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Mona Kattan's Must-Have Products

Mona Kattan's Must Haves: From Her Go-To Scent to a Portable Charger

Mona Kattan's Must-Have Products
Image Sources: Celebrity Image: Getty / David M. Benett, Products Images: Sephora / Oura Ring / Humantra and Photo Illustration: Aly Lim

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Mona Kattan's love of fragrance has always been an integral part of her identity. "Things like the smell of birthday cake and burnt candles just kind of made me kind of escape into this magical place of emotions," she says. She bought her first two perfumes at 14 with the paycheck from her first job. And when she moved to Dubai a few years later, the rest was history.

"I had a scent-gasm, I was just like, what is this? The way people use perfume in the Middle East is unreal," she says. She describes perfumes as an accessible luxury: "It just felt like such a great way to feel like royalty." Kattan created her perfume brand, Kayali, as an ode to her Middle Eastern roots. But Kayali, which means "imagination" in Arabic, goes further: it's also a way to create moods and a persona for yourself, and it helps educate people about the world of fragrance.

With Kayali's Oudgasm collection, Kattan brings a slice of her heritage to the masses, as oud is a core part of Middle Eastern cultures. "Oud is kind of polarizing. It might take time to get an acquired taste for it, similar to truffle oil," she says, noting that "oud itself is quite sensual. It really helps with longevity, projection." This collection eases people into the world of oud with four unique oud-blend scents, varying from light and warm to intense and deep.

Buying a perfume is a very hands-on personal experience, as different notes mingle and mix with your own body chemistry to create your own scent. Kattan wants people to find their power fragrance and emphasises gravitating towards "something that really makes you feel confident, bossy, just really good about yourself, to kind of walk into a boardroom, a meeting, or first date — whatever it is that you want to feel bossy about — and set the tone." Once you find a scent you like, she recommends educating yourself on the notes and the ingredients, really homing in on why you like them. That way, you can build your fragrance repertoire and make informed decisions when shopping.

However, Kattan also loves to experiment with new scents, especially as a perfume creator. "I'm a big believer in mixing it up and getting out of your comfort zone," she advises. "Create new memories, because a new fragrance will create a bookmark into your life, so step out of your comfort zone and have fun."

If you're on PerfumeTok, you probably already know that applying fragrance and storing perfume bottles requires some care, and Kattan tells us a few of her hacks. For starters, keep your bottles away from heat and light; this helps preserve the fragrance. When you spray perfume onto your wrists or your body, never rub the mist in; always let it dry down. Kattan recommends spraying your hair and clothing, too, because everybody's skin is different, noting that fragrances don't last long on her skin. To make fragrances last longer, she also recommends moisturising your skin.

"We're all about layering, too, because that is a big part of Middle Eastern culture . . . people mix the perfume oils, the musk, the oud, and they add this little ritual of layering, whether it's different scents together or the different types of perfumes and fragrances, the eau de perfumes, the perfume smoke, the hair mist," she says. Kattan doesn't want you to stop at just layering two or three scents; she wants you to wear as many as you can throughout your entire getting-ready routine, from when you're in the shower to right before you head out the door. "It really makes it more complex, which makes it last longer. It makes it more original, more unique, too," she says.

Beyond sharing all her tips and tricks on fragrances, Kattan gives us the scoop on her current must-have products ahead.

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