Comptoir Sud Pacifique: A Scent of Paradise
Comptoir Sud Pacifique is a brand that brought something new to the world when it began in 1974. Its founders, Josee and Pierre Fournier, named their new venture after “a collection of ingredients from the South Pacific” and that’s just what it is and what it smells like – tropical island paradise in a bottle – or on the skin.
A Touch of the Exotic
When Comptoir Sud Pacifique was established decades ago, using tropical scents like vanilla or banana or cocoa in fragrances was unheard of. Perfume lovers who tried it immediately wondered why no one had ever done this before. It was an amazingly simple concept, but the fragrances created had a beautiful balance of playfulness and elegance.
The scents of Comptoir Sud Pacifique are about passion, faraway places, breathtaking color, and other elements of paradise. The creators still hold to that, evoking all of those aspects through the scents they blend into their fragrances. Even the ocean blue color of their packaging and their island logo attempt to convey this sensation.
There has always been something fresh and new about the products from this company. They were even among the first to promote the idea of each customer creating a unique scent by blending more than one fragrance from one of their many Eaux de Voyage perfumes. This was a revolutionary way for someone to create a scent that was uniquely her own, since adopted by many other perfumers. A few bottles of perfume could be effectively dozens of different scents, one for each mood, one for every occasion.
The Many Faces of Comptoir Sud Pacifique
There are a great number of brands and lines created by Comptoir Sud Pacifique, all of them carrying the tropical island paradise theme. For instance, the popular Eaux de Voyage lines each carry a specific theme:
- Coco is the newest brand, carrying the distinct odor of coconut
- Sun Waters has the scent of fresh air and the beach and clear ocean waters
- Vanilla Islands are scented with ever-popular vanilla
- Exotic Fruits all have a fruity scent
- Tropical Gardens features scents with floral notes.
- Humid Forest has perfumes with a woodsy aroma.
- The Spice Route features fragrances with a touch of intriguing spice.
A popular favorite, Vanille Abricot, is a favorite of Nicole Kidman. There are many vanilla-based fragrances from Comptoir Sud Pacifique, but Vanille Abricot stands out due to the addition of fruity apricot tones. This is perfectly balanced with vanilla, with hints of papaya and jackfruit, and spun sugar in the background, to make an aroma that is perfectly delicious.
Malin Calin is another creation, which the company translates as “sugar milk”. It is an amazing composition containing such ingredients as vanilla sap, sandalwood – and even milk. This may sound a little strange, but one sniff will show what artists the creators are when it comes to scents. It is sweet and smooth, without being cloying, deep and complex while remaining simple enough to enjoy to the fullest.
Something for Everyone
There are reasons why there are so many imitators now. Comptoir Sud Pacifique was onto something good all those decades ago when they first created their south seas inspired perfumes. There is no substitute for the real thing, however, and the original is still going strong.
Many of its earlier scents are still being produced, just as popular as the newer fragrances. Barbier des Isles is one of these, first introduced in 1978. It is also one of the first to be marketed for men, but many women find it quite appealing, as well, drawn by its smoky aura. It is comprised of cardamom and rosewood, with touches of myrrh, giving it an almost mystical air. The scents of tropical flowers flirt around the edges of this fragrance, keeping it grounded in the tropical island mood that is this company’s calling card.
Through the work of perfumers Jacques Lions, Daniel Moliere, and others, more than 50 distinct fragrances have been made for Comptoir Sud Pacifique. The work by these talented people extends to the other products made by the company, from fragrant candles to body cosmetics to fashion accessories. Not everyone can visit paradise, but wearing these products can certainly create the sensation of being there.