To celebrate International Women’s Day, we sat down with Kate Crofton-Atkins, founder of niche fragrance brand Cochine, to find out her experience of being a woman in business and advice she’d give to women out there.  

What inspired you to create Cochine?  

The inspiration for Cochine was actually from a Jasmine plant I used to cycle past every morning when I was living in Vietnam. The scent was unlike anything I had ever smelt before in Europe, and it started me on this journey to discover lots of different flowers in Asia.

I really wanted to bottle these unique scents and bring them back to Europe. What I wanted to do with our fragrances is to create scents that carried you away to that faraway place, wherever it may be.  

What has been a career highlight so far?  

I would say working with master perfumer Maurice Roucel to create the first Cochine Eau De Parfum, it really was a pinch me moment!

I’ve admired Maurice Roucel all my life, I love the fragrances he’s made for other brands, it was a dream come true to work with him on our collection.  

Have you faced any challenges being a woman in business?  

I’ve faced big challenges, I think every founder has. Are they from being a woman? I’d say probably not, but that could be because we’re in a very female led category in beauty and fragrance.

My background is at Loreal which is also female dominated, so I have a sense of girl power. In the 15 years of building Cochine, I’ve seen women have a bigger share of voice and I think that’s a really good thing.  

What has made you who you are today?  

I would say leaving my life in London and moving to Vietnam in my 20’s was a turning point in my life.

I went there not knowing anyone and discovered this amazing country, culture, lifestyle and people, and that’s what really inspired me to create Cochine, to capture that feeling of travel, wanderlust and finding that very special place in the sun.   

Who has made you who you are today?  

I would say my family and friends for giving me the confidence to move to Vietnam in the first place, and the belief that I could build the brand I have.

I think now, my husband and my three daughters make sure that any minute I’m not doing Cochine, it is full to the brim.  

What’s one piece of advice you’d give to women out there? 

I would say go for it! If you get the chance to take a risk and do something a bit out of the ordinary, I’d say take it.

The life here in England is always here and I’m back now in the UK which I love but the memories of living in Asia are forever captured in Cochine fragrances.  

Cochine Top Picks

Cochine | Tuberose Absolute & Sandalwood 230ml Candle | £45.00, Member Price £36.00 

Cochine Tuberose Absolute & Sandalwood 230ml Candle

Exclusively created with master perfumer, Maurice Roucel, this is the scent of exotic and unforgettable nights.

Feminine, alluring and intriguing Tuberose notes combine with rich Leather and Sandalwood in this intoxicating, utterly addictive candle.

Cochine | Frangipani & Neroli 150ml Reed Diffuser | £60.00, Member Price £48.00 

Cochine Frangipani & Neroli 150ml Reed Diffuser

Smooth, honeyed tones of Frangipani are combined with the delicate freshness of Neroli in this diffuser to create an idyll of blissful tranquility in your home.  

Containing the finest essential oils, Cochine reed diffusers will add a unique and subtle elegance to any room. 

Cochine | White Jasmine & Gardenia Eau De Parfum 50ml Spray | £110.00, Member Price £88.00 

An exquisite floral fragrance that captures the true essence of femininity. Soft, white petals of rich Jasmine, Gardenia and Peony come together to create this unforgettable scent. 

Inspired by the romance of travel and long summer evenings in the tropics, Cochine fragrances capture the very essence of romantic escapism.

Click here to shop all Cochine at The Fragrance Shop.