IPF’s ethos are truly commendable and the importance of raising awareness of the use of truly natural, plant-based ingredients in the perfume industry is so important. This also carries over to the cosmetics, candle and soap industries as well.
Misinformation runs rampant in an industry with little regulations in Canada. Companies must register their products with Health Canada and label products according to their regulations but as we all know the use of the words, fragrance or perfume can encompass a broad spectrum. Especially with the onset of Covid, many people started home based businesses and are quite often fooled by jargon used by the wholesalers of ingredients. The use of words such as , “nature identical, natural blend, naturally occurring in nature”, etc., trick people into believing that the ingredients they are using are natural. Raising awareness and education is the key. With the help of IPF, people can be directed to trusted sources of information and I am very excited to be part of this.
We are slowly entering the consciousness of the consumer. Customer by customer, post by post, there is a shift happening. My business, Wild Coast Perfumery Ltd has grown year over year as I approach my 6th year in business. I am striving to keep the artisan, handmade aspect as I scale. But the expanding marketplace leaves lots of room for other natural perfumers to move in. I believe that mentoring and encouraging others to believe that there is viable business opportunities in the natural perfumery industry and education is the start!
People often ask me about the “scent free” environments requested in many government, school, hospital, or office situations.
This is changing too, as consumers become more educated. Many of my business’s customers are doctors, teachers and nurses. They are realizing that real natural ingredients are not triggering sensitivities but even have positive impacts on patients and students.
Industry trends and olfactory preferences seem to shift regularly, and it’s interesting to watch and track. During covid, consumers seemed to crave scents that reminded them of a vacation. So tropical feeling perfumes be it fruity or floral notes really spoke to people. In the last year as the economy slightly turned down, I noticed the trend of consumers looking for warm comfort, such as vanilla, oud, tonka, ambrette, coffee, vanilla, and tobacco type notes. But people's desire to be transported to places where they created happy life memories seems to be a constant, so this also keeps me inspired.
My journey to become a natural perfumer developed over literally decades. And I find myself reverting to perfumery workbooks that I started with decades ago but now look at the information with different eyes. Education is a journey, practice truly makes perfect, but perfection is always in the nose of the beholder!