More perfume podcasts…? Eau yes!

We’re so excited to see more dedicated perfume podcasts (and fragrantly themed episodes of other series) starting to blossom, and here’s our pick of the current bunch…

 

The SniffNicola Thomis is a fragrance-obsessed reviewer who, in previous episodes, has looked at soothing scents for troubled times, spoke with language translator, (and sometime Perfume Society fellow contributor) Marta Dziurosz, about the language of smell, and interviewed some of the hottest names in niche perfumery. The lastest episode is a vox-pop of perfumes people have been reaching for, and we love listening!

 

Molecast – The brilliant perfumer Geza Schoen and writer, Susan Irvine, are the hosts of this Escentric Molecules podcast, with Geza taking a deep dive in to the way he creates fragrances and Susan exploring the wider world of fragrance terms and techniques. This episodes looks at notes ‘from the stinky to sublime‘…

 

 

Outspoken Beauty – Host, Nicola Bonn, dedicates this episode to her ‘favourite fragrance of all time’: the iconic Frédéric Malle Portrait of a Lady. Hearing from the perfumer, Dominique Ropion, himself, plus a plethora of celebrity fans, like Val Garland and Nicola Chapman, say why they’re similarly obsessed. Our fragrant friend Odette Toilette also adds her knowledge, and this beautifully produced documentary is an absolute treat of an olfactory ode.

 

Fume Chat – We’ve been fans of this down-to-earth and chatty ppodcast since it began, and now we’re up to Season 3 if you can believe it! Co-hosts,fFragrance expert & consultant, Nick Gilbert and blogger & writer, Thomas Dunckley (aka The Candy Perfume Boy) use this latest episoide to take the lid off Playful Perfumery using ‘novel accords’. It’s always such a pleasure to tune in – they’re great friends as well as colleagues, and it really shows.

 

Dressed: The History of Fashion – Though they normally focus on fashion, obvs, in this special episoide, the historiuan and museum curator hosts, Cassidy Zachary and April Calahan, invite author and illustrator Jessica Roux ‘to discuss how the Victorians used the symbolism of flowers as a means of communication.’ Fascinating stuff, and of course we immediately pre-ordered a copy of Jessica’s stunning looking book, Floriography: An Illustrated Guide to the Victorian Language of Flowers (which we’ll review for our ever-growing Fragrant Reads section, never fear!)

 

 

Want to add even more perfume-related listening to your podcast list? Here’s the previous five fragrance podcasts we listened to, and then even more to peruse when you’ve finished those…

By Suzy Nightingale

5 perfumed podcasts to plug-in to while self-isolating

Given that we are all now on #lockdown for the forseeable in the UK, and that many of us are looking for new ways to unwind and be entertained, we thought it time to put together a new list of perfume and smell-themed podcasts we’ve been enjoying of late.

Why not settle back with a brew and a biscuit, and plug in to these scent-tastic listens to take your mind off the worries for a while? Simply click on the links to listen.

Fume Chat is back for a THIRD season, and we couldn’t be more delighted. On the latest episode, hosts (and great fragrant friends of The Perfume Society) Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunkley (a.k.a The Candy Perfume Boy) are chatting with the utterly brilliant James Craven – the Fragrance Archivist at legendary London boutique Les Senteurs. James talks about his incredible career while sniffing through five iconic niche fragrances, and we defy you not to be charmed!

The Sniff Perfume Podcast, hosted by blogger Nicola Thomis, ‘takes a deep dive into things fragrance and scent related, shining the spotlight on niche and artisan perfumes, the creators and their stories.’ And this year, they are nominated for a Fragrance Foundation Jasmine Award! In the most recent Sniff episide, Nicola chats to Chris Wilkinson from the YouTube channel Fragmental, about what it takes to be a video influencer…

The Scented Gent is hosted by Nick, who’s the Grooming Editor for Menswear Style, and also has a great Instagram account @thescentedgent where he reviews his favourite fragrances, and sets Friday Fragrance Challenges to ‘name that fragrance’ based on the description. And the podcast episodes are like a catch-up with a perfumed pal, brining news and musings for fragrance lovers.

Invisibilia is an always-fascinating podcast that ‘fuses narrative storytelling with science that will make you see your own life differently.’ Thi particular episode focusses on the amazing story of Joy Milne – a woman we wrote about last year, whose sense of smell is ‘a biological gift that allows her to see things that will happen in the future that no one else can see.’

