"The bottle must be the sound-box and the materialization of the ideas’ bubbling. Its is the shape of a perfume and the twin of the designer"

That is how Yves Saint Laurent describes fragrance bottles. Yet, perfume bottles were already coveted by the pharaohs of Ancient Egypt. Made of alabaster or clay, with carved animals and mythical characters, then made of glass, perfume flasks accompanied the most illustrious people to their sarcophagus.

Over the centuries, the master glassmakers have designed bottles according to the symbolism associated with their shapes. The square form evoked the human presence on Earth, secular power and the human proportions of the Vitruvian man. The round form, on the other hand, referred to divine perfection, the power of nature and to the sensation of infinity.

In the 19th century, bottles undergo a big change due to influence of Art Nouveau: floral motifs, clear or enameled crystal and colored glass, gold and silver decorations enter the world of perfumery. Among the most popular, "the silver butterfly" (a pink crystal vertical hexagon with silver ornament) and "astris" (a bottle with a star pattern).

With the development of perfumery in the 20th century, designers began to create flasks according to the character of their juices. The bottle being the calling card of the perfume, it presents an aerial and pure form when the fragrance is fresh and light, a heavy and imposing form when the perfume is heady, intense.

The design consultant Patrick Jordan explains that each object is first seized and appreciated by people according to its physical features ("physio-pleasure"). In the case of perfumes, the bottle is the first element to convey pleasure, through the senses of sight and touch. The ergonomics of the bottle, the ease one grasps its surface with, the safety of the catch all have an influence on the charisma of the fragrance. Last but not least: the sound and the duration of the vaporization!

The perfect bottle? The designer Catherine Krunas explains it has to combine a pure design with a timeless originality, so that it makes people want to be keep it forever.

Discover below our favorite bottles from the Nose selection.