Vintage Coty Perfumes, Reconsidered

mikeperez23

Be Here. Now.
Basenotes Plus
Dec 31, 2006
I just read through the whole thread - wow, grayspoole, hats off to you. You have a wonderful writing style and a real passion for the historical aspects of the scents, which is highly informative and a total geek-fest for us here on BN.

The very first Coty that I smelled was a bottle of Chypre that I bought (blind) on eBay that looks like this (it is an Eau de Parfum & the bottom says Coty Div Pfizer):

Chypre.jpg


At that time (maybe 10 years ago?) I was already very familiar with the chypre structure. When I joined BN I disliked chypres. Most of them I described as 'smelling like hairspray' or 'powdery' and I avoided coming into contact with them and stuck with my orientals and such. And then I was gifted a chypre by my ex-partner, who for some reason always wanted to buy me perfume that he found out shopping...even though many of them I returned because I didn't like them. He bought me Numero Uno by Carthusia, which is a bitter orange masculine-leaning chypre and I loved it. When I researched it on BN I found out it was a chypre and it was like a light bulb had been turned on. I suddenly 'got' it - that vibrational effect that chypre scents have when they combine citrus, oakmoss and patchouli. Anyway once opening that door I just *had* to try Mitsouko since I was already a big fan of Guerlain and I went right for the good stuff - vintage Mitsouko parfum, then 'new' EdT, then vintage EdC, then vintage EdT, then those disco'd Bar Soaps (I still have some in my shower now, in one of those plastic Guerlain soap containers).

Then...what-the-heck I bought Coty Chypre blind.

The first thing I noticed about the Coty is how much more fruity it is in the top notes. Strongly of fruit. I didn't expect that. I feel like the fruit elements of the Guerlain are more subtle, whereas in the Coty they're much more forthright and strong. I happen to enjoy that - in my mind it makes wearing the Coty feel more 'casual' and 'exotic'. For those of you who know me and have been reading my posts for years I have a silly ritual with Mitsouko: I wear it on rainy days. But the Coty - it doesn't have that 'rainy day' aspect.

Nonetheless, I found that I don't wear Chypre a lot. I like it's simple, classic crispness but I have to be in the mood for it's basic structure. And on most people (who smell me wearing this) it smells like I am wearing something 'powdery' or 'you smell like an old woman'. I really could care less what people think about my smell (even my partner) and god knows I'm 48 years old and I don't see the term 'old woman' as an insult in the least - but what I mean is the scent isn't going to garner me any compliments that's for sure. I'm not gonna splash some Chypre on before I go and pick up my Dad at the airport, if you get my drift.

Still - I treasure my bottle. I love showing it to friends and explaining to them it's historical significance. So I hope I always have it around.

I am unfamiliar with any other formulation of this - I have never seen 'new' bottles. I would enjoy smelling vintage parfum one of these days, if only for a point of reference.
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
I just read through the whole thread - wow, grayspoole, hats off to you. You have a wonderful writing style and a real passion for the historical aspects of the scents, which is highly informative and a total geek-fest for us here on BN.

Thank you sir! I feel very flattered! I love all of the discussions here, and I'm glad that my vintage geekery is welcome.

The very first Coty that I smelled was a bottle of Chypre that I bought (blind) on eBay...

I enjoyed reading about your experiences with Coty Chypre and then Mitsouko and chypres in general. I don't know why, perhaps I was imprinted with the smell of 1970's chypres in my childhood, but chypres have always been my favorite perfume genre. And while I appreciate the "historical significance" of Coty Chypre, I have to admit it is not my favorite vintage chypre. Perhaps I would feel differently if I had a pristine flacon of the vintage extrait, but several tests of the 1980's EDP and the vintage EDT, which I have recently acquired, have not altered my assessment.

I will keep looking for that perfect Coty Chypre extrait though...
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
I have been thinking about vintage L’Origan (1905) a lot lately. L’Origan is yet another extremely influential vintage Coty perfume. Barbara Hermann’s description of it as smelling like a “Wiccan biscotti” can’t be beat. It’s really all you need to know about vintage L’Origan.

WARNING: Vintage Geek Rant Begins Here

There is a standard classification of oriental perfumes into the ambreine (bergamot, vanillin, coumarin, civet) and mellis accords(benzyl salicylate,, patchouli, eugenol, hydroxycitronellal). Like many vintage perfumes, L’Origan falls in between these standard categories and some others as well. Victoria Frolova (Bois de Jasmin) notes that L’Origan is neither floral nor oriental.

L’Origan is defined by its spicy clove/carnation topnotes but what gives it its character is the way the warm spiciness plays off cool violet, rose, vetiver, and myrrh. There is also a haunting herbal quality, not so much the pungent oregano suggested by its name, but the milder, anisic tarragon. The base is a kind of musky amber.

L’Origan is almost inevitably compared to L’Heure Bleue, but these are different perfumes that deserve to be assessed on their own merits. L’Origan is much more spicy than LHB. The other comparison that immediately comes to mind is vintage Bellodgia, which is another discussion.

