When Jessica Chastain prepares for a role, she is meticulous about what her character wears, thinks, and even smells like — so she’s made a habit of choosing a signature fragrance for each part and wearing it until filming wraps.
As the charmingly aloof Celia Foote in The Help, the actress wore Chanel No. 5. As The Tree of Life’s ethereal matriarch Mrs. O’Brien, she spritzed on orange blossom. And when she was preparing to play a homicide detective in Texas Killing Fields, Chastain’s perfumer friend, familiar with her method, sent the two-time Oscar nominee a bespoke flacon labeled “Tough and Sexy Cop.” It wouldn’t be the last time she had an original scent commissioned to help bring a character to life. “I think about how they would define their personality in fragrance and wear that,” she says.