This is one of those fragrances that I don't like very much, but which I have to respect for its quality. I adore the smell of lavender, particularly French lavender. The more raw, earthy, sharp, dry and clean smelling the lavender is, the more I like it.
On the other hand, I don't like English lavender. This fragrance is clearly made with English lavender. English lavender smells to me too powdery and fussy, and C&E's Lavender Water is a particularly powdery and fussy smelling fragrance.
However, I cannot deny that this is a quality product. There's more here than just lavender, and I like how the supporting notes bolster, rather than overpower, the main lavender note. I really wish I liked English Lavender, because this fragrance has excellent longevity - about 3 hours - for a lavender fragrance.
What I like about this scent is its drydown. By the time the drydown emerges, the lavender seems to turn a bit dark and earthy, which I like, on top of the powdery foundation. It seems to have some of the rawness that English lavender typically lacks. I don't smell like a pile of laundry, which is the way I usually feel when I smell English lavender.
So I'm going to give this two separate ratings: one rating reflecting my own enjoyment of this scent, and another reflecting my objective views on this scent. I'm giving this a neutral rating because I respect this scent more than I actually like it.
MY PERSONAL RATING: 5/10
MY OBJECTIVE RATING: 7/10
Nothing special at all, but that's not what it is for. This is a simple, medicinal, resinous lavender solifore. Bracing and herbal indeed. For this purpose, I like Yardley English Lavender a little more.
Crabtree & Evelyn’s Lavender Water is indeed a simple one-note fragrance... and a brilliant one. It is natural, beautiful; a true lavender scent. Sometimes the best things in life are very simple, this is one of them. Lavender can be a floral that is suitable for men: it is dry and slightly herbal, with bracing and uplifting qualities, and an outdoorsy feel. This one is classy, not heavy (thus an excellent daytime scent), fun and cheery. It is superb. And it is not expensive! What more can we want? Thumbs are pointing very high here!
My all-time favorite Lavender and my favortie one-note fragrance. Many years ago, I used to hate Lavender because of my exposure to Yardley's English Lavender for women. Then I happened on this one, and it was a revelation. I've loved Lavender since then, but have never found one that tops Crabtree and Evelyn's. It's a good Lavender yes, but it is also more - it dispels the notion of a one-note fragrance being boring or non-complex. This fragrance has pretty much ruined me for other Lavender formulations. I've smelled quite a few, some by very respectable perfume houses, that just don't hold a candle to it, and are pale ghosts of the power of the Lavender note in this one. Some very respectable ones have Lavender in the name and turn out to be surprisingly tepid compared to this. This is the best you can come short of the essential oil itself, but is longer lasting than the eo, with more powder.
Note: To clarify, C&E's Lavender line was expanded, with different formulations, which are NOT the same. I got confused also, when the store that always carried this didn't have the original bottle anymore. I bought the new one, thinking it was the same. But I was very disappointed in the new one as it was weaker, though softer, with little longevity. The original is called Lavender Water and comes in a rectangular bottle, rounded at the top, with a silver cap. The new formulation, the weaker one, is called Eau de toilette, and is in a shorter, thicker, but prettier, squarish bottle with a lavender cap. The picture of the original is in the description at the top of this page. But the new edt, is in all the advertisements displayed below it.
02nd August, 2005 (last edited: 18th March, 2015)
I tried it once a few weeks ago. It was great! exactly what English Lavender should be. Lavender is one of my favorite scent, but not all "English Lavender" EDTs are alike. This one is certainly one of the best.