I AM HERETIC is a podcast by the niche fragrance house Heretic’s founder, perfumer and creative director, Douglas Little. Giving a sneak peek behind the scenes of the fragrance industry, he ‘…explores this fascinating  and the extraordinary people it has led him to. The conversations are fun and educational, with plenty of surprise guests.’

We’d love to know which perfume-related podcasts you have been enjoying most recently – are there some fragrant shows scenting the airways we should listen to next…?

By Suzy Nightingale

January blues? Listen to these fantastic fragrant podcasts to make your commute a scented breeze

Facing the January commute with a feeling of ennui? Download a fragrant podcast to blow away those blues!

We’re thrilled that fragrance is finally getting spoken about more frequently in the media, and in a way that confirms our belief that people are genuinely hungry to hear more – not only about the history, but the truly fascinating new technologies and advances being made. And there’s a plethora of perfume-related content out there at the moment.

We have rounded up some of the very best fragrant listening for you. So sit back, take a deep breath, and immerse yourself in these scented soundscapes…

Fume Chat has long been one of our favourites, presented by fragrance experts (and great friends) Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunkley. In this latest episode they look back at some of the best fragrances of the decade.

We were so happy to hear We Wear Perfume’s, and regular correspondent for The Perfume Society, Amanda Carr on BBC Radio 4’s You & Yours, discussing fragrance used for wellness and future trends. (Start listening to the conversation at 29:33).

Radio 4 really have a penchant for perfume, it seems, as another of their regular programmes took a fascinating look at the ‘smells and bells’ aspect of religion in Beyond Belief. They ask why smell has become an important part of many faiths and how it enhances religious observance, but also discuss the importance of the sense of smell and memory for everyone – an excellent listen we highly recommend!

Brilliant natural perfumer Mandy Aftel has inspired many to follow her lead, and mentored the founder of Heretic perfumes. The author of nine books about perfumery and essential oils, she is a wealth of information and always great to listen to, so the perfect guest for the Heretic Perfume podcast.

The AMERICAN PERFUMER® Podcast is a fantastic way of keeping up to date with the very latest niche fragrant happenings across the pond, and this episode hands the mic over to self-taught perfumers John Biebel & Hans Hendley.

Those interested in vintage fashion and fashion history will adore exploring the back-catalogue of the Dressed podcast, but this episode takes a look at the ancient process of extracting fragrant oils through enfleurage.

In a perfumed partnership with Fenwick, the presenters discuss the perfumes they can’t get enough of, and talk about fragrancing their homes in innovative ways, in the Outspoken Beauty podcast.

Pinot & Perfume ask: are robots creating fragrances? Spoilers: yes, and they have been for ages (mostly measuring fragrant materials and mixing them precisely), but now we are looking at a future where ‘robots’ might be designing the perfumes you wear..

In this edition of the popular beauty podcast Fat Mascara, David Seth Motlz, of D.S. & Durga, talks about how he became a self-trained perfumer, the bacon-y smell of autumn leaves, and the difference between natural and synthetic fragrance compounds.

Looking at the science behind the beauty indsutry, this episode of Beauty Brains asks what the terms unscented and fragrance free actually mean. Should you avoid fragrance in skin care products? What’s the difference between synthetic and natural fragrances? They seek to find the answers for you…

This series of short podcasts offers bite-sized French lessons to help you better explain yourself, and Learn French By Podcast. Here they will aid you to pass comment on fragrances – food, perfume, flowers, nature, and so on. ‘Let’s study, in this short lesson, some expressions which will allows us to do that. We’ll meet the verbs “sentir” and “mettre”, in particular. We’ll also see how to say that something smells quite strong.’

Whichever of these fragrance-related podcasts you listen to, we’re sure you’ll be equally thrilled to find the world of fragrance slowly (very slowly) opening up to the wider world. Like, subscribe and leave reviews to encourage this ongoing media discussion – and who knows what the next year will bring to further fragrance our airwaves…?

Written by Suzy Nightingale

 

Jo Fairley on Desert Island Discs

We’re so thrilled that the iconic BBC Radio 4 programme Desert Island Discs – now superbly hosted by Lauren Laverene – managed to catch up with our co-founder of The Perfume Society and editor of The Scented Letter Magazine, Jo Fairley; and we’re not quite sure how they managed it, because she is (to put it mildly) a busy woman.

