Sandrine Groslier, president of Mugler Fashion and Fragrance at L’Oréal, reminisced about how Angel was like a UFO when it landed in 1993. It was a blue fragrance with a sweet, candy-like scent coming in a star-shaped, refillable bottle that lay on its side.
“What is most important is to make everyone understand that Angel is new forever,” she said, describing the perfume as having “glamour,” “breaking the mold,” being “audacious,” “luxurious” and —today — “iconic” and “still young.” “We really wanted at the same time to pay tribute to the past 30 years of creation of Angel and Thierry Mugler Parfums, and to project the brand into the future.”
It’s also a tribute to Manfred Thierry Mugler, the brand’s founder, who died last January.
Angel’s celebration will have four parts, with the first being the new fragrance campaign, called “We Are All Angel,” meant also to fete the “One Mugler” strategy that unites the brand’s fashion and fragrance businesses. The campaign, intended to seduce new generations of consumers, as well, will be teased on Monday and revealed on Mugler social media platforms on Tuesday.
It is to run for three months in the perfume’s three largest markets sales-wise — France, the U.S. and U.K. — with biggest play on TV and online.
Casey Cadwallader, Mugler Fashion’s creative director, was in charge of the artistic direction of the campaign, which features seven talents. He worked with Publicis Luxe and Torso Solutions.
“Since it is the 30-year anniversary of Angel, we wanted to both pay homage to Mr. Mugler’s creation of the fragrance and its meaning, but also redefine what Angel means today,” said Cadwallader. “We built this campaign around an amazing cast that shows that Angel has different facets.
“Mugler doesn’t have just one muse, and we do not conform to one standard of beauty,” he continued. “We show amazing people, being their strongest selves. I believe in this for our shows, and I believe in this for Angel.”
“We really wanted to bring that freshness, energy and vision of the brand, and all the diversity, inclusivity and self-affirmation,” continued Groslier.
“The concept of the campaign is the expression of seven different contemporary femininities, because at the end of the day what is Angel about?” she continued. “Angel is about the expression of yourself, your femininity and to express the limitless possibilities of metamorphosis.”
To appear in the campaign, Mugler chose people who are close friends of the house — from the past and present. One is Irina Shayk, who “was the common dream of Mr. Mugler and Casey Cadwallader” to be in a campaign, said Groslier.
There’s also a close friend of Mugler’s, Berlin-based artist Nina de Lianin.
“She was the ultimate muse of Manfred Thierry Mugler,” said Groslier, who added the designer had told her that one day he wanted Nina to be part of a cast for Angel.
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From Cadwallader’s community comes actress and model Yilan Hua; poet, activist and model Kai-Isaiah Jamal, and Jazzelle – aka Uglyworldwide.
“She’s really an emblem of the Generation Z,” said Groslier.
There’s also Raya Martigny, a model and artist, and model Ariish Wol.
“For us, community is really important,” continued Groslier. “We wanted to bring altogether in that new, inclusive and diverse cast [the representation of] the different facets of femininity without the idea of gender. It’s really a broad vision of what femininity is about and close to Mr. Mugler and Casey’s vision of femininity.”
Numerous spots were produced. In the 60-second version, the talents strike a pose, then each is featured with star imagery or an Angel bottle. They’re reunited again, dancing and posing. The tagline “We’re all Angel” is said at the end.
“We’ve got a lot of snackable content with all these models or artists, and they are very keen to collaborate on this project,” said Groslier, explaining each will share the content on their own social platforms.
The executive said Angel is “really back in Europe.” It is strong in France, for instance. There, it figured in the top five, top 15 in the U.K. and top 12 in Europe in 2021, according to statistics from NPD Group.
In the U.S., Angel is bouncing back, after having ranked among the top 10 there a few years ago, she said.
Since Mugler wants to pay tribute to the customers and retailers in its key countries, there will be two events taking place in November.
In London starting Nov. 6 and running for a month will be a “One Mugler” pop-up embodying the brand’s new retail image. What specific retailer it will be housed in still remains under wraps.
“It will be a tribute to the global brand, but also with a specific tribute to Angel,” said Groslier, of the shop-in-shop. “A specific [limited-edition] Angel star will be developed for that city and event.”
In New York, the hit exhibition “Thierry Mugler: Couturissime,” a comprehensive retrospective, will be showcased at the Brooklyn Museum, from Nov. 18 to May 7. That will be the final stop of the traveling show, and the New York iteration will have two rooms dedicated to Mugler’s fragrance world, including Angel. The city is close to the brand, as its first campaign was shot there, and it was where the designer Thierry Mugler spent 15 years of his life.
The third part of the anniversary festivities will take place in early 2023, when Mugler enters into the metaverse and Web 3.0 to mark Angel’s anniversary there. Then, events and projects in Paris, in March 2023, will make up the final, and fourth, phase of the birthday festivities.