The author goes on at some length without even acknowledging the core problem for the industry: that many reformulations are widely regarded as crappy!
Thank you, kumquat, for starting this thread! I think it's valuable to share the names of successfully-preserved vintage perfumes, because I believe some notes and combination of notes are heartier than others. I bought a sealed, perfectly light-colored edc of Je Reviens and an open, light-colored Edeol by Lundborg of mysterious concentration that barely smell like anything and an opened parfum of Moment Supreme that (as we've discussed elsewhere) I suspect has gone off. Nonetheless, I've had some gorgeous windfalls too, such as:
Jean D'Albret's Casaque (parfum, used or evaporated, golden juice)
Weil's Zibeline (parfum, used or evaporated, dark juice)
Lanvin's My Sin (extrait, sealed, dark juice)
Richard Hudnut's Gemey (extrait, used or evaporated, medium to dark juice)
Revillon's Carnet de Bal (extrait, used or evaporated, medium to dark juice)
Ma collection of Jean Patou (edt, some used, some sealed, no difference)
Other than the Patous, I cannot say that they all have their top notes or are perfect, but they are all absolutely delicious on me, as is. And they were all blind buys, a risk in those cases that paid off. Beauty of bottle plays a role in my purchasing decisions as well. Virtually all my fragrances are in beautiful antique or vintage flacons with historical interest, so, as long as the outlay is not TOO high, even the duds have value to me.
When I joined BN , i haven't known anything about vintage perfumes and quite didn't care much . After one year I bought my first vintage scent ,just for my curiosity and the price was good. Since then ,I keep buying them, when the price is affordable.Unfortunately I have to disagree with some of the statements made by the author from Fragrantica . I give one example of a scent , probably the oldest from my small collection, which smells really good ,not like vinegar or nail polish remover. Monsieur Rochas EDC .... I think examples can continue.
I suspect Miss Elena is hoping to get us all to stop buying vintage so that she can keep them all for herself!!
I am quite infatuated with vintage fumes and can't imagine my perfumed journey without them at this point.
Here are a few favorites:
Bal a Versailles
Shalimar Vintage Extrait and EdC
L'Heure Blue Extrait
Weil Zibeline EdC
Weil Antilope EdC and Extrait
I've got more on their way to me, including Shocking de Schiaparelli and Lanvin My Sin, Joy, Eau d'Hermes and Cartier Panthere.
Do I think they are precisely as they were when originally formulated? No, I'm sure they aren't, but they are wonderful nonetheless.
My own collection includes Monsieur De Givenchy EDT and aftershave, of which the edt topnotes have suffered slightly,
Chanel A Gentleman's Aftershave, which puzzles me slightly as I can't really connect the scent with the current edt version,
YSL Pour Homme, which I do not actually like and wonder if it has gone off or if the vintage was supposed to smell this way ? (I like the current version),
small amounts of Escada Pour Homme (great, would like more)
Paco rabanne Tenere, which I am also fond of, kind of reminds me of Kouros,
Ungaro1 which I find perfect for certain occasions, some vintage Heritage, which is the epitome to me of opulence and one of my favourites, Nina Ricci Club, which I wear to freshen me up with it's citrus opening blast, though it can seem a bit "discordant",
Nina Ricci Phileas, which is unique (I am always reminded of one review which described the scent as reminiscent of a freshly cleaned ballroom floor) though it took a little time to warm to,
Fendi Uomo which I like very much despite the macho medallion man reviews it seemed to get. (maybe I can get away with it, not being the macho kind of man)
and last but not least Vintage Givenchy Gentleman, in EDT and aftershave, patchouli never smelled so magnificent.
Not sure if these all qualify as vintage and there are countless more that I haven't had the pleasure of trying but these are the ones that I feel can comment on.
* Should add vintage Kouros and Paco Rabanne Pour Homme, ultra classics that I would have no hesitation in wearing...
Feel free to talk about your losers. I think we need to keep abreast of the financial curve.
A couple I recall that were kaput-
Je Reviens-by Worth (dull, soapy)
Balenciaga- Le Dix, Quadrille (flat)
Balmain- Miss Jolie, Madame Balmain- EDTs (weak), Balmain de Balmain (dull)
Lanvin- My Sin (soapy)
Last edited by kumquat; 17th February 2014 at 11:22 PM.
I have been willing to take some risks buying vintages and have had both successes and failures. Ebay and thrift stores have been good to me. I treasure my vintage Diorella over the modern sampled in the shop, that is certain.
Other glorious vintages I've acquired: Le Dix, Le De, Le Temps D'Aimer, Mitsouko EDC, Audace, Bal a V, Robe D'un soir, Mayotte, Weil de Weil, Zibeline) .
Fails were: Magie, Madame Carven, Maxim's de Paris, Chapeau Bleu, Stradivari by Prince Matchiabelli, Yendi, Rive Gauche.
So many iconic scents escaped my nose in previous decades, so I can't really compare earlier versions with current. So, if I like the current one enough to wear, well.....I'll wear it. I've read posts lambasting reformulations of scents (Cabochard & Shalimar are often cited.) Posts like the juice from year xxxx is horrible ruined rubbish. Yet if one has not had the opportunity to experience "the good stuff' and likes the new stuff- must one eschew that pleasure? Will the perfume police haul me off ?Wearing the dreg version of Shalimar is still preferable to me than anything produced by Victoria's Secret.
This is another fine thread you've started kumquat. Many excellent posts!
Sync'in and Think'in in 2015!
Of course, there are many versions of each scent and many circumstances. For instance, I have an original Rive Gauche from the 1980's in a can. It's great. Yours may have been the wrong formulation, or maybe it was stored incorrectly.
