The Smell of Classic Blue

It’s Pantone’s Color of the Year 2020 ... but what does BLUE even smell like?

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.

BLUE FOUGERES

SALVATORE FERRAGAMO
Ferragamo
Aromatic Fougere
Masculine
ROCHAS
L’Homme Rochas
Oriental Fougere
Masculine
GIORGIO ARMANI
Acqua di Giò Profondo
Aromatic Fougere
Masculine

BLUE AROMATICS

RALPH LAUREN
Polo Deep Blue Parfum
Aromatic Aquatic
Masculine
TOMMY HILFIGER
Impact
Aromatic Fruity
Masculine
YVES SAINT LAURENT
L'Homme Le Parfum
Woody Aromatic
Masculine

BLUE FLORALS

DIPTYQUE
Impossible Bouquet Do Son
White Floral
Feminine
MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA
Replica Bubble Bath
Floral Woody Musk
Unisex
MUGLER
Alien Mirage
Oriental Floral
Feminine

BLUE WOODS

YVES ROCHER
Bois de Sauge
Woody Aromatic
Masculine
LOUIS VUITTON
Nuit de Feu
Oriental Woody
Unisex
HERMÈS
L’Ombre Des Merveilles
Oriental Woody
Unisex

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.

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