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Vero Kern created perfumes that are far beyond the norm in complexity and artistry. With every one of her scents, she takes you on a journey into a transforming and emotional sense experience. If the love of perfume were a religion I would worship daily at the altar of this Perfume Goddess. On her website, she described herself as a  “perfume composer junkie”. For her, creating fragrances is like a drug, a complete passion. “Perfumes are a love story. There is nothing more intimate in all of life than the connection between perfume and skin.”

Naja, her most recent scent, is a limited-edition of 650 bottles which was released in celebration of the 10th anniversary of her company, Vero Profumo. “Naja stands for my fascination, and my conviction of the healing power of scents and reminds me of my earlier activities as an aromatherapist and as a pharmacy assistant.” (Fragrantica interview).

This fragrance is her vision of tobacco – tobacco and flowers and fruit, per the note list. The packaging is acid green and dense black, the simple graphic is a coiled hooded cobra snake, and the first sniff is a shock. Naja smells exactly how I don’t expect it to smell, bitter, salty, rank and damp, a sensation of rotting flowers and fruit. Yep, this is a Vero Kern perfume!

My shock recedes as the tobacco accord takes shape, creamy, honeyed, and smoky, and I think Habanita, but Vero Kern delivers another sensory  jolt and takes me deeper into HER tobacco vision. The tobacco accord is the life of the plant, yanked from damp soil, clots of black earth on the roots, the acrid vegetal rush of crushed green leaves, the perfume of new blooms, the sweet hay smell as the leaves hang drying, the spicy complexity of dried leaves, the thick smoke of pipe tobacco -  it’s all there in a few deep inhales.

And then Naja becomes deep and dense, thick with leather notes from osmanthus absolue with its sueded apricot overtones, and then opulent from a honeyed sweet nectar, subdued but delicious, from linden flower. And through it all there’s the slight dissonance of a damp saltiness, the aquatic melon note, green rind and all. The combination of notes is unusual, but Vero Kern uses the power of the tobacco note with all its nuanced facets to expand their presence, especially the florals, which are just achingly beautiful.

The long drydown is as hypnotic as a cobra, swaying and weaving among creamy tobacco notes, damp earth, bitter green, and wafts of medicinal leather reminiscent of Onda, airy powdery linden blossom, faint doughy sweetness of apricot from osmanthus, hints of melon juice, and dried  tobacco leaves, spicy, peppery and smoky. The various notes and accords float up haphazardly in different combinations, Naja can smell different according to your mood, it’s dense, decadent and delicious but then becomes airy, it’s intoxicating and sensuous and then as light on skin as cashmere, it’s female, it’s male, it’s Everyone. Naja absolutely defies expectations.


Vero Kern passed away suddenly on December 18, 2018. Her contribution to modern perfumery should be treasured, and she will be greatly missed.

Read about our Vero Profumo fragrances listings: OndaRubj,

.rozy. Voile d’Extrait.


Notes: tobacco absolute, linden flower, honey, osmanthus absolute, melon

Type: EdP

Parfumeur: Vero Kern


Price: $15.00