Mint. It’s a notoriously difficult note for perfumers to work with. Leave it to Diptyque and the house’s director of marketing and product creation Myriam Badault alongside perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin to create a modern take on the note. A nod to the fougère (fern) olfactory family, the mint is combined with geranium, patchouli, and rose oxide. The pair behind this genderless scent unveil their journey.
What is the story of Eau de Minthé? What was your source of inspiration behind the scent? Why that name?
Myriam Badault : The fragrance was inspired by an olfactive memory, a fragrant trail in the entrance of a building and an elevator! What stroke me was the contrast between the classic scent twisted with a modern and aromatic freshness, in my head I’ve memorized the sensation as an “enveloping” mint. The story of Eau de Minthé comes from that ingredient (mint). I like to tell stories and share my discoveries, mythology and ancient times are among our strong inspirations, and we found this very nice story about the nymph Minthé and her love affair with Hadès. I have a whole collection of comics based on myths, the young author is Clotilde Bruneau. We asked her to write the storyboard of the film. It was a very enriching experience.
How would you describe Eau de Minthé?
MB: Both modern and familiar, depending on your age! For someone born in the ’70s, it refers to very familiar masculine fragrance, for someone a bit younger, barbershop scents and freshness. I wanted to explore the “fougère” universe with a twist and some reference to our heritage (the English roots of the brand, the barber soap that was sold in the Saint Germain stores in the early ’60s…) and my obsessive idea to use mint.
What are the key ingredients? Usually, Diptyque fragrances have an olfactory accident. Which one did you choose for Eau de Minthé and why?
Fabrice Pellegrin: Mint of course, for the modernity, but also the more traditional geranium and patchouli duet to follow the authentic fougère structure. I chose rose oxide as an even more modern “olfactory accident”. It brings its vibrant and modern aura to compose a new olfactory twist.
How does the fragrance develop on the skin?
FP: To me, Diptyque’s DNA is all about enhancing nature and its beautiful raw materials. In this case, it reminds me of a grooming realm but truly free gender. It has a soapy inflexion, like an authentic clean fougère. Its classy and rich dry down turns extremely chic on the skin.
What was the most difficult to achieve?
MB: The balance. The idea came quite quickly, but it took us a while to find the right balance and the right selection of ingredients. Fabrice’s son, who is studying perfumery, gave us some very constructive feedback! And we changed the blend of mint essences.
Is there anything else that you would like to share about this creation?
MB: As usual, we stop the fragrance creation when both the perfumer and I feel we are there. For Eau de Minthé, we were pushed by our team to make a decision and we did it. But none of us were a 100% happy, so we decided to go back to work and do a last submission!
What type of people do you imagine wearing this fragrance?
FP: Eau de Minthé would likely appeal to anyone who feels close to nature and is willing to enjoy its pure freshness and beauty. Eau de Minthé offers the pleasure of an escape in uplifting ferns and wild mint.
How did the collaboration with Fabrice Pellegrin, the perfumer, come about? And with Charlotte Gastaut, the illustrator?
MB: For Fabrice, it is all above! I worked with Charlotte a few years ago, she designed some patterns for our 34 BAZAR collection. During that time, I discovered her amazing work as an illustrator for children’s books. Through the illustration, we wanted to tell Minthé and Hadès’s story, as a tale whilst including all the richness and depth of the fragrant universe. Charlotte’s drawing is full of detail and symbols. Her drawing evokes a kind of exuberant nature.
How would you describe the creative dynamics between Diptyque, Fabrice Pellegrin and Charlotte Gastaut?
MB: Very positive! Charlotte get inspired by Fabrice’s creation, and Fabrice by Charlotte’s drawing.