One minute she’s putting pen to paper about scented subjects, the next she’s giving a talk to encourage small-business owners, putting together another volume of The Beauty Bible book, or jetting off to Australia with Green & Black’s chocolate (which she began with her husband, Craig Sams). Throughout every venture, Jo has believed in listening to her gut feelings, and going with what she’s passionate about (which is why perfume and chocolate feature so highly!)

Jo was over-the-moon to be asked on one of her all-time favourite radio shows, and says that ‘it was an absolute joy and a hoot to do,’ revealing that the team were ‘drinking tea and nibbling Green & Blacks while the back room crew got completely and joyously wired on their bars!’ Before listening to the show, Jo said, ‘I will probably break the Guinness World Record for breath-holding while listening (from behind the sofa)’ and comments over all the years of listening, she must have ‘mentally composed my playlist 1000 times (haven’t we all?) but let me tell you, when it comes down to it, selecting just eight tracks is REALLY HARD.’

We’re sure you’ve got a list of tracks you’d sail away with, so have a listen to Jo’s selection – and the fascinating interview with Lauren, all about Jo’s background, how she started in magazines and her advice for anyone starting a business…

By Suzy Nightingale

Fume Chat podcast returns for scented Season Two

Our favourite perfume podcast took a bit of a hiatus – some scented breathing space, if you will – but now Fume Chat is BACK for a second season of fun, facts and fragrant memories!

If you’re a new listener, really all you need to know is that Fume Chat is hosted by long-time friends and fragrance experts, Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunkley. Nick is a fragrance evaluator, co-founder of scent consultancy Olfiction, and has frequently appeared on radio, television, and in print media sharing his insights on the fragrance industry.  Thomas is perhaps better known as The Candy Perfume Boy – a multi-award-winning writer for several websites and publications along with his own blog, now working with Nick and perfumer Pia Long at Olfiction, as well as a fellow contributor to our The Scented Letter magazine.

So, between them, there’s very little Nick and Thomas don’t know about fragrance – from behind-the-scenes of creation and working with ‘noses’, to retail training and through to reviewing their own shelf-groaning collections of scent. We’re not quite sure how they find time to also work on their own podcast, but we’re awfully glad they do – as you will be when you give Fume Chat a listen.

Search and subscribe to Fume Chat on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

This second series is a good place to start for new listeners as well as long-term audio addicts, because in the first episode, our hosts discuss their perfume origin stories – how on earth they got into this weird and wonderful world of fragrance – as well as sniffing out some new scents to sniff. Later episodes will follow a similar path to the first series (which we urge you to go back and binge on) with special guests, ‘Battle’ episodes (where Nick and Thomas put two favourite fragrances up against each other and argue their case for which should ‘win’ the battle), and hours of factually interesting, inspirational and most importantly fun fragrant chat.

We have two warnings, though….

1: be prepared to have your scented shopping list grow exponentially.

2: be prepared to have the catchy theme tune in your head for the rest of the day/week/month.

The main thing for Fume Chat is to make the world of fragrance accessible for everyone – something we at The Perfume Society wholeheartedly agree with and constantly work towards – and oh guys, it’s good to have you back!

By Suzy Nightingale

Mandy Aftel & The Splendid Table

The Splendid Table Selects podcast indulges in ‘conversations that inspire us to cook in creative ways’, so we were thrilled to hear one of our favourite perfumers, Mandy Aftel, was a recent guest!

The Splendid Table say: ‘Mandy Aftel is an artisan perfumer with a deep knowledge of natural essential oils. Her book Fragrant: The Secret Life of Scentco-authored by chef Daniel Patterson, features scent-crafting skills and perfume ingredients in cooking to highlight the difference just one drop of essential oil can make in a dish. Splendid Table contributor Jennifer 8 Lee met up with Aftel to talk about cooking with five particularly powerful aromas: cinnamon, mint, frankincense, ambergris and jasmine. Check out Mandy’s recipes for Rose and Ginger Soufflé and Fragrant Raspberry Bubbly.’

Have a listen to the episode here.

