Beauty Nostalgia: Reminiscing With…Kilian Hennessy
Beauty Nostalgia is a weekly column on Beauty Counter in which we ask influencers, tastemakers, and some of our favorite industry experts to wax poetic on the sticks, salves, and sprays that helped shape who they are today.
The Pro: Kilian Hennessy, founder of By Kilian fragrances
The Product: “Since as long as I can go back in my mind, I have the memory of my grandfather applying Christian Dior Eau Sauvage in the morning, after his bath, once he was dressed. He would pour the perfume from his 500-ml. bottle in his hands and wet his hair with it—it was his gel, in a way! Eau Sauvage is, for me, the scent of elegance. It’s clean yet present. It’s aromatic yet feminine. It was created in 1966, I think, yet it’s timeless. It is the masterpiece of Edmond Roudnitska. But the way this scent smelled on my grandfather was unique, because it blended with the smell of his pipe. That combination is my Madeleine de Proust. My grandfather and I were very close. When he passed away two years ago, I felt that I lost my spiritual guide, my compass. His scent memory has stayed with me, because when I was close to him, I always felt protected. And perfume is as much about protection as it is about seduction. People tend to forget that. But this is why I carved a shield motif on my bottle, to help people feel secure. I haven’t created a cologne inspired by him yet, but my next collection is very much inspired by his world.”—As told to Kari Molvar
Photo: Courtesy of Parfums Christian Dior