Kylie Minogue is quite fond of the guys in her life — and the Australian singer plans to show her appreciation with her first fragrance for men, which will launch in September.
Called Inverse for Men, the limited edition scent is “for the men in my life, who as you know are complex, colorful characters,” Minogue said with a laugh during a recent interview at Cipriani 42nd Street in Manhattan. “I had so many men asking, ‘When are you doing one for men?’ that I decided to do one.”
This story first appeared in the July 17, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
This is Minogue’s sixth fragrance in the three years. Her first, Darling, was released in September 2006 and, according to industry sources, the Minogue fragrance franchise generates sales of more than $100 million at retail globally.
“It’s clear from a business standpoint we took a risk, because we’re not seeing a lot of female celebrities creating fragrances for men,” said Steve Mormoris, senior vice president of global marketing for Coty Beauty. “But in the case of Kylie Minogue, she has such a huge fan base of men and women — and now many women use men’s fragrances, so it made sense.”
The Inverse juice, an ambery oriental which Minogue developed with Givaudan’s Christophe Raynaud, has top notes of frozen lavender, warm spices and blood mandarin; a heart of benzoin, nutmeg, tonka beans and heliotrope, and a drydown of labdanum resin, patchouli leaves, skin musk, condensed milk and atlas cedarwood.
One size, a 50-ml. eau de toilette, will be offered. It will retail for 30 euros, or $42.38 at current exchange rates. The bottle, designed by Denis Assor, is a rectangular glass flacon with a metal top.
While executives declined to discuss sales projections, industry sources estimated Inverse could do about $10 million at retail.
Despite a challenging sales environment, Mormoris is optimistic about Inverse’s chances in the marketplace. “Saleswise, the Kylie Minogue house of fragrances is number 12 in Europe, which is incredible seeing that we launched four years ago,” said Mormoris. “We broke the top 15 amid formidable competitors, so there is real credibility in the fragrance market. We gain market share with everything we launch.”
Advertising, shot by William Baker — Minogue’s stylist and creative director — features Minogue with Spanish model Andrés Velencoso Segura. The black-and-white visual depicts Minogue leaning between two men — and on second glance, it becomes apparent the men are one and the same; Segura in a black suit and bare-chested.
Inverse for Men will be available in selective distribution in Australia, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Germany.
Now that Inverse is set for launch, Minogue is raring for more — fragrances, and perhaps, in time, color cosmetics, she said. “Beauty is a very intriguing and exciting industry, and I almost have to pinch myself that I am part of it,” she said. “I spend half my life in airports, and I look at perfume fragrances and beauty products in a completely different way now.” She is currently at work on her next women’s fragrance. Any hints? Mormoris shakes his head, but Minogue teases, “Our tradition is that we always drink Champagne.” As far as color cosmetics go, Minogue would like to create an all-in-one face palette for women on the go — until then, she said, she’s wearing Shu Uemura products.
And despite being globally known, the Melbourne-bred star doesn’t take her lavish perks for granted. One of Minogue’s favorite parts of fame? Clothing — and lots of it.
“Couture — there is nothing quite like it and I am very fortunate to be able to do things like that,” said Minogue. “I come from nowhere. I come from the suburbs. I used to be on the machine buying scraps from the market. And then to be able to be in this world where I work with the world’s best designers and have couture made — I’m in heaven.” To fund those couture purchases, Minogue is in the midst of preparing for her first U.S. tour, which kicks off Sept. 30 in San Francisco.