Frida Kahlo’s perfume collection was a reflection of her unique personality and creative spirit. She loved bold and feminine scents like roses, jasmine, and neroli, a perfume with a harmony of floral and citrus, which she often blended to create her signature scent. It’s said that she also incorporated the scent of copal, a resin used in traditional Mexican incense ceremonies, into her perfumes to celebrate her country’s history.
Frida’s perfume served a practical purpose too. She often used them to cope with the smell of medicines and hospital environments, which she was frequently exposed to due to her surgeries. Her perfume collection gave her a sense of normalcy and control in her life.
Overall, Frida’s perfume collection was an extension of her artistic expression and personal style. By exploring her perfume choices, we can gain a deeper insight into her personality and how she expressed herself through scents.
Installation view of Kahlo’s perfume bottles in the exhibition “Frida Kahlo: Appearances Can Be Deceiving,” at the Brooklyn Museum. Photo: Jonathan Dorado.