Mandy has long been a friend of The Perfume Society, and we have been delighted, in the past, to have thrown a Scented Supper in her honour, hosted and prepared by the brilliant chef Pratap Chahal, who was inspired by Mandy to use fragrant notes in his own cooking.

How wonderful that flavour and fragrance are finally being entwined in the public consciousness, and that perfumers are being interviewed about subjects outside of the usual ‘how do you make a perfume’ type questions. Could it be that our sense of smell will eventually be taken as seriously in the mainstream media…? We can but spray and pray.

Written by Suzy Nightingale

Scenting the airwaves – perfume themed podcasts we recommend

Fragrance is filling the air(waves) right now, with a plethora of perfumed podcasts to catch up with – some fairly recently released episodes, and some other (for us) just-discovered gems.
At The Perfume Society, we’ve long held that the topic of fragrance and our sense of smell is perhaps at the point food and wine were not all that long ago: something the general public are waking up to as a valid subject to explore, enjoy and discuss in depth.

Perfect to download and enjoy while commuting, these will ease you gently from wearing pyjamas past midday while mainly eating a cheese and chocolate-based diet; or perhaps to to catch up with while chilling this weekend…

Fume Chat: The Filth Battle
Fellow ‘fumehead Katie Puckrik joins regular hosts, Thomas and Nick, to judge a battle of their perfume picks that smell nothing short of downright dirty. Our very favourite kind! You’ll come for the fragrances and stay for the banter.

The Conversation: Perfume Makers
How do you capture and bottle a scent? Two perfume makers from France and Malaysia talk to Kim Chakanetsa about how they’ve trained their noses to smell over 1,000 different raw ingredients.

What’s the Tee?
RuPaul and co-host Michelle Visage spend much of this episode discussing their love of perfume, with Michelle in particular proving to be well-up on her niche houses and with seemingly quite a collection. Such a pleasure to hear people be passionate about things they love, don’t you think?

Two Sense: Perfumer & Flavorist Podcast
Flavour and fragrance are inextricably linked, and indeed many perfume companies create for both sectors. Perfumer & Flavorist sit down with Ewan Morgan, national director of Diageo, to discuss what goes into crafting a quality whisky.

The Why Factor: Perfume
For centuries perfume has been used to show status and wealth and the global business is worth now worth tens of billions of dollars, so clearly fragrance is more popular than ever. Here the BBc’s Mike Williams talks to an historian and archaeologist about why we use perfume and what, exactly, it says about us.

Histories of the Unexpected: Perfume
Presenters Dr Sam Willis and Professor James Daybell ‘argue’ that everything has a history (well, yes) here delving in to our favourite topic (obvs).

Making Scents: The Story of Perfume
Bridget Kendall and guests explore the modern history of perfume, including its flowering in France and the explosive chemical discoveries that helped to make fine fragrance what it is today.

The Pool: Perfume: A Century of Scents
Lizzie Ostrum (aka Odette Toilette) discusses her brilliant book, beginning with the story of CK One and how it came to epitomise the 1990s.

Stuff You Should Know: How Perfume Works
Josh and Chuck are the very laid-back and affable hosts who plunge into topics they previously knew little or nothing about, sharing their research with listeners. There are hundreds of episodes covering everything from corsets to cults, but of course we zoomed in on the perfume episode…

Do let us know if there are any more you’ve heard – we’re always on the lookout for further fragrant recommendations!

Written by Suzy Nightingale

 

 

War of the Roses: Jo Fairley judges a fragrant Fume Chat 'fight' between Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunckley…

Fume Chat is one of our favourite podcasts (for the uninitiated, think of podcasts as online radio shows you can subscribe to and download to listen later), from the offset aiming ‘…to have fun with fragrance – after all, it’s just perfume, so why it take it so seriously?’ Regular hosts Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunckley (a.k.a. fragrance blogger The Candy Perfume Boy) may be perfume experts in their own right, but they genuinely bring a sense of the joy of discovery along with down-to-earth accessible information to their weekly show.
Most episodes sees the fragrant twosome sniffing exciting new scents both old and new or discussing topics relevant to the world of perfumery – a brilliant recent episode was dedicated to Aroma Chemicals (or Synthetics) and exploring what the giddy hell they actually are and where best to sniff them out.
Our favourite episodes have to be the ‘Battles’, in which Nick and Thomas each bring to the table their favourite examples of a particular perfume genre. Often they’ll get a guest to decide the outcome (and overall winner of the battle!) and the latest – The War of the Roses –featured none other than our very own co-founder and editor, Jo Fairley as the judge. We wont spoil the surprise, but suffice to say it was a close battle and you’ll be wanting to scatter rose petals at the feet of the victor…

