Brand Portrait: Houbigant
It all began with just a basket of flowers. One day in Paris in 1775, a young man, Jean-Francois Houbigant, hung a handpainted sign of a basket of flowers over his little shop in Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré?
Operating since 1775, the House of Houbigant is the only fragrance house that has existed through four centuries of history. Through these centuries, the perfumers of the House of Houbigant have made groundbreaking discoveries in the formulation of perfumes that have revolutionized forever the way perfumes are constructed.
From the start his fragrances found favour with royalty and the nobility including Marie - Antoinette, Queen of France and wife of Louis XVI. Houbigant fragrances travelled in Napoleon?s campaign chest during the years when he was conquering Europe.
In the spring of 1815 Napoleon was only in Paris for three months, a period that history calls ?The Hundred Days?.
In those months he raised an army and yet found time to shop at Houbigant. The bill of sales is framed at Houbigant.
Houbigant was the precursor of perfume creations. In 1882, Paul Parquet introduced Fougère Royale, a fragrance that would define a new category of perfumes - the Fougère" (or fern-like) fragrance family, which is still today the most popular family in men fragrances. Parquet was the first perfumer to understand and use synthetic aroma materials: Fougère Royale was build around an accord of oakmoss, geranium, bergamot ... and synthetic coumarin. Without Parquet discovery great perfumes would have been lost either because the ingredients extraction has been forbidden such as musk or because the real ingredient has turned out to be nocive for humans (for instance the natural coumarin is cancerogene).
In 1912, Houbigant perfumer Bienaimé picked up the ball from Paul Parquet and introduced Quelque Fleurs, one of Houbigant's all time great fragrances and the first multi-floral bouquet ever created.