The Fab Four

Geza Schoen riffs on the super-special qualities of the four molecules at the heart of Escentric.

The Fab Four

The molecules in the Escentric Molecules fragrances are in a special category. Most aroma-molecules are great for special effects, but they have a linear scent-profile. This means they lack the complexity and beauty of a natural extract. A natural extract is like a fully-formed fragrance designed by nature. It can have anywhere from two to a hundred or so different molecules in it, all contributing to its scent-profile. The molecules I choose for Escentric Molecules are nuanced and complex, and in this way, more like natural extracts. They are rare, which is why I have always said that the Escentric Molecules series won't go on forever.

The molecules I choose for Escentric Molecules are nuanced and complex – this is rare

Iso E Super is in a class of its own. This is partly down to its radiance, the way it warms up with your natural body chemistry and hovers around you the whole day. It’s pretty unique in the palette of perfumery ingredients, and inspires intense devotion in those who can smell it (some people can’t).

AMBROXAN™ (Molecule 02) is a little less complex than Iso E but it has this special touch - an enormous mineral freshness. AMBROXAN™ is nature-identical, which means it is created in the lab but is identical to a molecule found in nature, in this case a molecule found in ambergris, which is a substance produced in the gut of sperm whales and found floating in the ocean or washed up on beaches. Ambergris is no longer used in mainstream commercial perfumery. There’s simply not enough of it to guarantee supply, so you find it today only in niche fragrances. It is an unusual animal ingredient because its sensuality is very refined, very elegant. AMBROXAN™ is by far the most beautiful of the aroma-molecules that make up ambergris, that's why I chose it for Molecule 02.

Molecule 03 has the necessary complexity to stand alone because it is half-natural to start with. It is vetiver oil which has been acetylized to take away the leathery, bitter aspect of vetiver. The acetic acid also gifts something new to the vetiver in the process, a grapefruit note. This I love, especially in the way the grapefruit blends with the woody, warm character of the vetiver itself.

Javanol is a remarkable molecule – fresh, radiant, powerful, rosy and creamy

What’s outstanding about Javanol (Molecule 04) is its almost psychedelic freshness. Natural sandalwood is heavy, a base note, whereas Javanol is a sandalwood-type molecule that acts like a topnote yet is super-longlasting. It’s fresh, powerful, radiant, and with so many facets to it: a rosy aspect, a unique grapefruit freshness, and then this creamy sandalwood thing as well. It’s a remarkable molecule.