Luca Turin is the world’s best known perfume critic and a scientist who came up with theory of smelling by vibrations. He wrote various books, many of them bestsellers with his wife, Tania Sanchez. Their Perfume Guides both 2008 and 2018 version are full of witty perfume essays and reviews, and I highly recommend you to check them on Amazon. In this interview, Luca Turin shed some more light on perfume critic, it’s importance as well as other perfume related subjects. Enjoy!


IGOR: What makes a perfume critic?

LUCA: A nose and a laptop, maybe also a brain connecting one to the other.

IGOR: Why do you think that perfume criticism is important?

LUCA: I suppose it is important in a practical way, to make people aware of fragrances that may not be in their local department store, etc, or are not prominently displayed. It may also play some role in increasing the amount of information about perfume for interested readers.

IGOR: Is there a good and bad perfume critic and what differs them?

LUCA: I criticize perfumes, not perfume critics.

IGOR: How would you describe a perfume to an anosmic (from birth) person?

LUCA: This sounds rather cruel, but if they insisted, I would ask them to imagine something between sound and color, with some aspects of taste.

IGOR: In your latest book your main focus are niche brands. How do you see the balance between niche and designers in the near future?

LUCA: I am not interested in who makes perfumes, only in good perfumery. Niche brands more often than not use major oil firms and their perfumers. I find the independents more interesting: new ideas, new people.

IGOR: Is there a salvation for designer brands?

LUCA: They don’t need saving. They are doing exactly what they want to do, i.e. make a lot of money.

IGOR: What needs to change in order for the industry to change? Should everyone became a little bit of a critic?

LUCA: The “industry” has already changed quite a bit, but it will take a long time for the general public to understand that there is more to perfumery than La Vie est Belle.

IGOR: What is the right measure between being too analytical about perfume and just enjoying it. When over analysis disrupts enjoyment, and when enjoyment isn’t quite right or fulfilling without analysis?

LUCA: I don’t think analysis damages art. If it’s intelligent, it aids understanding. If it’s stupid, it makes no sense and is easy to ignore. The only case where it changes things irreversibly is when an accord is split up into two or three components and can no longer be perceived as one thing thereafter, but one gets used to it.

IGOR: What period in modern history would you call renaissance in terms of perfumes.

LUCA: 1890-1930

IGOR: What is and can there be a perfect perfume?

LUCA: There are many perfect ones, each different.

IGOR: Can you tell us something more about your upcoming blog, what kind of content can we expect?

LUCA: I will post reviews regularly as new frags turn up, by way of an advance on the next guide.

IGOR: If magic had a scent, what fragrance would it be?

LUCA: Any and all perfumes are magic to me: stuff contained in a bottle, invisible and with no moving parts, that creates such sensations is magic.

IGOR: How do you create your top lists, since they are not exclusively made out of perfumes with 5 stars?

LUCA: Fast and unhesitatingly.

NEW PERFUME GUIDE BY LUCA TURIN 2018 IS OUT!

Top 10 list of best perfumes that came out since the first book can be found HERE.

CHECK OUT NEW TOP LISTS BY LUCA TURIN AND TANIA SANCHEZ 2018

Top list of best perfumes rated with five stars 2018 by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of best perfumes rated with four stars 2018 by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of best perfumes rated with three stars 2018 by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of worst perfumes rated with two stars 2018 by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of worst perfumes rated with one star 2018 by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

CHECK OUT MORE TOP LISTS BY LUCA TURIN AND TANIA SANCHEZ 2008

Top list of best perfumes rated with five stars by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of best perfumes rated with four stars by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of best perfumes rated with three stars by Luca Turin can be found HERE.

Top list of worst perfumes rated with two stars by Luca Turin can be found HERE

Top list of worst perfumes rated with one star by Luca Turin can be found HERE.