Shoval Shavit Shapiro thinks fragrance should do more than just smell good. Growing up around her parents’ careers in the cosmetics industry, she developed interests in visual communication and self-expression, leading her to explore design and beauty in Tel Aviv and Berlin. Eventually, she came up with the idea of blending sight and scent, working with her cosmetics expert mother Aliza and perfumers at International Flavors & Fragrances to develop the one-of-a-kind concept and formula. AMKIRI launched on March 21, International Fragrance Day, introducing a game-changing multisensory experience to the beauty world.
AMKIRI currently comes in a single, crowd-pleasing scent: a gender-neutral blend of notes including spearmint, ginger oil, juniper berry, musk, and cedar wood. But those who encounter it will first notice the visual element, which comes in charcoal and white. The product packaging looks like a giant liquid liner, and wearers can either apply their visual fragrance freehand or choose from over 95 designs.
Beyond looking and smelling good, AMKIRI is just so fun. It’s a sophisticated new way to enjoy ephemeral body art, and when a bottle arrived for the L’Officiel USA staff to try, the office had its most exciting Monday in a while as everyone began painting on roses, arrows, and dotted designs galore. The new scent truly brings an individualized creative energy to the art of fragrance, so Shavit Shapiro explained more about the thinking behind her concept, AMKIRI’s imagined cultural preferences, and what she wants to explore with the new brand moving forward.
How did you come up with the idea for AMKIRI?
Amkiri is the culmination of multiple influences; primarily my childhood, education, and travel experiences. I grew up the daughter of cosmetics experts and entrepreneurs, so I felt a calling to the world of beauty startups. With my background in industrial design and visual communication, I was always challenging the norm. It all started with a question: I’ve been wearing my perfume for years—it’s really my signature. So, I thought: If fragrance is my signature, why can’t I see it? As a designer, I needed to follow that curiosity as far as possible. I teamed up with my mother, Aliza Shavit, who’s a chemist, and started experimenting at the intersection of sight and scent. We spent many hours in the lab attempting to make the invisible, visible. After dozens of iterations, we landed on our patented formula—the world’s first visual fragrance. Fast-forward to now, and with fantastic investors and team members, we have made the Amkiri dream come true.
What do you think is the impact of visual and olfactory elements coming together?
It’s engaging. It allows you to express yourself creatively and invites others to share in that expression. There are huge social implications, whether it’s putting on Amkiri with friends, or tagging your design online—having the visual aspect is a conversation starter.
If AMKIRI was the star of its own movie, which actor would play the starring role?
Cara Delevingne! She is fierce, has a sense of humor, and doesn’t play by any rules!
Which place in the world does AMKIRI encapsulate best?
AMKIRI is international and finds beauty in all corners of the world. If we had to choose, it’d be a tie! AMKIRI captures the balance between the beach party vibe of Tel Aviv and the high-energy concrete beat of New York City.
If you had to place AMKIRI in an iconic decade past, which one would it be?
AMKIRI is an innovation for the future of beauty. As the first visual fragrance, we represent the future. But it also would fit within the '80s, with an exaggerated style full of gusto and beautiful contradictions.
What item from your wardrobe would you compare it to?
AMKIRI is your favorite piece of clothing that gives you that boost of confidence and makes you feel like the best version of yourself. It’s your go-to jeans that fit you JUST right.
What genre of music do you think AMKIRI most aligns with and why?
Multisensory self-expression is the heart of AMKIRI, and we feel music plays a major role in that expression. Drum machine, funky bassline and a bit of dramatic synth—it’s immersive and transportive. There’s a spontaneity to it that allows you to get lost in the rhythm.
If your fragrance had a night out on the town, what drink would it order at the bar?
Anything you can mix with gin!
If you were to relate AMKIRI to a book, what would it be? Why?
Alice in Wonderland. It’s the story of following your curiosity and letting yourself get lost in a fantasy world in order to find growth.
If AMKIRI had a soundtrack, what three sounds would play once you apply the
The Nicola Cruz Boiler Room Tulum set says it all.
If it wasn’t called AMKIRI, what would it be called?
AMKIRI was inspired by the history of perfume, cosmetics, and body art. We really don’t have a second best. ֿWe were inspired by Tā Moko, the Maori tradition of tattooing. Our name is a combination of the English word “Am” - to be alive, and “Kiri,” which means skin in Maori. If it wasn’t called AMKIRI, the name would’ve been derived from our many other sources of inspiration.
What do you want to explore with the brand moving forward?
We want to push this concept of open beauty, being something for everyone to define. We love the fresh narratives coming out of mixing old and new. We see collaborations with other like-minded brands in the lifestyle category and are currently crushing on streetwear meets high fashion. New fragrances, colors, stencils, and inspirational collaborations with artists of all genres who capture a unique creative spirit are all on the way. AMKIRI aims to create a culture of self-expression, as we believe it captures the beauty of human complexity.