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  1. #1

    Angry Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I hate and detest the term "old lady scent". I consider it offensive to women, older people, and perfume. But I'd never heard anyone actually say it out loud until yesterday - and it was about a Tauer! I couldn't believe it! A young (20-something) woman was sampling Miriam, which IMO is a gorgeous, beautiful scent with a vintage/classic vibe, but nothing remotely "old" about it. And she said - I quote - "Hmm, nice, but smells like an old lady scent". I wanted to let loose a volley of well-chosen words, but held my tongue in the interests of general harmony. But still! Miriam!
    Has anyone else heard this term used injudiciously?
    There's a thread on this, I know, but I wanted to point out the incongruity of using this phrase with a brand-new niche perfume that to me is anything but "old lady". I think the term should be banned!

  2. #2

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    This is just an example of how useless that term is in actually describing anything.

    But let's not get into banning anything. Next time, open your mouth and say something.

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    Dependent knit at nite's Avatar
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Ah me.....Why is it so much easier to express oneself clearly to a group of faceless internet pals?? I feel you about the general harmony issue redrose but...that was a prime teaching moment.
    of course, I am a Yank so it's very easy for me to intrude myself into other people's conversations
    Currently wearing: Joop! Femme by Joop!

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    It is a horrible expression on many levels. People who use it just demonstrate their ignorance and lack of human regard. I once did a research paper on the witch persecutions in Europe - which is a very interesting subject - most of it perpetrated against old women. This just feels like a remnant of the same old hate. It disgusts me really. I haven't heard the expression used in real life, just read it on chat boards, but it is so ubiquitous that I suppose it has passed into the vernacular. I doubt we'll be rid of it any time soon. Maybe it will go away like "groovy". We can only hope.

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by knit at nite View Post
    of course, I am a Yank so it's very easy for me to intrude myself into other people's conversations
    Yep, I have the same affliction!

  6. #6

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    There is so much wrong with using "old lady" as a derogatory or dismissive term that I hardly even know where to begin when I hear it used. I don't see the term with its current connotations falling out of favor anytime soon, despite the fact that it's obviously offensive and has no actual descriptive power. I get the feeling that many people use it because they have such a poor and limited vocabulary available to them to describe scents, without consciously tapping into the ageist and/or misogynist sentiments which have made "ew, smells like an old lady" such a common comment.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by redrose View Post
    I hate and detest the term "old lady scent". I consider it offensive to women, older people, and perfume. But I'd never heard anyone actually say it out loud until yesterday - and it was about a Tauer! I couldn't believe it! A young (20-something) woman was sampling Miriam, which IMO is a gorgeous, beautiful scent with a vintage/classic vibe, but nothing remotely "old" about it. And she said - I quote - "Hmm, nice, but smells like an old lady scent". I wanted to let loose a volley of well-chosen words, but held my tongue in the interests of general harmony. But still! Miriam!
    Has anyone else heard this term used injudiciously?
    There's a thread on this, I know, but I wanted to point out the incongruity of using this phrase with a brand-new niche perfume that to me is anything but "old lady". I think the term should be banned!
    Well you know one person's vintage/classic is another's "dated". As for Miriam for me it definately has the classic vibe that Andy Tauer intended it to have. But again for me there's something so "on the nose" about it I don't find it very interesting. I qualify my own opinion because I don't try that many strictly feminine fragrances.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Yes it is a rather obnoxious phrase but to the unlearned it is the only way to communicate.
    Similar to someone saying this tart is tasteless whereas it would have been more appropriate to say the chef's decision to sacrifice stronger ingredients in lieu of the almond essence was a poor decision because it is too faint.
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I loathe the term. It is unimaginative and inarticulate. Regarding the Miriam; I thought it was well done but smelled so close to vintage Chantilly, I decided to pass.

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    ...I thought it was well done but smelled so close to vintage Chantilly...
    Ears prick up. Maybe I will give Miriam a try.

