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Thread: Reformulation.

  1. #1
    N_Tesla's Avatar
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    Question Reformulation.

    Remember when Coke reformulated and discontinued Classic Coke? Buyer pressure caused Coke to bring it back. So, why wouldn't letter writing campaignes work with fragrance? Base Notes could be an organizing force in bringing back some of the classic fragrances. The Internet can be a powerful force for change when used properly. Your thoughts? It just take organization, support and numbers to affect a fragrance maker.
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 23rd June 2009 at 05:08 PM.

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    CanwllCorfe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    That would be so amazing. I am up for it

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Well, its funny you mention this N_Tesla... I don't think we can ever underestimate the power of mass-mailing.

    In the past, I for one, have snail-mailed and emailed Penhaligon's repeatedly (both H.O and retailers) BEGGING for LPNo9 to be reinstated. It was an exhaustive exercise, but they did reinstate it.
    I certainly don't attribute its return solely to my "campaign", but I do feel that by jumping up and down on the spot for a good many months, certainly attracted their attention.

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    KMF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Coke advertised that they were changing their formula... Good luck getting any fragrance company to admit that they tinkered with their formula...

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    Question Re: Reformulation.

    OK, well I am not suggesting that we attempt the revival of every reformulated fragrance but, perhaps suggestions as to the classics that we all would like to see returned to us might be a good place to start. Personally, I would like to see Mitsouko brought back as a seperate offering. Fragrance companies are always comming out with flankers, here is an opportunity for escellence on their part and maybe a money maker. Look at the style of the automile called the Cruiser. It looks like an old classic. They made huge money on that model. So, don't say it can't be done. Perhaps this thread could be a forum for more ideas on how to proceed. There is much talent and energy here that could be used for a good purpose, the return of true classics.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dimitri View Post
    Well, its funny you mention this N_Tesla... I don't think we can ever underestimate the power of mass-mailing.

    In the past, I for one, have snail-mailed and emailed Penhaligon's repeatedly (both H.O and retailers) BEGGING for LPNo9 to be reinstated. It was an exhaustive exercise, but they did reinstate it.
    I certainly don't attribute its return solely to my "campaign", but I do feel that by jumping up and down on the spot for a good many months, certainly attracted their attention.
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 23rd June 2009 at 05:21 PM.

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    Smile Re: Reformulation.

    That is true but, we do know the ones that have already been reformulated. Numbers are convincing.

    Quote Originally Posted by KMF View Post
    Coke advertised that they were changing their formula... Good luck getting any fragrance company to admit that they tinkered with their formula...

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Im not suggesting we attempt the revival of every reformulated fragrance either, rather, simply stating the fact that the squeaky wheel often DOES get the oil.

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    Smile Re: Reformulation.

    Absolutely correct.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dimitri View Post
    Im not suggesting we attempt the revival of every reformulated fragrance either, rather, simply stating the fact that the squeaky wheel often DOES get the oil.

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    KMF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by N_Tesla View Post
    That is true but, we do know the ones that have already been reformulated. Numbers are convincing.
    Maybe so, but with the impending regulations on oakmoss & citrus, etc bringing back original classics will prove to be a difficult, if not impossible task...

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    Smile Re: Reformulation.

    You know I thought that too but, having read some of the industry news on the web it looks like, as is the case with obtaining concensus everywhere, some of the industry is doing their own thing and going with other organizations. As far as self regulation is concerned, the lady has not yet sung.
    Consumer wants and needs are only served when your mad as hell and won't take it anymore. You are the customer with dollars and you are always right, don't let them take that away from you.

    Quote Originally Posted by KMF View Post
    Maybe so, but with the impending regulations on oakmoss & citrus, etc bringing back original classics will prove to be a difficult, if not impossible task...
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 23rd June 2009 at 05:43 PM.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Drinks and fragrances are two different things. People need to drink in order to live and fragrances are luxuries and wants.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Of course I agree in principle, but I'm very, very skeptical that LVMH would care about the letters of a few Mitsouko fans. Massive action would be required to get their attention - like a boycott of all their products - and that would be hard to organize on a global scale. Of course LVMH will likely respond that it's out of their hands and they are only following the rules; mistruths that prevent popular support of a boycott.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    AlexPanzer would be right if we were talking abut water. Now, we are talking about Coca Cola, which falls in the realm of wants, no needs.

