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  1. #1

    Default New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Does anyone other than me have a hard time getting the new classification of "chypre"? Has patchouli always been a component of chypres? And why is Narcisso Rodriguez a chypre? To me, it's woodsy/musky. I don't get the chypre part. Do woods = chypre now? Is it that classic chypres are dead, so the fragrance industry needed something new, so resuscitated the category of "chypre" but actually are just using the the name and not really making chypres per se? Or are chypres being reinvented, and it's all very exciting, and I'm just an old dinosaur. Help! Anyone care to enlighten me? :-/

  2. #2

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    I have always believed chypres to be the most complex of all the fragrance families. For many a classic chypre should be citrus top and oakmoss base. But there are so many variations I find it hard to follow. I know I have never thought of Cristalle as a chypre but just a floral.

    I own SpaceNK Melodrama which they describe as a chypre/oriental!!!????? To me it is a chypre it has the dry down and all the elements.

    Poor chypres have been forgotten for so long in modern fragrances I think people are actually frightened of them! Fragrance houses and designers are now creating fragrances calling them chypres but they are far from what many of us would class as a chypre. Perhaps they are breaking their buyers in gently and will actually bring out a real chypre in the range at some point.

    Chypre to me is a fantasty and ideal which perfumes try to create they have so many elements and notes which can be included or left out.
    DONNA

  3. #3

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Classic chypre = bergamot + oakmoss + patchouli + labdanum + any other fragrance components. This creates a sweet/sour/earthy/wet/dry combination of notes that makes chypres so complex. Some people love them (I do) and some people hate them.
    New chypres use vetiver instead for the sour/dry component. They also use patchouli for the earthiness, and substitute other citruses for bergamot, the way Coco Mademoiselle uses orange, and Chance uses citron.
    Most of the new chypres are not as heavy as the old-style chypres with the labdanum base, and they can be cleaner and less complex. However, some of them are quite complicated and lovely
    Narciso Rodgriguez EDP and Agent Provocateur are new chypres. I would also put Lorenzo Villoresi Sandalo in this category for its use of rose with vetiver, lavendar, sandalwood, and amber.

  4. #4

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Quote Originally Posted by donna255
    Poor chypres have been forgotten for so long in modern fragrances I think people are actually frightened of them! Fragrance houses and designers are now creating fragrances calling them chypres but they are far from what many of us would class as a chypre.
    Miss Dior is my benchmark chypre. It's just what "chypre" means to me (I mean the vintage Miss Dior). I've never smelled Coty Chypre, the prototype of them all.

    Quote Originally Posted by donna225
    Chypre to me is a fantasty and ideal which perfumes try to create they have so many elements and notes which can be included or left out.
    That's a good point! Perhaps I am being too literal about it.

    Quote Originally Posted by purplebird7
    Classic chypre = bergamot + oakmoss + patchouli + labdanum + any other fragrance components. This creates a sweet/sour/earthy/wet/dry combination of notes that makes chypres so complex. Some people love them (I do) and some people hate them.
    New chypres use vetiver instead for the sour/dry component. They also use patchouli for the earthiness, and substitute other citruses for bergamot, the way Coco Mademoiselle uses orange, and Chance uses citron.
    Most of the new chypres are not as heavy as the old-style chypres with the labdanum base, and they can be cleaner and less complex. However, some of them are quite complicated and lovely
    Narciso Rodgriguez EDP and Agent Provocateur are new chypres. I would also put Lorenzo Villoresi Sandalo in this category for its use of rose with vetiver, lavendar, sandalwood, and amber.
    I take it back about patchouli - Miss Dior has patchouli. But I'm not very aware of it as a single note. I enjoy vetiver. Of the three, patchouli, sandalwood and vetiver, I like vetiver best.

    What I'm understanding here is that new chypre = a new interpretation, loosely based on certain ingredients, though not necessarily, and the overall feel is citrussy/woodsy, which can be complex or simple.

