All about: the seriously unique and amazing Kinski

It’s scary how many “generic” smelling women’s fragrances there are out there in the marketplace, with their creators latching onto a single buzz ingredient that – like fashion – has become a trend. I’m someone that likes to smell a little different when I spray on a pick from my “fragrance wardrobe” every day, and love hunting out new and unique scents that I can make my own.
The same goes for a lot of men out there, many of whom appreciate being a little ahead – or to the left of – the pack. It’s lucky then that there are a number of beautiful, individual releases out there for them to fight over, including the rather enigmatic Kinski.
Available now at The Department Store, Kinski has been described by Liam – resident sartorial adviser in The Men's Dept smelling like “what it must be like to be rich", a description that I think is seriously spot on.
Created in collaboration with the creative team behind the Escentric Molecules range of fragrances, it’s an homage to legendary German actor Klaus Kinski (1926 - 1991), who was best known for his collaborations with director Werner Herzog, including the classics Aguirre, Wrath of God, Nosferatu the Vampyre and Fitzcarraldo, a trilogy which pushed performance to the brink of all-consuming madness.
In real life, Kinski was equally electrifying. According to Peter Geyer, head of Kinski Productions, which manages the actor’s legacy, his name came to stand for “leadership in extravagantly non-conformist thought,” a polite way of describing a bloke whose hell-raising and general air of danger scandalised even his most free-thinking contemporaries.
Geyer wanted to create a fragrance honouring the great man to mark the 20th anniversary of Kinski’s death, so he sought out Berlin-based perfumer Geza Schoen of Escentric Molecules fame.
The end result has been described by Schoen as “a richly decadent, textured scent with heady top notes including cassis, juniper and castoreum; a heart with oceanic notes inspired by Kinski’s love of the sea; and a base of animalic and woody notes that reflect his own almost feral sensuality”. Whoa!
“The ingredients list for Kinski comes into its own when you look at his lifestyle,” says Schoen. “It was excessive, exuberant, debauched. So I instantly thought of something animalic, dirty…yet with me, there is always something clean too. It perfectly fits with this ambivalent thing that Kinski had. It’s an old cliché that there is a fine line between genius and madness. In Kinski’s case, it was a knife edge…”
Schoen worked with Jeff Lounds and Me Company on the Escentric family, a collection of products that look as good as they smell. Kinski is no exception. The end result is an expressionistic rendering of the actor’s face on the bottle, splintered and filtered through the decadent 70s, the decade when Kinski’s life and art combined to create the cult-ish magic that still grips audiences today.
I seriously love this dedication to creating a fragrance that is truly original … and hey, if I wanted to share a bottle of wine with a man I’d much prefer that he smelled like Klaus Kinski than Justin Bieber!


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