The 1970’s, portrayed by many historians as a period of pivotal change in the world, perfectly describe the lives of Shimon and Sarah Barda who made their way from France to Israel in 1978. At the time, Shimon had been a fashion designer, living and loving life, rocking out with his semi-pro musician friends to the music of the 70’s.
But Shimon, like many Jews of that era, felt an ever increasing stirring to return to Israel, the ancient ground of his forefathers. It wasn’t an easy decision or move, but Shimon knew it was the right choice. The land of Father Abraham was now becoming the Land of Shimon Barda. Shimon, a style designer and artist by trade, now had to provide for his family. What to do? Shimon reasoned that he had always had two passions aside from music.
The first was fashion while the second was the Beit HaMikdash—the Holy Temple. Now, could he get a job where he could fulfill both passions and still have time to Rock & Roll on the side? These were Shimon’s thoughts when in 1994 he started “Les Parfums Itamar,” otherwise known in English as, “Itamar Cosmetics.” Ever since Shimon had been a fashion designer in France, he had thought about how fragrances should compliment the clothing a person wears.
With Sarah Barda and one of her grandaughters, in front of a table of their cosmetics
Sweet smells reminiscent of the Temple
He knew back in the ancient times of the Temple, as was recorded, the women of Jerusalem needed no perfume because the fragrance of the Temple incense and Holy Anointing Oil completely saturated the entire city. It was also noted that the fragrance could be smelled even from the city of Jericho, which was 12 miles away! With this in mind, Shimon knew he wanted to use fragrances to connect people to the Land and God of Israel.
As it says in the Proverbs, “Oil and perfume make the heart glad,” Shimon’s goal was to make products connected to his heritage and to his beliefs. If the fragrance of Jerusalem during Temple times pointed to God, then he wanted his perfume to reflect the Divine as well. Not only did he want to create perfumes and creams that reflected Godliness, he also wanted to return to the ancient art of the perfumer—creating products without chemicals and other harmful ingredients.
He was continually told that his research was for naught, but his consistent reply was, “If my ancestors could do it in ancient times, then it is possible to replicate it today.” Today, we are proud to say, against all odds, Shimon succeeded! We are excited to offer you some of the best perfumes Israel has to offer. The aroma of mango, apple, and wildflower give the sense of one returning to the Garden of Eden!
Mango-Apple Adagio Perfume
Enjoy Itamar Cosmetics!
In our store you can find several of Shimon’s perfumes and colognes. The Adagio perfume has a delightful sweet apple and mango scent. Another perfume, Katif, is named after the Jewish communities uprooted from the Gaza Strip in 2005. At the time, it was a flourishing agricultural hub, amounting to a large percentage of Israel’s fruit and vegetable production. It was a lush oasis and the Katif perfume memorializes this with its delightful wildflower scent.
★★★★★ Lovely perfume. Very light and floral! Fresh scent great for every day use. —Vanessa R.
We also have a range of Shimon’s creams. His immensely popular hand cream combines green tea and avocado oil for a wonderful moisturizing and refreshing experience. Then there are the anti-aging face creams, for night and day. And the multivitamin serum for a feel-great healthy skin experience.
★★★★★ Wonderful product! Those little lines around my eyes and lips...where did they go? —Mary B.
In Hosea 14:6 we read of the land of Israel revitalized and flourishing under the Kingship of the Messiah, it says, “[Israel’s] shoots will sprout, and his splendor will be like the olive tree, his fragrance like the cedars of Lebanon.” The Rabbi of Safed, Shmuel Eliyahu adds to this by saying, we are living in a time when the “fragrance of Messiah is in the air!” Join us in the restoration of the Land and people of Israel! And as you use Shimon’s perfumes, may they always remind you of the fragrance of Messiah, which is ever growing, as we work together towards the coming redemption!