Studies have shown that smell is the strongest sense linked to memory. One fragrance entrepreneur is proving that by launching a company that harnesses the scent of a deceased loved one by turning it into a perfume.
French entrepreneur Katia Apaletegui came up with the (not at all morbid) idea for the company. Here’s how it works: After gathering your deceased loved one’s personal items, such as their clothing and their pillow cases, a chemist at Université du Havre runs these items through a process to isolate the human-originating odors (roughly one hundred molecules) to turn them into sprayable fragrance.
The aim is to help people cope with their grief after a recent loss. Apalategui says she wants to provide people with “olfactory comfort,” or a source of solace on par with photos and videos of the deceased.
She plans to launch the company in September with help from her son, who’s currently in business school. Once the company is operational, you can buy your own custom-made person-smell online for 560 euros, or roughly $600 USD.