What is Niche or Artistic Perfumery? Or maybe Indie...
The Fragrance Foundation (FiFi) once categorized fragrances as "niche" or "mainstream" based on the number of doors they were supported in (ie the number of retail outlets stocking a specific scent or brand). This would generally mean that... the majority of scents you find in large retail franchises and department stores are classed as mainstream or "designer" scents, such as those launched by fashion houses.
Boutique artisanal perfume studios whose production is on a much smaller scale, and whose presence in mainstream retail stores is minimal or non-existent, are thus referred to as niche. These are the scents you might likely find at a perfume specialist or high-end fragrance boutique.
Niche devotees often argue that boutique perfumes offer the consumer the opportunity to reward oneself with a scent that is both uncommon and individual. Many might reason that niche equates to quality; in that greater attention to detail has been given to the construction of the perfume, and that components are of the highest calibre with in many cases an 'obsession' for the quality. Many prefer to pay top-dollar for the privilege of not smelling like someone's ex-boyfriend, or brother or aunt.
We just want to be a tiny and discrete second option.
Cristina and the Exscentia Team