My current list of vintage favorites (most of them, also discontinued, these two categories tending the frequently overlap) is quite modest yet also eclectic, but I'll try my best to remember at least some of them:
Biagiotti Venezia and Venezia Uomo (both prior to their re-release)
Le Dix by Balenciaga
Julio Iglesias pour Homme
Yves Rocher Eau de Vetyver
Guy Laroche Horizon
Joint by Roccobarocco
the vintage versions of Yardley Gold and Yardley English Blazer
Fendi Theorema Uomo and Life Essence
a few scents by Faconnable, including Homme and Face a Face
Jacques Bogart One Man Show
the earlier batches of Polo Green
Slava Zaitsev Maroussia and Authentic Maroussia
surprisingly, also certain mass market offerings, more or less vintage (at least, not so readily available nowadays), like the vintage formulations of Brut, Old Spice, Puig Agua Brava, Sumatra Rain, also, the German budget male grooming brand Gammon, with the currently less available variations Cool Passion and Roman Nature
Preferred Stock (yet another comparatively affordable powerhouse)
Guerlain Habit Rouge
Last edited by Ken_Russell; 18th February 2014 at 12:29 AM.
Absolutely, it could be several reasons that Rive Gauche didn't appeal. Storage in heat is likely. Or, just not my type of notes? I should dig it out and retest...You never know
Sync'in and Think'in in 2015!
Of course, you might not like the scent at all. That's different. We're mostly interested here in whether the notes hold up. The original Rive Gauche is a sparkling, mossy aldehyde.
Aldehydes are often problematic, so a RG stored in the heat may have ruined aldehydes. In any case, I think the current version is relatively close, so that's easy to see if one likes the thing or not. (and then there's also Calandre, arguably closer to the original formula).
I would say, read Elena's article carefully, and try to see her points as they are (and not to ascribe any particular hidden motive). Her points stand on their own: buy vintage free of the illusions/misconceptions that people tend to have.
Her thesis: "Now that I have caught your attention, dear reader, let's investigate why hawking over online auctions for mystifying bottles with dark liquids and tattered boxes may be a doubtful if entertaining hobby rather than an investment or an art lesson, as you might have originally thought." (Emphases mine.)
Some salient points:
Vintage perfumes age, but not always well.
Vintage perfumes do not represent with fidelity the original conception because of the ageing, and also because of possible improper storing.
Nowhere in the article does Elena actively opposes vintage simply because it is vintage; and such a stand would contradict what she is as a blogger where she has written very much on vintage.
In a way, a lot of the furore seems to be centred on the tone of the article, which is unfortunate, and that prevented a lot of people from actually reading the article completely and carefully. But I can also see a lot of vintage-lovers just get defensive, no matter how sensitive this topic can be handled.
Hedonist - I have that bottle of Diorella shown and it smells brand new to this day!
I just bought a full bottle of the original Derby and I am giddy to try it. All of the samples I've tried so far were perfectly preserved but I do have a miniature that has some barely sour top notes which blow away after 15 minutes or so.
I've yet to find a bum batch of Gucci's Nobile. I have a 30 year old bottle of Carven's Vetiver and I feel the citrus top must be diminished but is otherwise a beauty. My Chanel No. 5 cologne is a little off as well but I still enjoy it. I've got four vintages of English lavender by Yardley - the 50's version is slighly sour atop but far more floral and lush than the others, which are all (70's, 80's, and 2010) new-smelling. All of my old Royal Copenhagen scents held up great. But far and away my favorite oldie is currently a bottle of Norell cologne splash which could originate anywhere from '68-97 and it is stunning; nothing seems to have been lost with time.
"Strange things are afoot. I am one of them and I am up to another." -*^-'._.'-^*- - S.B.
I've had two bad experiences so far with purchasing vintage. One was a Vol de Nuit EdC which I'm pretty certain has lost it's top notes. The other was Antilope EdC which just has very little scent at all. I'd say EdC is the culprit, but I've got a number of those that have held up remarkably well. So, I think it's just storage, as Kumquat so often reminds us!
Well, this is going to look a lot like the list I compiled for lpp's thread about discontinued/cult fragrances, so please pardon the repeats, but most of my very favorites are discontinued as well as twenty or thirty years old, some even older. Many of them were brand spankin' new when I got them and grew "vintage" in my possession, actually, which is why I can not only vouch for their provenance, but can be sure about how they were kept, and also how the actual fragrance has held up ...which in all but two cases has been exceptionally well. I've also had very good luck with new-old-stock, which is, of course, the gold-standard when seeking out vintage perfumes (I rarely buy used, but I have inherited *dozens* of used bottles that have all been quite good.)
Guerlain Chamade, Nahema and Parure
Chanel Coco, No5, No19, No22 and Bois des Iles
Dior Miss Dior, Diorissimo, Dune and my latest lovely vintage acquisition, Diorling (70s parfum)
Gucci No1, Gucci No3 and L'Arte di Gucci
Royal Copenhagen Flora Danica
the original Calvin Klein for Women
EL Azurée, Aliage, Private Collection, Youth Dew and Knowing
K de Krizia
Mystère de Rochas
Avon Topaze and Occur
Molyneux Quartz and Vivre
Patou 1000 and Sublime
Yves Rocher 8e Jour
Ralph Lauren Lauren, Safari and Tuxedo
YSL Paris, Opium and Rive Gauche
the original Oscar de la Renta
Jean Marc Sinan Sinan
Givenchy Ysatis and Givenchy III
Balmain Vent Vert, Miss Balmain and Ivoire
Science is not only compatible with spirituality, it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognize our place in an immensity of light-years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual. ..Carl Sagan