Kim Kardashian West’s new perfumes aren’t sexy. That’s a rarity in the perfume industry, which fragrance titan Frédéric Malle once described as “extremely focused on sex.” It’s also perhaps a little unexpected for Kardashian West. Instead of associating her new scents with a buzzword like “sexy” or “confident,” she told the Cut that she wants to create “healing” fragrances.
Kardashian West has created perfume before, but these are her first with her own brand, KKW Beauty. There are three available on her website today: Crystal Gardenia, Crystal Gardenia Oud, and Crystal Gardenia Citrus, each $60. WWD reports that sales are projected to be brisk and in the millions. The Cut talked to Kardashian West ahead of the launch about everything from why she started collecting crystals and how she maintains inbox zero to how she really feels about aging.
What was your first scent memory?
Hmm. I keep all my old fragrances, but I really don’t know what my first ever scent memory was.
But my first perfume ever was Benetton Tribu. I still have it. It’s really strong. My dad always would get me a perfume when he was traveling. He got that for me. I still keep all the fragrances he would get me.
Often scents are described as “sexy” or “confident.” But you wanted yours to be about healing and clarity. Why were you drawn to that shift?
I took some time off last year. And when I did, it seems everyone who came over would bring me healing crystals. I didn’t know much about them at first, but I investigated them and got really into them. I’m around them more now, and it’s been really cool. I don’t have tons of them in my house, but they seem to give off an overall calm energy.
I love how crystals look. One bottle mirrors citrine, the other quartz, and the other rose quartz. I really love how they turned out. The scent isn’t overly fussy or too strong. The perfume is the white florals I’ve always been drawn to. It’s been fun seeing my vision come to life.
What type of smells (not necessarily perfumes) are you into?
I love smelling food. I love truffles! [Laughs.] Amazing, delicious truffle pasta will always be a good smell to me. I love the smell of a wood-burning fire. There’s nothing better than that.
Since we are talking about scent, I have to ask. You once said you can smell cavities. Is that true? What do cavities smell like?
I really can. Everyone asks me this. It’s so hard for me to describe. I don’t even really know what it is. I’ve been smelling it for years, although I don’t think I necessarily knew it was cavities.
I just smell the scent of what I think a cavity smell like. I tell the person, “You have a cavity.” And I’ve never been wrong! But I don’t know how to describe what it smells like.
I’ve heard that you have inbox zero — nothing unanswered. How do you do it?
I multitask. I’m doing it right now. I’m doing this interview and answering so many emails at the same time. It’s honestly gotten overwhelming, though, having to keep the inbox at zero. It’s hard.
You just can’t let it bother you. I definitely delete as I go. But at the end of the night, I delete everything. If I feel like the conversation will continue, I will keep an email. Sometimes because I delete, I can forget and I’ll be like, “What were we talking about again?” It’s really rare I will keep a text message.
You joked on Instagram you were going on a “late night gummy bear run.” What is your favorite color of gummy bear and why? What is one color you could do without or have less of?
I just tried the watermelon. I was so excited and had never seen it before. But it’s not really my thing. My favorite is the green or white. The green is strawberry and the white is pineapple. The yellow — that one doesn’t really do it for me. Lemon is not my thing, either.
Do you have fears about aging?
Every single day. It’s obviously about the wisdom. We were having dinner with my mom last night for her birthday. We were talking about the same thing. There’s a sense of calmness and wisdom you get from life. But it also just sucks. There’s no easy way.
Right, and then there’s the idea that aging is a gift. You get to experience another day.
Yeah. [Pause.] I would take aging over not being here.
This interview has been condensed and edited.