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Meet Ilsa Manning of Ilsa Fragrances in Phoenix

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ilsa Manning.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Ilsa. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, but have always been a Francophile (no idea why!). I studied French in high school and minored in it in college and then, got a job as a nanny in a suburb of Paris after I graduated from college.

I tell you this because, while I enjoyed fragrance and used my time in Paris to indulge in scent, it was just another product in my toiletry bag.

Years later, when I was living in England, I got a job at the largest fragrance manufacturer in the world. One of the main reasons I got the role was because I was American and I had the French background, and the role consisted of working with the company’s French and American locations. Really, I had no experience other than those two things! But it was in this role, and at this company, that I learned about the perfumery world, and that is when I fell in love with fragrance and the impact of scent on our lives.

The epiphany (because that’s what it was!) to create my own fragrance and fragrance company occurred shortly after the birth of my first daughter. I had had a winding career up until that point and I never felt I was getting anywhere (progressing professionally or monetarily). I also, for reasons still unknown to me, seriously lacked self-confidence and self-belief, which fed into a general dissatisfaction and somewhat depression regarding what I was doing and where I was going in life.

It was about three months after the birth of my daughter when I had my epiphany and what her birth and the impact she was making on my life taught me was that I have done incredible things in my life! And, in fact, these things that I thought were failures had always been successes and had been integral to my life journey. To getting to here. To have the strength and belief in myself and to pass that on to my daughters and to other women – through Ilsa Fragrances. That is why the first collection is the Infinite Collection – because your dreams, potential and capabilities are infinite!

I established the company in 2015 and launched No 1, the first fragrance in the Infinite Collection, in September 2016. I’m currently in development on the second fragrance.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My main challenge is the balancing act of taking care of my number one priority, my daughters and creating and growing Ilsa Fragrances. (It’s almost as if I have three little ones I’m nurturing!)

And, to be honest, my daughters always come first, which means the perpetual challenge is always where best to spend time when there is not much of it (product development, marketing, sales, business admin…?) and how late to stay up in the evenings (I’ve got to have my 8hrs. of sleep!)!

Ilsa Fragrances – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Ilsa Fragrances is a fine fragrance company. We create quality formulations that are inspired by the artistry of perfumery. These unique scents are created with the intent of making the wearer feel beautiful, confident and ready to conquer whatever their day brings to them!

One of the aspects of Ilsa Fragrances that I am most proud of is our mission – to empower women to believe in themselves and everything they can do:

– We carry out this mission by empowering women to feel good, confident and beautiful through our fine fragrances.
– by encouraging them to believe in themselves through quotes and other empowering posts on social media and our blog.
– by encouraging them to follow their dreams through our Facebook Live Coffee & Conversations where I interview women and they share how they achieved their dream/goal so that others can be inspired to do the same/learn from them.

And to empower future generations of women, we donate 5% of the net proceeds from sales to Girls on the Run, a non-profit organization that aims to create ‘a world where every girl knows and activates her limitless potential and is free to boldly pursue her dreams’ and we are also a sponsor of the spring 2018 Girls on the Run 5k in downtown Phoenix happening April 28, 2018.

We are, integrally, #perfumewithapurpose!

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
I personally define success as achieving what you’ve set out to do. I have set out to have a company that creates beautiful and unique fragrances that empower women to believe in themselves and to goes after their dreams and goals.

Each time a woman tells me they love the fragrance, that they are inspired and encouraged to conquer their day because of the content on Ilsa Fragrances… this tells me I am succeeding!


  • Infinite No 1, eau de parfum, 1.7oz/50ml spray $110
  • Infinite No 1, eau de parfum, deluxe rollerball sample, .34oz / 10ml $24.50
  • Infinite No 1, eau de parfum, 1.7oz/50ml spray and .34oz/10ml deluxe rollerball sample duo $125

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