Revson of Revlon marketed the first "life style scent," with Charlie, according to Roja Dove. The emancipated, free-wheeling woman, Charlie marketed towards, was perfectly timed to coincide with a male-free, women's liberation attitude. It was also available everywhere and was affordable.
The original release used quality ingredients, though time has eroded most of those in the modern re-formulations. So go for vintage if you are sampling or buying.
I found it to be a pleasant, warm, floral, drying to a herbal chypre.
Top notes: Aniseed, Tarragon, Citrus, Peach
Heart notes: Hyacinth, Jasmine, Muguet, Carnation, Rose, Cyclamen, Orris
Base notes: Cedarwood, Sandalwood, Oakmoss, Musk, Vanilla
I'm basing my review on the Charlie from back in the 70s.
What I got was a bright citrus opening, followed by a mellow floral, very bright, with a clean drydown . In the mid 70s, I didn't know one girl who didn't have this on her dresser. When I see a tester of this in a drug store I always take a sniff, and it transports me back to high school. I think it is overlooked because of the low price tag, but it beats the heck out of some of the stuff that is so popular today (are you listening, Coach?)
imo, under-rated. Strong, feminine, fresh, floral, green, citrusy, sillage, powerful, longevity- not in how many hours does it last, but how many days? I love it! Good for very busy, active women.
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I used to wear Charlie as a teen, then didn't wear it for decades. I tried wearing it again in my 30s and 40s and gave up, thinking it was overpowering. Now I'm in my 50s, and tried it again just yesterday. Now it's a green floral with a powdery drydown that is refreshing and different in this age of fruity gourmands. Time changes my perspective of certain perfumes.
Hah, a drug store fragrance and I think it's AMAZING in all regards. One regard is its boisterous attempt at being something "expensive" smelling. It's really potent and sometimes could be called "vile". Now something this cheap and old would mean that everyone probably wore it "way back when". Honestly, I don't remember in my youth a single women ever wearing this. Of course, I wasn't paying attention to such.
I bought a vintage bottle from an elderly lady and I told her why and she was ecstatic that I was collecting bottles.
I adore Charlie! For the price, its incredibly long lasting. To me, Charlie is a classic fragrance. Charlie Blue is too sweet for me, and I haven't tried any of the other Charlies. The original Charlie from 1973 is the one I love!
Anyone who grew up during the 1970s in America will instantly recognize Charlie. My mother, sister, etc. never wore it, so I had no real frame of reference for it, until a few weeks ago when I smelled it at my local drugstore.
BINGO! Memories of my fifth grade teacher, who I had a huge crush on back then, instantly came to mind, since she wore this to school daily. Images of countless women walking through the malls my parents took me too when I was young, came to mind as well. Charlie is the women's perfume I remember most from my childhood. I liked it then (even though I didn't give a damn about perfume), and I still like it now. It's a sharp, cheerful floral with a citrus twist, and just smells wonderful and is extremely feminine. I don't think Charlie smells cheap or outdated at all, even with the low price. I bought my wife a small bottle of it the same day I smelled it, and I hope she wears it. Sure, it's not Mitsouko for complexity, but I think it deserves due credit as a bonafide classic.
It has a very robust, powdery scent. If you have problems with florals smelling like industrial cleaner on you, this scent may surprise you by mellowing out with a beautiful, spicy undertone.
Gahh I really like Charlie.
It's so easy to wear and I think it lifts my spirit. The smell is a bit dry and spicy (thanks to carnation), sweet, but it doesn't feel heavy.
With such an affordable price and few wearers where I come from, it's a thumbs up for me.
This is my grandmother's signature scent. She is 86, and I am 32, and I think it works equally well on both of us. Charlie is a seamless scent- it has good persistance and it stays true all day. The only quibble I have with it is the "Blue" incarnation. It smells slightly different than the original- my grandma had an old bottle of the original that got tucked away half-used in a cabinet, and when I compared it to a bottle of "Blue", the original seemed slightly warmer and deeper, with a slightly spicier drydown. Perhaps that is due to age, but the effect is generally more pleasing. A perfume that reminds me of Charlie is Nautica woman, which has that same seamlessness, and a touch more persitance than the "Blue".
