We’re all used to celebrities lending their persona to launch a perfume, so whenever an actress, singer or – in this case – a supermodel comes out with a new fragrance, it’s tempting to raise a wary eyebrow and wonder exactly how ‘personal’ this perfume really is to them. As soon as you hear Anja Rubik‘s story, and especially when you’re lucky enough to meet her in person to talk about it (as we were), you’re left in no doubt as to her perfumista credentials and the driving force that compelled her to immerse herself in every stage of Original‘s creation.
‘I want this fragrance to inspire you to rediscover your uniqueness.
I want it to provoke you to follow your own path & spirit.
I want it to be a reminder to your own originality.’ – Anja Rubik
Speaking to The Perfume Society, Anja told us ‘I thought it would be really interesting to put something out there that’s really mine, y’know, something that shows my world, my aesthetics. I didn’t want it to just be something that was beautifully packaged and with a lovely fragrance, it was really important to me that it was connected with a message.’
‘It’s all about empowerment, the strength of women, and I thought it would be really interesting to do that through a fragrance, and started to do a lot of research on the impact the sense of smell has, and how it can change your emotions from one moment to another. Every time you smell the scent on your skin or your clothes, I want women to be reminded of the manifesto that comes with the box, to feel the strength of being Original. It’s not about blindly following trends, it’s about creating your own style…’
Anja described how she spent years finding the right people to join her team in developing this debut fragrance, using her initial creative mood-boards referencing iconic women such as Debbie Harry, Patti Smith, Bianca Jagger and Jane Birkin and heavily inspired by photographer Robert Mapplethorpe‘s iconic black and white images of lilies; sourcing the perfumer and learning the art of making accords, discovering how a master ‘nose’ builds a fragrance; to personally designing the striking style of the bottle and packaging.
Liberty say: ‘Inspired by freedom, both sensual and feminine the scent features notes of wood, amber, floral, green tea and pink pepper, the result is a subtle and personal fragrance that is unique in every regard.’
We were thrilled to discover Anja was a true fellow fragrance fanatic, and even more so when finally smelling Original on the skin. Seductive, beguiling yet ultimately comforting, this is a grown-up, modern twist on a lily fragrance for women who don’t want to toe the line, but perhaps need reminding every now and again that the strength to be whomever you choose is always within you…
We got to chat to Anja at some length, during which she revealed all sorts of fragrantly fascinating insights, and we’ll be sharing these with our VIP Subscribers in the award-winning Scented Letter magazine soon…!
Anja Rubik Original, £60 for 50ml eau de parfum
Buy it at Liberty.
Written by Suzy Nightingale