Different versions of Mitsouko

Bonnette

Missing Oakmoss
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2015
Was this just a bad bottle? When I’ve smelled Mitsouko before its been more like a typical chypre with a napthalene mothball top. Seeing as there are Mitsouko aficionados in the room could someone please throw some light on what this was or could have been?
(Note - I believe the tester strip was clean because it was in a tall pot behind the counter and not reachable by customers).
I have no idea, though it's hard to imagine even a bottle that's turned smelling like feces and vomit - to me, bad Mitsouko is pungent, but in a varnish-y way. Maybe Mitsouko has been reformulated yet again, and you smelled a fresh bottle of a bad blend. Vintage is the way to go with Mitsouko, in my opinion. One needn't look for bottles earlier than the late 80s through the 90s to find a good one.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
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  • Moderator
  • #42
The oak moss vintage is the way to go. Look for older boxes.

Mitsouko parfum killed it today. It rocked so hard as my scent of the day, my SO went for it for her scent of the evening - the only Guerlain she seems to like!
 
Jul 20, 2017
It’s never been like this for me. What a strange story. It is to me a chypre with an interesting and cryptic top note (they claim it’s peach). It’s very very good.

The top really wasn’t peach.

When you are expecting a pleasant smell and get hit with something as unpleasant as that it puts you on the back foot when testing.
Its like a bad hangover that makes you weary of anything remotely alcoholic and just the thought of it is enough to make things vivid again.

Uhh. Really left a horrible smell in my nose.

I have no idea, though it's hard to imagine even a bottle that's turned smelling like feces and vomit - to me, bad Mitsouko is pungent, but in a varnish-y way. Maybe Mitsouko has been reformulated yet again, and you smelled a fresh bottle of a bad blend. Vintage is the way to go with Mitsouko, in my opinion. One needn't look for bottles earlier than the late 80s through the 90s to find a good one.

If it was just a turned bottle fair enough but I wouldn’t expect something to change so drastically even if it had turned. I’ve had one or two bottles from my teen years turn (didn’t know better and left them on a shelf), but they were lighter more citrus/aquatic and they got that ‘turned’ smell especially in the top notes.

I know many here on Basenotes have a liking for challenging animalic fragrances but this almost made me heave. I won’t be trying Mitsouko again in 2019 and not from the same store. If its a reformulation it won’t last. In a couple of years when this memory has faded I’ll try vintage as you have suggested.
 

Gilturko

Super Member
Dec 30, 2006
I put the test strip to my nose and was overcome by a ghastly smell of vomit and faeces

After reading what you wrote I wonder if only both excretion smelled like that. LOL
Putting jokes aside, that sounds really strange. My oldest bottle of Mitsouko is a 1/4 full montre cologne from the late 1950s. I keep it for its beauty because obviously it's not in a good shape anymore, but it does not smell at all like the tester you tried. There's the peach and the oakmoss still front stage and a delicate layer of civet, but no stench at all.
The other bottle I own is a younger parfum de toilette from the early 1990s and it smells spicy and peppery with a subtle bergamot. I have a tiny parfum too, not sure about the year, and it's a small velvety beauty.
 

Ponyboi

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Apr 28, 2018
Hello all,

I just purchased a vintage parfum bottle and I am wondering how those who have experience with the dab bottles, how do you apply and store? Do you decant into a spray sample bottle? It’s a sealed bottle and is light honey color. I don’t want it to go bad once I open it up. Thank you in advance for any ideas. :)
 

N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer

Retired
Basenotes Plus
Jul 1, 2011
Hello all,

I just purchased a vintage parfum bottle and I am wondering how those who have experience with the dab bottles, how do you apply and store? Do you decant into a spray sample bottle? It’s a sealed bottle and is light honey color. I don’t want it to go bad once I open it up. Thank you in advance for any ideas. :)

Do you mind providing a photo of the bottle? They're a marvel to look at it.

Personally I would decant splash bottles into glass decant atomizers. I prefer spraying my scents on. It be best to avoid applying directly from the splash bottle as skin contamination can degrade the fragrance.
 

