Welcome to our series, My Life in Perfume. We’re asking our favourite fragrance fans to reveal all – from their first perfume purchase to their signature aroma; here are their scent stories…
Clemence CC is a fragrance specialist with a YouTube channel and Instagram that shares her love of all things scent. The latest guest in our My Life in Perfume series, Clemence, was born in Paris, raised in Brittany, and now lives in London, where she was a Chanel perfume trainer for five years before becoming a full-time scent specialist. Here’s everything you need to know about her passion for perfume…
My First Perfume
As far as I remember, it has to be No5. I asked my parents to gift me this fragrance for Christmas so many times because I was fascinated with Chanel’s very rich history and heritage. It was and still is the ultimate in class, and it gave me a feeling of being strong, independent and confident even at a very young age. I think I wanted to be like the ladies in the magazines! Its floral aldehydic champagne is timeless, and I don’t think I’ll ever get bored of it. I have worked for Chanel as a fragrance expert for five years which make sense when I’m telling this story!
My First Perfume Purchase
I was around 15 and purchased Yves Saint Laurent La Parisienne because it was trendy, and I felt like a queen wearing it in high school. It has a very heady note of rosy cranberry, so I think I wanted to make sure everybody could smell my fragrance when entering a room. Also, I loved the name as I was born in Paris but was living in Brittany, France, so it reminded me that I was a Parisian at heart.
My First Mind-Blowing Fragrance
Fragrances have always surrounded me from childhood to my studies, so no fragrance was a revelation. However, when I smelt Maison Francis Kurkdjian Grand Soir, I was mind blown; it was when I started my journey in the niche perfume industry. I had stars in my eyes as I had never smelled an amber that pure and elegant at the same time. After that, I am crazy about discovering more niche / unique fragrances.
My All-Time Favourite
Miller Harris Scherzo! Just because it suits my personality, it’s fun, cheeky, quirky with juicy sweet notes and has a very dark opulent strong character with Oud notes. Overall, it’s feminine and seductive. No more comments!
My Everyday Scent
Burberry London has always been my everyday fragrance. If I don’t know what to wear, what I’m doing during the day, or who I’m meeting, that’s the one! It’s a very simple composition, white florals with a very rich sunny accord, perfect for any day/season/situation and paired with a casual-chic outfit.
My Most Sentimental Perfume
Yves Saint Laurent Babydoll is my most sentimental. It was my mom’s perfume when I was younger. She had quite a big collection of fragrances, but this one was always on her dressing table. I used to dress up, apply her make up and steal a spray of it to look like her. It’s a fresh cute pineapple scent; I’ve never smelled anything similar in other fragrances. Every time I wear it now, I feel like I’m eight again, wearing my mom’s white shirt, pretending I’m a successful working girl!
My Favourite Brands
Of course, Chanel. Its history guided me to work in the perfume industry – I love all the fragrances for the storytelling behind each of them. It has always been a pleasure to tell all those stories during my masterclasses. I own around 30 Chanel fragrances, and I’m in love with each of them for their timeless, elegant DNA.
I will also add L’Orchestre Parfum as I fell in love with the brand a few years ago. They have a very clever concept linking their fragrances to music. You can listen to your fragrances. Olivier Polge, a Chanel perfumer, always said that creating a fragrance is like creating a symphony. The composition of the scents is very meticulous, and it’s probably the fragrances I wear the most daily. For example, Piano Santal and Ambre Cello, my favourites, are unique and really reflective of all the french perfumery savoir-faire with a very modern and creative touch.
My Perfume Collection
My perfume collection is big, but I’m still quite selective when I choose my fragrances. I wouldn’t say it’s very organised; I display them by brands and separate niche from designer. When adding a fragrance to my collection, I don’t think about it a lot (I don’t think about the season or anything); it all depends on whether I fall in love with the scent. Being a fragrance YouTuber, I always need more fragrances to review and take videos of, so I’m constantly adding more fragrances to it. I own around 400, I guess; I am not counting anymore as it’s very overwhelming! I also have a vintage fragrance collection hidden in boxes and suitcases to ensure they don’t expire and the juice isn’t going bad with daylight. When saying how much I have, I used to feel quite concerned, thinking it was an obsession; however, now this is my job; it does sound normal, I guess!