The scented saga of Comme des Garçons Perfums

This spring, discover the enigmatic, raw universe of Comme des Garçons Perfums, with their disruptive approach to fragrances, their use of unexpected, inorganic smells and their original, highly addictive perfumed collectibles — available now to shop at ENTRANCE.

By Diana Colcer

Photography: Christian Tudose

Styling: Amir Doboș

According to everyone who knows their way around around fashion, the influence of enigmatic Rei Kawakubo – the designer who founded Comme des Garçons in 1969 – should rank up there with the likes of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel, Christian Dior and Cristobal Balenciaga. After debuting in Tokyo, taking Paris catwalks by storm, shocking everybody with her minimalist, deconstructed approach to fashion and cooping brilliant Junya Watanabe, at the beginning of the nineties she decided to move into the fragrance world. Fast forward a couple of decades, Rei Kawakubo become known and loved for breaking rules in the fragrance world, just as she had with fashion. Under Rei’s original vision, Comme des Garçons Perfums division has demonstrated a keen sense of unconventionality through out the years — they created sculptural, asymmetrical designs or fluid bottles fitting comfortably into the curve of a palm, which they filled with some of the most coveted fragrances you’ll ever encounter. Some of these quickly became collectible items. Rei would take a single ingredient, such as incense, or leaves, or sherbet, and interpret it in new, exciting ways. Or, she would make our lives as perfume lovers even more interesting and exciting, by incorporating synthetic, inorganic fragrances which you’d normally stay away from into highly addictive formulas. The perfume universe imagined by Comme des Garçons is futuristic and somewhat savage, and it certainly deconstructs and rearranges the very foundations of what a perfume is expected to be. “A fragrance should always be worn for your own pleasure, not necessarily to seduce. It’s not conceived for a man or a woman: it’s “non-gender”, only for the one who loves it”, says Rei Kawakubo, plain and simple, and we have no choice but to give in to her bold, mysterious and highly original sense of smell. Here are some of the newest, as well as some of the most addictive classical scents by Comme des Garçons, available to shop right now at ENTRANCE.

White, bright & Light. COMME DES GARÇONS WHITE (EDT 50 ml) is retaining some of the stimulating spices from Eau de Parfum White and also contains white flowers such as Lily of the Valley and White May Rose. Among the other notes, experience pomegranate, Tagette Absolute, pepper, coriander, cardamon, cinnamon leaf, clove, nutmeg, cedar wood.

ARTEK STANDARD by Comme des Garçons (EDT, 100 ml) is a contemporary and dynamic approach to a perfume. An ideology which is more art than tech, featuring a modernist white wood with notes of rusted metal. Prepare to be smitten by notes of Fennel, Ginger, Lemon, Saffron, Cedar wood and Musk.

MONOCLE SCENT THREE SUGI by Comme des Garçons (EDT 50 ml) light, energising and sophisticated fragrance inspired by the sugi – also known as Japanese cedar – which is a popular ornamental plant in Japan. A refreshing unisex scent, beginning with top notes of Mediterranean cypress and pepper from Madagascar, followed by iris from florence and cedar from Virginia and finished with pine and Haitian vetiver.

COMME DES GARÇONS 2 (EDP 50ml / 100 ml) plays with complements and contrasts, with reflection and opacity, with mirrors and brilliance, with light and shadow, with earth and the energy of the sun. Expect to succumb to this delightful mix of ink, incense, amber, labdanum, patchouli, cedar wood, new aldehydes, cumin, angelica root, Vetiver, cade oil, absolute maté, magnolia, absolute folia.

In a world where concrete is ubiquitous, the mundane fabric of urban cityscapes, now it is given disparate context: the uniquely refined realm of perfumery. An exploration of destruction, construction and creation, the newest addition to their scented world, CONCRETE by Comme des Garçons Parfums (EDT 80ml/100 ml) is a fragrance where material preconceptions are deftly demolished, paving the way for something new. Destruction: the richness of sandalwood is shattered to reveal its very essence, a radically new scent emerging from its fractured form. Construction: industrial synthetics pierce natural familiarity; artificial rose oxide distorts an opulent woody overdose. Creation: layers of resinous warmth are lacquered with metallic seams, built upon a foundation of Comme des Garçons’ spice signature.The juice is contained within a shell of concrete and glass, hand-finished and held within a pocket of bubble-wrap.

CDG DOT by Comme des Garçons (EDP 100 ml) captures the suave floralcy with fruity tonalities that emanates from the blossoms, with radiant green notes to illustrate the leaves and white ambery woods that reflect the bark of the Osmanthus tree. Top notes : leafy greens, bitter orange, pepper. Mid notes : Osmanthus absolute, olibanum. Bottom notes : white amber woods.

The second anti perfume by Comme des Garçons, ODEUR 71 (EDT 200 ml) is revisiting the previous research into solid phase micro technology, by cloning inorganic smells from modern daily life and mixing them with natural ingredients. What should you expect? Smell of dust on a hot light-bulb, warm photocopier toner, hot metal, a toaster, freshly welded aluminium, the ink in a fountain pen, fresh pencil shavings, wood and moss, bay leaves and bamboo, white pepper, hyacinth, lettuce juice.