in trying out personalized fragrances, including blends (55%) or DNA-based fragrances (50%).

And one overriding element to the trend for these scents is that it is younger consumers who are showing the most interest in more personalised fragrances that are tailored towards their tastes, but at the same time the trend is also targeting older consumers as a way of freshening up fragrance category offerings.

The Mintel team has also seen some polarisation in the trend for personalised fragrances, with services offerings customers to help choose their own signature scents from classic fragrances, and at the other end of the spectrum, services offering consumers the chance to combine their own ingredients to create unique fragrances that suit their specific tastes.

However, as a general rule the more personalised the service or fragrance formulation, the more premium the product tends to be, which has priced some consumers out. In answer to this, there is also a growing trend to bring back vintage fragrances as limited edition, which are generally more affordable.

One product does not fit all

Typifying the move away from the one fragrance for everyone era, earlier on this year Kenneth Cole launched customizable fragrances for men and women, which also combines notions of gender fluidity.

The concept behind the launch is relatively simple though. The collection, which consists of a ‘Him’ and ‘Her’ scent can be worn either individually, or layered to fit consumers’ personal tastes or even mood.

It’s the first time in 15 years that Kenneth Cole has launched a new fragrance master brand, but giving the launch a bit more edge, Kenneth Cole has also included three additional scents that can be blended with either the His or Her scents to give different effects, and an added edge.

Serenity is blended to be calming, Energy is described as fresh, and Intensity is blended to evoke a sense of mystery.

Although the personalization of fragrances is not a brand new trend, it is certainly continuing to evolve, diversify and even mature, and is continuing to offer a means for fragrance players to 

Related topics Market Trends Fragrance

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