Isabelle Doyen enrolled in 1979 at the ISIPCA, Institut supérieur international du parfum, de la cosmétique et de l'aromatique alimentaire, from which she graduated in 1982. Upon leaving school, she started working as an independent perfumer and collaborated with Monique Schlienger, her former perfumery professor, in the field of creation.
In 1985 she met Annick Goutal, an encounter that marked the beginning of a long and wonderful collaboration, connivance and friendship. In parallel, she was responsible for the olfactory training of the students of ISIPCA, taking over after Monique.
In 1993 she created Aromatique Majeur with Annick Goutal, an independent creative company that primarily creates for the Goutal brand.
Since 1999, Camille Goutal has been the head of Aromatique Majeur and Société Goutal, taking over the role of Annick.
Nose What is your motto?
Nose What is your oldest olfactory memory?
Isabelle It’s rather a taste: the saffron of a small syrup that my mother would rub on my gums to calm the pain of my teeth growing. I do not remember the pain but I have a very precise memory of the saffron taste.
Nose Who has been your mentor?
Isabelle Nobody apart from Jorge Luis Borges.
Nose What are your sources of inspiration?
Nose Which perfume(s) do you wear?
Isabelle It depends. Generally I don’t wear any to avoid blurring my nose’s precision. I often wear tests of the moment on my wrist; I apply it just before going to bed to observe the overnight reaction with my skin and to see if it’s still there in the morning.
Nose What advice do you give to your ISIPCA students to help them become good perfumers?
Isabelle To be humble, determined, curious, to hold themselves to high standards, to be sponges (by doing research, imbibing themselves with all forms of beauty and literature, as well as the processes and intentions of other creators), to finish what they start and never go just half-way, to get to the heart of things, to have the will to offer what is beautiful.
Nose What are your favourite materials?
Isabelle Rose essence, estragon, galbanum, blackcurrant in different forms, Hedione and Evernyl. The last two enchant me.
Nose What is your olfactory signature?
Isabelle I don’t know. You would have to ask other people. I would hope, at least, that it consists of things that smell nicely of tenderness and humanity, that have the ability to dishevel and that don’t disturb others when you are in the theatre, the cinema or at a concert.
Nose What does "Nuit de bakélite" evoke for you? Who is this perfume intended for?
Isabelle What does "Nuit de bakélite" evoke? Tuberose sap, peeled tuberose, tuberose in a cage made of green and leather, a focus on the small peduncle that connects the flower to the stem, the sound of plastic when several stalks of tuberose tangle, the wild majesty of the Persian tuberose.
Nose How was your work with Naomi Goodsir different from your other creations?
Isabelle Each project is different depending on the person or brand who initiates it. Naomi is a wonderful person filled with kindness, character, modesty; she’s daring and imaginative, a talented and aesthetic creator. She is very respectful of the time it takes to achieve the fulfilment of an idea. We created this tuberose together, without making concessions, without any other influences, and under Renaud’s the benevolent gaze. We extracted this tuberose from the depths of our inner gardens.