Reformulation, pixelation (eg. Mitsouko): a contrarian view?

    Reformulation, pixelation (eg. Mitsouko): a contrarian view?

    post #1 of 15
    Thread Starter 

    I was walking in a department store behind a classy Parisienne, and the most delicious sillage tingled my nostrils: Mitsouko! Ah, the aura of mystery! I thought Mitsouko this good had to be vintage--I've been hoarding the stuff for five years. Since this woman had stopped at a stand, I could not resist, went up to her, and started a discussion about vintage fragrances. She looked puzzled, said that yes, it was Mitsouko, and that she had bought it...a week earlier. She was really nice. Something like that happened in a train, just a few days later.

    Here's my thought. Reformulation is a fact. But I wonder I fumeheads don't have an overly negative view of it because we overanalyze at a close distance. Is sniffing your arms trying to discern the difference between treemoss and oakmoss really the way to go to judge the quality of reformulations? Those glass ventilated cabins in the Malle boutiques are there for a good reason, to help us appreciate sillage. To put it in other words, I wonder if we should not consider reformulated versions like pixelated images, that look poor when seen from up-close, but are ok when viewed from a distance.

    In any case, I'm sticking to my vintage extraits...

    post #2 of 15
    There was mention on MUA that Guerlain has manage to remove the troublesome element from oakmoss and the more recent batches of Mistuoko 2012 onwards contain the 'new' oakmoss. Maybe you were smelling the much improved formulation?

    I do take your point though and do prefer vintage where I am able find it.
    post #3 of 15

    I am also waiting to try the new version that supposedly contains IFRA compliant oakmoss. Good that you found it great. Oakmoss and treemoss are not good substitutes, though, not even at a distance, plus oakmoss is not the only forbidden ingredient. Bergamot is gone too.

    Also, I think that in theory at least the difference could be least noticeable in edts, which are lower concentrations, though of course edts are also those that perhaps use the less expensive ingredients.

    cacio

    post #4 of 15
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cacioView Post

    I am also waiting to try the new version that supposedly contains IFRA compliant oakmoss. Good that you found it great. Oakmoss and treemoss are not good substitutes, though, not even at a distance, plus oakmoss is not the only forbidden ingredient. Bergamot is gone too.

    Also, I think that in theory at least the difference could be least noticeable in edts, which are lower concentrations, though of course edts are also those that perhaps use the less expensive ingredients.

    cacio

    Sorry cacao but I must pull you up there. Bergamot has not "gone" yet. Many citrus oils (including Bergamot, Lemon, Lime and Grapefruit) contain chemicals which are skin sensitisers. It has been decided by IFRA to limit the amount of these chemicals, however ( as far as I am aware) it has not yet been decided what that limit should be. It is possible for the citrus oil producers to remove some of these offending chemicals without affecting the smell of the oil, but as they don't yet know how much to remove they are in a bit of a jam.


    Edited by David Ruskin - 7/24/13 at 10:24am
    post #5 of 15

    Thanks for the clarification!

    So it's not IFRA (yet), it's just the perfume companies themselves who have somehow substituted bergamot.

    cacio

    post #6 of 15
    The element I miss most from Mitsouko is bergamot.
    post #7 of 15
    Thread Starter 
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by treeman5823View Post

    The element I miss most from Mitsouko is bergamot.

    Now that is an interesting proposition. Would definitely consider speculatively. Care to elaborate?
    post #8 of 15
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jblanch1View Post

    Now that is an interesting proposition. Would definitely consider speculatively. Care to elaborate?

    Uh--I miss it? It's just not there anymore, hence the truncated dynamism of the thing.
    post #9 of 15
    Thread Starter 
    For sure.
    post #10 of 15
    ]
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jblanch1View Post

    For sure.

    My bottle was made in March of last year, and besides the top notes, it's very good. Just put your nose half way between your wrist and your earl grey. :-)
    post #11 of 15

    Bergaptene is one of the Bergamot elements that is removed for allergenic reasons from Bergamot. (There may be others.)

    There is Bergaptene free bergamot available for perfumer's usage, and most likely is used widely.

    But I am afraid that the perfumer companies are simply responding to the IFRA tyrranies to remove these elements from Oakmoss and Bergamot.

