Reflections on 2023: Celebrating our niche perfumery journey and our accomplishments

2023 . 12 . 28 | written by Karen Marin

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Fragrance lovers

Dear Readers :

As I write these words, the final days of 2023 are upon us. It’s the quiet before the storm with a few more shopping days before the man in the red suit travels the world bestowing gifts. As a former retailer, this is the nervous moment when you start asking yourself questions: How will the year end? Are sales increasing, staying flat, or heaven forbid, decreasing? What will be the big successes of the season? Did we have the proper stock levels? How can we do better next year? Now in a very different role, I still ask a lot of questions, but in a new context, and today I take stock of Essencional – what did we do in 2023?

Bringing you original content about the most interesting stories is at the core of our mission. In 2023, we stepped up our coverage of La Gente di Nicchia (the People of Niche) with interviews of young perfumers including Alexandre Helwani and Isaac Sinclair. We delved into the rise in Korean and Nordic brands while also taking a deep dive into the British Approach to Perfumery. We brought you direct coverage from the biggest fragrance industry tradeshows including Esxence, Pitti Fragranze and SIMPPAR. We uncovered the latest in ingredient trends with articles on Coffee, Cardamom and Vegetable ingredients. We took you to some of the top fragrance institutes (Grasse Institute of Perfumery, Italian Institute of Perfumery) and we got a private tour of the Museo Lorenzo Villoresi. If that’s not enough we also visited immersive exhibits incorporating scent. And then of course we introduced you to new and emerging brands such as Pernoire, Nissaba and Electimuss. And if we don’t write about it ourselves, we keep the community of artistic perfumery enthusiasts and professionals in the know by republishing curated coverage of key industry news, pulled from top online resources.

In our efforts to continue to foster the community, Essencional continues to be an important partner at Esxence, the annual rendez-vous for artistic and niche fragrance. In 2023, our teams worked on seven panel discussions which covered a range of the key topics facing the industry today including our Periodic Observatory 2023, opportunities in China and Korea as well as the use of Scent in Therapy. From coordinating to participating to moderating, Essencional plays a vital role every year, and this will be the case more than ever at Esxence 2024.

As a trusted authority and advocate for the artistic perfumery sector, it was only natural for Essencional to take on a new role as consultant to brands. We view the industry through impartial eyes, we listen, we understand, we identify problems and propose solutions, all with the aim of helping brands to reach their full potential. In 2023 we launched these services in which we accompanied several brands through assessments and evaluations, leading to the creation of an action plan tailored to get results. We project that these services will expand in 2024 and will become a larger part of our activities.

With these three main pillars, Essencional has upheld its mission and sees itself well positioned to serve our community in the new year. We welcome your ideas and feedback to help us identify where we can break new ground and where we can do better.

We close the year with a sense of optimism and excitement, eager to take on the challenges that await us in 2024. From all of us at Essencional, best wishes for a Happy - and fragrance filled – New Year!


Here is a message from Silvio Levi:

I warmly thank the entire Essencional team and all those who follow us and who honour us when they confirm that we have become an absolutely outstanding and often indispensable source of information. Giving opportunities, finding little-known excellence, evaluating prospects together is what drives us to persevere in this activity. A huge thank you to Karen who wrote this summary message, to Laurence and Chiara for their tireless and enthusiastic work, and I hope to find you all ever closer and more involved, you readers, in a 2024 that promises to be very interesting! All the best to everyone.
Silvio Levi

Essencional Director