    As to N-Tesla's proposal, would Guerlain be the target? Anyway, I am in.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pollux View Post
    AlexPanzer would be right if we were talking abut water. Now, we are talking about Coca Cola, which falls in the realm of wants, no needs.

    As to N-Tesla's proposal, would Guerlain be the target? Anyway, I am in.
    I agree, but most of the people when they buy drinks they buy more of Coke than bottled water. And there are bunch of soft drinks but no brand is as popular like Coca Cola. So if a lot of people demand change then Coke will listen and retool their formula. For fragrances there are just not enough votes.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    The story goes like this: in blind product tests against Pepsi Cola, Coca Cola realized that when drunk at 5 C, Coca Cola consumers chose Pepsi. So they decided to change the formula. But Coca Cola managers are so in love with the blend, that they made a mistake: instead of changing the formula in homeopathic dosis without informing consumers, they decided to make their decision go public - while keeping a version of the old formula. And since Coca Cola's branding is relevant in emotional terms, well, consumers protested against Coca Cola's decision.

    Yes, you are right: brand relationships between consumers and soft drinks are not analogous to the relationship between consumers and perfumes. Scents as brands work like fashion goods, thus the reason why the continous launch of new products and brands - of course, as the owner of a perfume business you can alter these rules, but let's agree that is not so in most cases. So change is beyond being a part of reality, for this industry it is rather a necessity.

    As I said, I would be in, but let's face it, I don't think we would be succesful (still, would not mind going to Paris in order to protest, LOL).

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    Cool Re: Reformulation.

    Unless someone has information to the contrary, I do not think the fragrance industry has ever come up against an organized consumer revolt particularly from a group who have some fragrance experience. It might just give them pause. Viva la internet! Viva la revolution!
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 24th June 2009 at 03:05 AM.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by N_Tesla View Post
    You know I thought that too but, having read some of the industry news on the web it looks like, as is the case with obtaining concensus everywhere, some of the industry is doing their own thing and going with other organizations.
    This is interesting, could you provide specific examples / links, sir?
    Last edited by monsieur_sparkle; 24th June 2009 at 03:28 AM.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    I hate to be such a dissenting voice, but I have to be realistic. I would love nothing more than to see many of my beloved scents revived and brought back to their former glory. Fact is, it probably will not happen, especially where LVMH is concerned. They are like the enormous capitalist octopus spreading their greedy arms with tentacles over all they can. They think nothing of reformulating, changing, discontinuing, releasing sh*t and charging top dollar, making cost prohibitive "exclusifs" for the self-indulgent Guerlain-flock, and cheapening all that falls into their path. They sell products on the name alone, not on the quality, nor the inherent historical connotations, sales on name brand alone.
    Do you think these people give a flying fig about a few rabble-rousers, I have been emailing and complaining since I worked for them over 10 years ago. They DO NOT CARE. The reasons why are myriad, but the fact is; any shmoo and their uncle knows what Shalimar is, couple of other scents also, and they will keep buying regardless if it was piss in the bottle. Not to mention the hoards of "devotees" on here and all the other assorted fragrance sites, who are basically catatonic with excitement over all "thing" new and [wonderful] ( I say that with sarcasm) in the world of Guerlain. They are spending $200 plus a bottle and still begging for more. Please market more sh*t they are saying with their wallets wide open, throwing money willy-nilly at Guerlain.
    No my dears, this is nothing like the Coca-Cola scenario where a huge cross-section of the populace spoke out by withholding their precious, hard earned money from CC Inc. Not enough people could ever be on board enough to change the inevitable mediocrity from creeping further and further into the world of Les Grandes Maisons de Parfum. Have any of these houses truly created a fragrance in recent history, if memory serves us well, that could ever come close to the hoopla of say; No 5, Shalimar, Poison, Opium, Arpege, Je Reviens, Ma Griffe, etc... Fragrances that have long outlived the couturiers and parfumeurs who brought them into existence.
    No my dears, there is no united front of vintage fragrance lovers who can alter the impending crush of the capitalistic greed machine. I mean my goodness, I would even be thrilled if they restored Coriandre by Jean Couturier, but I know it is just a dream, just as I know the Guerlain I once loved is now lost to the sands of time, memory and legend.
    Last edited by Brielle87; 24th June 2009 at 03:43 AM.
    Quand on boit l'eau, il faut penser sa source

  19. #19

    Default Re: Reformulation.