    IFRA is evil and their tyrranical reign over perfumes must be toppled.

    post #12 of 15

    Good luck Paul

    post #13 of 15

    Thanks for the vote of Luck, My friend... :-)

    I'm afraid that I can only rail against the Machine of IFRA. But Yell again and again I will.

    I can speak of such atrocities openly and loudly, because I'm not going to lose my job over such overt criticism and complaints, like almost every other professional perfumer faces potentially...

    So I intend to make myself as much a nuisance as possible.

    post #14 of 15
    Yup, kick and scream wherever possible. Luca Turin called IFRA 'traitors' in the recent slimline 100 - which was basically a chronicle of what they have destroyed to date - of the better known perfumes, at least.

    I haven't been able to get my hands on a recent Mitsuoko Extrait but also very keen to see if there has been any sort of upswing in the mood of it. I have a few versions going back to the PdT which is great.

    I think it's clear from his very public comments about the damage the IFRA restrictions are doing that Guerlain is in the best hands we could hope for with Thierry Wasser. He has probably been more vocal than most - the luxury of not being directly employed by the aromachem companies that make up IFRA and where most perfumers still get their pay cheques. I have spoken to a couple off the record and they are all equally dismissive of the whole mess but it would be betraying a confidence to quote them or to name names.

    I guess it's unlikely Wasser will see his dream of a special 'Heritage' line from within Guerlain with something resembling original formulas and some sort of label warning (or even a signed 'Held Harmless' - hell, I'd have no problem with that) so bespoke it is smile.gif

    I suspect we will see more of a grassroots thing emerging with indie perfumers whereby some 'richer' chypres et al are still available on request and at a price etc. but I guess it will all come down to whether you can continue to source the raw materials, right? And actually make it financially feasible - limited edition runs must be difficult.
    post #15 of 15
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mr. reasonableView Post

    I suspect we will see more of a grassroots thing emerging with indie perfumers whereby some 'richer' chypres et al are still available on request and at a price etc. but I guess it will all come down to whether you can continue to source the raw materials, right?

    Yes--Wasser can't even reconstruct perfumes for his own reference because he can't find the raw materials.
    class="

    7/24/13 at 6:51am

    jblanch1 said:



    I was walking in a department store behind a classy Parisienne, and the most delicious sillage tingled my nostrils: Mitsouko! Ah, the aura of mystery! I thought Mitsouko this good had to be vintage--I've been hoarding the stuff for five years. Since this woman had stopped at a stand, I could not resist, went up to her, and started a discussion about vintage fragrances. She looked puzzled, said that yes, it was Mitsouko, and that she had bought it...a week earlier. She was really nice. Something like that happened in a train, just a few days later.

    Here's my thought. Reformulation is a fact. But I wonder I fumeheads don't have an overly negative view of it because we overanalyze at a close distance. Is sniffing your arms trying to discern the difference between treemoss and oakmoss really the way to go to judge the quality of reformulations? Those glass ventilated cabins in the Malle boutiques are there for a good reason, to help us appreciate sillage. To put it in other words, I wonder if we should not consider reformulated versions like pixelated images, that look poor when seen from up-close, but are ok when viewed from a distance.

    In any case, I'm sticking to my vintage extraits...

    7/24/13 at 7:04am

    Xscent said:



    There was mention on MUA that Guerlain has manage to remove the troublesome element from oakmoss and the more recent batches of Mistuoko 2012 onwards contain the 'new' oakmoss. Maybe you were smelling the much improved formulation?

    I do take your point though and do prefer vintage where I am able find it.

    7/24/13 at 7:52am

    cacio said:



    I am also waiting to try the new version that supposedly contains IFRA compliant oakmoss. Good that you found it great. Oakmoss and treemoss are not good substitutes, though, not even at a distance, plus oakmoss is not the only forbidden ingredient. Bergamot is gone too.

    Also, I think that in theory at least the difference could be least noticeable in edts, which are lower concentrations, though of course edts are also those that perhaps use the less expensive ingredients.

    cacio

    7/24/13 at 9:07am

    David Ruskin said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cacioView Post

    I am also waiting to try the new version that supposedly contains IFRA compliant oakmoss. Good that you found it great. Oakmoss and treemoss are not good substitutes, though, not even at a distance, plus oakmoss is not the only forbidden ingredient. Bergamot is gone too.

