Gwen Stefani Talks Harajuku Lovers Fragrances with Nylon

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When it was announced in June of 2008 that Gwen Stefani was coming out with Harajuku Lovers Fragrances, they were expected to be released in September of 2008. To everyones surprise, they are available a month early! Each in adorable bottles to represent one of the Harajuku Girls, the fragrances are available online now through Sephora. In the September, 2008 issue Gwen Stefani Talks Harajuku Lovers Fragrances with Nylon. Interviewed by Fiorella Valdesolo for a piece titled Turning Japanese, Gwen Stefani dishes on the Harajuku Lovers fragrances, how their creation came about, and her future in beauty products and cosmetics.

Gwen Stefani might be the only person who could dye her hair powder blue, get braces, slap a bindi on her forehead, throw on a pair of parachute pants, and have a line of girls behind her ready to do the exact same thing. Since her early days as the front-woman of No Doubt, Stefani has consistently played by her own style rules, much to the delight of her fans. It’s no surprise then that her jump from style icon to fashion and beauty entrepreneur has been an easy one – Stefani’s L.A.M.B. and Harajuku Lovers fashion lines, and her first fragrance have all been widely embraced. So it was with eager anticipation that I, an avowed No Doubt superfan, awaited her next foray into fragrance. And Harajuku Lovers – not one, not two, but five distinctive perfumes inspired by the girls of Tokyo’s most fashionable district and housed in Kidrobot-like figurines – does not disappoint. Here, Stefani answers a few questions about her latest creations.

Q : When Did you first visit Harajuku, and what struck you most about it?

A : I was first in Harajuku when I was touring with No Doubt – it was like going to another planet for me. But it felt like going home in a weird way because I remember being in the shopping district and thinking, “Wow, everybody here is so creative.” It was very inspiring and that inspiration stuck with me all the way through making the dance records. I always got really excited about going back.

Q : How did you come up with the idea to connect Harajuku to a fragrance?

A : I just had this image in my mind of how cool it would be to have each Harajuku girl have her own fragrance, with each fragrance bottle being in the shape of the girl; basically a doll that holds fragrance. I asked Coty if we could do five Harajuku Lovers fragrances, not really expecting them to say yes, but when they did, the whole thing came together really quickly because I had already been thinking about the project for the last four or five years.

Q : Tell me about the characters and how they came to be.

A : They’re each based on L.A.M.B. Love is love. She’s really just this easygoing, lovable girl, soft and romantic. Angel is from L.A., the city of angels. She is also easygoing, but more of a cheerleader type. She’s got a lot of spirit and energy. Music is the tomboy, the aggressive, confident girl. Also, she is obsessed with and hugely inspired by Michael Jackson. She can be a little tough and she definitely has attitute. Baby is the youngest. She is the funniest one to me – the most conservative, but the biggest flirt out of all of them. She’s very girly and sweet. And, luckily I dot to be a part of it too as G!

Q : Did creating these characters with specific personalities and styles help to influence each of their scents?

A : Each one was created from a smell that I love and that matches each girl’s personality. I had inspiration points. Love is a soft, romantic floral with some rose and jasmine. Angel is yummy with lots of of my favorite fruity notes. Music has some real attitute with a mix of my favorite scents including pear, sweet pea, and musk. And obviously I wanted Baby to have a powdery, baby smell. With G, I used coconut and other tropical scents because I love to wear those types of scents. We’re all individuals, we’re all saying something different. And that’s what the fragrances are supposed to be – five different fragrances so you can choose which one is you.

Q: What of your fragrances do you wear yourself?

A : I actually really like G, with its tropical smell. And Love is so pretty that I can wear it both day and night – it smells just like my favorite roses. I didn’t want to have all these bottles of perfume that I couldn’t wear, so I had to make sure I loved them all.

Q : Will you add more characters to the Harajuku World?

A : The brand really lends itself to branching off in many different directions, so we’ll see!

Q : Any chance you would ever do a makeup line?

A : Of course! I would love to do a L.A.M.B. makeup line some day. Makeup, like fragrance, can be an important part of creating a mood and a feeling when you’re getting dressed.

You can also request a sample of one of the five Harajuku Lovers Fragrances through Coty.

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