The Smell of Classic Blue
CLASSIC BLUE. It's the Pantone Color of the Year 2020, infused across global creative industries in a myriad of ways. It seems deeply apropos given the more cautious and solemn tone these last few months have taken, and many brands have followed suit with their own interpretations through product launches.
The immediate association to sky and sea are reflected not only in color gradients, but also in fragrance expression. Marine and aquatic notes bring abstract freshness, with coconut water transporting us to the tropics where a log washes to shore. The most obvious aromatics are given a depth to offset any overt green connection to ingredients such as thyme, geranium and eucalyptus, by layering fougere notes of oakmoss, lavender, vetiver and the sweetness of coumarin.
Violet, iris and mimosa are a great pairing for the lingering soft powder scent for the baby blue scale, and the smell of ink often has a surprisingly pleasant, rounded floral quality for a melancholic backdrop.
For the first quarter of 2020, we have a dozen gorgeous examples in BLUE, many of which are flankers of successful signatures. Traditionally considered the color for boys, blue bottles on the market today are still overwhelmingly masculine. As we continue to break gender-conforming expectations of what anyone should look (or smell) like, we are encouraged to see more design executions inclusive of, and marketed to, a broader customer set based on an attraction to specific olfaction and its harmonious emotional state – rather than color alone.
Whether in bottle shape, packaging or figurative escape to open air and introspection, we’re eager to see how the category expands throughout the year to envelop and represent the beautiful spectrum of Blue.