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Justin Bieber is funneling his budding maturity into his latest scent, Girlfriend.
“Girlfriend is kind of a more mature version of Someday,” Bieber told WWD on Monday, referring to his first fragrance, which became the number-one women’s fragrance launch in U.S. department stores last year. “It has some of the same scents to it, but older. It’s going to be a great fragrance, and I think people are going to like it a lot,” said the 18-year-old, whose new album “Believe” — due out today — also reveals a more grown-up Bieber.
This story first appeared in the June 19, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Someday, together with Girlfriend — which launched at Macy’s and a host of other national retailers on Monday — has the makings of growing celebrity fragrance empire à la Jennifer Lopez. After all, Someday’s annual sales reached $39 million according to The NPD Group figures cited by the maker of the Bieber fragrance franchise, Give Back Brands, which was acquired by Elizabeth Arden Inc. last week.
RELATED STORY: Selena Gomez Launches Fragrance at Macy’s >>
Bieber — who sounded a little worse for wear after two weeks of country-hopping, making stops in Norway, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, England and Mexico, on a promotional tour for his new album — downplayed that idea.
“We wanted to make a fragrance for my female fans — I don’t know what’s going to happen from here, though. At the moment, I’m not interested in making a men’s fragrance,” said Bieber, who was set to perform at a private concert later Monday evening at the Apollo Theater. Tickets were only available to the first 500 fans who lined up at the Macy’s Herald Square store Monday morning to purchase a $168 bundle that included the new fragrance, ancillary products — such as Hair Mist and Touchable Body Lotion — along with the new album. On Sunday night, more than 200 fans had camped outside Macy’s, on 34th Street, to get their hands on the fragrance and the concert tickets.
When it comes to writing music, the pop signer said he finds creative inspiration after dark. “The nighttime is usually the best time for creativity, because my mind wanders, and I’m able to focus more,” he said. “I’m always inspired by different things that I’ve gone through. Over the past couple years, there are things I want to talk about — even with Mariah claiming that she had my baby. I wanted to be able to talk about that with my album,” he said, referring to Mariah Yeater, the woman who falsely accused Bieber of fathering her child last year.
Asked if the introduction of girlfriend Selena Gomez’s first fragrance has inspired friendly competition between the two, he said sheepishly, “Oh yeah.…No, I don’t know. She’s cool.” OK, but did the pop star give Gomez any pointers on the fragrance business? Bieber said, “Yeah, I told her how to do it right. I’m just kidding. We don’t really talk about business.”
As for the business side of beauty, Bieber said he has not yet met with executives at Arden, but his team from Give Back Brands will remain the same, said a spokeswoman. The scents will also continue to have a charitable component, benefiting Pencils of Promise, as they did under the Give Back Brands business model. “The whole point of the fragrance was to give back and add a charitable component to my fragrance. That’s why we teamed up with Give Back,” said Bieber.
The Girlfriend fragrance is described as a “flirty sophistication” with tops notes of sparkling pear, crisp mandarin and rich blackberry; a heart of pink freesia, star jasmine, apricot nectar and orange blossom, and a drydown of vanilla orchid and luminous musk. Eaux de parfum spray in three sizes — 1 oz. for $39, 1.7 oz. for $49 and 3.4 oz. for $59 — will be sold. Ancillary products include the 5-oz. Hair Mist, $20, and the 6.7-oz. Touchable Body Lotion, $25. The assortment is available at specialty and department store retailers, including Macy’s, Sephora, Dillard’s, Belk, Nordstrom and Boscov’s.
Bieber, a veritable prince of social media, drummed up buzz for Girlfriend with an online contest where fans can submit a girlfriend-themed version of his new song “Boyfriend.” The maker of the best video — as deemed by Bieber — will be flown out to an upcoming concert and meet the singer in person. “We just picked the winner. There were a couple of funny ones, and some really talented ones.”
Bieber may have sounded tired Monday, but throughout the day the pop star was excitedly counting down to the debut of “Believe,” at one point tweeting to fans, “It’s so close, can yah taste it?”