Bonnette

Missing Oakmoss
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2015
Hello all,

I just purchased a vintage parfum bottle and I am wondering how those who have experience with the dab bottles, how do you apply and store? Do you decant into a spray sample bottle? It’s a sealed bottle and is light honey color. I don’t want it to go bad once I open it up. Thank you in advance for any ideas. :)
Like N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer, I decant splash bottles into glass atomizers and spray my perfumes. I decant 10ml at a time and store both the original splash bottle and the decant in a closed perfume cabinet at room temperature - if your perfume came with a box, use the original box for storage. To minimize evaporation, make sure that the stopper on the original bottle is firmly in place (some people apply plumber's tape or Parafilm around the neck of the bottle, as well). Your beautiful fragrance will probably outlast all of us!
 

Ponyboi

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Apr 28, 2018
Do you mind providing a photo of the bottle? They're a marvel to look at it.

Personally I would decant splash bottles into glass decant atomizers. I prefer spraying my scents on. It be best to avoid applying directly from the splash bottle as skin contamination can degrade the fragrance.

Like N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer, I decant splash bottles into glass atomizers and spray my perfumes. I decant 10ml at a time and store both the original splash bottle and the decant in a closed perfume cabinet at room temperature - if your perfume came with a box, use the original box for storage. To minimize evaporation, make sure that the stopper on the original bottle is firmly in place (some people apply plumber's tape or Parafilm around the neck of the bottle, as well). Your beautiful fragrance will probably outlast all of us!

Thank you both for the great info. I will add a pic shortly :)
 
Dec 18, 2018
i keep getting the urge to try classic/vintage and mitsouko has been on my radar, so after seeking the advice of a very helpful member of the forum i sprung for a bottle of vintage mitsouko. got it off ebay it was sealed ,have to double check but i think its late 80's. it really is strong but not necessarily in projection. i dont have a problem wearing 'loud' perfumes but i couldnt wear this in public. im not very good at notes and descriptions but i find it very animalic, im thinking of big furry lion for some reason. it is a nice smell something i can appreciate with a spray on the wrist but wouldnt wear ,maybe its just not my style. i was initially going to buy a 30ml bottle but in the opted for a 7.5ml and am glad that i did so. id definitely advise to try before buying. while i was waiting for that to be delivered out of curiosity i ordered a little bottle of the modern one 5ml edt for £8. obviously not comparable in quality but they do smell alike and the edt is something i could wear though it is isnt anything special. maybe i would get on better with the edp but i havent tried that and to be honest i think ive scratched my mitsouko itch, now i seem to have a new rash developing called shalimar ...
 

Bonnette

Missing Oakmoss
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2015
i keep getting the urge to try classic/vintage and mitsouko has been on my radar, so after seeking the advice of a very helpful member of the forum i sprung for a bottle of vintage mitsouko. got it off ebay it was sealed ,have to double check but i think its late 80's. it really is strong but not necessarily in projection. i dont have a problem wearing 'loud' perfumes but i couldnt wear this in public. im not very good at notes and descriptions but i find it very animalic, im thinking of big furry lion for some reason. it is a nice smell something i can appreciate with a spray on the wrist but wouldnt wear ,maybe its just not my style. i was initially going to buy a 30ml bottle but in the opted for a 7.5ml and am glad that i did so. id definitely advise to try before buying. while i was waiting for that to be delivered out of curiosity i ordered a little bottle of the modern one 5ml edt for £8. obviously not comparable in quality but they do smell alike and the edt is something i could wear though it is isnt anything special. maybe i would get on better with the edp but i havent tried that and to be honest i think ive scratched my mitsouko itch, now i seem to have a new rash developing called shalimar ...
Shalimar would indeed be a nice itch to scratch next. :) Good thing you opted for the smaller size of Mitsouko, as it does have an unusual combination of notes and qualities.
 

