Dominique Ropion on Timeless Musk

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The 21st annual Dubai Shopping Festival wrapped up earlier this week. The month long celebration has brought in over 56 million visitors during its existence, showcasing the best of Dubai as a world-class luxury leader, an exceptional retail destination, a knowledge hub for the industry, a source of exclusive content, and a fount of inspiration, a hub of conversation, a place to share stories.

As the festivities came to a close, the last leg of the event was dedicated as Perfume Week with a Perfume Avenue track honoring perfumery.

Importance of Musk in Perfumery 

IFF perfumer Dominique Ropion took the main stage at the festival last Sunday to discuss musk. Dominique, a man who we like to describe as kind and a poet, grew up in Paris with a pedigree in perfumery. Both his mother and grandfather worked in perfume industry. As a child, he says he could literally smell everything, even a handshake. Today, having developed fragrances like Alien for Thierry Mugler (with L. Bruyère), L’Homme YSL for Yves Saint Laurent (with P. Wargnye & A. Flipo), and Carnal Flower and Portrait of a Lady for Frédéric Malle, one of his favorite materials is musk, timeless and indispensable for anything that needs a certain sensuality.

Dominique took the audience on a journey through the origins of musk, IFF’s investment in R&D work focused on musk, the importance of musk in perfumery, examples of musk fragrances and wrapped up with a Q&A discussion.

While the use of natural musk in perfumery and medicine dates back to the 4th century, today, it is rarely used and synthetic molecules have offered musk reconstitutions as a less expensive and more sustainable replacement. The European and American health commissions officially banned the use of animal materials in perfumes and cosmetics back in 2002.

Our pioneering firsts in musks have made great contribution to perfumery. IFF’s perfumers have an exclusive portfolio of captive musks used to offer differentiation to our fragrances. Many recently discovered molecules at IFF have been focused on developing a new category of musks, like Cahmeran. Synthetic musk fragrances are more airy, closer to what today's women desire.

Highlights from the Dubai Shopping Festival 

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