M.INT was born in Italy in 2012. The brand name refers to the last name of the company’s founders Serge and Helen Mints. The logo – a winged letter “M”, the first letter of the brand name, represents creative freedom. What tell us Helen Mints about this new brand?
- Hey! First of all, could you, please, describe M.INT to our readers?
I would say that M.INT is more than just perfumes. It is a new signature lifestyle for those who appreciate original ideas. Our perfumes make you feel new emotions. Thanks to them you can try on a new style, a new image.
It took us five years to create our collection of 20 fragrances together with the world’s best perfumers, such as: Nathalie Lorson, Philippine Courtiere, Marie Salamagne, Fabrice Pellegrin, Hamid Merati-Kashani, Thierry Bessard, Elise Benat, Christian Rostain, Jacques Flori, Daniel Visentin, Harry Fremont, Karine Vinchon, Serge de Oliveira. I believe that we have managed to create not just high-quality perfumes, but fragrances recreating emotions and allowing original interpretations. We take interest in all that is innovative. That is why we avoid conservativeness and banality of any sort. We follow our slogan “That which triggers emotions” that fully expresses our philosophy.
MINT’s collection of 20 fragrances consists of four lines. Each line represents the beauty of the French Riviera and is defined by one of these colours: blue that stands for the sky, azure – for the Mediterranean Sea, green – for the luxurious nature of the Riviera and violet – for the peaceful Mediterranean nights. We live in Italy right across the French border, while we work in France. Our perfume compositions were elaborated in collaboration with the perfumers of the Firmenich and Robertet companies in France. The stylish design and packaging was created in collaboration with the Dome Agency (France), a luxury market branding expert.
- How did you discover your passion for perfumery?
Fashion has always been part of my life and, as you know, fashion and perfumery are very closely related. My passion for beauty and sophistication dates back to my childhood: my parents’ perfumes at first, then I studied at the university to become a shoe designer, but I longed for something new and so I studied fashion design at the Marangoni school in Milan. Certainly, I often joined my husband Serge when he visited perfume exhibitions. He has been working in the perfume industry for a very long time.
Then we opened our own boutique specialised in niche fragrances. We have spent a long time looking for new original perfume concepts. It was largely our work with many niche brands that helped us to shape our own tastes. So, when we acquired sufficient experience in this field, we really had the drive and the inspiration to create and produce perfumes of our own.
- From your experience, what’s the most important step when creating a new perfume?
The most important thing for us is to fall in love with the perfume we are elaborating. We are happy with a scent when we know we would love to use it ourselves. We do not wish to follow fashion trends aiming at targeting the widest audience possible. If you follow these values as creator, you will surely find people who share your taste. The sphere of activity itself is not important. You may be a designer, a perfumer or a composer. The principle stays the same. We use only our own perfumes which have very different compositions and thus may be suitable for various social occasions, weather conditions, and we must not forget the wearer’s moods.
Establishing an atmosphere of understanding with the nose is also extremely important to tune each note of the composition you are working on. Sometimes you may find yourself working with a very talented perfumer, but the understanding is just not there. It is normal since all people are different. Our philosophical or stylistic views and ideas differ, and you must be ready for that.
- We love the whole concept of your brand, starting with the bottle design and packaging to the advertising shots. What inspired you when creating it?
I am very happy to hear that! As I said, new emotions and sensations are our key interest. That is why our team has worked so thoroughly on all the details. It was not only the fragrance compositions but also the design of the bottle and the packaging, as well as the advertising campaign. The design was inspired by the natural optical effect called pleochroism that is characteristic of certain gemstones. This was the effect we tried to recreate while working on the bottle that can diffuse different colours depending on light and angle. The gradient structure of the textile elements enhances the optical effect.
The images used in our ads aim at awakening the viewer’s senses and emotions. They transmit positive energy. As in all other aspects of our work we try to avoid being boring and predictable when shooting the campaign images. We prefer to add some humour and our shots may even be somewhat provocative at times.
- What’s your favorite perfume from your line?
We love and wear all our fragrances. But of course, we tend to use some of them more often than others. This largely depends on the mood and on the season. For example, it is hot where we live right now, so I mostly wear “Blue Waterfall”, while Serge prefers “Rainy City” and “Azure Haze”. When it is a bit cooler, I love wearing “Hit the Mark”, “Winged Heart”, “Cashmere Beige”, “Meek Passion”. Both of us really love and often wear “Vibrant Scent”. We often choose “Refocus”, if we feel like being a bit more eccentric. So, it depends on the occasion.
- Which of the M.INT perfumes was the hardest to create and why?
There were some moments, when we could not find the formula for quite a long time. For example, it took us about two years to create “Blue Waterfall” although its composition might seem very simple. We were aiming at conveying the exact state of mind we experience while standing close to a waterfall. At first, we had many difficulties recreating it because of salty or even fish-scenting undertones that were not pleasant to distinguish in the accord. Finally, together with the nose, Marie Salamagne, we managed to create the right composition.
The fragrance is very fresh but very stable, tenacious and long-wearing at the same time. These qualities are rather an exception when we speak about this kind of composition. Some other fragrance compositions have also been worked on for quite a long time. We worked with a team of 14 outstanding perfumers and, I believe, we managed to tune each chord of our fragrant bouquets making each of them “sound” like a true orchestra.
- If possible, you can reveal anything about the future of M.INT to our readers?
We are currently working on our new perfumes. We wish to create something unique and magical. I hope we can present them before the end of the year but let us be patient. We will see the result in due time.
We are also preparing a new product, a travel set with a very original design and easy to take with you on a trip. We have been working on other products as well. Besides in the nearest future M.INT will become known not only for its perfumes. I cannot reveal the details yet, so, please, let me keep this little secret for a while longer.
M.INT perfumes are found exclusively in Elysee Stores!