I took this photo three years ago, at a pop-up perfume exhibition titled “Sensorium: Life at First Scent & Lucid Dreams.” This show was co-organized by Sephora and Firmenich (a global flavor and fragrance producer) and it included various interactive experiences that encouraged visitors to think more about our sense of smell and to learn more about the hows and whys of perfume design.
One of my favorite sections, however, was a more traditional display just inside the exhibition entrance, where vintage perfume bottles and other fragrance-related memorabilia were shown in cases. This fantastic little machine probably dates back to the late 1950s. It dispensed tubes containing sealed-glass sample tubes (“nips”) filled with perfume. For just 25 cents, a customer could enjoy a dose of Chanel no. 5, Lanvin Arpège, Lanier Folie de Minuit, or Silent Night by Countess Maritza. Such an affordable luxury!
Image by Tinsel Creation.