I have always been intrigued by the relationship between psychology and perfume. Not only am I incredibly picky when it comes to choosing a fragrance, but my taste alters season to season, mood to mood. So, I was very excited when I received an invite to a truck show for Aromachology. The ladies behind the brand have really shaken up the world of perfume, literally, by bringing custom fragrance to the beauty counter - allowing consumers to design a truly signature scent that highlights one's own personality, mood and style.

Here is what the founders and longtime friends, Kirsten Menkes and Ashlee Firsten, had to say about their blossoming creation:

In short, what is Aromachology?
Kirsten: Aside from the science, Aromachology to me means self expression. It means individuality and the ability to identify and appreciate who we are and what we can become. Life is about growing, changing, and Aromachology helps people express and communicate their identity, which is something we should all be proud of, celebrate and take a minute to recognize every once in awhile.

This is such a fascinating way of looking at fragrance. Where did the idea for your company stem from and how did you get started?
Kirsten: The idea behind the process of the brand came from a life-long love and fascination of fragrance. I grew up watching my mother and grandmothers get dressed and finish their outfit with a spritz of their trusted scent. From an early age, I began a collection of different scents and would choose my perfume for the day or the night based on how I felt. Whether I was going out on a date, a night with the girls or to work, I would gravitate to a specific scent based on my mood and I always wondered why that was.

We discovered the science of Aromachology and how it studies the affect that different scents can have on your behavior and mood. Ashlee and I both wanted to develop a product that customers can connect and relate to and feel like they had a hand in the creative process. There’s something truly special about owning something that’s one-of-a-kind and that is meant to communicate one’s own identity. Our fragrances are meant to reconnect consumers and revolutionize the artistic and scientific experience of creating, enjoying and wearing perfume. And, from that motivation, Aromachology was born.

Your site says that you two combined different experiences and knowledge to create your brand. What were you doing before this and how has it helped you in developing this very unique product?
Kirsten: Ashlee and I have had quite different, yet experienced, paths. I went to American University in Washington, DC knowing that I wanted a career in communications. From gaining experience during my college semesters and summers interning in marketing, public relations and broadcasting, I went on to pursue a career in Sales working for, and in New York where I only broadened and strengthened my experience. After moving back to Toronto, I honed in on my love for PR and marketing, making connections, forming relationships and understanding what it takes to drive the communications side of a company and how important that is. My experience working in all areas of communications and my love for using my creative mind has allowed me to apply that to the development of Aromachology as a brand and being creative about bringing it to people’s radars.

Ashlee is the science mind. She earned her Bachelor of (Chemical) Engineering from the University of Western Ontario and went on to work at Estee Lauder in Operations and QA. With a greater desire to keep growing and learning about the beauty industry, she moved to Monaco to complete her MBA at the International University of Monaco. She is the brains behind the operations of Aromachology and has applied her training and experience to make the innovative process not only work, but successful in creating something special that speaks to each person's personality.

Tell us a little about the already-existing scents on your site. How did you come to develop these?
Kirsten: The already existing scents are the base personality groupings, which are five different, very unique smelling scents that correspond with a specific type of personality.

Based on much research and scientific studies, we chose the five most common and specific fragrant groupings, which are Floral, Gourmand, Oriental, Fresh and Woodsy, and have identified key personality traits and descriptions for each. Ashlee and I spent a lot of time smelling over 100 different smells in each category and pinpointed certain notes we liked and didn't like, and went through many tries until each blend was perfect, and we felt, truly captured each identity. All the scents are very light and soft, as we both agreed from an early stage that we didn’t want to make scents that were too heavy or overwhelming. Although I’m a true Gourmand at heart, I can’t resist rotating all of our fragrances; they all tease my fragrance palette with such an intoxicating and beautiful smell that I can’t refuse! I like to think I’m a very rare blend of all our bases! :)

I love that anyone can order their "own" perfume and the result is based on traits recognized in the Scent Profile. How long does it take to make a tailored scent and what kind of work goes in to creating the perfect match for someone?
Ashlee: The Scent Profile itself takes about 5 minutes to fill out and then we let you smell your blend and tailor it to what you are feeling at that moment, more Totally Edible, less Bold & Brisk, etc. After we have this base, we go through the 15 top notes or attributes, you can take a couple minutes to pick which you want to include and it takes about 3 minutes to blend, and Voila, your own personal scent!

Have you created a scent for yourself? If so, please tell!
Ashlee: Kirsten is a Totally Edible at heart with Empowering and Creative but has tested everyone else's blends, as well. I have been wearing a Floral Woodsy blend with Inspiring and Graceful top notes since we started, but recently made a blend for my friend Mandi's birthday which I stole: Totally Edible with Sexy, Seductive and Sensual - it's amazing!

you're invited!
(click to enlarge)

What can visitors expect from the Bendel Trunk Show?
Ashlee: You can expect a unique and very interactive experience that touches on the different layers of blending a fragrance and fitting it to your personality and your aspirations. You can expect to be your own creative director ... manufacturing the fragrance just to your likes!

Anything else is in the pipeline for us to look out for?
Ashlee: You can look out for The Perfume Bar to pop-up during the holidays in a variety of locations (check and next year for some even more fun products that cater to our clients want of a product that fits them, rather than them fitting into some mass product.

Thanks Kirsten and Ashlee!

More on Aromachology:

And if you are in New York, Oct. 26 - Nov. 1:

{photos courtesy of Aromachology}