This perfume smells like America’s first president.
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George Washington’s cologne of choice was an aromatic bottle by Caswell-Massey, a Rhode Island-based fragrance company that bills itself as the first to be made in America.
“We joke that George Washington was our first influencer. He made it popular,” Nicolas Arauz, president and CEO of Caswell-Massey, told FOX Business of the brand’s No. 1 selling product.
President Washington allegedly stumbled on the brand’s Number Six fragrance – with notes of citrus, bergamot, rosemary, amber, and musk -- in 1780. The brand also says he gifted a case of it to Frenchman Marquis de Lafayette. Today, the scent, which costs $225 per bottle, is made in New Jersey.
Caswell-Massey started as an apothecary shop in Newport, Rhode Island in 1752 when Scottish-born doctor William Hunter introduced a line of fine-fragrance bath and body products like men’s shaving products and soap. It went on to open a New York City store on Fifth Avenue in 1854, and just opened its latest outpost in downtown Manhattan aimed at attracting a younger audience to the legacy brand.
But instead of breaking into the subscription-boxed business model to attract a new demographic, Caswell-Massey said having a retail presence was a priority so customers can smell and experiences the fragrances in person.
“We sell a lot of blind buys online, but it’s still not the same as experiencing it in person,” Arauz said.
Bars of soap is also a top-selling item, Arauz said, despite reports that suggest younger generations are killing the industry. Bar soap sales dropped 2.2% from 2014 to 2015 with Millennials saying it’s inconvenient to use, according to a report from market research firm Mintel.