Uncommon scents mark the efforts of Fred Hayman

November 18, 1993|By Valli Herman | Valli Herman,Dallas Morning News

Fred Hayman has a nose for scents that summarize an era.

Hayman is the one-time hotelier who in 1981 unleashed Giorgio, a powerful scent redolent of '80s excesses. While that fragrance made him rich enough to retire forever to his Malibu estate, he's back year after year with more hopefuls.

With the national launch this fall of his fifth fragrance, Fred Hayman's Touch, he has established a reputation as a contender in the highly competitive fragrance industry. But he's not always winning the match.

In an unusual move, Mr. Hayman has taken his last fragrance, called ". . . With Love," back to the drawing board where chemists are reworking its top note.

"It didn't sell," he says with his usual candor. "People aren't patient when they test a fragrance."

Mr. Hayman has recently been touting the new Touch at various cocktail parties and bottle signings for Neiman Marcus, Dillard's and Macy's. Touch, he says, is the essence of the '90s, a light, romantic floral.

He's most enthusiastic about his latest product innovation, dry perfume, that will debut with Touch. It's an advance of solid perfumes sold in compacts. This, he promises, is unique.

"It's a brand-new invention we've developed with 3M. It's going to be a big-time thing in the perfume industry," he says, bringing a sample from his pocket.

The difference is encapsulation. Tiny beads of the fragrance burst with contact.

"Once the scent leaves you after a while, you just rub your skin again," he says.

Mr. Hayman aims to encapsulate all his scents into dry perfume as a way to give his fragrances distinction.

"When we started Giorgio, we had everything different," he says. He's the guy who brought scent strips to magazines and sold fragrance through an 800 telephone number.

"Today everybody has followed us," he says.

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