Interview of Nathalie Feisthauer by Esquire Singapore (Mazen nasri & Philaé Rollet) – June July 2020 issue.
Nathalie Feisthauer – Independent perfumer
Putain des palaces État Libre d’Orange, Honour Man Amouage, Rêve Van Cleef & Arpels, Eau des Merveilles Hermés Paris, with Ralf Schwieger ~ Absinthe Boréale Maison Crivelli
ESQ: Are fragrances created in response to society?
NATHALIE FEISTHAUER: Of course! I soak up what’s going on around me and somehow it shows up in my creations.
For instance, I wondered a lot about whistleblowers when this phenomenon first started to appear. I can now say that this movement, which is both surprising and in tune with the times, has had an impact on the way I work and communicate with my clients. Now it has become much easier and more common to discuss the composition of a perfume in a transparent way. Today, my big question is how this COVID-19 crisis that we are all going
through will affect my work.
ESQ: Do you believe in assigning gender to certain notes?
NATHALIE FEISTHAUER: Yes and no. It is true that a form of tradition attributes certain raw materials such as floral notes more to women, and others such as woods, for example, more to men. There is a cultural influence on scents, a part of common knowledge. However, a growing number of brands, especially niche brands, are taking more freedom regarding this distinction.
A customer may like a perfume and wear it just because they find it beautiful, regardless of gender.
ESQ: Do you believe the future of perfume is genderless?
NATHALIE FEISTHAUER: No, I don’t think so. People are free to like all kinds of perfume. The most important is that a person enjoys a perfume, that it makes them feel good, whether it be with ‘commercial’ perfumes from well-known brands or with genderless ones, often reflecting a perfumer’s creative vision for a niche brand.