Perfume Directory

Youth Dew (1953)
by Estée Lauder


Youth Dew information

Year of Launch1953
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 378 votes)

People and companies

HouseEstée Lauder
PerfumerJosephine Catapano
Parent CompanyEstee Lauder Companies

About Youth Dew

Youth Dew is a feminine perfume by Estée Lauder. The scent was launched in 1953 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Josephine Catapano

Reviews of Youth Dew

In the 1980s I would have described heavy oriental fragrances, particularly Opium pure perfume, as my favourites. Since then my tastes have changed in favour of chypre and floral fragrances. However, recently I have fancied revisiting Opium, but have found many online reviews which refer to its recent, and apparently very inferior reformulation very offputting, and also the pure perfume seems to have been discontinued. Therefore, I have bought Youth Dew (which I had never tried, but had seen described as similar to Opium many times), in the Bath Oil strength, as I read on the Estee Lauder site that it can be worn as a pure perfume strength skin fragrance, as well as being used in the bath. I'm wearing it for the first time today and I have to say, I'm thrilled with it: I'd describe Youth Dew as somewhere between the original formulation of Opium and Cinnabar: a little sweeter, lighter, and a little less pungently spicy than Opium, but heavier and definitely not nearly as sweet as Cinnabar, which I have always found rather sickly. Very impressed, especially as I have never been an Estee Lauder fan. The body cream is next on my list.
21st March, 2018
I look forward to winter, not for the rain and the cold and the miserably cut off days, but for the chance to dig down to the bottom of my wardrobe and bring out some thick, resinous, spicy oriental; a rich, full bodied composition that would be too heavy and stifling in the heat of July but makes an ideal comfort blanket in January. And among them, one of the stand outs must be Youth-Dew.

It's an amber composite of pale sweet powder, sour-dry orangey resins, and cinnamon. At first there is a nuance of white floral, but that soon fades and incense comes through to back up a cold black spice that adds bite to the cinnamon. Later, a peculiar waxy note emerges, resembling the one that can be found in some 1920's aldehydics - which may show that Lauder haven't messed with the original formula too much. Finally a white musk down at the bottom suggests they may have tweaked it after all...

It's a bit pointless to speak of a traditional head and base structure to Youth-Dew, there isn't much to separate one from the other, it's mostly one long flow of balsamics, powder and spice, and what makes this stolid profile a success is the contrast set up by the two opposing chords of sweet powder and dry resin. They create an internal tension which is then supported by a secondary contrast between the sweet cinnamon and the cold black spice & incense. This allows Youth-Dew to continue in the same vein for hours without becoming dull or boring; it all depends on striking - and then maintaining - the right balance, and perfumer Josephine Catapano has got it spot on in this, her chef d'oeuvre.

This sub-genre of oriental - the spicy resinous amber, first appeared in the guise of Tabu by Dana. Now that a decent formulation of Tabu is a collectors item, it's fair to say that Youth-Dew has become the de-facto grandmother of the lineage. There are two reasons why Youth-Dew has acceded to this status: firstly, Estée Lauder still produce a good formulation of Youth-Dew, and it's available everywhere, and the second reason is that the perfume has benefitted from the way our olfactory tastes have changed since it was released in 1953. Today, it feels not so much like an antiquated feminine but more like a gender-neutral spicy oriental in the manner of Serge Lutens' Arabie or the resinous balsamics of Comme des Garçons Parfum. The similarity between Y-D and these two is palpable.

Because of its age (sixty four this year) Youth-Dew may not be so popular any more - it's not on the cutting edge of fashion after all, but this sweet and comfy feelgood fume could still be worn by anyone looking for an alternative to the Shalimar style oriental.

Youth-Dew the veritable old timer is like a camel coat - a timeless classic. It deserves to be known better.