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Yes, it's actually very good. It's just nothing new to my nose.

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    Yes, it's actually very good. It's just nothing new to my nose.
    I understand what you mean. I am having a love affair with Chantilly lately. I keep looking for more modern alternatives, but I haven't found anything I like as well yet. Not that there is anything wrong with Chantilly, but you know.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by redrose View Post
    I hate and detest the term "old lady scent". I consider it offensive to women, older people, and perfume. But I'd never heard anyone actually say it out loud until yesterday - and it was about a Tauer! I couldn't believe it! A young (20-something) woman was sampling Miriam, which IMO is a gorgeous, beautiful scent with a vintage/classic vibe, but nothing remotely "old" about it. And she said - I quote - "Hmm, nice, but smells like an old lady scent". I wanted to let loose a volley of well-chosen words, but held my tongue in the interests of general harmony. But still! Miriam!
    Has anyone else heard this term used injudiciously?
    There's a thread on this, I know, but I wanted to point out the incongruity of using this phrase with a brand-new niche perfume that to me is anything but "old lady". I think the term should be banned!
    The term "old lady" scent is used by some people to describe older and more classic scents that are unlike the fruity, candy-floss rubbish they sell to the (usually young) unsophisticated population. Let them throw their money after the latest trash or celebrity scent.

    Just as some would enjoy steak tartare, sushi or caviar, it's a matter of taste and a comfort zone. Some will live forever eating cheap hamburgers. I say let them.

    I will continue to wear my Vol de Nuit, Shalimar, Jicky, Narcisse Noir and Chanel No. 5.

    Ignore this ignorance and enjoy what you wear.
    "That lover which is like fragrance
    Whose voice is as beautiful as Urdu.

    She who hides in the flowers
    you can only find her from her fragrance."

    "Chaiyya Chaiyya," from the film, "Dil Se."
    <div class="bnsotd"><b>Currently wearing:</b> <a href="ID26125293.html"><img src="http://www.basenotes.net/photos/products/33/26125293.jpg"> Hypnôse by Lancôme</a></div>

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Miriam is excellent. "Old lady" in a Tauer-esque way will wear full make up, have her hair done twice a week, in designer overalls and working on her own '64 and 1/2 fancy car, convertible, mint both in color and condition. Younger bunch envies her and can't contain themselves, IMO.
    Currently wearing: Omnia Paraiba by Bulgari

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Just as they'll often drink soda pop for breakfast as they have no interest in coffee or orange juice, youngsters seem to prefer the sweet and the uncomplicated. (I call it Bimbo Juice)

  16. #16

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Yes, I heard the term. One time from an otherwise very well-informed and nice sales assistant at Barney's (about CDG Stephen Jones). I think people, for lack of a better vocabulary use the term to describe old-fashioned scents. Personally I don't see it as necessarily much worse, or more offending, or ill-intended than using...I don't know..."fresh" and "clean"...to describe a lot of newer perfumes. Yes, it may sound as if it has a negative, ageist connotation but I bet most people don't intend it like that at all. It could be "old lady" just because it reminds them of a granny or mother or aunt. You may not want to smell like her but you don't necessarily disrespect her. It is not the best chosen description, obviously, but it does convey some information.


    Also...isn't saying something like this about young people just as offending and presumptuous?

    Quote Originally Posted by Primrose View Post
    the fruity, candy-floss rubbish they sell to the (usually young) unsophisticated population. Let them throw their money after the latest trash or celebrity scent.
    Each era has specific tastes in fashion, music, perfume, etc. No need to feel that we are in any way better than our elders or the younger, is there?

    Just to make it clear...I love a lot of perfumes that are classified as "old-lady" and I am not awfully young myself. Also, I have no doubt that Miriam is a wonderful and current perfume (never tried it). I just want to make the point that it is easy to find reasons to feel affronted. Maybe sometimes it is only excusable ignorance?