Bonnette

Missing Oakmoss
Basenotes Plus
Jul 25, 2015
Thank you! And thanks to all the contributors to this thread. I was under the impression the darker the better until I found this and used the advise to look for a good year and color of perfume. :)
The color of your Mitsouko is perfect. You have a grand bottle there.
 

stelz

New member
Dec 17, 2019
I was just looking at the back of of the box - a brand new bottle, mind you - and one of the ingredients listed is "evernia furfuracea (treemoss) extract".
I'm guessing it's standing in for the oakmoss, at least partly? Or was it always there? Curiouser and curiouser...
I googled it, and it looks very similar to oakmoss, but it grows on firs and pines. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudevernia_furfuracea
 

saminlondon

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 25, 2011
I was just looking at the back of of the box - a brand new bottle, mind you - and one of the ingredients listed is "evernia furfuracea (treemoss) extract".
I'm guessing it's standing in for the oakmoss, at least partly? Or was it always there? Curiouser and curiouser...
I googled it, and it looks very similar to oakmoss, but it grows on firs and pines. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudevernia_furfuracea

It's been used as a replacement for oakmoss since around 2005-2006, from memory. Here's an old thread I found, though there will be more out there:
http://www.basenotes.net/threads/187615

Since then, things have moved on, and Guerlain are now also using a version of oakmoss that is low in atranol, the component that is suspected of causing allergies. Mitsouko is smelling pretty good these days, I'd say.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
  • Thread starter
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  • #64
It's been used as a replacement for oakmoss since around 2005-2006, from memory. Here's an old thread I found, though there will be more out there:
http://www.basenotes.net/threads/187615

Since then, things have moved on, and Guerlain are now also using a version of oakmoss that is low in atranol, the component that is suspected of causing allergies. Mitsouko is smelling pretty good these days, I'd say.

I agree that the current Mitsouko seems ok.
 

Rick58 & Beth62

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Dec 27, 2019
I agree that the current Mitsouko seems ok.

I have a tiny little 2ml bottle from the early 80’s and it’s holding it’s own (it hasn’t gotten gunky, still smells very nice), but I think I’d like to buy a new bottle so I can wear it when the impulse hits.

This question goes out to all you Mitsouko-lovers here: Looking at Guerlain’s website, they list three currently in production - extract, EdP and EdT. If you were to chose just one, and you did not want to spend the time or risk your money on eBay hunting down vintage, which would you choose? And why?
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
  • Thread starter
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I have a tiny little 2ml bottle from the early 80’s and it’s holding it’s own (it hasn’t gotten gunky, still smells very nice), but I think I’d like to buy a new bottle so I can wear it when the impulse hits.

This question goes out to all you Mitsouko-lovers here: Looking at Guerlain’s website, they list three currently in production - extract, EdP and EdT. If you were to chose just one, and you did not want to spend the time or risk your money on eBay hunting down vintage, which would you choose? And why?


I think the tester I was trying at the shop recently was an edp. I tend to like edt's and edp's.

In my experience, especially with modern formulations, the parfum versions are more likely to smell off. EDT's and EDP's feel like safer choices to me.

I was testing from this special edition bottle, which I gather is the edp, from this description:

https://www.guerlain.com/int/en-int/exceptional-creations/mitsouko-100th-anniversary-edition#

I would go with the edp!
 

Akragas

Basenotes Member
Nov 9, 2017
I have a question about the umbrella type - how can you tell if it's sealed/never been opened just by looking at the bottle itself?

I have several umbrella bottles, and it's impossible to say.
A real "wrapping plastic seal" or a "sealing cord" didn't exist for umbrella bottles, so you must (unfortunately) rely only on vendor's words.
 

saminlondon

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 25, 2011
I have a tiny little 2ml bottle from the early 80’s and it’s holding it’s own (it hasn’t gotten gunky, still smells very nice), but I think I’d like to buy a new bottle so I can wear it when the impulse hits.

This question goes out to all you Mitsouko-lovers here: Looking at Guerlain’s website, they list three currently in production - extract, EdP and EdT. If you were to chose just one, and you did not want to spend the time or risk your money on eBay hunting down vintage, which would you choose? And why?

