In a world filled with scents and fragrances, one woman has made an indelible mark on the industry through her passion, and innovative approach. Sue Phillips, CEO of Scenterprises Inc. and Fragrance Expert, has a remarkable journey from aspiring singer and actress to becoming a renowned figure in the fragrance industry. With an unwavering determination and a passion for her craft, Sue Phillips has overcome challenges, embraced change, and carved a unique path for herself. Her story serves as an inspiration to women of all ages and highlights the power of perfume as more than just a sweet scent but a transformative experience.
Sue Phillips’s journey began when she left her native South Africa and embarked on a new chapter in America. Facing initial setbacks in her pursuit of a career in singing and acting, Sue Phillips’s ability to adapt and find a fallback option led her to discover her talent in executive administration as her ‘ticket’ to a green card in the USA. This unexpected turn of events opened doors for her, allowing her to establish a foothold in her new home.
Starting as an Executive Assistant to the President of Elizabeth Arden, Sue Phillips utilized her theatrical background and artistic flair to excel in the fragrance industry. She quickly rose through the ranks, becoming the National Training Director and later expanding her expertise into product development and fragrance marketing. With her unwavering passion and ability to connect with audiences, Sue Phillips brought a new level of creativity and innovation to the brands she worked with. Her passion for fragrance marketing led her to further success at Lancôme and as Executive Fragrance at Tiffany & Co., she played a pivotal role in developing their iconic perfumes. Ultimately, she reinvented herself and founded Scenterprises Inc., a fragrance consulting company, and created fragrances for major brands: Burberry, Avon, Trish McEvoy, Lancaster, Oilily and others.
As the economy took a downturn in 2008, Sue Phillips faced a new challenge. Undeterred, and ahead of her time, Sue introduced the concept of bespoke custom fragrances, paving the way for a burgeoning trend. Despite initial skepticism, in 2012, she opened The Scentarium, her own Perfume Boutique in Tribeca, offering fragrance enthusiasts the opportunity to create their own signature scents. Her boutique garnered attention from celebrities, including Jamie Foxx, Katie Holmes, and Zendaya, solidifying Sue Phillips’s reputation as a fragrance expert with a unique offering.
Sue’s expertise and innovation have continued to shape the fragrance industry, firmly establishing her as a leading figure. Her unique approach gained traction, with celebrities and fragrance lovers alike flocking to her Perfume Boutique, as well as Fortune 500 companies such as AOL, GOOGLE, PINTEREST, Wells Fargo, MetLife, Zurich Financial who were seeking innovative fragrance ‘experiences’ for their employees and clientele. Recognizing the growing trend of personalized scents, Sue Phillips pioneered the concept of bespoke custom fragrances, defying skeptics who doubted its potential.
When the pandemic struck, Sue Phillips faced new challenges as the fragrance industry experienced a downturn. Undeterred, she reinvented herself by authoring a book titled “The Power of Perfume” and developed scent healing consultations and kits to help people regain their sense of smell. Through viral interviews and media features, she became known for her ability to help hundreds of individuals suffering from anosmia. As the world emerges from the pandemic, Sue Phillips continues to inspire and innovate, reopening her boutique on the tony Upper East Side of Manhattan, and presenting engaging scent-centric events.
Looking ahead, Sue Phillips envisions a global brand bearing her name and aims to establish a Foundation dedicated to initiatives close to her heart, such as supporting Alzheimer’s research and wildlife preservation in South Africa through fragrance-related endeavors. Her unwavering determination, passion, and commitment to making a positive impact on people’s lives exemplify her visionary spirit. Sue’s mission is to continue to create magical fragrance ‘experiences’ for fragrance lovers …drop by drop. She encourages people to think about fragrance as a way to reflect one’s individuality and personality…”perfume is the signature of your soul”