top of page

Rei Kawakubo's Olfactory Symphony: Exploring Fragrance, Emotions, and Comme des Garçons.

Fragrance, like an invisible muse, weaves through our lives, influencing our moods, evoking memories, and enhancing our personalities. It's an art form that dances with our olfactory senses, leaving a trail of emotions in its wake.

Imagine encountering a scent that transports you to a different time, conjuring vivid memories with a single whiff. This is the power of fragrance, intricately connected to our limbic system, the seat of emotions. It's no wonder that the loss of smell, or anosmia, can be linked to feelings of melancholy, emphasizing the profound impact scents have on our well-being.

But what defines your signature scent? Are you drawn to the lively top notes that greet you initially, or do you savor the lingering base notes that embrace you throughout the day? Do you seek fragrances that unfold like a symphony, each note playing a harmonious tune, or do you prefer the simplicity of a single, captivating scent?

In the realm of fragrances, much like wine, quality isn't always synonymous with price. While designer fragrances cater to a broader audience with consistent formulas, niche fragrances embrace uniqueness, inviting the aficionado to discover hidden gems.

Enter Comme des Garçons, a visionary in both fashion and fragrance.

Rei Kawakubo's influence permeates every aspect of Comme des Garçons, from couture to fragrance. Her commitment to pushing boundaries, questioning norms, and celebrating individuality shines through in each scent. It's a reminder that fragrance isn't just about smelling good—it's about self-expression, emotion, and artistry.

Inspired by Rei Kawakubo's avant-garde ethos, Comme des Garçons' scents defy conventions, blurring the lines between masculine and feminine. Each fragrance is a journey, a sensory exploration that challenges traditional fragrance norms.

Comme des Garçons' illustrious perfume collection launched in 1994, crafted to be unisex and discreet yet possessing a distinct allure that captivates the senses. What sets these fragrances apart is their penchant for rare woody and spicy notes, creating compositions that are both intriguing and unforgettable.

The journey began thirty years ago with the iconic CDG Eau de Parfum, the very first fragrance that heralded the arrival of Comme des Garçons in the realm of perfumery. It's a fragrance that has etched its name in the annals of history, thanks to its floral chypre notes that exude elegance and sophistication.

With CDG Eau de Parfum, the wearer is transported to a world of timeless beauty, where floral nuances intertwine with the earthiness of chypre, creating a harmonious symphony of scents. It's a fragrance that evokes memories of grandeur and refinement, reminiscent of a bygone era yet still resonating with modern sensibilities.

As one delves deeper into the Comme des Garçons perfume collection, they are greeted with a diverse range of olfactory experiences, each crafted with precision and passion.

Take Comme des Garçons' Concrete, for instance, a fragrance housed in a striking concrete bottle that defies conventions from the moment it graces your senses.

As the first spray envelops you, a symphony of warm spices dances on your skin, their notes intertwining with the subtle embrace of earthy, woody undertones, creating a harmonious blend that is at once comforting and intriguing.

It's a fragrance that invites exploration, a journey of discovery with each passing moment.This initial encounter is not just a fragrance application but a sensory experience, where the juxtaposition of spice and wood creates a tapestry of scent that is both complex and captivating.

What sets Concrete apart is its audacity to be different, to challenge the norms of traditional fragrances. It doesn't follow the beaten path of predictable scents; instead, it forges its own trail, appealing to those with a taste for the unexpected. This daring spirit is reflected not only in its composition but also in its presentation—the striking concrete bottle serving as a testament to its boldness and innovation, It is a fragrance that invites exploration, a journey of discovery with each passing moment.

As the name the telling name suggests, Comme des Garçons' Wonderoud Eau de Parfum is a fragrance that delves into the multifaceted world of oud, showcasing a meticulous blend of natural ingredients that highlight the depth and richness of this prized resin.

The composition begins with a striking opening where sharp cedarwood meets a sprinkle of black pepper, creating a dynamic and invigorating start. This initial burst sets the stage for what unfolds as the fragrance evolves on the skin.

As Wonderoud progresses, it transitions into a softer heart characterized by delicate notes of rose intertwined with layers of woods in varying shades and densities. This phase adds a touch of floral elegance to the woody symphony, balancing the robustness of oud with a subtle sweetness and refinement. The interplay of earthy vetiver and patchouli further enhances the fragrance via an alluring drydown, evoking imagery of warm, sun-kissed grass amidst a forest of wonderoud trees.

What sets Wonderoud apart is its ability to maintain a sense of subtlety and sophistication throughout its journey. While oud fragrances often veer into extremes, either overly animalic or excessively sweet, Wonderoud strikes a harmonious balance between dark and light elements. It avoids the clichés associated with oud perfumes and instead presents a nuanced exploration of the resin's diverse character.


Words by AW.

Photos courtesy of Leta Sobierajski and Comme des Garçons.


bottom of page