With summer finally here StyleNest took 5 minutes to catch up with Nathalie Vinciguerra, the founder of fragrance brand Anima Vinci, to find out about her favourite sunny scents, her tips for choosing a new and personal perfume, and where she might be travelling to this year to enjoy the sunshine.
What is your first memory of perfume?
My first memory of perfume stems from my Corsican roots. It is the smell of the maquis, early in the morning, an incredibly addictive smell of aromatics, sea salt and minerals.
You’ve had an illustrious career working as the creative director for Penhaligon’s and l’Artisan Parfumeur before launching Anima Vinci. Any particular career highlights that you can tell us about or any moments that have stood out for you?
One of my very exciting memories was when I created Juniper Sling for Penhaligon’s with Master Perfumer Olivier CRESP and developed at the same time the cocktail of the fragrance with the mixologist of the Plaza Athénée in Paris. We initiated this new trend of a fragrance and cocktail launch!
A spritz of perfume is usually the finishing touch to most beauty regimes, but other than perfume what are your must-have beauty products and do you have any beauty secrets you can share with us?
My beauty secret is to breathe properly and oxygenate all my cells. I have been practicing yoga and meditation for more than 30 years and I am entirely convinced that these are the best finishing touches to any beauty regime!
Perfume can be one of the hardest beauty products to buy, with so many options to choose from. What advice would you give StyleNest readers when treating themselves to a new fragrance?
I would suggest to go back to your roots and to happy memories. It will help you identify the type of fragrance which makes you feel good. I often do profiling sessions with my clients in London, with a ½ hour consultation with open questions. During the session, I can identify your olfactory family type and guide you towards cologne, floral, chypre, woody or oriental fragrances. It is important to let positive memories flow back and to start building a wardrobe of fragrances depending on your mood of the day.
Other than Anima Vinci of course, do you have any other favourite scents in your perfume collection? Perhaps something that invokes a happy memory or a particularly iconic perfume?
I intend to fall in love with all the perfumes I develop. I would say that I have a wardrobe of perfume to play with, but as I am involved in creation almost every day, I need to keep my skin clear and ready to test a new scent.
If I wanted to escape, I would wear one of Jean Claude Ellena Perfumes that he created for Hermès. I find his work minimalistic and so poetic!
In addition to the five scents in the collection, Anima Vinci will launch two new fragrances for summer. Can you tell us a little bit more about the creative process and what inspires your fragrances?
Our two new fragrances for the summer, are inspired by the idea of capturing ‘sunshine in your mind’ which is part of Anima Vinci’s philosophy and roots.
I asked two different perfumers to work on the addiction of my two favourite sunny destination Rio de Janeiro and Marrakech. For Tudo Azul, we worked with a very talented Perfumer at IFF, Fanny Bal to recreate the feeling of a Caipirinha cocktail on the sea side of Ipanema. This joyful fragrance has an incredibly uplifting benefit.
For Neroli wisdom, the inspiration was to capture the addictive scent of the Neroli and Orange Blossom from Marrakech, combined with the gourmand note of the ‘corne de gazelle’ oriental patisserie. This fragrance developed by Beverly Bayne has a very relaxing effect on the body and soul.
What is a typical day for you at Anima Vinci, if there is one!
I wake early with the sun. Start my day with ½ hour meditation. Go in my garden, breathe and water my flowers. I smell these gifts and surprise of nature. I recreated a little maquis and Mediterranean garden in my London garden. Then I prepare breakfast for the whole family – I love preparing fresh seasonal fruits salads or juicing and selecting the matcha or green tea of the day. (I love the taste of Japanese green teas and matcha.) I start work around 8.30 where I do my first fragrance evaluations with a fresh nose and spirit. Then I send my feedback to the different perfumers. Every day is a new adventure! I recently went to the rose harvest in Grasse, to collect the best ingredients for my perfume development. (Rose Prana). If I am at the office, I will work with designers on new communication or window campaigns. I try to identify the new names or new benefits of my new fragrances. I meet with Department stores or distributors, and prepare the new social media contents (follow us on Instagram: @animavinci)
How would you spend your perfect day off?
My perfect day off would always be surrounded by nature! From exploring the beautiful English countryside to going back to my roots in Corsica. Any connection or new emotion in nature, gives me true inspiration for my Anima Vinci perfumes.
How would you describe your style? Any favourite designers or brands you like to wear?
I am quiet, wild and minimalist. I like simple fabrics. Bash is one of my favourite brands for daily wear. In London, I really like the brand Anya Hindmarch for its bags and accessories, which are so colourful and vibrant.
You must travel to France quite often for Anima Vinci, but where are you other favourite travel destinations and what would you recommend our readers do there?
Corsica is my favourite destination for this fabulous contrast between mountains and seaside. I also enjoy spending time in Switzerland – from its very charming ski resort to the beautiful Lake Leman. And I love Italy. Particularly Florence and the Tuscan countryside. I love everything there: the culture, the countryside, the people, the food and their amazing way of living: ‘Sempre vivo’ attitude which reflects the Anima Vinci Attitude. (You can visit Anima Vinci in the 10 ‘Bar a Parfum’ in Italy: Firenze, Roma, Bergamo, Torino, Milano, Bologna and Genova!)
And finally, what is your life motto?
Everything is possible! All you need to do is breathe!