By the second half of the nineteenth century many dwellings contained bathing rooms. Better hygiene ensured that people were less likely to tolerate bad odours. The industrialization of the perfume industry, increased productivity and technological advances meant that perfume was no longer an exceptional luxury. The commercial availability of fine perfumes and also perfumed soaps were deemed a necessity rather than a luxury. Despite the fact that mechanisation had brought the costs of production down certain high end perfume houses would keep their prices high to differentiate their brands from the more commonplace perfumes. Naturally, the bourgeoisie wanted to wear scent that was unlikely to be used by their servants. The decline in the fortunes of the perfume industry during the French Revolution had all been reversed by the nineteenth century. By 1840 the Almanach-Bottin du commerce stated that 151 perfume houses were thriving in France. Impressive flower farms in Grasse and Cannes were established to supply the perfumeries. L T Piver purchased factories to process the raw materials. The presence of these manufacturing concerns allowed Piver to become more competitive. However, none of the perfume houses were able to manufacture the whole range of synthetic compounds that were required and so there was always a reliance on the thirty or more manufacturers who specialized in supplying these commodities. These factories were mostly located in or near to Paris. The De Laire & Issy-les-Moulin factories were the largest. However, the presence of the major perfume houses dominated the trade, despite their reliance on these suppliers.
Toussaint Piver was employed as one of Pierre-Guillaume Dissey’s shop assistants. Piver’s obvious talent and hard work ensured that by 1813 he became Dissey’s associate. The firm was so successful that by 1810 its annual turnover represented 2% of the French perfume trade. In 1862 Alphonse Honoré, the son of Toussaint, was responsible for the continuing success of the perfume house. The annual turnover had increased by a massive 54 times the amount stated in 1810.
In recognition of their remarkable entrepreneurial skills Alphonse-Honoré Piver was awarded
Legion of Honor in 1878. In 1900 his son, Lucien Toussaint Piver, was also granted this prestigious title.
Piver had patented an automatic dryer which aided the process where white soap was transformed into perfumed soap much more quickly than before, taking days rather than a month to complete the process. The use of artificial aromas also transformed the industry increasing productivity and profits.
By the nineteenth century L.T. Piver had over one hundred outlets worldwide. Their factory in Aubervilliers specialized in the manufacture of cosmetic products. The House of L.T Piver manufactured luxurious perfumes, soaps, perfumed gloves, cosmetics and face powders.
Their luxurious creations won many awards and medals.