 
Do go and have a listen by clicking the Fume Chat logo, above – who do YOU think will win? – and have a pad handy, because the way Nick and Thomas so breathlessly describe their favourites makes us want to go and sniff (and douse ourselves in) them immediately…
(If you’re not an Apple user, you can find the Fume Chat RSS feed here).
Written by Suzy Nightingle
 

Fume Chat podcast's fragrant predictions for 2017…

To roll in the New Year, fragrance experts, friends and now regular Fume Chat ‘podcasters’ (think of podcasts as radio shows you can listen to online, if you’re new to the term!) Nick Gilbert and Thomas Dunkley (aka The Candy Perfume Boy) decided to look ahead to all things fragrant for 2017 and ponder on the perfumes we’ll all be using in the months to come.
In this sixth episode, the fragrant twosome muse on questions including…
– Who will release a perfume in a bottle of their face?

– Will oud ever die?
– What scent can be described as ‘Rosa Dentata’?

fortnums_thomas_nick1
[Photo via Olfactaria’s Travels perfume blog, showing Nick and Thomas on a previous perfume-sniffing outing…]
Presented in their trademark down-to-earth but entirely knowledgable way, it’s a great listen (as always!) and we think their friendly discussions definitely encourage an ever-growing list of perfumes to seek out and try for yourselves.
We suggest you settle down with a cup of tea, put your feet up and listen to the episode here. You can catch up with any shows you may have missed, too!
Written by Suzy Nightingale

'Fume Chat – a new podcast show that has serious fun with fragrance…

We perfume-lovers are greedy types – ever hungry for more fragrance in all its forms: spritzing on layers of it, daily (obvs), surrounding ourselves with scented candles, reading books on it, watching shows [like Love to Smell on YouTube] about it and, now, listening to perfume-themed podcasts to-boot. More is always more, with us, and so of course we eagerly listened to the first ‘Fume Chat episode when it launched a couple of weeks ago…
Hosted by fragrance expert, writer and independent consultant Nick Gilbert and his long-time perfume blogging pal, Thomas Dunkley [aka, award-winning The Candy Perfume Boy]; ‘Fume Chat is a conversation between two highly knowledgable (and very funny) friends that you really feel part of as you listen. And for those of you who haven’t ventured into the world of podcasts yet, think of them as online radio shows that you can download and listen to whenever you wish. Particularly useful for tedious train journeys, we find!
The first episode is more of an introduction to the sorts of topics they hope to be covering, with Nick and Thomas picking some of their favourites from recently launched perfumes in their extensive wardrobes, and talking more generally about what they personally like to wear. The second episode, just released this Sunday, is themed around what will be an on-going feature: a fragranced duel.
comme_des_garcons_01
For each of these special shows, a perfume house is chosen – this time it was COMME de GARÇONS – and sees our hosts each picking three of their favourite examples, playing a kind of game of “smelly Top Trumps” before having a scented smack-down to agree on a winner.
As Thomas explains, the whole idea behind the show is to be informative but in a really enjoyable, relaxed way: ‘Fume Chat aims to have fun with fragrance – after all, it’s just perfume, so why it take it so seriously? We’ll be sniffing exciting scents, both new and old, battling head-to-head to see who can pick the best fragrances, and discussing many topics related to the smelly aspects of this wonderful world.’
female-radio-listener-vintage-radio-01
We’re certainly looking forward to hearing more from our scented friends, the perfect way to ease yourself into a new week over a lazy Sunday breakfast while dreaming of all the new scents you want to sniff. Anything that encourages people out there and exploring more perfumes gets our vote, and can we just say, we love the catchy theme tune, too!
Depending on their equally busy schedules, new episodes of ‘Fume Chat will be ready to listen to on a fortnightly basis, and they’re really simple to listen and subscribe to. Simply go to their page on iTunes or, if you’re not an Apple user, you can find the ‘Fume Chat RSS feed here. You can also follow ‘Fume Chat on Twitter to join in the conversation, and pay a visit to their Facebook page.
Written by Suzy Nightingale