Saturday Question: Who Is Your Favorite Indie Perfumer Or Indie House?

This week’s question was one of the topics Brigitte suggested back when Portia solicited SQ ideas from the APj’s readers. Whenever my week gets so busy that I don’t have time to think about this post until I sit to write it (an hour before the midnight or even later), I open the spreadsheet with all the suggestions and choose one that feels right. This one was that type of a week.

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

Saturday Question #91:

Who Is Your Favorite Indie Perfumer Or Indie House?

I’m not sure if there is a strict distinction between indie and niche brand definition, so each of you can think of your own criteria. But I think as the year comes to the end, and we all will be thinking about gifts either for others or ourselves, it would be nice to be reminded of those brands that won’t have massive ad campaigns or YouTube influencers lining up to recommend those perfumes in their holiday shopping guides.

In addition to naming a brand, please share your most favorite perfume from the line.

My Answer

I’m not much into indie perfumery. I have a number of favorites from several brands, but none of the brands really stands out.

But if I have to name just one, I’ll probably go with Tauer Perfumes. And perfume that I like the most is L’AIR DU DÉSERT MAROCAIN.

I think that even full bottles of Andy Tauer’s perfumes are priced reasonably for the quality of ingredients he uses. But unless you plan to bathe in one of his perfumes, a travel spray, a couple of samples or a 5 ml mini (if there is one for that perfume) will go a long way.

Tauer LDDM Mini

Who Is Your Favorite Indie Perfumer Or Indie House?

 

Image: hajusuuri

44 thoughts on “Saturday Question: Who Is Your Favorite Indie Perfumer Or Indie House?

  1. I can’t pick just one. Can I have three? Thank you, in that case I’ll pick Laurie Erickson – Jour Ensoleille, Diane St. Clair – Casablanca, and Andy Tauer – much harder to pick my favourite from him. Possibly Rose Flash – subject to change.

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  2. I only have a couple of indie perfumers in my collection Sarah McCartney of 4160 Tuesdays & Liz Moores of Papillon Artisan Perfumes.
    From 4160 Tuesdays I love Lady Rose Lion (Monkey Unicorn) & from Papillon my choice is Dryad. Both mossy chypres

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      • Such a shame 4160T isn’t your aesthetic. I admit to not checking the website as frequently as I used to. Trying to keep up with the constant releases became overwhelming.
        Bengale Rouge is on my “to try again later” pile of samples. I had an incident with Le Lion which ruined both LL & Shalimar for me. Bengale Rouge may fill that hole in my collection in the future but not yet

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  3. Tauer is definitely a favorite – high on my list of “always interesting”, but somehow feels less indie than some of the others, even though I know he runs his entire operation… Sonoma Scent Studio and DSH, St Clair Scents, Dame – all people I want to support who are making great perfume and have grabbed repeat business from me. Newly discovered – Chris Rusak who is doing some super interesting work (and seems like a genuinely nice guy – last winter I received a postcard from him out of the blue complimenting my 365 project).

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    • Tauer Perfumes seems the most professionally done (as a business, I’m not comparing perfumes themselves), and that makes me respect the brand even more.

      I’m curious about Chris Rusak, but with my success rate with indie perfumes I keep posting getting samples. Maybe next year.

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    • I was choosing between LDDM and those two roses – I like them equally, but yesterday it felt like LDDM (I couldn’t break my own rules and name multiple perfumes :) ).

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  4. This is an interesting question because I don’t know enough indie perfumes to have a favorite. However, there are indie perfumers that I really like, because I like listening to them talk and reading their books: Sarah McCartney and Mandy Aftel. For both of them, I have more of their books than their perfumes at the moment! Fave perfume so far from Sarah is Red Queen. Also admire Shawn Maher for posting his creative process for each perfume in detail to take us along the development; I recently bought a sample set.

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    • Totally agree about Shawn Maher. I have tried several of his perfumes from both Chattilion Lux and Maher Olfactive. Have purchased some bottles as well. Tempo Rubato and Weingrasse which have a beautiful grape wine note. I ordered a sample of the new Sagan Dayla just yesterday. He is a great new perfumer.

