New York fragrance line, Le Labo owned by Estée Lauder, have set up shop in Bondi. The hipster fragrance brand produce high-end scents as well as products for skin, hair and home.
The City that Never Sleeps loved their product enough for Le Labo to try for an Australia store, but only time will tell if the brand will appeal to the Sydney audience. The store boasts a wide variety of entrancing scents from more traditional florals to their best selling, Santal 33.
Santal 33 scent boasts the comfort of the Old West dream in the scent of woodsmoke and spices brought to life by cardamom, violet, iris and ambrox, which crackle over Australian sandlewood, papyrus and cedarwood.
It has hints of leather and musk that make it a truly unisex fragrance capable of enrapturing the senses.
Sounds amazing, right? Like all perfume merchants, Le Labo has a way with words that bring lifestyles to life. But is it just a gimmick?
They bottle their fragrances in store from larger containers and print all their own labels. It adds a small business, homemade touch, but is likely just for show.
Le Labo’s products are not for your everyday shopper. A 1.5ml sample costs $9, with 100ml setting you back $420. In the scope of high-end fragrances, from New York no less, this is well within reasonable range, but when 100ml of Versace is only $60, Le Labo will have a hard time selling to the everyman.
500ml bottle of Santal 33 laundry detergent will set you back $66. If that didn’t sound ridiculous enough, try their soap bars starting at $74 a pop. If you enjoy the smell, these are the prices you’ll pay. As a buyer of Santal 33 I would hate to it devalued when it is sold as laundry detergent.
Le Labo is a hipster brand which thrives on looking like they don’t care and charging like they do. They have the upmarket, hipster appeal for the Bondi crowd, but only time will tell how relevant their product will be to the market and how they will be perceived in the niche fragrance space.