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How DedCool Is Disrupting The Fragrance Industry

Beauty
All photos courtesy of DedCool

Not your grandmother’s perfume

“As a child, I collected all the mini samples from the department stores. I loved fragrances so much, but never could translate them to my personal scent,” says Carina Chazanas, founder of rising fragrance line DedCool. Chazanas’s preoccupation with fragrance, identity, and how the two intersect, has followed her through her 21 years as a Los Angeles resident. Then, in June 2015, her prevailing interests became something more: She created her own line of unisex, vegan, cruelty-free, and non-toxic fragrances. Labeled “01” through “05,” it’s as though DedCool’s stripped identity is a tool in helping the user create their own scent identity, by cutting out the extremely gender-specific marketing that is typical of generic fragrances.

However, Chazanas’s personal aesthetic isn’t the only thing driving her up-and-coming indie label—she wants to push fragrance forward toward inclusivity. “I wanted to change the way of fragrance by making it ‘cool’ and natural. I decided there should be no gender attached to fragrance, as I wanted to smell masculine and have a lover smell the same,” she says about the mission of her brand. The line’s for-all vibe is visualized in the bar code logo, which de-genders the product.


Since DedCool’s official launch last year, the original five fragrances have been joined by four super-sized lip balms, called Chazsticks, and two hand creams with the same commitment to clean ingredients and non-gendered use.

While DedCool’s minimalist bottles and androgynous scents may perfectly fall in line with the millennial aesthetic, it's only a side effect of Chazanas’ goal to disrupt the fragrance industry with her line’s startling un-branding, duality, and simplicity. It’s rare to see a fragrance label—or any cosmetics label, for that matter—put so much trust in what’s inside the bottle that they all but abandon the outside. However, Chazanas’ faith in product and user has charmed more than just the indie beauty sphere. Major retailers such as Urban Outfitters, Fred Segal, and Neiman Marcus have already taken on carrying DedCool in stores, just over a year after the brand was founded. Currently, DedCool is also part of the starting lineup of Forever21’s beauty shop debut, Riley Rose

Check out the brand for yourself at DedCool.com, where you can buy a Chazstick and simultaneously donate to Puerto Rico relief.

She considers herself "one of the luckiest kids on the face of the earth"

Dani Okon, NYLON's associate creative director of video, sat down with her great-aunt, May Okon, to talk about their shared experiences—despite vastly different time frames—living as queer women in New York City. Prior to retirement, May was a journalist for the New York Daily News, having first entered the male-dominated workforce when "the boys were all at war." And, of course, she absolutely killed it. Her only regret? "Retiring at 55," she tells Dani, joking, "Who the hell knew I was gonna live to 100?"

Upon retiring, she moved out to the Hamptons with her partner and bought a home. If she had to do it all over, May says "there are a lot of things I wouldn't do," but she still considers herself "one of the luckiest kids on the face of the earth." Get to know May in the video, above.

Check out the other videos in our series where we placed queer people from different generations in conversation with one another:

Rob Smith and Eddie Jarrel Jones
Lauren Morelli and Garcia
Marlene Colburn and Naima Green
Ashlee Marie Preston and Devan Diaz

Produced by: Alexandra Hsie
Camera: Gretta Wilson + Katie Sadler
Edited by: Madeline Stedman

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Lauren Morelli, the showrunner and executive producer for the new Netflix show Tales of the City, is fostering a space where multiple queer realities can be shown on-screen. She spoke with one of the cast members, trans actor Garcia (who plays Jake Rodriguez on the show), and, in the video above, they explore why it's wrong to treat queer stories as representative of the entire community. Tokenization is something that they both want to avoid at all costs, and they're on the right track.

Check out the other videos in our series where we placed queer people from different generations in conversation with one another:

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We put non-binary activist Eddie Jarrel Jones and The Phluid Project founder Rob Smith in conversation with each other, and the two spoke some powerful truths about the continued gendering of products like makeup and clothing. Smith recalls that 30 years ago, the only way that he was able to experience the joys of playing with makeup was to work at a beauty counter. Even today, Jones notes that it's hard for non-binary femmes like them, or even trans women, to get that experience in stores.

In the video above, get a sense of why Smith created a genderless store, and see how important it is for people like Jones to have a space where they don't feel criticized for dressing like they want.

Check out the other videos in our series where we placed queer people from different generations in conversation with one another:

Dani and May Okon
Lauren Morelli and Garcia
Naima Green and Marlene Colburn
Ashlee Marie Preston and Devan Diaz

Produced by Alexandra Hsie
Directed by Charlotte Prager
Shot by Charlotte Prager + Dani Okon
Edited by Gretta Wilson

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