ReVived: Vive teams up with To Summer to recreate its first perfume

Heritage Shanghai-based beauty and skincare brand Vive (雙妹, lit. Two Girls) has teamed up with leading New Chinese-style fragrance label To Summer to recreate Vive’s first-ever perfume and pay homage to the modern women of 1930s Shanghai. The 475 Mansion is named after the first Shanghai location of Vive at 475 Nanjing Road, back in 1910.

Founded in 1898 by Fook Tien Fung in Hong Kong as Two Girls, it entered Shanghai 5 years later in 1903 and won a gold prize at the 1915 Panama Expo. The brand had grown to be known for its Shanghai heritage of providing women in the modernising period of Chinese history with fragrance and beauty products. The Shanghai and Hong Kong branches parted ways in 1950 after the revolution in the Mainland. Vive is now part of the Shanghai Jahwa United group while the Two Girls brand remains active in Hong Kong.

To Summer and Vive dug deep into Vive’s archive and contemporary report to find clues on the first perfume, developed by Vive founder Fung himself, and experimented with various scents to match the description. The result is a strong scent of jasmine that reflects the “dia” (sweet and feminine) and “jia” (shrewd and capable) duality of Shanghainese woman, which is what the “two girls” of Vive have come to represent. The ceramic bottle cap was inspired by the cheongsam dress which was popular in the 1930s, and made with Jingdezhen’s famous gaobai (高白, lit. high white) clay. The box was inspired by art nouveau-style cigarette cases, as smoking was a symbol for modern and independent women back in the day.

To Summer included the fragrance in its collection that pays tribute to the pioneering early modern women of the 1930s. They recently opened a second store in Shanghai at ROCKBUND and the design was inspired by Virginia Wolf’s A Room of One’s Own (1929). They also launched a “Nosepaper” that brings attention to female poets of today. For To Summer, the collaboration perfectly embodies the independent nature of the modern woman as “dia” and “jia” are still relevant today. For Vive, it revives the rich history and Shanghai heritage of the brand, while bringing a modern twist to its classic fragrance.


Join our newsletter