Anything Huda Kattan touches turns to gold—and so when she launched her own perfumebrand Kayali, which means “my imagination” in Arabic, we knew it was going to be the most coveted fragrance this holiday season. Huda’s younger sister Mona Kattan (Huda Beauty’s global president and founder of Dubai’s The Dollhouse salon) is the co-founder of Kayali, and it was her love of fragrance and know-how in perfume layering that prompted the sister duo to launch their own fragrance line. Kayali Collection 01 has four different scents—VANILLA 28, CITRUS 08, MUSK 12 and ELIXIR 11—and Collection 02 is already set to launch next year. The notes of the signature scent, Elixir, include jasmine sambac from India; a potent but feminine fusion of sweet apple and rose petal that hits you at first whiff.
The Kattans have crafted their scents in France, but the inspiration is firmly rooted in their Middle Eastern influences, so they hope to blend the best of the east and west to create perfumes that work beautifully when layered together to create a unique blend. We spoke to the sisters behind Kayali to know more.
How long has this been in the works?
Mona Kattan: We’ve been working for nearly six years to develop Kayali. It’s taken us so long because we really wanted to launch the brand when we felt absolutely confident that we had created the best fragrance we could offer. You’ll notice next to each scent, there is number which indicates the number of modifications made until we landed on the perfect formula for each one.
How did you decide on these four scents and what is the influence behind them?
Huda Kattan: The entire collection was inspired by the heritage of the Middle East. After falling in love with our concept, we decided we wanted to work with the best noses in the world to bring it to life. Together, we handcrafted a collection of four fragrances—one signature scent, created to be layered and combined with three variants—so you could experience the full concept of Kayali from the moment we launched.
Should one layer the scents?
HK: Of course! Kayali was created to encourage perfume layering and we hope it inspires each and every person to experiment and create their own unique combinations. We really hope our new brand reminds you to celebrate every layer of yourself.
Why not launch this as the Huda Beauty perfume?
MK: Kayali is an entirely new fragrance brand with its own identity, which is very different from the identity of Huda Beauty. It’s been so exciting for us to enter a new market and explore its nuances!
What are your favourite fragrances from this collection and how do you wear them?
HK: The order in which you layer is actually just as important as the fragrance combination itself, as the end result can vary! Right now, Mona’s favourite would be to start with ELIXIR 11, followed by a spritz of MUSK 12 and finished with a layer of VANILLA 28. This combination creates the most beautiful, complex, floral scent! I, on the other hand, really just love ELIXIR 11 for its addictive, super sexy appeal that leaves you exuding confidence.