Mimi Talks to Azzi Glasser

BATD ON Mar 04, 2009 AT 10:07 am

Azzi Glasser

Azzi Glasser

We caught up with Azzi Glasser the nose behind Agent Provocateur parfum.  Azzi gives us the low down on her life in fragrance. The perfumer has designed ranges for the likes of Kylie and Nicole Fahri, so when it comes to fragrance this woman certainly knows her stuff. Read on to find out more in our exclusive interview.

BACKGROUND

1. How did you get to where you are today/where did you train?
I worked initially for an Italian mineral company where I used to invent new ideas for the industrial and cosmetic industry. One was a leg scrub using a mineral called – pumice which was a sand grade and was brilliant for exfoliating hair in a natural way. The other was adding colour and fragrance into Pumice (volcanic) rock which was a great success in the mid-eighties in the height of the ‘Potpourri’ buzz.  There was an article written about me in ‘Cosmopolitan magazine’ and I was soon after approached by a British fragrance company called CPL aromas.  I found the perfume industry very different to what I expected as it seemed quite corporate and robotic.  I trained with CPL Aromas and a great perfumer called ‘David Williams’ I mainly learned the technicalities and the fragrance language used in perfumery.  In terms of creativity I think I really found my own path which was extremely different to the rest. A lot of my inspiration and drive in perfumery came from my mentor Terry Pickthall founder of CPL aromas. I started ‘Agent Provocateur Parfum Ltd’ together with Joseph Corre and Serena Rees in the late nineties and also my own fragrance consultancy company “Family Three”.  I have consulted for many different fashion designers like Nicole Farhi, Jasper Conran, Alexander McQueen, Jean Patou, Monsoon, to multinational companies for CPL, Home ranges for Designers Guild, Kelly Hoppen, Kylie Minogue, Liberty of London and Caravane together with some high profile clients for personal bespoke which remain private.

Signature Fragrance

Signature Fragrance

2. What started your interest in fragrance?
My first love for fragrance came from when I was very young, I have memories of my mother going off to parties, she would put on her false eyelashes then her fur coat and the finishing touch was always spraying her perfume on before she would kiss me and my sister goodbye.  The amazing aroma of her fragrance ‘Worth’ would be left in the air, which was mesmerising and has always stayed with me. When I entered the fragrance industry, I noticed that most of the fine fragrances seemed to smell the same and didn’t seem to have that ‘raison d’être’ which I remembered; this is what I wanted to bring back into the industry. In the late nineties when most fragrances were all smelling of the watery trend and really seemed quite bland and boring, I launched together with Agent Provocateur their first signature fragrance which was very different, it shocked the industry with its powerful accords of hypnotic sensuality bottled in a precious pink porcelain flacon shaped as an egg – The rebirth of fragrance. It was a true marriage between scent and seduction.

 3. Describe a day in your life?
Most of my days are hectic and wondrous.  I have two children both boys aged 1 and 5. Dan my photographer husband and I are both up with the kids around 6.30am we have breakfast with the kids, I then usually drop Zach off to school for 8.15am and then head back to my perfume studio at home to start the day at work. I have a de-brief with my PA and assistant and then usually head off to meetings which can average to around 3 a day usually around London. I have around 20 projects on at a time so it’s never a boring day switching from creating fragrances for fashion designers, to multinational companies or to my bespoke client list. We then all meet up again around 5.30pm for homework with the kids, supper, bath and bed time stories. And then most nights I get back to work for a couple of hours when the kids have gone to bed.

Strip & Tease Votive Candles

Strip & Tease Votive Candles

4. What’s the AP brand’s USP?
AP’s USP is creating an availability of high quality designer lingerie and beauty products with creative flair to stimulate enchant and arouse both customers and their partners. Agent Provocateur leads the way where others follow.

5. For readers that haven’t experienced the brand or its beauty products before, can you describe the philosophy behind it and what a consumer can expect from their purchase?
Agent Provocateur’s philosophy is a commitment to investment in creativity led by pure instinct of that which is beautiful, and of course, that which is erotic. This art of seduction applies to its beauty products as much as it does to the lingerie and other AP products. A customer can expect an intensely private, wholly personal experience at AP when purchasing a product as opposed to a mass experience, dictated by market forces and meaningless advertising.

Click here to read part 2

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