Essential Luxury - Cartier Perfume
Delicately refined and as beautifully constructed as their jewellery collections, Cartier perfumes are daringly elegant, thoroughly modern, and taking the world of haute parfum by storm.
Words by Natasha Were.
For more than 160 years, Paris-based Maison Cartier has lived up to its reputation as ‘jeweller to kings and king of jewellers’. European aristocrats, Indian maharajahs and Hollywood divas have all famously commissioned their exquisite creations. Best known for designing and crafting extravagant, gemstone-laden jewellery and luxury timepieces, Cartier’s more recent expansion into the world of fragrances gives olfactory expression to the house’s distinctive style.
Sculpted with the same expert composition and meticulous craftsmanship that goes into each piece of jewellery, Mathilde Laurent, Cartier’s in-house perfumer since 2005, constructs her fragrance formulas using a small selection of rare and luxurious ingredients.
Through a combination of alchemy, expertise and sound scientific knowledge, Laurent – who graduated in chemistry, studied at the prestigious ISIPCA Institute and then spent a decade at Guerlain before joining Cartier – aims to push olfactory boundaries and challenge dominant archetypes whilst creating harmonious blends that evoke complex emotions.Consistently hailed as one of the most exciting ‘noses’ in the business, Laurent strives for each perfume to be an expression of the prevailing global trends of the time, while simultaneously drawing upon the unique and timeless mixture of exoticism and audaciousness that is the hallmark of Cartier’s style. It’s a process that can take many months to perfect, but the result is like invisible jewellery for the skin.
The very earliest Cartier designers travelled widely taking inspiration for their designs not only from the artistic traditions of other cultures, but from the animals, flowers and fruits they encountered. Cartier’s iconic panther motif is the ultimate illustration of this. Exuding sensuality, mystique and a hint of danger, the panther is their interpretation of femininity, a wild creature from a far off land.
Through an impeccable blend of central notes of animalist musk and delicate gardenia, Laurent has translated the essence of La Panthère, a ‘feral floral’, into the eponymous new women’s fragrance launched in March 2014.
Les Heures de Parfum, Laurent’s 2009 collection of 13 unisex fragrances inspired by the emotions of life, received two prestigious awards from the Fragrance Foundation of France, firmly establishing Cartier in the world of high perfumery.
The history of Cartier fragrance formulation is a relatively short one – the first women’s fragrance, Must de Cartier, was not launched until 1981 – yet in the ten years Laurent has been at the helm of this division, she has demonstrated her unique ability to translate the house’s tradition of excellence into an olfactory experience. As the Maison Cartier sails boldly into 21st century, Laurent’s leadership ensures perfume aficionados can look forward to a new era of surprising, seductive and sophisticated fragrances.
Available exclusively at Kirk Freeport locations: The Cartier Boutique, La Perfumerie I & II, Bayshore Perfumerie and Kirk Freeport at The Strand www.kirkfreeport.net
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