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    • It’s interesting that you’re coming to perfumes through books: I think usually it’s the other way around.

      I’ve never heard about Maher. I’ll read about his perfumes.

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      • It’s not so much that I came to perfumes through books – I learned about them as perfumers first, but while I’m much more opportunistic when it comes to trying perfumes, I will usually seek out a book I’m interested in; and if a perfumer writes a book about perfume or scent, I’m probably interested. :)

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  5. This is so such an interesting question, and some nice new ones I didn’t know and will explore.
    For me it’s April Aromatics. I would love to get to know more of the US indie brands, and shop with the ones I do know, but VAT and import charges are simply too high.
    I remember liking a few from the brand ‘for strange women’ and of course DSH.

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    • April Aromatics was one of the contenders for me because of the UdL perfume. But since it’s the only one from the brand that I love, I went with a different choice. DSH is also my favorite, but Dawn is too prolific, I can’t keep up with her creations.

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  6. Tauer would rank as #1. Love most of his line. Not surprised to see him as a firm fave among most of its.
    I’ve been on a mostly no-buy for a couple of years (except for fb replacements of my adored Chergui).
    But next on the list for wold be Goldfield & Banks and Teone Reinthal. Getting samples and perfumes from overseas is getting harder and this was before the pandemic.

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    • Did you find a vintage bottle of Chergui or go with the current formulation?

      I’m not too familiar with Australian indie brands, but have a discovery set from G&B, so I’ll be testing them more.

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      • I have a vintage but my replacements are the new formulation. I am too nervous to buy vintage on my own- worried it’s be a fake or diluted :(

        Tell us what you think of the G&B!

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  7. I can’t pick just one! I have the most different fragrances from Sarah McCartney (4160 Tuesdays), and I love her work. I also admire and love the fragrances I have by Diane St. Clair (St. Clair Scents) and Liz Moores (Papillon). Another independent house that makes two of my favorites is Atelier des Ors; the perfumer is Marie Salamagne. I love their White Collection, my favorite being Choeur des Anges: https://scentsandsensibilities.co/2019/04/21/scent-sample-sunday-choeur-des-anges/.

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    • I know that I suggested that everyone chooses their own criteria for the definition of “indie” brand. In my classification, since Marie Salamagne isn’t an owner of the brand, it’s rather a niche brand than an indie one. But of course it’s not a strict rule :)

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m going to go with April Aromatics. I was lucky enough to have won a complete sample set on an Instagram giveaway. I love the quality of the products, the thought that went into each, the packaging. I think my favourite from the line might be Bohemian Spice, because Suzanne of Suzanne’s perfume Journal gave me a huge sample of it, from her own bottle. So for me the AA line speaks of kindness-the universe showing you there are beautiful things to experience.

    Great question, as always :)

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    • April Aromatics has a special place in my heart, partially because of Suzanne, partially because their Under den Linden is one of my favorite linden perfumes and linden is my absolutely favorite blossom.

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  9. Hey Undina,
    This is really interesting. So many Indie brands to consider.
    Far out front for me is Neela Vermeire Creations. Because her brand is self funded I still think of her as an Independent brand. Mohur is my favourite fragrance from the line but I wear Rahele at least three times as often. It was my wedding fragrance and there is such a feeling of joy every time I spritz. It also isn’t a complete diva superstar so I can concentrate on living while wearing it.
    In a bunch for second I reckon DSH Perfumes, Soivohle, Olympic Orchids, Abdes Salaam Attar (previously La Via Del Profumo), and Naomi Goodsir.
    Portia xx

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  10. Tauer is a very good choice, and like others who commented I am a bit torn. Liz Moores springs to my mind first of all. Shelley Waddington of En Voyage Perfumes has also done some great scents, not forgetting Dawn Spencer Hurwitz as mentioned. And Neela Vermeire! We are spoilt for choice in the indie sphere.

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