after six years of writing the glossarie, i’ll admit that pinch-me moments are hard to come by. i still feel incredibly lucky over what this blog has become and all of the amazing experiences that it brings my way, but opportunities like getting to spend some quality skype time with isabelle masson-mandonnaud a few weeks ago take the cake.
isabelle is the founder of sabé masson and the creator of one of my very first beauty obsessions, crazylibellule and the poppies. aside from being absolutely darling in the package, her solid scents, now called le soft, are impeccably constructed and last all day long. i love pretty products that work, and i love any chance to speak with someone who adores beauty products as much as i do.
in her 20’s, isabelle interned for a tiny perfume house called shop 8. (fun fact, shop 8 would later go on to evolve into the beauty mecca sephora!) she quickly fell in love with the solid perfume concept, as presented by estee lauder in beautifully designed compacts and she began hunting down solid perfumes in antique shops, obsessed with their history (dating all the way back to egyptian times), simplicity and ease of use.
le soft perfumes
convinced that there are not enough products in our life that are easy to use, isabelle kept circling around the concept of lipstick – in her mind, the most fabulous beauty invention to date. she created her very first solid perfume in a tube like a lipstick and remembers being questioned by strangers whenever she would apply it in public, educating them all about this new-yet-old beauty concept.
what makes them special
isabelle brings even more innovation to solid perfumes by adding skincare “virtues” as the calls them into her formulations. she chooses the most nourishing ingredients like shea butter, to create a perfume that is very well constructed, natural in composition, with added benefits for the skin. all of her customers can take comfort in knowing when they slide one of her solids onto their wrist or neck, that they are not only going to smell great, but they are doing something nice for themselves. she also noted that traditional perfume sprays are full of alcohols and other ingredients that are actually harmful to skin. her advice? spray perfume on your clothes, not your skin.
that packaging, though
i am obsessed with a pretty package, so i had to get the scoop on the artful designs dressing up le soft perfumes. it turns out that every perfume begins in isabelle’s notebook as a colorful sketch – then, she gives it a name. she gives the page straight from her notebook to a designer who creates the packaging, then she gives the name and color inspiration to a perfumer – leaving them perfectly free to create the corresponding scent. i found this fascinating! isabelle explains that every scent is new and different because every drawing and name are unlike something she has created before.
8 incredible new scents have just launched, along with two discovery sets – all available at beautyhabit. read through the descriptions of each one to pick your favorite. there’s no way that i can choose just one – and i love how each scent has a meaning behind it. (but if you’re twisting my arm, i’d have to settle on belle furieuse!)
aside from an upcoming feature in glossybox, isabelle is also working on opening a shop here in the states. she revealed not only that sprays are coming soon (very soon!) but that she is working on powder perfumes, reminiscent of vintage hollywood glamour. (picture the round box and the big powder puff – what a chic and sexy way to apply perfume!) isabelle is focused on making the perfect combination of scent and skin benefits, and i cannot wait to see this new formulation come together. the woman is a genius and her brain continues to create non traditional but gorgeous ways to add fragrance to our lives.
after chatting, it’s no surprise to me that isabelle is a true creative and loves to make her life beautiful. i was so tickled to be a part of any small moment of her day – although, i could have talked with her for hours. my virtual deskside with her was a beauty dream come true and i’m so grateful to my friends at beautyhabit for making the connection.
as we were wrapping up our call, isabelle begged “come to france!” and she offered to search high and low for any remaining tubes of my beloved crazylibellule.
isabelle, i’m on the next plane!
to celebrate my dreamy skype sesh with isabelle and the launch of le soft’s latest scents, the team at beautyhabit has generously offered to give away a sabe masson discovery set to two lucky winners. enter below!