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I am almost always willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt - as I myself have benefitted - but this is one that just does not seem to go away, and I do sense a hostility there. Not in all cases, though. I usually don't get involved in the "old lady" discussion, as it never goes anywhere. I am not super sensitive either but I think we are past due for a change of expression. How about "classic" or "vintage" or "retro" or even "old fashioned", rather than old lady? And yes, we ALL should treat each other with respect.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    Just as they'll often drink soda pop for breakfast as they have no interest in coffee or orange juice, youngsters seem to prefer the sweet and the uncomplicated. (I call it Bimbo Juice)
    Oh my goodness I cracked up laughing, Bimbo Juice

  19. #19
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    Heehee ! I love that ' Bimbo Juice '

    Really , I don't know how that term ' old lady scent ' came into being . Does anyone ? Is it a recent thing ...... in the last 10 years ?
    I don't like that term at all - it's sexist and ageist and just insulting .
    I was blown away by Miriam - absolutely beautiful . It's totally wonderful .
    I guess people who view perfume masterpieces as Old Lady would view classical paintings and famous works of art as a waste of paper , canvas and passé .
    Currently wearing: Angel by Thierry Mugler

  20. #20
    Dependent knit at nite's Avatar
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Ha ha ha ... I can just hear it now...."Excuse me young lady, but how would you like it if I called that scent of yours "Bimbo Juice"?"
    Currently wearing: Joop! Femme by Joop!

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I'll never forget one of the best responses I've ever hear on this board. In a thread like this, about disparaging references to "Old Man" scents. The respondent said :

    "When I go up to the fragrance counter, I tell the SA that I want to smell like an Old Man, and that's when they start pulling out the good stuff. "

    Currently wearing: Daim Blond by Serge Lutens

  22. #22

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I love when the list all the OLD LADY scents, and if there are a few I never tried , I make a point of rushing out and sniffin it. That list usually contains most of my perfumes.

    Ps Birdboy48 that is a great comback!

  23. #23

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    LOL at birdboy.

    I dislike the term bug spray and old lady..come on now..like can't you be a little more detailed than that?

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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by Birdboy48 View Post
    "When I go up to the fragrance counter, I tell the SA that I want to smell like an Old Man, and that's when they start pulling out the good stuff. "
    Well, that is the silver lining in the whole matter and a great tip!!

  25. #25

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I don’t see the term ‘old lady scent’ as innocuous at all. Because perfume is most certainly connected to couture and the fashion industry which almost exclusively promotes itself through imagery of the young, beautiful and rich, calling something ‘old lady’ is therefore said specifically as a dismissive and negative comment.

    You never hear that term in reference to food or art or medicine. Have you ever heard a young person say, ‘that’s old lady food’? People, through conditioning, view fashion through the media’s imagery of young and beautiful, and anything that doesn’t fit that mold is immediately overlooked or disregarded. It's a sad commentary on the popular view of mature women.

    I love the term Bimbo Juice! Too funny! I have to add that to my repertoire. I have also heard it termed, 'Teeny-Bopper perfume' and 'Bubblegum Spray'.

  26. #26
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    Red face Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    I am personally not offended if they call it "old lady scent", I am an old lady, LOL!

    But I do notice what perfumers say about scents and your age is true - our taste in frags changes over time.
    I remember as a child absolutely gagging on my mothers perfumes -- chanel no 5 & My sin.
    Now its payback time, cause I love em!

    My first love was a one scent wonder from Avon called Roses Roses - no offense to anyone who loves this as it is a pretty scent, but I get sick to my stomach now when I smell things like that.
    I do still love the frags of my hippie dippie days like Civet Oil ( I have a decent frag copy in my collection - since the original H version is so rare.) and musk.

    I may not care for the celebrity & fresh/soft frags of youth...but I don't throw stones, I'm just older now and so my preferences are different.
    Seriously Addicted to Animalics, Chypres and Vintage Pure Parfums!

