DUBAI: Guerlain’s grasp perfumer Thierry Wasser is not any odd man.
The nostril behind a number of the maison’s most iconic fragrances, Wasser joined Guerlain in 2008 to fill the sneakers of his predecessor, Jean-Paul Guerlain. This made him the fifth-ever perfumer in the home’s historical past and its first non-family title.
Wasser was not too long ago in Dubai to disclose Guerlain’s newest bee bottle, designed in collaboration with Lebanese designer Nadine Kanso, and he spoke to Arab Information about his position at Guerlain and the way the Gulf Cooperation Council area continues to encourage him.
The maison’s newest fragrance, Reve d’Amour, housed in a bottle designed by Kanso, is one Wasser described as a competition of white flowers.
He mentioned: “I additionally wished one thing linked to Nadine, which is the cedar wooden – it’s the logo of Lebanon.”
The Center East, particularly the GCC area, is necessary to Wasser. He famous an encounter with an Emirati man 15 years in the past, which led to the creation of Santal Royal in a bee bottle designed by artist Tarek Benaoum.
“I created Santal Royal after a dialog with an older gentleman who mentioned, ‘you European folks don’t know how you can design a giant wow fragrance.’ And he defined to me what a perfume means for an Emirati.”
From that dialog, Wasser discovered how some Emirati males rub rose oil on their nostril and beard earlier than greeting somebody.
“GCC, for me, isn’t solely about enterprise but in addition a supply of inspiration. The importance of perfume right here is profound in comparison with Europe and America,” Wasser added.
He identified that power, diffusion, and long-lastingness have been crucial within the area.
“In Europe, you place fragrance in your pores and skin. Right here, fairly often, it’s on the garments. And in case you study concerning the longevity of the composition on garments versus on the pores and skin, you write your system somewhat in a different way,” he mentioned.
Wasser grew to become a perfumer by likelihood and revealed that his preliminary commerce was medicinal herbs.
“I received kicked out of college after I was 15 as a result of I discovered it boring and received a diploma in botany as an alternative,” he added.
In the course of the Nineteen Seventies, the Swiss nationwide joined Givaudan Perfumery Faculty in Geneva, the place he found he had a knack for scents.
He mentioned: “The top of the varsity was struck by my potential to explain scents utilizing phrases – that was my robust level.”
After graduating, he labored in Paris and New York earlier than his appointment at Guerlain. His expertise on the maison has been distinctive in comparison with his roles at different firms.
“Guerlain could be very particular in comparison with its competitors. Since 1828, they manufacture all the things they promote – there are not any frozen pizzas within the kitchen.”
He discovered the artwork of producing and sourcing from and with Jean-Paul Guerlain.
“Beforehand, I used to be solely designing fragrances. With Guerlain, all the things begins from scratch. I spend 35 % of my time sourcing flowers within the fields,” he added.
From the Indian state of Tamil Nadu comes jasmine, vetiver, and mimosa whereas pepper is sourced from Madagascar. With a vertically built-in provide chain, Wasser is commonly knee-deep in flower fields and is aware of his suppliers nicely.
He mentioned: “Jean-Paul Guerlain was sourcing the bergamot from the south of Italy from the identical household, which is now in its third technology.
“Perfume is incarnated by the individuals who decide the flowers and rework them into the oil. So, after I scent a rose from Bulgaria, it has a which means to me as a result of I do know the pickers and transformers. There’s an emotional cost to all these totally different components, and that’s why I believe our fragrances are alive,” Wasser added.