    I`m with Brielle87 bitter voice... I`d rather try to get from LVMH the addresses of their 60-70`s retailers somewhere in Asia-Europe and try to travel there, in old private perfume shops.
    Better results.

    And let`s believe that in some marketologist will be enlightened enough to launch something like "True Old Perfume Line" with unchanged and high-calorie high-priced formula. It could be prohibitive by price as it sure would be limited edition.

    By the way, Guerlain still has Djedi perfume (in their open-door events they let it smell - ughhh, not buy)
    Vetiver The Great!!!

  20. #20
    Ken_Russell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    I already have some further fragrance suggestions, aside from he obvious Guerlain Vetiver example, about fragrances which have been watered down, cheapened or worsened by reformulation, as quite a few notable fellow Basenoters suggested that even Antaeus, Trussardi Uomo, Armani PH, Santos and more were all better in their original/vintage formulation.

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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brielle87 View Post
    I hate to be such a dissenting voice, but I have to be realistic. I would love nothing more than to see many of my beloved scents revived and brought back to their former glory. Fact is, it probably will not happen, especially where LVMH is concerned (etc....
    Yes, you are right: people's knowledge as to fragrance buying is null. They buy, but mainly because of the brand's face value.

    The point is, there is a wonderful business oportunity in this. I don't know you, but I see loads of money in a serious - artisan like - limited / niche products - down to earth price policy in the scent business. Just give me some time...

  22. #22
    N_Tesla's Avatar
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    Smile Re: Reformulation.

    see CosmeticsDesignEurope site and my IRFA thread on the Fragrance Industry board.
    There is a lot of information on the internet about the fragrance industry and Fragrance. Just google fragrance industry news and Fragrance Industry regulation.

    Let's not forget that these quasi-regulatory orgs. are industry supported and not government entities that recieve industry support so long as the bottom line of the industry is not adversely affected and the P.R. is good. The more I learn about business, the way it is conducted now, the more I realize how scruples are set aside so readily in the pursuit of profits. Just look at the Wall Street mess that screams of unscrupulous behavior born of unrestricted and admired greed.

    Quote Originally Posted by monsieur_sparkle View Post
    This is interesting, could you provide specific examples / links, sir?
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 24th June 2009 at 05:07 PM.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexPanzer View Post
    Drinks and fragrances are two different things. People need to drink in order to live and fragrances are luxuries and wants.
    People actually have survived for long periods without Coke!

  24. #24

    Default Re: Reformulation.

    To work on the soda/perfume comparison... it's just adding up the numbers. Having billions of unhappy customers costs a lot more than annoying a few hundread people (at the most0 who have happened to come across a discontinued fragrance (1st degree of freedom), have loved it (second degree of freedom), can notice a differences from the reformulation (3rd degree of freedom) and prefer the older version (4th degree of freedom). Probably doesn't add up.

  25. #25
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    Smile Re: Reformulation.

    cpk: I agree. It would be close to cruel and unusual punishment to deprive a Base Notes member of their fragrance though. LOL. Beside in the absence of Coke their is always what remains....the rum.

    Quote Originally Posted by cpk View Post
    People actually have survived for long periods without Coke!
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 24th June 2009 at 05:33 PM.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by cpk View Post
    People actually have survived for long periods without Coke!
    Maybe. Maybe not. But the thing is that Coke is the #1 drink of all time and I don't see it going away anytime soon. Everyone knows Coke, even some kid in Africa.

  27. #27

    Default Re: Reformulation.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexPanzer View Post
    Drinks and fragrances are two different things. People need to drink in order to live and fragrances are luxuries and wants.
    This is true, but soft drinks are a billion dollar business--as is the luxury fragrance industry. Perhaps the smaller the consumer base, the more likely a company will listen.

    OTOH, maybe it could be marketed as "new and improved" and sold as "classic." LOL!
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

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