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  1. Reflections on Reformulation: Concluding Aesthetic Resignation.

    [B]Reality check[/B]

    The question of interest is not whether all reformulations are necessarily worse than the original perfumes. Surely some of them are better—at least to some wearers. The whole reason why some companies choose to reformulate is because they feel that “times have changed”—and wearers too. What might have been appropriate fifty years ago can seem dated or “old ladyish” (not a term of derogation in my own book, but according to many it is...) and if the company wishes ...
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  2. Reflections on Reformulation. Inquiry 4. Do“Ancient Family Secrets” Also Protect Reformulations?

    [B]Some ingredients matter much more than others...[/B]

    One reason why the case of reformulated [I]Rumba [/I]is different from the case of “reformulated” [I]Drumsticks [/I]is because we never knew what was inside the bottle of [I]Rumba [/I]in the first place. Sure, there may be a list of ingredients, but the key ingredient, [I]fragrance[/I] or [I]parfum[/I] or [I]profumo[/I]—usually second only to alcohol and, in the case of colognes and some edts, water—is a [B]Big Black Box[/B]. ...
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  3. Reflections on Reformulation. Inquiry 3: Are Rumbas like Drumsticks?

    [B]Adam Smith's not-so-invisible iron-fisted grip[/B]

    Economic factors underlying product modification figure frequently in many other realms as well, of course. Take ice cream, for example. Those who read the labels of foodstuffs before putting spoon to mouth will most certainly have taken note that in recent years “ice cream” once regarded as high end now may list “whey” as its very first (dominant) ingredient. Interestingly enough, such frozen confections no longer claim on their ...
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  4. Reflections on Reformulation. Inquiry 2: Is a Reformulation a Fake?

    [B][I]It's the name on the bottle, ma'am[/I][/B]

    The most crucial distinction between an e-bay perfume scam and a reformulation is that in the latter but not in the former case it is the maker of the bottle, the house whose name is printed on the bottle and whose perfume it is, who fills the bottle. Still, we may earnestly protest, a perfume company may have the right to produce and sell whatever it produces under any name it wishes, but [I]is there not a point at which a form of ...
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  5. Reflections on Reformulation. Inquiry 1: When does a thing stop being what it is?

    [I][B]My favorite perfume by any other name would smell as splendid as my favorite perfume[/B][/I], but what if, instead of changing the name, you change the properties of the thing? What if, for example, you change the essential qualities of a perfume—its notes or their proportions—but keep the name the same? If rose geranium now replaces rose but the name remains the same, is “it” still the same perfume?

    Virtually every perfumista can name a perfume once beloved to him/her but ...
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