“I’m on a mission to reshape the way fragrance is defined and experienced,” declares Carina Chaz; the Californian ‘zillennial’ (on the cusp of Millennial and Gen Z) behind DedCool, the brand we’ve tapped to be the leader of a new era in scent.
“DedCool is about practical, everyday items embedded with scent,” explains Chaz, whose category-bending, self-taught approach to fragrance evolved from the teenage need for self-expression. While peers were looking to clothes, music and unconventional hair colours in search of their identity, Chaz turned to essential oils, which soon evolved into fragrance. “Think of the DedCool scents as a coming of age,” she tells us.
Layer up to level up
What sets the brand apart is a new and fascinating approach to fragrance layering. Traditionally, layering is the pairing of eau de parfums – or toilettes – on the body to create a custom scent profile; DedCool takes an ‘omnichannel’ approach. This has resulted in a collection comprising of laundry ‘Dedtergent’, air freshener, linen spray, a massage candle, and Poop Drops, in addition to eau de parfums.
“We design complementary fine fragrances that make for easy and experimental layering and emphasise the power of personalisation,” Chaz explains. “We encourage our customers to create their own signature scent to manifest however they want – like wearing Milk EDP every day, but using Taunt Dedtergent.”
Wearers can “level up” through various layers of scent to create the feeling, experience or mood they desire: “Everyone should have a signature scent that extends beyond a glass bottle, so we intermingle fragrance into otherwise mundane products,” says Chaz.
Skin-like scents that suit everyone
The brand’s hero scents – each fresh, ‘second skin’-like and reassuring in their own way – bring a new perspective to MECCA, rooted in authenticity and approachable fluidity. “There were no scents on the market that were specifically ‘me’,” notes the founder, who felt uncatered to in the confines of a department store.
This led to the creation of scents like Milk, a soft bergamot, white musk and amber-led fragrance that works with your body chemistry to create a unique and memorable scent. “My aspirations never revolved around the idea of becoming a professional perfumer, it was solely based off my personal love of scent and how I could share that love with people around me,” she says. “Being a self-taught perfumer allows me to express myself within the world of scent, turning fragrances I’ve ‘envisioned’ into a tangible sample without limitations.”
It’s far from traditional, as far as the very traditional fragrance industry goes, “but it’s how we like to do things at DedCool.”
Cool to be conscious
“I grew up in a household where wellness and natural beauty were cornerstones of the family dynamic,” shares Chaz, describing her upbringing as “hippie-dippy” before it was “cool” to be environmentally conscious. “Growing up, my dad always enforced water and energy saving practices, and my mum always enforced a ‘clean and safe’ upbringing,” recalling the organic foods she admittedly didn’t appreciate at the time.
Packaging with as much reusable and recyclable materials as possible and operating with carbon neutrality means that for a small brand, DedCool is ticking big boxes.
“Being a conscious individual is part of my DNA and now part of DedCool’s mission. Sustainability is a foundation we’re built on, alongside others, but I understand that no matter what, we’re producing product, which is ultimately producing waste – let’s just do it in an as environmentally friendly as possible way.”