Halston 1-12 
Halston (1976)

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Average Rating:  61 User Reviews

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Halston 1-12 by Halston

Fragrance Overview Where to Buy Reviews Community Ownership

About Halston 1-12 by Halston

People & Companies

Halston
Fragrance House
Elsa Peretti
Packaging / Bottle Design

The international roll-out for Halston fragrances in 1976 was masterminded by Michael Edwards, who told Basenotes why Halston chose to launch with two male fragrances:
"Halston couldn't make up his mind which one he preferred so he said, “Launch both”. The names, Z-14 and 1-12? Those were the perfumer's code numbers."
Basenotes visitor, Bryian Davis tells us "the bottles were inspired by the soft shapes fingers would make pinching the form, that's where the name 'pinch' bottle came from. "

Fragrance notes.

  1. Top Notes

  2. Heart Notes

  3. Base Notes

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Reviews of Halston 1-12 by Halston

There are 61 reviews of Halston 1-12 by Halston.


Immensely enjoyable. Old school, but really well done. Considering the price, a good deal. For under $20 a bottle there really is no reason not to have this in your collection if you are a fan of old school, green barbershop scents. Definitely better than those luxurious/ premium fragrances which seal too much money and after getting fame they reformulate their juices. Halston 1-12 initial seconds feel harsh, cheap and shaggy. But then it quickly lets you peek into his soul which is dreamy, and noble. Self explanatory chypre scent, piney, green, herby with lots of spices and citruses.

The top notes are very intense, citruses and basil with a hint of lavender and pine. This beautiful combination is definitely old school barber shop territory, strong and powerful. Middle notes settles in an hour or so later and it becomes RL Polo, yet a lighter, less heavy blend, with a touch more basil and cedarwood. Then the serenity that ensues enveloping me in the marvelous dry down than lasts long beyond the onest of slumber. The base is woods and green notes. Suitable to wear it on rainy/overcoat spring days with a flannel shirt, jeans.


The EA version still resembles the old formula but it is less sharp and more of a watered down version. I still find this wearable. I traded my vintage bottle of 1-12 bottle years back but no regrets as this EA bottle still holds memory of the original.


My friend complained when I put this on but I can barely smell it. To me, it's a musky brown blob.
Like beans bags, lava lamps and all the rest of that seventies crap, it's weak and shapeless.


Considering where we are at with reformulations of z-14 and 1-12, at least both are available ridiculously cheap. I paid $10 each which for 1-12 is a great buy. I'll leave z-14 for it's own review.
I really like 1-12, it is definitely understated with just a touch of the citrus in the opening drying down into a very pleasant musk glow. It definitely smells like the 1970s, but not in a macho way. . Thumbs Up.


I'm going to be the first to state that despite the notes list I have always detected pineapple in 1-12.

This opens with fresh base of lemon coupled with sweet pineapple. A little bit of jasmine as an undertone. There's also a creamy soap made from a blend of lavender, smooth vanilla, cedar, and a lot of musk. This has the same animalic musk used in Z-14 but it's much stronger in this fragrance.

1-12 by Halston used to have a green tone to it from pine rendered sticky from amber added to the base in the old formula. But I'm not surprised the pine/amber combo was removed because this it's always been such a fruity and musky scent. A neutral for me though. For some reason the duo of 1-12's pineapple and musk became too rich and nauseating.


Halston 1-12 (1976) may be the lesser of the "Halston Twins" to some, or just completely unheard-of to others; but I think the only real "problem" with 1-12 is it was the safer of two choices presented at launch, at a time when "safe" was no longer what guys wanted. The story behind the creation of 1-12 and its more-popular sibling Halston Z-14 (1976) is well-documented, so a quick recap is all you need here. Roy Halston Frowick, the larger-than-life celebrity designer from America who stormed the scene with his flowing lines, launched his eponymous women's fragrance Halston (1975) the year before. He wanted a matching men's fragrance, and the whole thing was orchestrated by Michael Edwards, who presented Halston with two "finalist" choices both co-composed by Max Gavarry and Vincent Marcello. Gavarry was the more low-key of the duo, and wouldn't see his name come to any considerable recognition in men's fragrance again until Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme (1994) came out. Marcello on the other hand, he was the nose for the now-notorious Caron Yatagan (1974), and is a name associated in general with the budding powerhouse style of men's fragrances. Halston ended up choosing to release both, and ultimately they were told apart by their perfumer's codes of Z-14 and 1-12 respectfully, reusing the single package design created by Elsa Peretti, who also designed the preceding women's launch. Initially you could tell 1-12's "pinch bottle" apart from Z-14's by the purple cap and green-tinted glass, but later on that was reduced to just a greener bottle, then finally the identical bottle as Z-14, truly making them twins.

The reason I say "safe" about 1-12 is that the scent was designed as a men's floral leather chypre, similar in tone to things like Royal Copenhagen by Swank (1970) and other musky floral things transitioning from the dapper 60's into the hairy 70's. Z-14 was a big, sweet, woody, spicy, musky, and bold aromatic chypre of significant heft. The epitome of hairy chests and T-top muscle cars driven by tanned guys in handlebar mustaches was Z-14, while 1-12 clearly wanted to stay in a smoker's jacket with slicked-back hair and penny loafers. I actually think 1-12 is the more refined and sophisticated of the two, and it doesn't need to curl a bicep or puff a smoke ring to let you know how manly it is, but that's just me. The opening of 1-12 shows off a rounded green feel using bergamot and galbanum with mandarin orange and a bit of basil. Juniper and carnation mix with a bit of lavender before a slightly indolic jasmine shows up to soften things more. By this point a bit of powderiness enters the picture. before a crisp oakmoss, leather, and labdanum musk base establish the chypre feel. If Z-14 is brown leather jacket, then 1-12 feels very much like a powder-blue blazer by comparison. Cedar and what feels like a bit of sandalwood (unlisted) also shows up, before a rounded tonka gives 1-12 a little intertextuality with Z-14, showing that they are indeed blood relatives. Wear time is equally long, but projection is not of the same enormous levels as Z-14, so expect sillage arms length away that lasts all day. Best use would be as a throwback office scent, while the "cologne guy" in the office wears Z-14 instead. 1-12 is also a bit more year-round versatile in my opinion as well.

Halston 1-12 doesn't get celebrated quite like Z-14 and also doesn't get stocked as openly either, with many places having just Z-14 if they have any Halston at all. At least 1-12 remains in production, and is the only other men's fragrance from the house Elizabeth Arden still produces, although there is a caveat to that. The Halston fragrance portfolio was acquired by French Fragrances from Miami, FL sometime in the 90's after the brand finally collapsed posthumously. Roy Halston Frowick himself had long been shoo'd off his own brand after the failed collaboration with JC Penny to bring the ready-to-wear mainstream, and passed away in 1990. He lived fast in general, with notorious drug habits and excessive libations in Studio 54 with celebrities, and very much carried himself like a Hollywood actor at a time when traditionally fashion designers were more humble (or at least faux humble). French Fragrances removed the purple caps but kept the green glass of 1-12 for time, then eventually housed both "Halston Twins" in identical "pinch bottles" anyway. Elizabeth Arden made few changes when they acquired the fragrances other than heavily promote Z-14 with NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon, then reformulate per IFRA rullings in 2001 to cut the oakmoss with treemoss. Bottles from this 2000's period are still good however, it's just post-2011 bottles removing oakmoss altogether that are suspect. Some people say 1-12 fared better than Z-14 in this second alteration, but I've never smelled the newest formula. Anyway you slice it, the soft-spoken floral brother to the embodiment of the 70's is worth checking out in my opinion. Thumbs up

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