21st December, 2017
Not quite as good as Shalimar or My Sin, the woody makes it a bit masculine. Still overall an enjoyable fragrance. The color should warn you that it will be strong. I dislike the peach top note, but luckily it is gone fairly quickly. There is a slight fecal note that makes it a rich deep complex fragrance. A classic, but not quite on par with Shalimar
09th August, 2017
Thanks to an impulse buy at Nordstrom's, I finally got my hands on a fragrance that made my nose clench as a child. I hated the aldehydic classics like Chanel No5. Maybe growing older has dulled my senses, but I've fallen in love with Youth Dew. It's dense and richly textured, lasting for ages on the skin.

It moves when I move. Just when you think you are comfortable with the scent, any movement unmasks different layers that mingle in the air. I always spray in my hair and on the nape of my neck, so just running my fingers through my hair wakes me up and keeps me present.

Not to get too lofty, but I appreciate YD's restrained power. When worn lightly, it doesn't have to announce itself. Instead, it draws people in. Yes, I was naive enough to wear it to work, but even in the sterile clinical setting, Youth Dew found a way to fit in. Still employed!
27th July, 2017
It's neither youthful, nor dewy. What were they thinking with that name?

It's Opium, but harsher (clove is to blame). Unlike Opium, it loses it's depth in the dry-down.

For me, it's ballsy and old-fashioned - spiced in a slapdash way. It's never really beautiful.

Of course, each to their own. Perhaps it smells divine on the right person.

My lasting impression? Bold, dry, loud spice. Too much clove. Like Opium but not as good. BUT it is a good price.

'Youth Dew' should become 'Elderly Parch', which is not necessarily a bad thing.

Silage and longevity very good.
09th June, 2017
rbaker Show all reviews
United Kingdom
Review of the vintage formulation.

An explosion of rich, intense darkness characterises the opening blast: ripe orange flavour and a deep but soft, resinous spiciness appear in tune; and an overripe peachy undertone adds a fruity undertone. This spiciness is the result of a mix of clove and a gently balsamic overlay, nigh-camphorated but with an only minimally medicinal hint at times.

The concept reminds me a bit of Creed's Orange Spice, but the more clove-based and balsamic nature of the spiciness as well as the judicious addition of uplifting bergamot with a modicum of aldehyds distinguishes it favourably from the Creed: this original Youth Dew is the more complexly layered and construed product of the two.

Whilst the top notes a rich and dark, the drydown sees the lightening of the mood ito a brighter, very floral range. A bouquet of flowers emanates: a dark and velvety rose expresses reminiscences of the ealier moments, but the subsequently added carnation, and especially the orchid with a comparatively restrained ylang-ylang cast off the shadows and move towards a brighter momentum.

The base comes in two phases on my skin: initially a vanilla impression is added, and subsequently a soft and light patchouli with an ambery background note develop gradually. The floral heart notes, now attenuated considerably, are nonetheless still present, and towards the end they they merge with the slightly dusty amber to create light, feathery and bright whiffs of a slim, modern powderiness.

The sillage is moderate, he projection excellent, and the longevity a splendid thirteen hours.

This autumnal evening vintage scent, a dark, thick and viscous oily juice, is of wonderful richness, complexity and with a neverending development of permutations and variations. The contemporaneous version, whilst still very respectable, is not of the same high standard. The vintage formulation is masterfully blended whilst maintaining excellent structure, and is constituted of ingredients of superb quality.

Whilst this is at times a bit heavy and can be a touch overbearing, and is probably not everyone's cup of tea - that's the colour of the juice anyway - and whilst one should definitely try this product before one buys it, this is indubitably one of Estée Lauder's finest creations. 4.25/5.
14th May, 2017

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Youth Dew By Estee Lauder 2.25 Oz EDP Spray New In Box Sealed Perfume For Women

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YOUTH DEW by Estee Lauder 2.25 edp Perfume for women NEW IN BOX

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Estee Lauder Youth Dew Perfume 67 ml Eau de Parfum for Women 2.25 Oz Spray 80%

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Youth Dew Perfume Estee Lauder For Women 2.25 oz Eau De Parfum Spray NEW IN BOX

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