  27. #27

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    If I see this phrase I just make a mental note that this is probably worth checking out

  28. #28

    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by darkdreams View Post
    Yes, I heard the term. One time from an otherwise very well-informed and nice sales assistant at Barney's (about CDG Stephen Jones). I think people, for lack of a better vocabulary use the term to describe old-fashioned scents. Personally I don't see it as necessarily much worse, or more offending, or ill-intended than using...I don't know..."fresh" and "clean"...to describe a lot of newer perfumes. Yes, it may sound as if it has a negative, ageist connotation but I bet most people don't intend it like that at all. It could be "old lady" just because it reminds them of a granny or mother or aunt. You may not want to smell like her but you don't necessarily disrespect her. It is not the best chosen description, obviously, but it does convey some information.


    Also...isn't saying something like this about young people just as offending and presumptuous?



    Each era has specific tastes in fashion, music, perfume, etc. No need to feel that we are in any way better than our elders or the younger, is there?

    Just to make it clear...I love a lot of perfumes that are classified as "old-lady" and I am not awfully young myself. Also, I have no doubt that Miriam is a wonderful and current perfume (never tried it). I just want to make the point that it is easy to find reasons to feel affronted. Maybe sometimes it is only excusable ignorance?
    Well said indeed.
    I have to add, as long as the unfortunate phrase achieves its objective, it serves a purpose and a somewhat accurate one. Whenever the term is bandied about, one immediately thinks of powdery aldehydes and/or possibly indolic or heavy hitting florals- something more suited to a senior level of appreciation. Its a description that works- to a point.

    I don't find the term offensive at all, and to be honest, I don't think it is meant in offense towards older women. However, what I do find annoying is the lack of articulation and ignorance of not knowing what it is exactly, you're disliking and why and using a term that is rather broad. Okay, so the scent is reminiscent of an "old lady", but how exactly? Are we talking leather handbag? Powder? A certain type of flower? Or are we talking about something from the 80's? How old, is "old"?

    The pendulum swings both ways though- there is intentional offense in some of the unfortunate phrases being thrown about, pertaining to younger folk or those who enjoy a particular genre of perfume. I'm a believer in teaching people through being the example, unless you can walk the talk- every finger you point at one person, will have 10 pointing back at you. Lead by example if you want to instigate a positive change. No one perfume lover is better than the other if they both behave the same way- irrespective of their fragrance wardrobe.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by mr. reasonable View Post
    If I see this phrase I just make a mental note that this is probably worth checking out
    I do this too and I consider the source of the original comment.
    It's that time of year again where my daughter asks; "Mom, why does the cat smell like Chamade?"

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Actually heard someone say "old lady scent"! About a Tauer!

    Quote Originally Posted by Primrose View Post
    The term "old lady" scent is used by some people to describe older and more classic scents that are unlike the fruity, candy-floss rubbish they sell to the (usually young) unsophisticated population. Let them throw their money after the latest trash or celebrity scent.

    Just as some would enjoy steak tartare, sushi or caviar, it's a matter of taste and a comfort zone. Some will live forever eating cheap hamburgers. I say let them.

    I will continue to wear my Vol de Nuit, Shalimar, Jicky, Narcisse Noir and Chanel No. 5.

    Ignore this ignorance and enjoy what you wear.
    I was in an elevator yesterday and a young woman's perfume had totally lingered in it. I tried picking apart the notes a bit, but all I could thinkg was, 'I really wish this was more classic'.

    Quote Originally Posted by Birdboy48 View Post
    I'll never forget one of the best responses I've ever hear on this board. In a thread like this, about disparaging references to "Old Man" scents. The respondent said :

    "When I go up to the fragrance counter, I tell the SA that I want to smell like an Old Man, and that's when they start pulling out the good stuff. "

    I need to try this sometime. Today my cousin's boyfriend was telling me how his dad douses himself in Polo from a splash bottle and my response was, 'oh, he's vintagey and old school!'




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