In early March 2023, Escentric Molecules released its Molecule+ collection exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue containing three fragrances—M+ Guaiac Wood, M+ Black Tea and M+ Ginger.
The brand's founder Geza Schoen says, "Molecule + is perfumery deconstructed. You don't need dozens of ingredients to make a great fragrance. The opposite is true. Minimalism brings clarity."
More from Schoen on the collection and the concept of minimalism in perfumery is below.
P&F+: Can you touch on the concept of minimalism as it pertains to fragrance formulation?
All of our Molecules are the most minimal fragrances possible. Each is composed of a singular molecule. The beauty of minimalism is the creativity of creating an individual scent out of a single molecule with the same effect as complex perfumes, minimalism is a true skill and as a long-time perfumer, I enjoy the challenge of creating from minimalism something that seems so complex due to its effectiveness while remaining minimal in ingredients.
P&F+: What are the trends driving the concept of minimalism in formulation?
Since I created Molecule 01 in 2006, it has been my every day concerning my formulas for my company Escentric Molecules. I have seen that consumers want to be more aware of what they are applying to their skin without a million unrecognizable ingredients. Quality is always best when created with a minimalist concept in mind.
P&F+: Can you explain the M+ line? What are some of the nuances you can share about the technology?
It's neither one molecule in a bottle like our Molecule fragrances nor a complex fragrance with top, middle, and base notes like our Escentric fragrances. It's a new way of composing a scent all about the interplay of two elements. In each Molecule +, one fragrance note dances alone with Iso E Super, the unique Molecule that is Molecule 01. Molecule + is a dance of two. I wanted the simplicity of Molecule 01 to play against the complexity of a natural. Technology? Well, I can't give away all my secrets!
P&F+: What inspired you to create the M+ line?
It all began when my partner, Sophie, asked me to make a fragrance for her. I noticed that every time Sophie said she loved perfume, it had an iris. Iris is a subtle note that perfumers love for its powdery elegance and smooth sense of body. But it’s always in the background, and most people would not be able to identify it in perfume. I thought it would be great to smell Iris naked for a change. So I started minimally. I took the best quality iris absolute and added a chunk of Iso E Super–our Molecule 01. I figured that because Iso E is so sexy, it would play beautifully against the elegance of the iris. And when I smelt the result, I realized I should stop there; they were made for each other. To add anything more would be to take away from their interplay. That’s when I realized that this could be a series, a whole new way of making a fragrance.