Perfume Directory

Envy (1997)
by Gucci

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Envy information

Year of Launch1997
GenderFeminine
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 244 votes)

People and companies

HouseGucci
PerfumerMaurice Roucel
PackagingTom Ford
Parent Company at launchWella > Cosmopolitan Cosmetics

About Envy

Envy is a feminine perfume by Gucci. The scent was launched in 1997 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Maurice Roucel. The bottle was designed by Tom Ford

Envy fragrance notes

  1. Top Notes
  2. Heart Notes
  3. Base notes

Reviews of Envy

Envy is a sour green floral made of three simple parts : a bitter brown base, a green accord and a sour floral.

The floral is a magnolia bouquet, made sour by sharp lilac, fugitive hyacinth and fake citrus. There's also cold iris and a green accord based on the shiny smell of muguet leaf.

But Envy is not just sour and green, it must be one of the driest florals on record. It uses a bitter black note found in the magnolia petal - which adds a gritty edge in the same way as the indole in jasmin - and this is worked into a kind of burnt-sugary mossy base which is anything but sweet. In fact, what sweetness there is, is only there to stop the tamarisk note from getting out of hand, nothing more.

Even though it's bold and striking, Envy is not as original as it may seem. It's like a green l'Eau d'Issey on a base of scorched earth - which clearly derives from Sinan.

On the other hand, what is different about Envy is it doesn't even try to smell nice. By flouting the old idea that 'a perfume should always smell good' Envy places itself firmly in the difficult, or expressionist camp along with some of the Roudnitska's, Sécrétions, Poison etc.

And of course it was a big commercial success, which just goes to show that a safe perfume isn't always the most lucrative one. Back in 1997, it seems the public had an unhealthy appetite for the mean and nasty as well as pink fluff and candyfloss, and we can see the same thing happening today with the spiky woods. The spirit may not be there but the orientation is the same, just the materials have changed - for the worse.

Aggressive and mean smelling, Envy was a success because of its faults - rather than despite them - and it's these qualities that make it so distinctive and memorable.

*****

Miniature with no box
16th October, 2019 (last edited: 31st October, 2019)
Costume design for the ballet "Mad Tristan" by Salvador Dali
03rd May, 2018
I was given a big bottle of this for Christmas several years ago, and initially I really liked it, but after a while, for some reason, it started to irritate me. So I shoved it to the back of my perfume collection and haven’t touched it for a couple of years. I hauled it out yesterday and dusted it off. It’s still pretty, but it’s very white-flowery on me – I don’t get any pineapple or rose or sandalwood or pretty much any of the other notes. And I think I’ve figured out why it irritated me – a) the white flowers take over after half an hour or so, b) it barely lasted four hours and c) what was left took on a rather sharp, almost-but-not-quite sour green edge. I’m going to try layering it with something else to see what happens, as the first half hour of this is rather lovely. If anybody has any suggestions, I’d be happy to try them.
25th September, 2016
Oviatt Show all reviews
United States
This sweet, soft green floral is from 1997 but if you changed the '97 to '79, it would totally make sense. This throwback to the 70s, that Tom Ford does so well, should be evident from the first glimpse of his spare, chrome-capped bottle. The big floral notes--Hyacinth and Muguet--could easily take the bit between their teeth and make a run for it, but in Roucel's hands they are so well blended and harmonious that they are real team players. Does it smell a bit like expensive shampoo? Absolutely. Imagine a woman who has just stepped out of the shower at a first class hotel, say, the George V. In 1979. She wraps herself in a luxurious white robe while she ponders what to wear that night (does she wear the Castelbajac or the Sonia Rykiel? Her Maud Frizon snakeskin sandals or the gold leather Charles Jourdan pumps?). Before the makeup, before she lights her first cigarette of the evening, before she pours herself a Dubonnet and before she douses herself with Calandre, she smells like this--fresh, floral, clean.....
23rd January, 2016
I like Envy. I like it because it is unambitious yet different from the modern climes. It is an almost entirely floral composition, in a throwback way which somehow casts an unassailable aura around the wearer, like a vampiric woman whose creation and heart are rooted in the 40's, and who walks the Earth unchanged, unmoved. I also like that it is like an echo, growing smaller and more distant, as hour by hour the bittersweet petals are stripped away, layer after layer, until all that is left is a cool and pleasant iris, like the core of an old Guerlain.
30th December, 2015
Salutation.

I Was Absolutely Delighted with the ENVY For Men Because It was a Great Classic with a Distinctive Scent However Female Version is not as Great as Male Version for me But I Love Everything that comes out of GUCCI So This one is Not Exception Too. Floral, Urban,Refreshing,Interesting,Graceful, Modern,Subtle and Elegant.

It is a Nice Soft Fragrance with a touch Young.The Top notes Encompass a Fruity Melody of Pineapple,Peach and Bergamot as I found it quite Green and Inspiring.The Floral Aspects of ENVY are a whispered compliment to the Elegant Femininity.The base notes is Soft and Clean.

ENVY is for a Tender and Refined Femininity.The bottle is not very Artistic Like many other perfumes by GUCCI.It is Nice for SPRINGTIME and for a Modern Character.Great for EVERYDAY Use and In my opinion It is Romance Enough to Wear INTIMATE Occasion.

Sillage?Nice.

Longevity?Above Average on my skin.

7/10
23rd April, 2015

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