    I think I feel a "New" chypre exploratory phase coming on.

  5. #5

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Heh. Yeah. I know what you mean. I was, at first, angry about the oakmoss controversy. I didn't want to like the "new" chypres because I love the old ones so much, and I hate like heck to lose them to reformulation. However, I do like the new chypres. Now, I'm not saying they are a substitute for that olfactive family, but there is room in my heart for them

  6. #6

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    All I know is that if Coromandel is a "new chypre" then I'm toast because it smells like Comet bathroom cleaner on me.

    ETA: D'oh I'm confusing my Les Exclusifs; it's 31 Rue Cambon that is supposed to be the "new chypre". But Coromandel still smells terrible on me.

  7. #7

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Quote Originally Posted by mharvey816
    All I know is that if Coromandel is a "new chypre" then I'm toast because it smells like Comet bathroom cleaner on me.

    ETA: D'oh I'm confusing my Les Exclusifs; it's 31 Rue Cambon that is supposed to be the "new chypre". But Coromandel still smells terrible on me.
    Well, hey, you can smell like Comet for much less money than Chanel charges.

  8. #8

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    It's a confusing genre, but for me it's always been about the oakmoss - moss juxtaposed with varying degrees of citrus, floral and resin, but always played off against oakmoss and its deep somber earthen gloom.

    I'm a devoted chypre fan - no other genre has that complex, deep, contradictory, but ultimately perfectly reasonable mix of notes. The good ones are like life itself - they seem authentic. There are many scents that go for a big juxtaposition, but none do it so effortlessly as a classic chypre, and most seem shouty and histrionic next to a subtle, confident chypre.

    So for me New Chypre is a play of terms. Similar but not the same. I'm open to new ones, but I don't see how they can replace the older ones - we are talking apples and oranges here. They don't have the same feel, in spite of a similar concept.


    My favorites are the floral chypres, especially rose, and what I like about them is the beautiful-floral-in-the-deep-forest-gloom quality, something wonderful shimmering in the earthen darkness. I haven't smelled a new chypre that produces this as well as the mossy ones, though I don't know why it's not possible - it should be. In addition to a reformulation, it seems there has also been a re-imagining of the chypre.

  9. #9

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Quote Originally Posted by mharvey816
    All I know is that if Coromandel is a "new chypre" then I'm toast because it smells like Comet bathroom cleaner on me.

    ETA: D'oh I'm confusing my Les Exclusifs; it's 31 Rue Cambon that is supposed to be the "new chypre". But Coromandel still smells terrible on me.
    I agree. I was so disappointed in 31 Rue Cambon and Cormandel, I could hardly believe it. For me Chypres (pronounced sheep rah) are about citrus at the top with oakmoss. They were supposed to imitate the island of Cyprus. The new chypres pink and green are confusing as heck. NR EDP and SJP's Lovely are surposed to be new pink chypres and the only thing I smell in common is the musk. I don't see any difference in them as any other fragrance with musk. I do love NR especially the EDT, but darned if I can tell what makes a new chypre.

  10. #10

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Quote Originally Posted by flathorn
    we are talking apples and oranges here. They don't have the same feel, in spite of a similar concept...In addition to a reformulation, it seems there has also been a re-imagining of the chypre.
    Yes, this is what has me confused. I thought perhaps I was too stuck in past and taking chypre too literally. And then I thought I was beginning to understand how NR can be called a chypre - because of its woodsiness and earthiness. But it really is a musk fragrance, and a "new" musk fragrance at that. :-/ So, I don't know. (sigh!)

