Arriving at the EFF perfume laboratory always comes with exciting olfactive surprises.
Before even entering the office, we can guess what the factory is making: the fruity apple notes of a fragrance for shampoo, the fresh pine character of a surface care product, or the opulent aroma of a Middle Eastern fine fragrance.
The morning often starts picking up from the previous evening. We evaluate how our fragrances have faired overnight to test their longevity and strength when dry.
After a quick morning meeting with the evaluators, each perfumer within EFF is assigned a different project for our clients.
Once we are alone in front of our desks, we set to work creatively, working also within the constraints of the project, these could be to meet a certain price point, to create something to meet a particular customers regulation, to achieve a certain level of in-use performance benchmarked by the client, sometimes a particular fragrance currently sold may also need to be looked at to be updated to meet the newest and latest regulations which EFF, through their commitment and membership to IFRA, subscribe to.
Each perfumer within EFF has a unique personality, perfume preference, and background which allows the company to have strong and wide creative diversity in what we create. As my now retired teacher, Tony Stokes used to say, “if you give a perfume to two perfumers, you will get three answers.” That said we share and suggest different olfactive ideas with each other on other projects, sometimes igniting a spark for a different direction.
A perfumer’s job is a never-ending learning curve, and we are always smelling new essential oils and molecules that have just been discovered or old materials that we haven’t smelled in a long time, it is an evolving and exciting palette we can work from.
Technical knowledge is essential to be able to recreate the fragrances that are in our imagination which has to be combined with creativity to stimulate our imagination. These can range from creating a hazelnut ice cream for fun, or recreate the smell of the Amazon jungle like I did for the multisensory, virtual reality movie, MUNDURUKU.
The day to day work is exciting, challenging and different each day but the real satisfaction comes when a customer finally adopts one of our fragrances, which is the best part of my job here at EFF.
In a recent interview with Fragrantica here, Nadjib says that in the next 10 years he sees himself as a “hybrid perfumer, creating fabric softeners during the day and making performance perfumery at night.”
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