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Fragrance and personal care

Lancôme rides with empowering fragrance effort

August 27, 2019

Lancome Zendaya Zendaya fronts Lancôme’s new fragrance campaign. Image credit: Lancôme


Beauty brand Lancôme is embracing feminism with a star-powered campaign for its latest fragrance.

Actress and activist Zendaya stars in the “I Can, We Will” effort for Lancôme’s Idôle scent. Pairing the young star with a feminist message will help the prestige brand resonant with millennial and Generation Z consumers.

“The campaign targets an audience ready to overcome the traditional, rise above the norm and create a united front,” said Aleni Mackarey, chief operating officer at Base Beauty Creative Agency, New York. “It reflects Lancôme's identification with female empowerment, passion and being beautifully real.”

Ms. Mackarey is not affiliated with Lancôme, but agreed to comment as an industry expert. Lancôme was reached for comment.

Feminist fragrance
The Idôle fragrance has a feminist origin story that is reflected in the new spot.

Female perfumers Shyamala Maisondieu, Adriana Medina and Nadège Le Garlantezec worked together to design the new Lancôme fragrance, which is described as a musky floral scent. Lancôme also touts that the bottle is arguably the slimmest in the world (see story).

Lancôme shared an empowering campaign for its new scent

Lancôme’s film opens with Zendaya overlooking a city from a bridge while riding a white horse, which is often used to symbolize a hero. She wears a muted pink gown with riding boots, combining equal parts of strong and feminine fashion.

Zendaya excitedly begins galloping towards the city, pausing in the middle of an intersection as she orients herself. She catches a glimpse of the sun and continues riding.

Sia’s power ballad “Unstoppable” serves as the spot’s soundtrack, and the music swells as Zendaya begins ascending a peak outside of the city. As Zendaya rides the horse, she is shown wearing the Idôle bottle across her body as if it were a piece of armor.

Zendaya shares how she defines an Idôle

As Zendaya reaches the hilltop, the sun begins to set behind the city. She raises the perfume bottle to reflect the sunlight.

“I can, we will,” Zendaya says in a voiceover as she stares down the camera.

“Zendaya is a great fit for this campaign as she is an icon for natural beauty, female empowerment and strength,” Ms. Mackarey said. “On social media, she shares moments of her raw, unedited self and athletic dance abilities.”

Scent stories
Other beauty brands have embraced messages of feminism and empowerment in recent campaigns.

France’s YSL Beauty is bottling up the essence of freedom in a fragrance campaign fronted by a millennial pop star.

British singer Dua Lipa is the face of Libre, a new perfume that is said to be for those who “make their own rules.” YSL’s latest scent takes reference from its namesake fashion house’s own rule breaking, such as its tuxedo eveningwear designs for women (see story).

French fashion label Chloé also explored ambition and curiosity in the latest effort around its Nomade fragrance.

Chloé leveraged social video for its new series, “Nomad Stories.” In the same manner as other Chloé efforts, the Nomad Stories campaign emphasizes free spirits and female friendships (see story).