February 23, 2012

Two perfumers' minds: Interview with Mandy Aftel by Dana El Masri

If your soul connects to scents you have to read this, every word. Promise me. This interview, from The Perfume Magazine with Mandy Aftel by Dana El Masri is a masterpiece. The answers describe the beauty and infinity and sensuality of scents so well. Mandy Aftel's answers paint the big painting, and at the same time describe details in the most beautiful way. Now you already know from my previous posts that I am a big Mandy Aftel-fan. I am fascinated by her way of representing the finest things about scent creation while also making this world accessible to many others. Her book, Essence & Alchemy: A Natural History of Perfume, for example is perhaps the No 1, intro course globally for anyone interested in learning more about perfume. This combination between artistry and guidance in itself is extra-ordinary. But what makes Mandy Aftel so interesting is her devotion to natural ingredients which makes her creations even more seductive and exquisite. All this you can read more about on Afteliers website.

But this interview is not only about Mandy. You can sense immediately when looking at the questions that they are asked by someone who truly gets...feels...this topic. The questions are precise, sublime and they lead the reader to a magic place where you can understand a professional's fascinating process of creating perfumes. So I was not suprised, but enchanted to find out more about Dana El Masri at the end, and I hope to encounter her name many many more times.

Dana El Masri is an aspiring perfumer and scent blogger. When Dana first opened the pages of Tom Robbins’ classic “Jitterbug Perfume”, she knew she had found her calling - to create authentic and whimsical perfumes. Since then Dana worked at the niche fragrance house, L’Artisan Parfumeur and decided to pursue her dreams further at the Grasse Institute of Perfumery in France. During her studies, Dana’s recreation of the scent of luxury was chosen as the winning scent of the year. Her personal collection blends melodies of the past and the present through scent and music - crafting a playful symphony of fragrances. Now back in Montreal, Dana continues to grow and evolve as an aspiring perfumer while sharing her love for music, culture and scent on her blog

Thank you to you both, Mandy and Dana for this precious rendering of things that are not easy to capture with words. You both gave me an injection of inspiration and bedazzlement, and the story you tell together just captures it all so very very well. 


  1. Sylvia – your commentary is terrific! I applaud your recognition and support of the profound nature of scent, and your compliments about Dana’s talented interview are spot on.
    xo Mandy

  2. I, too, liked Dana's introspective commentaries and questions. So nice to get a feel for the person behind the brilliant brand that is Aftelier Perfumes. And, yes her ingenious creations are second to none. Sheer luxury for the senses that beat out any mass marketed scents & oils I have tried.

  3. Thank you! Love reading your comments.