Just to confuse things, I'd go with the EdT, which is airier, bright, dry and an easier wear (for me).
 

DrTricia

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Mar 23, 2020
Hello Mitsouko lovers/experts. I am new to BN, but have long been a fragrance enthusiast. My husband has recently become enthralled with fragrance and is active here and collecting/sampling like mad. I told him I’d always wanted to explore more of the Guerlains, with Mitsouko at the top of the list. He proceeded to gift me with a 4oz bottle of extrait from, I think, the 1980s. On the first 2 wearings, I smelled pretty much nothing. He said he smelled it on me, and it was divine. Heartbroken, I let time pass, and returned to my beautiful, enormous bottle a couple of weeks later. This time, I put some in an atomizer, and sprayed liberally. The opening was ok, and I went about my day. About 2 hours in, I was talking on the phone about something completely unrelated, when the heavens opened and this big, warm cloud of fragrance wrapped itself around me like a cloak, causing me to confuse the person with whom I was speaking, when I loudly expressed my joy and surprise. It had the density I find so wonderful in Opium (which I wore for years, then went off of it, and recently returned), so there was a psychological attempt to interpret it as that fragrance, but it wasn’t that, so I continued inhaling profusely for the next 30 minutes or so, trying to comprehend what I was smelling. I fell deeply, and hard for Mitsouko that day. I wore it again the next day, and had a similar experience. I still don’t quite understand it, but I love it.
Now I have set about collecting different versions and concentrations. From what I’ve read here, I shall try the current EDP (is the 1.7oz edp refill in the gold box with the line ending in circular logo the current version? I have the refillable flacon, and those are really well-priced).
Just today, I received a lovely little Les Meteorites refillable spray case, and, unexpectedly, it still has a mostly full 1/4 oz bottle of Mitsouko parfum inside. From what I understand, this packaging was offered in the 1980s, and I was wondering if anyone knows when they stopped making them. The bottle has the code VH 0T6, which, according to an online site, puts it at 1998. The seller believes it is from the 80s, but doesn’t remember exactly when. I guess it could be 1988, but has only 5 characters, hence thinking its 1998. Did they make these that long?
At any rate, I am eager to try this version of Mitsouko parfum (can’t today, because I already started a L’heure Bleue trial before I knew Mitsy had arrived - incidentally, going unusually well; I was afraid LHB was out, but it’s back in good graces), but wanted to know what your collective wisdom tells us about her identity.

I will likely have many more questions related to my recent return to fragrance discovery. I thank you in advance for your indulgence and anticipated enlightening words.
 

PStoller

I’m not old, I’m vintage.
Basenotes Plus
Aug 1, 2019
My husband has recently become enthralled with fragrance and is active here and collecting/sampling like mad. I told him I’d always wanted to explore more of the Guerlains, with Mitsouko at the top of the list. He proceeded to gift me with a 4oz bottle of extrait from, I think, the 1980s.

