Exclusively in StoreHoubigant

A true heritage brand, Houbigant has a history that can be traced back to 1775

From creating fragrances for the nobility of the Court of Versailles to developing groundbreaking methods of distilling perfume, Houbigant’s scents, in the perfume world, are as important today as they were two hundred years ago.

To date, Austins is the only stockist of Houbigant fragrances for men and women in the South West.

The Houbigant Brand

Houbigant is widely credited to be the forerunner to modern perfumery. With centuries of notable history, it seems almost untenable that this luxury perfume house is quite possibly one you’ve never heard of – until now.

The brand’s story began in Paris, 1775, on the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.  In his shop, A la Corbeille de Fleurs – a basket of flowers – Jean-Francois Houbigant discovered a new way of formulating perfumes.

The scents Jean-Francois created soon found favour with the great and good of the day.  An air of fable became associated with this artistry in scent; it’s reported that he taught the women at the Court of Versailles how to perfume their fans to create ‘a romantic message’, wherever they went.  Napoleon was a customer and in 1793, on her way to the guillotine, Marie-Antoinette was said to have carried three vials of Houbigant perfume in her corsage to ‘give her strength’.

Houbigant was awarded the license of ‘Perfumer to Her Royal Majesty, Queen Victoria’ and became official perfumer to the Imperial Court of Russia.  From there on, a roll call from the European royal houses and Tolstoy, to Guy de Maupassant and the Rothschilds, fell under the spell of what we now know to be one of the world’s oldest perfumer.

Houbigant continues to create perfume for today’s discerning market with their trademark elegance, innovation and quality.


Our collection of Houbigant’s ladies’ fragrances draws on the house’s most iconic scents. Essence Rare was created by master perfumer Jean Claude Ellena in 1973.

With instructions to create a classic perfume ‘à la Française’ he chose the three evocations of flowers; rose, jasmine and lily of the valley for this soft floral timeless scent. Jean Claude Ellena himself recreated the scent for today’s market.

Iris is one of the most prized scents in the world of perfume.  Iris de Champs blends iris absolute, rose and jasmine with amber, musk and sandalwood.

The classic Quelques collection is one of Houbigant’s most enduring ranges. Developed in 1912 by French perfumer Robert Bienaimé, it is recognised today as the first true multi-floral blend scent. Bienaimé’s original formula consisted of upwards of 15,000 flowers and 250 prestigious raw materials. It’s no surprise that when it was first unveiled it quickly gained ‘mythical and ethereal’ status. The fragrance is still created in Grasse, France, just as its ground-breaking predecessor was.


Our men’s collections include the confident, sophisticated Duc de Vervin range. Named after the northern French city where this scent has been created since 1985, this is a refined collection with notes of bergamot, lemon, spices and musk.

The Bois Mystique collection is rich and woody, with a distinctly modern twist. Created with hints of spice, ginger, pepper and incense to evoke thoughts of bonfires, woodland walks and sunsets.

Fougere Royale is one of the House of Houbigant’s oldest and most ground-breaking fragrances. ‘Fougere’ translated from the French as fern, is to date, still one of the main notes in men’s fragrance. Today’s collection is reimagined from the compounds of the original scent developed in 1882.