What makes a Chanel smell like a Chanel? (Welcoming all types of answers: from info on ingredients and structure, to poetic sensations, to jokes)
As Kagey was saying, Chanel was famous for the (then) lavish use of iris. In general, I think classic Chanels have a certain cold elegance, rich but not quite voluptuous. This is in accord with iris chill character, but is the case also of things where iris is not so prominent, like no 5.T
his is compared, say, to Guerlain, which instead tend to have a sort of rich, hazy feel, with gourmand tendencies that are absent from Chanel.
There is that slightly aloof 'coolness' and sense of élan, and I think Chanel has perfected a way to sprinkle aldehydes into the mix in quite a few that might also qualify as a Chanel 'signature' - it's like crossing the threshold of one of the flagship boutiques, the air becomes ever so slightly more rarefied
And let's face it - they're a class act with Polge and Sheldrake and an obviously dedicated backend team working on the stuff and maintaining the legacy of Ernest Beaux and Coco Chanel.
Aldehydes and iris. Aloof coolness, as mr. reasonable describes it, is spot-on IMO.
I'll see your aldehydes and iris, and raise you a jasmine and a ylang-ylang.
Behemoth cut a slice of pineapple, salted it, peppered it, ate it, and then tossed off a second glass of alcohol so dashingly that everyone applauded.
Strong yet at the same time exquisitely smooth floral notes, in some fragrances, also some of the smoothest, most vibrant and translucent citrus notes, in others, an almost leathery base that adds a certain distinctiveness without ever becoming overpowering.
Last edited by Ken_Russell; 18th November 2013 at 01:49 PM.
When we come to the other world and meet the millions of Jews who died in the camps and they ask *what have you done for us*.......I will say * I did not forget you*. Simon Wiesenthal
I agree with aldehydes, but what about that unique creamy sandalwood + vanilla in most of their fragrance's dry-downs?
In terms of notes: floral heart of jasmine and ylang-ylang (the latter ramped up in current Chanels) and a base of sandalwood and iris.
This covers No.5, No.19, Bois des Iles and Cuir de Russie (which in its vintage iteration shared much with No.5)
Various aldehydes are present in No.5, No.22 and Bois des Iles. I've often read No.19 being described as 'aldehydic' but to my nose (and so far as my research indicates) it does not contain aldehydes.
Last edited by gandhajala; 18th November 2013 at 10:29 AM.
The complexity of its components.
Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
Are we talking the 'Allure' line here?
If so, -- NAFFNESS
Otherwise, I agree with iris and aldehydes
I'm not familiar enough to offer any sort of opinion, but I do appreciate reading all of yours. TFS
By most of the answers alike I would also say iris and aldehydes. However there is a common heart of rose-jasmin-ylang-ylang in most of the scents I know. Also, there's sandalwwod. And some patchoulli, as well. but overall, it mught be all these things together forming the most classy, dreaming and sophisticated of scents. I love chanel scents, and that's why i envy women so much, for they get all the best from Chanel. I am happy with Egoiste.
I'm not sure about individual notes, but to me - Chanel's got that strange but smooth blending that makes the perfume extremely composed and put-together. I struggle more with detecting individual notes in my Chanel perfumes (Allure homme, allure edition blanche, egoiste, antaeus and bleu) but instead I get something that's been seemingly blended together very meticulous. It's like it's been "shaken" more than other fragrances - making it more fused together. Now I can't tell if that's a good or a bad thing. I mostly love to detect individual notes, but in my Chanel fragrances that's really hard. I do love how they smell, though. There is an air of sophistication about them that I enjoy.
Aren't they one of the last houses to have their own exclusively harvested flowers?
Thanks for all the responses - helpful and amusing! (even though I don't know the first thing about crab boil, ha)
Imo Chanel makes such a wide variety of fragrances (both for women and for men) that no common factor can be found of them
Some bottles for sale (Worldwide)
"Le parfum est la musique du corps"
Chanel has proprietary ingredients. So do other houses, but this is particularly true of Chanel's florals. It's not just iris or rose or jasmine or ylang-ylang, but THEIR particular suppliers' absolutes.
The synthetics, those are probably easier to replicate by other houses, unless they also have deals going with aroma-chemical suppliers for patented molecules. It's entirely probable. After all, when a new molecule comes onto the market, you'll see many houses begin to use it in new compositions. It makes economic sense to corner the market on a unique, new aroma if you can afford to do so.
ldehydes, yes. Some of the older Chanels put me off because they approached the realm of "cigarette ashtray" for me.
The newer Chanels smell more modern, but they still try to keep the same "vibe." I was fascinated with Coromandel because it smelled like Christopher Sheldrake had a great time with Chanel's proprietary ingredients after doing Borneo 1834 for Serge Lutens. Both are gorgeous patchoulis, but one can smell the relationship between the styles and ingredients of both houses.
Tonka- in the Allure series primarily
When I was young , Chanel's just smelled old . Thank heavens I got old.
LOL Willy, that was funny!!!
To be more straightforward, I think that Ernest Beaux and Coco Chanel were an extraordinary creative duo. She had a style - he captured it in perfume. He found a subject into which he could transform her style, and then worked from that, to give her something definitive within her style. She recognized it, and the rest is history. Jobs and Woz - same thing. Another example of two people who, together, create more than either could alone.
With no.5 as a guide, subsequent geniuses of scent and fashion have been able to keep the Chanel legend undiminished and increasingly rich.
What can I say, I just grabbed a few sprays of vintage No 19 edp...and fell in love all over again. What makes a Chanel smell like a Chanel ? I really have no idea, some things I just choose not to question but rather enjoy !
Isn't part of what also makes a Chanel smell like it does, is the consistency? And from what I've heard, across vast periods of time. Their formulations seem to do extraordinarily well at holding up year after year, as long as environmental conditions are fair. Are there any others reputed to be as robust, not turning after a mere decade?
Angela of NSTP once said, "Say 'classic Chanel' to perfume lovers, and likely they envision a greyhound of a fragrance — aldehydic, elegant and restrained." and I agree.
Looking for THE femme fatale scent. If you think there is something I should smell please PM me!
^ Funny how Gucci tried to rip off the Chanel design and make their own interlocked logo. Can't compare to the classic simplicity of Chanel's logo.