I have no idea who she's talking about.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
  • Thread starter
  • Moderator
  • #74
Hello Mitsouko lovers/experts. I am new to BN, but have long been a fragrance enthusiast. My husband has recently become enthralled with fragrance and is active here and collecting/sampling like mad. I told him I’d always wanted to explore more of the Guerlains, with Mitsouko at the top of the list. He proceeded to gift me with a 4oz bottle of extrait from, I think, the 1980s. On the first 2 wearings, I smelled pretty much nothing. He said he smelled it on me, and it was divine. Heartbroken, I let time pass, and returned to my beautiful, enormous bottle a couple of weeks later. This time, I put some in an atomizer, and sprayed liberally. The opening was ok, and I went about my day. About 2 hours in, I was talking on the phone about something completely unrelated, when the heavens opened and this big, warm cloud of fragrance wrapped itself around me like a cloak, causing me to confuse the person with whom I was speaking, when I loudly expressed my joy and surprise. It had the density I find so wonderful in Opium (which I wore for years, then went off of it, and recently returned), so there was a psychological attempt to interpret it as that fragrance, but it wasn’t that, so I continued inhaling profusely for the next 30 minutes or so, trying to comprehend what I was smelling. I fell deeply, and hard for Mitsouko that day. I wore it again the next day, and had a similar experience. I still don’t quite understand it, but I love it.
Now I have set about collecting different versions and concentrations. From what I’ve read here, I shall try the current EDP (is the 1.7oz edp refill in the gold box with the line ending in circular logo the current version? I have the refillable flacon, and those are really well-priced).
Just today, I received a lovely little Les Meteorites refillable spray case, and, unexpectedly, it still has a mostly full 1/4 oz bottle of Mitsouko parfum inside. From what I understand, this packaging was offered in the 1980s, and I was wondering if anyone knows when they stopped making them. The bottle has the code VH 0T6, which, according to an online site, puts it at 1998. The seller believes it is from the 80s, but doesn’t remember exactly when. I guess it could be 1988, but has only 5 characters, hence thinking its 1998. Did they make these that long?
At any rate, I am eager to try this version of Mitsouko parfum (can’t today, because I already started a L’heure Bleue trial before I knew Mitsy had arrived - incidentally, going unusually well; I was afraid LHB was out, but it’s back in good graces), but wanted to know what your collective wisdom tells us about her identity.

I will likely have many more questions related to my recent return to fragrance discovery. I thank you in advance for your indulgence and anticipated enlightening words.

Those decorative "meteorite" purse sprays sound nice. I've never looked into Guerlain batch codes. I'm handy with Dior and Hermes batch codes, and that's it. For Guerlain and Chanel, going with older packaging has worked for me. If I were guessing, I would say 1988 might be more likely than 1998, based on the ads I was finding online for the meteorite cases - and 1998 is getting borderline too recent. If it smells amazing, then ' 88. If it's a total letdown, it sounds like an IFRA-compromised '98.

It should hopefully be similar to / the same as the Mitsouko parfum (extract, extrait) you've been wearing. Your experience with the heavens opening sounds familiar from my Mitsouko sampling.

I'm not an Opium fan, and in my mind, it's diametrically opposed to Mitsouko. To me, they're as different as bombast and elegance.

For current versions, anything other than a sampling trip to the Guerlain counter sounds like a recipe for buyer's remorse. It's been a few months since I've descended on a Guerlain counter. I'm feeling due for a trip.

Huge congratulations on passing your L'Heure Bleue test!
 

saminlondon

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 25, 2011
Thank you for sharing your story about Mitsouko. I always love hearing about people falling head over heels for the classics!

The batch code on your bottle definitely dates it to 1998, as you say. Should still smell very good, since the most far-reaching IFRA restrictions didn't come in until the early 2000s, and the fact that it is nearly full is an advantage (less exposure to the air). I've found that Mitsouko in the extrait can vary noticeably from year to year, I suppose owing to the raw materials: some vintages are peachy-soft and golden, others almost inky dark and bitter or spicy or heavy on the vetiver.

Those multicoloured Météorites flacons aren't featured in the Atlas-Monniot Guerlain bible but are usually dated to the 1990s. They're fun, in any case, and were used for also for Samsara, Shalimar etc.
 

DrTricia

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Mar 23, 2020
Those decorative "meteorite" purse sprays sound nice. I've never looked into Guerlain batch codes. I'm handy with Dior and Hermes batch codes, and that's it. For Guerlain and Chanel, going with older packaging has worked for me. If I were guessing, I would say 1988 might be more likely than 1998, based on the ads I was finding online for the meteorite cases - and 1998 is getting borderline too recent. If it smells amazing, then ' 88. If it's a total letdown, it sounds like an IFRA-compromised '98.

It should hopefully be similar to / the same as the Mitsouko parfum (extract, extrait) you've been wearing. Your experience with the heavens opening sounds familiar from my Mitsouko sampling.

I'm not an Opium fan, and in my mind, it's diametrically opposed to Mitsouko. To me, they're as different as bombast and elegance.

