Ever smell a fragrance and think, “Wow. This smells just like so and so”?
It happens. Especially when a scent is successful, the pull to make a similar scent can be hard to resist. Hence, the aforementioned olfactive deja vu. Perfumer Christophe Laudamiel wants to do something about fragrance copying, but in a way that is sure to raise eyebrows.
"It is no secret that plagiarism is rampant in the industry,” claims Laudaumiel, who has co-created fragrances like Ralph Lauren Polo Blue and Clinique Happy Heart. “I want to initiate a concrete action to fight that plagiarism by showing a new way of respecting the creators and doing it in a legally creative way.”
Case in point, Sailors, one of the scents in his recently launched collection, The Zoo. Sailors is Laudamiel’s remix of Cartier’s Declaration, a 20-year-old men’s scent created by renowned perfumer Jean Claude Ellena. Over the woody fresh floral, Laudamiel added cashmeran, cinnamon leaves and clove, as well as ambrox and sandalwood. The result is a juice that has more woods, less cumin, and an overall watery feel, which might explain its seaworthy appellation.
It’s not as if he’s doing this behind anyone’s back. On The Zoo’s website, he explains what he’s done, and he’s recently reached out to both Cartier and the perfumer. Stay tuned re their responses...
Laudamiel mostly wants to start the conversation about this topic, and in doing so, he hopes his fellow perfumers will see this kind of attention as a compliment, and an idea he hopes the industry will embrace. “D.J.’s sample songs all the time,” he points out. “I’ve never heard a singer say don’t use my song.”
Here’s hoping his peers won’t treat him like Donald Trump.