    Also, I think that in theory at least the difference could be least noticeable in edts, which are lower concentrations, though of course edts are also those that perhaps use the less expensive ingredients.

    cacio

    Sorry cacao but I must pull you up there. Bergamot has not "gone" yet. Many citrus oils (including Bergamot, Lemon, Lime and Grapefruit) contain chemicals which are skin sensitisers. It has been decided by IFRA to limit the amount of these chemicals, however ( as far as I am aware) it has not yet been decided what that limit should be. It is possible for the citrus oil producers to remove some of these offending chemicals without affecting the smell of the oil, but as they don't yet know how much to remove they are in a bit of a jam.


    Edited by David Ruskin - 7/24/13 at 10:24am

    7/24/13 at 11:07am

    cacio said:



    Thanks for the clarification!

    So it's not IFRA (yet), it's just the perfume companies themselves who have somehow substituted bergamot.

    cacio

    7/24/13 at 5:19pm

    treeman5823 said:



    The element I miss most from Mitsouko is bergamot.

    7/24/13 at 5:28pm

    jblanch1 said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by treeman5823View Post

    The element I miss most from Mitsouko is bergamot.

    Now that is an interesting proposition. Would definitely consider speculatively. Care to elaborate?

    7/24/13 at 5:31pm

    treeman5823 said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jblanch1View Post

    Now that is an interesting proposition. Would definitely consider speculatively. Care to elaborate?

    Uh--I miss it? It's just not there anymore, hence the truncated dynamism of the thing.

    7/24/13 at 5:39pm

    jblanch1 said:



    For sure.

    7/24/13 at 5:44pm

    treeman5823 said:



    ]
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jblanch1View Post

    For sure.

    My bottle was made in March of last year, and besides the top notes, it's very good. Just put your nose half way between your wrist and your earl grey. :-)

    7/25/13 at 9:53am

    pkiler said:



    Bergaptene is one of the Bergamot elements that is removed for allergenic reasons from Bergamot. (There may be others.)

    There is Bergaptene free bergamot available for perfumer's usage, and most likely is used widely.

    But I am afraid that the perfumer companies are simply responding to the IFRA tyrranies to remove these elements from Oakmoss and Bergamot.

    IFRA is evil and their tyrranical reign over perfumes must be toppled.

    7/25/13 at 12:26pm

    David Ruskin said:



    Good luck Paul

    7/25/13 at 8:29pm

    pkiler said:



    Thanks for the vote of Luck, My friend... :-)

    I'm afraid that I can only rail against the Machine of IFRA. But Yell again and again I will.

    I can speak of such atrocities openly and loudly, because I'm not going to lose my job over such overt criticism and complaints, like almost every other professional perfumer faces potentially...

    So I intend to make myself as much a nuisance as possible.

    7/26/13 at 10:23am

    mr. reasonable said:



    Yup, kick and scream wherever possible. Luca Turin called IFRA 'traitors' in the recent slimline 100 - which was basically a chronicle of what they have destroyed to date - of the better known perfumes, at least.

    I haven't been able to get my hands on a recent Mitsuoko Extrait but also very keen to see if there has been any sort of upswing in the mood of it. I have a few versions going back to the PdT which is great.

    I think it's clear from his very public comments about the damage the IFRA restrictions are doing that Guerlain is in the best hands we could hope for with Thierry Wasser. He has probably been more vocal than most - the luxury of not being directly employed by the aromachem companies that make up IFRA and where most perfumers still get their pay cheques. I have spoken to a couple off the record and they are all equally dismissive of the whole mess but it would be betraying a confidence to quote them or to name names.

    I guess it's unlikely Wasser will see his dream of a special 'Heritage' line from within Guerlain with something resembling original formulas and some sort of label warning (or even a signed 'Held Harmless' - hell, I'd have no problem with that) so bespoke it is smile.gif

    I suspect we will see more of a grassroots thing emerging with indie perfumers whereby some 'richer' chypres et al are still available on request and at a price etc. but I guess it will all come down to whether you can continue to source the raw materials, right? And actually make it financially feasible - limited edition runs must be difficult.

    7/26/13 at 2:27pm

    treeman5823 said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mr. reasonableView Post

    I suspect we will see more of a grassroots thing emerging with indie perfumers whereby some 'richer' chypres et al are still available on request and at a price etc. but I guess it will all come down to whether you can continue to source the raw materials, right?

    Yes--Wasser can't even reconstruct perfumes for his own reference because he can't find the raw materials.





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