For current versions, anything other than a sampling trip to the Guerlain counter sounds like a recipe for buyer's remorse. It's been a few months since I've descended on a Guerlain counter. I'm feeling due for a trip.

Huge congratulations on passing your L'Heure Bleue test!

Thank you for your response! I wore the new old Mitsouko today (from the meteorite bottle), and it was curious. It went on very differently from my big vintage bottle. It is difficult to describe, but it has a sort of oily smell, not unlike the way your clothes smell after you’ve been in a “greasy spoon” diner when you encounter the clothes the next day. I went about my day, and it got better, but after smelling the initial weird food-y note, I can’t seem to shake it completely. I can now smell something related to my previous impression of Mitsouko, but I’m concerned that my little meteorite is from a different galaxy. Mr. S did not register the food/oil note, so maybe I didn’t go around smelling like a snack all day. Not having any frame of reference other than my vintage bottle, I’m not sure which bottle is closer to type. I need to find more versions to try and get a proper read on the fragrance.

I agree that Mitsouko and Opium are very different kinds of scents. My likening Mitsouko to Opium is only related to the density I encountered when the Mitsouko blanket wrapped itself around me. Opium is one of the fragrances with which I have encountered that quality with consistency (in the old juice, that is). I am not referring to mere strength/loudness of smell, rather I mean presence. That is part of what was interesting about my Mitsouko moment; it was so unlike any other fragrance I have worn, and my mind cast about for a reference, but could only recognize that feeling of density I get from Opium, but the smell is very different, so I remained off-balance. It really was glorious. Mitsouko goes through many different phases. So much more than top note, middle and dry down. It is an adventure. I am hyper-aware of it the whole time I wear it. I wish the stores were open so I could get samples.
Well, I can L’Heure Bleue tomorrow while I shop online for more Mitsoukos …
 

DrTricia

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Mar 23, 2020
Thank you for sharing your story about Mitsouko. I always love hearing about people falling head over heels for the classics!

The batch code on your bottle definitely dates it to 1998, as you say. Should still smell very good, since the most far-reaching IFRA restrictions didn't come in until the early 2000s, and the fact that it is nearly full is an advantage (less exposure to the air). I've found that Mitsouko in the extrait can vary noticeably from year to year, I suppose owing to the raw materials: some vintages are peachy-soft and golden, others almost inky dark and bitter or spicy or heavy on the vetiver.

Those multicoloured Météorites flacons aren't featured in the Atlas-Monniot Guerlain bible but are usually dated to the 1990s. They're fun, in any case, and were used for also for Samsara, Shalimar etc.

Thank you for your response. I always seem to gravitate toward refillable flacons, and the “Les Meteorites” series of cases is so lovely and beautifully made. It’s like jewelry for my perfume. I love the fact that the same case can house a variety of fragrances. I discovered that they came in 2 sizes; 1/4 oz parfum, and 1/2 oz EDP.

Now if I can just figure out how to make the little refill bottles refillable, things will be perfect.

If my meteorite Mitsouko is from 1998, is that an off year (as Bavard feared it could be)? I’ve read that the reformulation was really bad, then good, then bad again in 2015, then good again, and remains so. I have never read anything to pinpoint the years to avoid, other than 2015. Hopefully my little meteorite will be more pleasant on next wearing. Sometimes it is anticipating one thing, and getting something slightly different that spins one around.

I wish the fragrances I love were still themselves, as all of this detective work, while enjoyable on some levels, is exhausting when all you want is to smell the way you want to smell. I have gone through years believing my sense of smell had changed so that once-transformative fragrances no longer spoke to me, only to find much later that perhaps I hadn’t changed as much as the fragrances had. My husband’s recent foray into vintage scents brought some of my long-ago-abandoned former loves into the house, and I have been absolutely staggered to find that, in some cases, it wasn’t me - it was them! Wonderful, except it creates this impossible task of collecting enough of the old bottles so that I never run out. Sigh.
 

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