The Ultimate Fashion Fragrance Collab

Photograph by Pete Daly.

Fragrance-philes, buckle up. Fashion purists, take a deep breath. Inimitable perfume provocateur Frédéric Malle has just released a scent with iconic designer Alber Elbaz. It’s called ‘Superstitious’ and it’s a heady mix of Egyptian Jasmine, Turkish Rose oil and Haitian Vetiver… Yes, cross yourself twice because this is some sexy black voodoo in a bottle. It will set you back $570 and you will know every drop is worth it.

The collaboration was announced late last year, around the same time Elbaz (the former Creative Director of Lanvin) received The Order of Légion d'Honneur, France’s highest honour, for services to fashion. This is only the second perfume created by Malle’s ultra-exclusive side label ‘Par Frederic Malle’ and, a first for Elbaz. The duo signed master nose and parfumer Dominique Ropion to build an entirely surprising scent in the manner of proper, traditional perfume. It’s said Ropion worked in isolation, every so often giving the precious scent over to Malle and Elbaz, who didn’t exchange a single email throughout the tweaking process. Such labours of love were only to be discussed over long lunches.

Many lunches later, it’s finally here. So what does it smell like? The first sniff hits like a love-drunk floral overdose. ‘Indolic’ is the word insiders use to describe this kind of sensual Jasmine. Aldehydes give a rich, deep rose heart a clean sparkle that you don’t see coming and by the time you pick up Sandalwood smouldering with earthy and fresh Vetiver in the base, you’ll know this is something very special. It’s as though familiar fragrances have been put together in a way that gives the finished product a little kink.

Malle puts it down Ropion’s “secret architecture”, a hidden construction similar to that of an Elbaz couture dress—you understand the genius when you put it on. We suggest you do.


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