Editor's Picks, Grooming

Bask in Pharrell’s first collaborative foray into fragrance with LVERS

Bask in Pharrell’s first collaborative foray into fragrance with LVERS

The endeavour to capture sunlight in a bottle. 

With his manning as the Men’s Creative Director at Louis Vuitton passing its one-year mark in February earlier this year, Pharrell Williams has certainly begun carving a new identity for himself – someone capable of orchestrating the legendary House into territories that the rest of the fashion industry and the world cannot help but watch with bated breath. So far his creative cerebration has manifested, among others, with a reimagining of the legacy pre-monogram Damier pattern into the pixelated “Damoflage” on trunks and suitcases and the popular varicoloured Speedy Bags in buttery leather. Perhaps most memorably, his preeminent status as a music industry giant has also meant a new kind of bridging between the worlds of fashion and pop culture with the likes of Rihanna, A$AP Rocky and The Carters gracing his inaugural show.

Albeit, more impressively, his year-long tenure has, so far, displayed a penchant for thematically grounded creations aimed at expressing abstract conceptions to the consumer. So when his first foray into the world of perfumery at Louis Vuitton (and since 2014) was announced as a collaborative dialogue between himself and Master Perfumer Jacques Cavallier Belletrud – an in-house perfumer hailing from the capital of perfume in Grasse, France – it came as no surprise that LVERS is a scent distilled with meticulous attention at capturing the notional.

In a masterful callback to his debut show on Pont Neuf in 2023, Williams and Belletrud double down on the thematic power of the sun – its vitality to Williams’ vision of the brand – and his endeavour to share the warmth and sense of opportunity that it can represent to the masses. The pair began their process of collaboration by returning first to the basis of William’s inaugural show last year and his memorably optimistic mantra that beckoned us to consider “What will you do when the sun shines on you?”. Williams, for one, likened his Creative Director appointment as being shined upon by the sun, an opportunity that he ultimately could not refuse and instead – allowed himself to bask in. But as all things in nature transform and grow, so too did Williams’ original philosophy – hand in hand with Belletrud they have honed on the idea of photosynthesis as a genesis of life.

And from this notion of photosynthesis the pair set out to capture this abstraction of life’s energy into a bottled form. Belletrud, being the Master Perfumer as he is, began his process of dissecting the olfactive properties of this concept through an alchemic analysis – identifying the scent profiles that came forth in the vitalisation of fauna in the sunlight – particularly leaves in sunrays, the nectar of freshly grown grass and the earthiness of tree trunks.

In these visions, scent notes like the scarcely used Galbanum – a rich green resin from the Ferula plant once used for its medicinal purposes in Ancient Greece – were honed into the sappy and spicy heart tones in the scent. Cedarwood forms the bottom note of LVERS – its woody camphorous aroma a transportive device to the forest and is synthesized with the crisp vivacity of ginger and the buttery smoothness of sandalwood for a grounded earthiness. Each wood too is a reflection of the therapeutic nature of the sun, with cedarwood utilized in Ancient Egypt for preservative purposes and sandalwood (and ginger) widely considered an indispensable part of Eastern medicine. The bouquet of LVERS is elevated with the scent of bergamot – a refreshing citrusy top note widely regarded across cultures as an alleviative tool for both mental and physical revitalisation.

LVERS’ construction is reminiscent of the sunlight’s reflective and refractive propensity – an aureate liquid enclosed within the signature cylindrical silhouette of Louis Vuitton’s Les Parfums. Boasting a prismatic finish upon its glass structure the entire composition of the Eau de parfum is evocative of glistening sunlight upon skin. LVERS has also been unveiled alongside a Damoflage motifed travel case and fragrance trunk, the latter of which accommodates three bottles of the fragrance. In culmination, Pharrell Williams and Jacques Cavallier Belletrud’s LVERS unveils itself to be a thorough pursuit of capturing a fleeting feeling – one which we too often seem to take for granted – and yet is like feeling the sunlight on our face.

Available in selected Louis Vuitton stores and at louisvuitton.com

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