Yep, something I wore when I was about 10. Enjoyed it then and I like to wear it very lightly for my own personal enjoyment every now and again.
My mom wore this one. I think it very underrated. I always thought of it as the everyday women's version of Norell. Nice green floral.
Thirty-four years and still going strong...there's a reason folks! This juice is pretty good. I don't personally care for it, but there have been plenty of times I've complimented someone on their fragrance and it's been Charlie! It's light and neutral...even if it's not your style... you won't find it offensive. Powdery. Slightly sweet and dry. Wears close to the skin.
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An underrated fragrance, probably because it is so inexpensive. This is a lovely greenish floral with a slight musk on the drydown. It seems to work well on most skins and is a wonderful daytime perfume. Although it doesn't have a great deal of staying power you can cheaply buy small purse sprays for reapplication during the day. I personally have found that it layers well with Jovan Musk for evening wear. The combination is sexy and long lasting. Another trick is to use a drop of white musk oil before applying Charlie to give it a little extra punch.
Another plus for Charlie is that you will never find yourself in a room surrounded by other people all wearing the same scent. It's been around too long to be flavour of the month but long enough to prove itself. Although I never approve of buying perfume for someone unless you know it smells good on them, Charlie is one perfume you could buy on spec and it would be appreciated by most people.
Oh, where can I get it - the original, I mean?
"Charlie Blue" is simply NOT the same fragrance, no matter what the clerks tell you.
It was the first fragrance I wore in my life. I still remember the day, when I came back to school after the summer break, smelling of "Charlie"... Ah.
It's a wonderful, gorgeous scent: fresh, original, fun and dynamic in a VERY sexy way. (Ask men if you don't trust women's opinions. ;) And there was NOTHING, no other perfume in the world, that could compare to the effect of "Charlie" in the hottest days of summer.
It would have never gotten out of fashion, not really, so there's no need for the recent concoctions. The original "Charlie" was relatively inexpensive, but it was never "cheap". The new editions are just that: cheap.
Laugh all you wanna. It's still a nice, inexpensive scent for young women -- falls into the same category as White Shoulders, etc.
Yeah, Charlie is definitely a very casual, pleasant fragrance. That was my grandma's favorite perfume and every now and then I used to spray it on me because it is nice. I would describe it as easy going and simple + it's not expensive ;)
One of the first female colognes I smelled, when I was 3 years old my mother used it, I remembered this aroma more than 20 years late. It's a fragrance with personality, sweet floral with an oriental base, maybe a bit dated but different from the massive/common taste parfumes. Seems there's no age range for this cologne, a simple aroma for daytime and office use.
I had never worn Charlie Blue before but was encouraged to try it by both Bonni's review and the 70's inspired phase I seem to be going through at the moment. I think it is a great casual, uplifting fragrance. Very fresh without being aquatic or airy and it layers nicely with Versace's Jeans Couture Femme ( the jasmine in both maybe?). An unlikely pairing on paper perhaps but I would describe both as having funloving sunny personalities. IMHO the 30+ year old Charlie Blue is lean and alert and a good alternative to modern trends towards overstuffed, soporific fragrances (e.g Angel) laden with foody notes of fruit or chocolate. Definitely recommend giving Charlie Blue a try!
P.S. With so many variations on the brand now (red, silver, gold, black etc), if there was to be a gourmand addition to the range, chocolate notes of course, would it be called Charlie Brown?
I started wearing Charlie in the late 70s when I was young and didn't have a very clear idea of who I was or what worked for me. At some point, I discovered other, more sophsticated (and expensive) fragrances and Charlie got edged out in favor of those, but recently, I was given a bottle of Charlie as a gift and I was surprised by how much I still like it. It does remind me of the 70s (hey, EVERYone was wearing it!), but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The fragrance is still spunky and quite pleasasnt, and I actually do wear it now, although not all that often. It's a great casual classic, and I'm glad I've rediscovered it.