Perfume Directory

Mitsouko (1919)
by Guerlain


Mitsouko information

Year of Launch1919
AvailabilityIn Production
Average Rating
(based on 1117 votes)

People and companies

PerfumerJacques Guerlain
Parent CompanyLVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton
Parent Company at launchGuerlain

About Mitsouko

Mitsouko is a feminine perfume by Guerlain. The scent was launched in 1919 and the fragrance was created by perfumer Jacques Guerlain

Mitsouko fragrance notes

Reviews of Mitsouko

What wondrous story
Making past seem like present
Stirs in your bottle?
25th November, 2017
I bought this blindly and the Eau de Toilette came in the mail a few days ago.

When I opened the gold box and took the elegant bottle out I was excited.

Then I sprayed it on me. It instantly reminded me of my late Aunt Serena who lived from 1921-2011. Which was both good and bad.

This scent is unlike anything I've ever liked. My first impression was that I hated it. My preferences are for notes such as opoponox, sandalwood, cedar, cypress, and bergamot. My favorite scents are Chanel Bois des Iles, Diptypque Tam Dao, Tom Ford Noir and Gucci II. I took a "risk" by purchasing Mitsouko.

The problem with me, personally, is that I was convinced this smelled like my late Aunt Serena. I loved her, but I did not want to smell like her. So I contacted her son and asked him if his mother ever wore Mitsouko.

His answer was related to something that will not sound at all politically correct but it is the truth.

Aunt Serena was married to Uncle Luke, who served in the US Army Infantry during WWII. He fought in the most brutal battles in the Pacific, both on Leyte Island and Okinawa against Japanese forces. He saw the worst of war. He hated the enemy.

So according to Serena and Luke's son Tom, his mom would NEVER wear any perfume that sounded Japanese. My apologies for having to communicate something which sounds prejudiced to modern ears. Yes it is, but it must be understood in connection to those who experienced WWII. There are still some old people who won't drive German cars, or people in China who cannot forgive Japan, or Japanese who cannot forgive the atomic bombs. We must all repair our bonds but we also must try and see how historic hates metastasized into wars.

So now I know my Aunt Serena never wore Mitsouko. And after learning of this, I reapplied the scent, forgot the association, and found that Mitsouko needs time to appreciate.

It is frankly old-fashioned, reminding me of opening up an old box of newspapers in an attic, smelling the inside of piano, entering an old house where a woman just dusted herself with powder and went into the kitchen and sliced up a peach.

The scent sticks and sticks and will not go away. It dries down into something perceptible and ruminative. It makes me think of the piano score from the Anastasia (1958) written by Alfred Newman and starring Ingrid Bergman.
21st October, 2017
I read another fragrantica review about Guerlains, which propose an explaination why this truly legendary brand not as popular as it was: they're not those over-the-counter 5-minutes-fame perfumes, they're mean to be take-home and appreciated in a longer time frame. Most people don't have the patience now.

Now that I've experienced mitsouko, I can't agree more with this review.

First time I tried mitsouko at counter, the sales person burst into laugh when they saw the grimace I made: the opening is a bit off-putting. It has a rather medicinal note which appears in a lot of old Guerlains, and I still don't know what caused it. I also get that inky/wet oakmoss tone on top. The rest of it is soft-fresh spice smell, not sweet, not warm, not harsh.

I just let it sit on my arms and went home, planning to scrub it off as soon as I can. By one accident sniff I was captured: it turns into something divine. The only note I can pick out is peach, not in a realistic way——frankly speaking, a lot of realistic peach only make me feel they tried too hard——but rather...lazy and comforting, not unlike a beauty lies blithely on the bed of aforementioned spicy accords, as if she did not know how charming she is.

So Guerlain teachs me a lesson: never judge a perfume by its opening, especially old classics like mitsouko.
18th October, 2017
Every time I try this out, it smells like spicy plastic and I can't detect the florals at all. I'm mainly smelling a more peppery version of Irish Spring with something else I can't identify muddying up the smell. It certainly smells expensive, but it's also highly stuffy and moldy. It's what I imagine an old dowager's mink smells like. I love most Guerlains, but this one hasn't worked for me in any season. After an hour, I have to get it off of me.
11th October, 2017
I seriously loved this one for approximately a year, bought a 2 oz sealed vintage bottle for big bucks, and then slowly lost my enthusiasm. I still think, intellectually, that it is a stunning chypre, but I have to be in a very specific mood (slightly melancholic, introspective, autumnal) to want to wear it. I don't feel entirely attractive when I wear Mitsouko; I feel sophisticated and 'classy,' but I don't feel seductive in any way, and because of that, I don't indulge very often. I tend to like my chypres to be a bit more intriguing or animalic or dirty; Mitsouko is lovely, but distant-smelling and slightly spicy, rather than sensual or inviting, or even biting. I appreciate this scent for what it is, but what it is, isn't me, therefore I don't wear it--although I still have my bottle that I sniff from and sample on lonely fall evenings when the leaves are just beginning to turn.
01st October, 2017
I bought Mitsouko perfume bottles 15ml.& 7ml. This is classic and very beautiful smell. Perfume had flower,wood smell but Eau de Toilette had green smell sharply. I don't like EdT.
27th June, 2017 (last edited: 02nd July, 2017)

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