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Aura, chakra perfume

February 21 2018

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The latest Mugler perfume is called Aura and is named after a fragrance created in 2006 on the occasion of the release of the film The perfume. In its formula, we find an ingredient that is not usually used in perfumery, but in the Chinese pharmacopoeia: tawny creeper. The result? An oriental-vegetable both powerful and disconcerting, because it uses a raw material that smell does not recognize. - Isabelle Cerboneschi.


it may seem obvious to name a perfume "Aura". The aura and the perfume having in common that they radiate around a body immaterially, one being energy, the other being odor.

It was still necessary that the name be free to be deposited and protected legally, which is far from being obvious today. The general manager of a luxury group recently explained to me the difficulty, if not the impossibility, of finding names for their new perfumes, all or almost all having been deposited, from the simplest words to the most improbable neologisms.

It turns out that Aura is dormant in the Mugler Parfums archive. This name had already been used by the brand on the occasion of the launch of the film The Perfume inspired by Patrick Suskind's eponymous book published in 1884. When it was released on screens in 2006, Mugler had launched in a very limited edition a box of 15 perfumes created by Jean Christophe Laudamiel and Christophe Hornetz, perfumers for the International Flavors and Fragrances (IFF) in New York.

Each scent olfactively illustrated a chapter of the book. Aura was the last of the box: a note almost alive, so vibrant it was. Impossible to know the composition kept secret. Pierre Aulas, the artistic director of perfumes Thierry Mugler told me at the time that they could take this idea one day to make a perfume. And now, eleven years later, Aura is born. It does not have much to do with the original bottle that rests well cold in the shelter of my fridge (I have this privilege), except maybe this little side "almond". The first thing you can smell is a green and tart note, rounded up in a kind of vanilla milk, a facet of smoked wood, incense, a resinous note, almost medicinal ...

This perfume is intriguing because difficult to define. The nose believes to recognize some scents, but not quite. Difficult to put them back in a scented context. It's as if this perfume was moving towards an oriental note, while making a detour through the virgin forest and the back shop of a Chinese pharmacopoeia. It's both addictive and confusing.

"It's the tawny creeper that has this medicinal aspect, explains Marie Salamagne, the perfumer who had the idea of ​​this perfume which was written with eight hands, or rather with four noses. But since this substance has never been used in perfumery, we do not have the olfactory landmarks. This is what gives him a small mole. It's important to create an accident in a perfume, not to do something too smooth. In memorable perfumes, you will notice that there is always a happy accident "

This scent encased in a heart-shaped bottle has a real power, the signature of Mugler fragrances. We find in its composition the fawn vine, with many facets, both vegetable, animal and "drage-amandée", the rhubarb leaf that brings its freshness, and vanilla bourbon, which, once wrinkled, develops scent of leather. And there is still what my nose discern, among this jungle of odors from elsewhere and on which the brand has chosen not to communicate: a chord, very small, all subtle rose and violet. The smell of holiness ...