  11. #11

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    I still can't figure out what a chypre is. I am just going by the listing of them here.
    Is Ambre Sultan a chypre? Is that a dumb question?
    "Like a lobster with a pearl in its claw, the beet held the jasmine firmly without crushing or obscuring it. Beet lifted jasmine, the way a bullnecked partner lifts a ballerina, and the pair came on stage on citron's fluty cue. As if jasmine were a collection of beautiful paintings, beet hung it in the galleries of the nose, insured it against fire or theft, threw a party to celebrate it. Citron mailed the invitations." Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins p. 189

    What I am loving right now: Shalimar vintage extrait, Chanel Bois des Iles, Chanel no. 22, Le Labo Iris 39, Guerlain Iris Ganache

  12. #12
    moondeva's Avatar
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    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    I am a true dyed-in-the-wool chypre lover. I may run around with all manner of different scents from the other families but my heart belongs to 'chypre'.

    I have always understood a classic / true chypre to be based upon a patchouli + oakmoss + citrus (bergamot) + labdanum accord. Many traditional chypres tend to omit the labdanum.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chypre
    Last edited by moondeva; 4th March 2007 at 06:01 PM.
    Favourite (Winter) Crazy Combos

    Tabu + Orange Blossom * Hermes Rouge + Bellodgia* Voleur du Roses+ Rose Ispahan * Rasa Extreme + Paris * Wood Coffee + Cafe Noir *

  13. #13

    Talking Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    well okay, then, if according to the wikipedia description , chypre often has citrusy topnotes with a warm woody and ambery base, then I hereby declare my layering of the afternoon a chypre concoction:

    Fleurs d'Oranger + Ambre Sultan

    and I am in HEAVEN!!!
    Am I right, Moondeva?
    "Like a lobster with a pearl in its claw, the beet held the jasmine firmly without crushing or obscuring it. Beet lifted jasmine, the way a bullnecked partner lifts a ballerina, and the pair came on stage on citron's fluty cue. As if jasmine were a collection of beautiful paintings, beet hung it in the galleries of the nose, insured it against fire or theft, threw a party to celebrate it. Citron mailed the invitations." Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins p. 189

    What I am loving right now: Shalimar vintage extrait, Chanel Bois des Iles, Chanel no. 22, Le Labo Iris 39, Guerlain Iris Ganache

  14. #14
    moondeva's Avatar
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    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Quote Originally Posted by rtamara41
    well okay, then, if according to the wikipedia description , chypre often has citrusy topnotes with a warm woody and ambery base, then I hereby declare my layering of the afternoon a chypre concoction:

    Fleurs d'Oranger + Ambre Sultan

    and I am in HEAVEN!!!
    Am I right, Moondeva?
    That sounds like a doozy of a combo rtamara41 and I would love to be able to say a wholehearted yes, but the pivotal note in a true Chypre is the oakmoss. Yes the base of your blend is ambery but the oakmoss is essential for that dreamy skin but better velvety moss like character that is unique to true chypres.

    As it stands your layering blend is a rather delicious floriental. Order yourself wee samples of Ava Luxe Moss / Dark Chypre / Ingenue to gain a better idea of what a chypre scent feels like.
    Last edited by moondeva; 4th March 2007 at 06:03 PM.
    Favourite (Winter) Crazy Combos

    Tabu + Orange Blossom * Hermes Rouge + Bellodgia* Voleur du Roses+ Rose Ispahan * Rasa Extreme + Paris * Wood Coffee + Cafe Noir *

  15. #15

    Default Re: New chypre vs. Classic chypre

    Phooey!
    oh, alright.
    "Like a lobster with a pearl in its claw, the beet held the jasmine firmly without crushing or obscuring it. Beet lifted jasmine, the way a bullnecked partner lifts a ballerina, and the pair came on stage on citron's fluty cue. As if jasmine were a collection of beautiful paintings, beet hung it in the galleries of the nose, insured it against fire or theft, threw a party to celebrate it. Citron mailed the invitations." Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins p. 189

    What I am loving right now: Shalimar vintage extrait, Chanel Bois des Iles, Chanel no. 22, Le Labo Iris 39, Guerlain Iris Ganache

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