The HELM Staff is surrounded daily by the perfect scent of leather but ever since we opened the retail store, we have been educating ourselves on countless fragrances and looking everywhere we can for unique, made in the US makers and craftspeople to bring to you. Fragrance is one of those things that we have wanted to carry in the store but it is tricky as it is so personal and extremely subject to individual preference. For that reason we have been sampling and smelling a lot of products to see if we can narrow down something that would be unique but also have mass appeal. We all have different noses but we all agree: as scent is so linked to memory, it should be based on real smells. Pleasure can be found by tapping into those scent memories and can improve your mood, your sense of well-being. It can enhance your environment. Smells can also suggest things that haven’t occurred yet or fantasies of things you’d like to accomplish; of who you’d like to be.
At any rate, after finding some pre-made scents which intrigued us, we began to explore the option of creating a custom HELM scent. Something that would be the scratch and sniff portion of the HELM brand story; whatever it is that would explain to people’s olfactory nerves what we would like to be. We found a perfumer in Austin, Roux St. James, who opened our eyes to what goes into creating a scent and helped us craft a custom fragrance. There were many exploratory meetings to find out what the likes and dislikes are. In our case we wanted tanned leather, cedar and lavender to be used and we did not want powder, citrus, floral or amber notes as those are the ones that people tend to have strong feelings about. We knew we wanted something bright and unisex, clean and interesting so we gave those instructions to our perfumer and after narrowing it down from eight variations to two to finally one, we moved into production. She hand-blends the natural ingredients and organic raw materials in small batches and hand-packages them in her Austin, TX studio.
Our HELM No. 1 fragrance was released in 2013, with the new spray version in stores only a few months ago. To sample this fragrance or one by L’aromatica, a San Francisco Bay based company inspired by natural scents, stop by our store.