There's a difference between smelling good and having a signature scent. The former is fleeting and forgettable while the latter is timeless – offering a summation of one's essence. That's precisely what drove Karen Huger, entrepreneur and cast member of the popular series "Real Housewives of Potomac," to create her own fragrance. Huger fondly recalls her mother and grandmother both wearing perfumes that lingered in the air well after they left the room - “a unique, delicate footprint in time,” she says. Recognizing such staying power, Huger crafted La'Dame Eau de Parfum as the first product in her lifestyle brand of the same name, which launched in 2019.
Huger’s entrepreneurial spirit and can-do attitude was born out of her parents' encouragement during childhood. “They taught their children that all things were possible,” she says, “that we could do and achieve all things.” Healthy doses of positive reinforcement coupled with her father’s business sense and work ethic have made Huger the successful boss lady she is today.
The Potomac resident classifies her target audience in broad strokes. La'Dame or “the lady” in French is a representation of her fellow females: "It's all of you, it's us," she says, counting a wide range of customers aged 18 and above as fans of the perfume. ”From the younger demographic to the more mature– it's quite amazing to hear from so many that just love the scent,” she says.
The body's olfactory system is known for storing memories and that's exactly what Huger set out to do when she crafted the “feminine, bold and classic” fragrance. With the matriarchs of her family at top of mind, she wanted to capitalize on a scent’s ability to “transport you in time,” explaining that the effect is a super power she’s always treasured.
Intriguing and intoxicating is how Huger has previously defined herself, so it was only natural that she create a perfume reflecting the same characteristics. The scent, which took more than a year to perfect, is packed with exotic spices, fresh citrus, sugared violet, plus notes of vanilla bean and white florals, with undertones of cedarwood and sandalwood. The finish is clean, crisp and elegant, Huger says.
Although she has had to overcome hurdles and growing pains business owners commonly expect, Huger has been grateful for the opportunity to navigate the learning curve. From discovery to product development to manufacturing, marketing and selling, Huger was involved in every step of the process, leaning on her strong and competent team all along the way. “It is imperative that a business owner is able to complete all tasks, from the very smallest detail to the final goal, which is product delivery to the customer,” she says. Furthermore, she emphasizes the importance of actively engaging with end users, crediting her loyal fans for La’Dame’s product expansion. With the brand’s growing popularity and shelf presence on Bloomingdales and HSN, there is plenty of reason to bask in the brand’s success.
As anyone who watches RHOP understands, being a real housewife is a lifestyle more than anything else. Each cast member is unabashedly opinionated and steadfast in their beliefs. Karen Huger embodies the show's ethos tenfold. Her strength of character doesn't allow naysayers or ageists to tear her down – Huger proclaims that the words "'cannot' and ‘stop’ do not exist in my vocabulary." Her recent wig collaboration La'Dame by Karen Huger X RPGSHOW was an immediate hit and Huger doesn’t see the momentum slowing down anytime soon. Her hopes for the future of La’Dame are high. “The sky’s the limit,” she says.