Perfume Making With KUKA-aromateque, Yangon.

KUKA-aromateque is Myanmar’s first perfume studio, where guests can make their own personalised eau de perfum under the tutelage of (the very lovely) perfume designer Ana Cecilia Cervigni.

KUKA-aromateque offers two courses, a 2 hour session where you have access to 50 different ingredients from which to make your own bespoke eau de parfum, or a longer 4 hour session where you can choose from an overwhelming 170 different fragrances to construct your dream eau de parfum with.

My friends and I opted for the shorter 2 hour session, which was great value at $60 including 35mls of your bespoke scent (which Ana Cecilia can recreate for you to purchase again once it has run out)

Ana Cecilia’s home studio is lovely, light and airy, and free from any outside distractions which meant we were able to fully focus on the task at hand. She has accumulated a wonderful array of different scents, some of which were familiar as well as some new and intriguing ones that I wouldn’t have been able to identify previously.

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Photo from Kuka-aromatheque facebook

After a brief welcome introduction into the perfume making process and methods behind how, and why, we were going to layer each scent to create our ideal perfume, we were asked to fill in a short questionnaire to understand what sort of perfume we were aiming to create.

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Questionnaire 

I found this process really interesting, and it was helpful to keep returning back to my notes as we began to work our way through the vast selection of scents to choose from, as it helped me keep my focus as to what the ultimate scent should smell like.

The 5 of us doing the class all had a different goal, from my friend who wanted to make a fun perfume suitable for a night on the town, to another who was making a scent for her partner, and a teacher friend who wanted something light and suitable to wear at school, that wouldn’t overwhelm her young students (so thoughtful!)

My target was to create something fun yet sultry, that would remind me of the scent on the breeze on a hot summer night (can you tell I am missing being able to travel yet?) After listening to each of our objectives, Ana Cecilia pulled out some additional fragrances for us to choose from, without telling us what they were or who she had selected them for and it was fun to try and guess who she had in mind when smelling them.

Ana Cecilia had explained that we needed to choose 3 different parts of the perfume we were making; the heart of the perfume (something that would be the main body of the fragrance) the top notes (those scents that hit you immediately when spraying your perfume but then dissipate relatively quickly) and the base (the scents that remain with you for hours) and we were advised an to how many different components we should pick for each section of our fragrance

We were advised to smell each ingredient before reading the label which was an interesting experience, we then had to score them out of 10 and narrow down which of the ingredients worked well together to make our final fragrance, remembering our target goal from the earlier questionnaire we had filled in.

After much to-ing and fro-ing, I settled on base notes of Oriental Royal & Ambergris, with heart notes of Tobacco (warm, herbaceous and hay like), Narcotic (a heady blend of white flowers such as lily, orchid and jasmine) and Muguet (Lily of the Valley) with top notes of Herb and Citrus which gave me that summery, wild flower “maquis” scent that I was aiming for

Ana Cecilia has such a wealth of experience that she was effortlessly able to tell us how many drops of each scent we should use to make our eau de parfum, advising us to then check how we liked it before adding any other necessary notes. She got mine spot on, and I only added one more drop of the citrus scent in order to slightly freshen up the final fragrance.

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Making our eau de parfum

Final eau de parfum in hand, we were told to leave it in the fridge for 5 days to allow the scents to bond to each other and develop, something that was harder to do than you might imagine as I loved my perfume so much, but sure enough it was fascinating smelling it over the coming days, and seeing how it developed and changed in the bottle.

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The finished product!

We had such a fun afternoon, I absolutely adore my fragrance (so much so, a month in it is nearly finished!) and I would highly recommend booking a session with Ana Cecilia in order to create your own bespoke eau de parfum too.

Check out their facebook page here or email for bookings!

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