Saturday, October 29, 2011

What Does Romance Smell Like?

Eau Sauvage  Dior for men
I love perfume!  I think I have worn perfume almost everyday of my life since I was a teenager, my first one being Blue Grass, which my mother bought for me during a trip we made to Paris.  Whenever ever I smell it, I am instantly taken back to a time when I was young and my mother was showing me how to dab the scent carefully onto my wrists and behind my ears.  As well as taking us to difference points in our lives, perfume can also evoke different people.  My father always wore Eau Savage by ChristianDior and every time I smell it, I am always reminded of him. 

Royal-OudBecause perfume can arouse such strong feelings and memories, I spent a long time thinking about what kind of scent the characters in THE ROYAL SHEIKH would have.  The hero, Sheikh Rafiq, would wear a heavy cologne.  It would be expensive to reflect his wealth, it would have undertones of musk to evoke sex and it would smell slightly exotic, but at the same time international to reflect his Arabian origins but jet-set lifestyle.  Royal-Oud by Creed would be perfect for him as it was inspired by ‘wood, leather, marble and gold, elements of a royal Persian palace’ and it gives the wearer ‘a touch of the splendour of palace life, Persian and Parisian’ (Creed Boutique).

In contrast, Clare MacKay, the heroine of the novel, would wear a very different type of scent. Unlike the Sheikh, she is not rich or overtly sexual.  Instead, she is a hard-working professional, focusing on becoming a fully qualified architect.  Therefore, she would just wear a small amount of a classic, light floral fragrance, such as Light Blue by Dolce and Gabbana.  In addition, she would use bathroom products scented with cherry blossom, which would evoke her Japanese ancestry, such as L’Occitane’s Cherry Blossom Bath and Shower Gel. 

While Clare is staying in a luxury hotel in the Middle East, visiting the Skeikh’s kingdom, she uses a jasmine-scented shampoo provided by the hotel.  What brand do you think it would be?  Also, what's your favourite scent and why?


  1. Cool subject for a blog post, Katheryn! I know a fellow writer who had a local perfumer make signature scents for her characters. Wouldn't that be awesome?

  2. Thank you Nora. I LOVE the idea of signature scents for book characters. If I could, I would do the same, not just for my book but for a couple of my favourites as well. For example, what kind of perfume would someone like Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice wear?