‘Helvetica The Perfume’ livens up the holidays with ‘the scent of nothing’

Apparently, mother’s freshly baked gingerbread men weren’t doing the trick this year. (UPDATE)


Sorry, Britney, but this font is about to damper your fragrant “fantasy.” And One Direction, your “moment” might soon be coming to a close. You may be at the top of the music charts, as well as the overtly saturated market of celebrity-branded fragrances this Christmas, but you’ve got literally “nothing” on the typeface-based smell Guts & Glory hopes will fill the air. Providing the best bottled nothing since Phoebe Buffay started hawking Aquafina, the Oakland, Calif.-based design collective has put out what is sure will be the scent of the (hipster’s) holiday season. Introducing Helvetica The Perfume. Named for the popular sans-serif typeface developed in 1957 by Swiss designers Max Miedinger and Eduard Hoffman, the fragrance is described as “a scent distilled down to only the purest and most essential elements to allow you, the content, to convey your message with the utmost clarity.” Sold in 2 oz. spritzers, $62 is all that stands between you and sheer modernistic merriment this Christmas. (Let’s be totally clear here: It’s just really expensive bottled water.) In an article at The Dieline, Guts & Glory’s designers explain the concept behind its less-than-aromatic creation:

This is a design object rooted in super nerdy design humor (which we love.) It’s an idea and a point of view, not a real perfume in the traditional sense. … While Helvetica The Perfume is an homage to a typeface loved (and hated) the world over, we think the idea of a perfume inspired by nothingness is bigger than recontextualizing a typeface. What does nothing actually smell like? We hope that this product makes people think about everything from the concept of nothingness to the beautiful absurdity of the perfume category. We are graphic designers who specialize in branding and we are leveraging the power of design to create desire as well as poking fun at ourselves and the industry we work in. It is, after all, just packaging. But as designers we see the beauty and art in packaging. We are collectors and catalogers of these objects which are essentially meant to be tossed after opening.

What a … thoughtful gift? Sadly, it might be too late to place an order to help fight typographical terrorism with fragrance. According to Adweek, all shipments were to go out Dec. 5.

Still, I’d suggest taking a look at the limited edition product’s Twitter page. The tweets simply reek of irony and humor:

UPDATE: Helvetica The Perfume is still available for purchase. Faun Chapin, a partner at Guts & Glory, has clarified to PR Daily that the company simply wouldn’t begin shipping the product until Dec. 5. Olfactory systems, rejoice! (Image via)

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