Geir Ness has built his fragrance company around the environment that so inspired him while growing up – the mountains near Oslo, Norway. Following his work with large fragrance companies, he returned to his homeland and began a new journey – creating fragrances that brought the scents of his childhood to others. Geir kindly agreed to answer some questions about his role in the fragrance industry, his accomplishments, and where he sees the future of fragrance heading. Here’s what he had to say!
How did you first get involved with fragrance creation?
I was doing some freelance work to promote several international fragrances and customers asked me where I was from. When I told them that I was from Norway, they all wanted to smell a scent from my homeland. Since we didn’t have any scent created in Norway, I started to do research and I created a scent that reminded me of my childhood – a fresh clean scent from the mountains in Norway – and I named it after my mom Laila, who has always been my inspiration.
What has been your biggest accomplishment so far?
My biggest accomplishment has been to get the fragrance out to the world. And, I’ve been able to get a positive message out to people that have a dream: they can do it without a big name or money, but you need to believe in yourself. I have met people naming their daughter after my scent, and people all over the world are telling me that when they are wearing my scents, they feel happy and it gives them positive energy!
I borrowed money from a friend of mine, maxed out my one credit card, and started from scratch. So, for me it’s very important to show people of all ages how important it is to never give up and have a goal in life.
What obstacles have you faced in your path?
Being a small player in this very competitive business. Not having money to promote yourself when those big brands are all over the media with big celebrities’ names attached to their brand. I had to use myself and create something personal that I think has been working great. But it took time and dedication.
When it comes to creating the fragrance inspired by Frozen, were you expecting the reception you received?
When I created the scent Frozen in a Bottle with Disney, I wanted to create something that reflected the movie. The snow and Ice and love from the sister. I wanted all that to be inside the bottle. That’s why the name is Frozen in a Bottle. After it sold out, it’s now a wonderful collectible scent, and I’m now working on my next one.
What kind of power do you believe scent has? Why should those in the fashion world be concerned with it?
A scent is powerful because it takes us back to memories, emotions. My first scent Laila, and then Frozen, took me back to my childhood in Norway. I loved walking up in the mountains and smelling the fresh clean air and wildflowers.
How has the pandemic impacted the fragrance business?
I think a scent that gives you great memories and happiness is now more important than ever!
You hosted the Midwest Fashion Week in Indianapolis. What was that experience like?
Working with Berny was such a pleasure and to see how creative he is and the kind person he is. I have worked with a lot of people in the fashion industry, and I have to say that Berny is one of the designers that stands out because he always reinvents himself and he is just a really great person!
What do you think is most important when it comes to men’s fashion and grooming?
Men’s grooming is very personal. I think we have to find who we are and be true to ourselves. Some men look great with facial hair and some don’t. The most important thing is to feel good about yourself.
When it comes to fragrance, what are some trends you’re seeing in the industry?
There are several trends in fragrance today, but I will say that a lighter, cleaner scent is something that always will be a staple for most people.