There is a fascinating 2017 Basenotes article by Nick Gilbert about the recreation of L’Origan for a recent scent exhibition at Somerset House, London, curated by Claire Catterall and Lizzie Ostrom here:

http://www.basenotes.net/features/3531-recreating-lorigan

The exhibition website offers this assessment:

Unlike wine, once bottled perfume has a relatively short shelf-life of about five years. To experience a fragrance as it was in 1905, the only option is to recreate it, a challenging prospect given that anyone attempting to can only rely on anecdote and general knowledge of how perfume smelt at the time. ...Finding the right materials as they would have been in 1905 also provided a substantial hurdle. Some ingredients have changed over time, due to different extraction methods, whilst others are no longer available. (https://www.somersethouse.org.uk/blog/original-pioneering-perfume)

As a vintage perfume collector, I have to disagree with the general argument being made here. The Osmotheque versions of vintage perfumes are not “our only option” and I certainly don’t believe that perfumes have a shelf life of five years. In fact, well preserved vintage perfumes can offer a very good indication of what the original perfume smelled like. You may not find a bottle containing Coty’s original 1905 composition, but a good vintage bottle of L’Origan should get you close. Just to be clear, I respect the work of the Osmotheque, but I don’t think that Osmotheque intrepretations should completely define our understanding of a vintage perfume.

I also think it is important to recognize that the Osmotheque perfumers are making “reinterpretations” rather than perfect “recreations” of vintage scents. They do not have access to all of the original ingredients or bases. In Gilbert’s article, Will Inrig, a perfume historian, seems to question Osmotheque’s reliance on a 1950’s L’Origan formula for the Somerset House L’Origan and suggests that a 1962 formula from a factory compounding sheet may offer a better guide. Further, Daphne Buguey, the nose who created the Somerset House L’Origan, clearly states that she was not seeking to make a precise historical reconstruction. She notes:

“I kept in mind the design of a contemporary formula made of available ingredients” – meaning that one day, it could be manufactured”

I think it’s wonderful that museums and curators are devoting attention to the art of perfumery, but in assessing an important vintage perfume, there can be no definitive version. All we can do is discuss different versions, bottles in different states of preservation, and different reformulations. We can’t regain the original L’Origan, but we can still learn about its history and appreciate its greatness.

END of Vintage Geek Rant

Have you worn/do you wear L’Origan? What do you think of it?
 

cacio

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Nov 5, 2010
I agree with you that reconstruction is not the only way to experience old masterpieces. Also, the composition changed over time, so there is usually no single formula (and as LT noted for Iris gris, perhaps the osmotheque formula was never actually used...).

Still, having smelled many Osmotheque reconstruction, I feel that vintage perfumes rarely smell so good. It is rare to get a bottle that's in such a good state. But the osmotheque doesn't sell its stuff, so one does what one can.

As for l'origan, not sure what to make of Wiccan biscotti-but then I'm not familiar with wiccans... But I do agree with your description. Spicy floral, but abstractly so, and a revolutionary perfume. it gave rise to nearly a century of "makeup" perfume (now mostly substituted by vanilla and other syrups).

cacio
 

N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer

Semi-Retirement
Basenotes Plus
Jul 1, 2011
Coty produced many gift sets over the years. I haven't found an ad with that specific box but here's a similar Emeraude set.

View attachment 105944

And a different style of set for Chypre.

View attachment 105942

And here's a 1940 ad showing the sets for L'Aimant, Emeraude, L'Origan, and Paris.

View attachment 105943

It would be very easy to get carried away into collecting these...(but not today Satan, not today)
Wow these are absolutely stunning.

I really would like to compare the original Chypre to Chypre-Siam
 

Earlyn

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 14, 2019
WARNING: Vintage Geek Rant Begins Here

Ahh...please do continue, its fabulous! IMG_0574-1.jpg
My bottles of L'Origan representing a couple different periods - earlier ones parfum, EDT, later the PDT. Generally, with what is available to me, I'd agree the Pfizer Cotys aren't as interesting although I'll give a slight pass to the Emeraude because my mom used to wear the Pfizer and it was beautiful on her, also only have the 80's version of the unicorn Chypre.

As to the restoration/recreation of vintage fragrances - It occurs to me that there is often a shock when works of visual art are restored. The Sistine Chapel was unexpected in its brilliance when cleaned and restored that some called it garish, as people had gotten so used to the muted tones of the aged work. I'd think that a similar effect could be experienced in a resurrected fragrance due to that lack of a certain patina. Although I understand the thought behind the updating of some of the recreated fragrances at the Osmotheque and see value in that, I believe these fragrances were and are works of art - some representing turning points in perfumery, and I would also value a skilled attempt at a historically accurate revival. I don't think "updating" the chapel ever figured in to that restoration project as there was a reverence to the work and a desire to experience it as the artist intended.

This thread is great and inspiring so much exploration - vintage to vintage, within a house, and house to house. Haven't done head to head comparison with these L'Origans yet but will. I'm collecting or have collected other Cotys to try vertically - L'Aimant, Emeraude, Paris. Wish I had ten arms and five noses.

Now, if I could just shut up the irrational little voice - "Don't use those early vintages - save them until you are SURE you can commit them to memory, because if you use them up then they will be gone from your cabinet and from your head FOREVER when you want to compare them to something else, BUT if you don't use them you won't learn them, or enjoy them." - so around and around goes the hamster wheel. The death of fun.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
Now, if I could just shut up the irrational little voice - "Don't use those early vintages - save them until you are SURE you can commit them to memory, because if you use them up then they will be gone from your cabinet and from your head FOREVER when you want to compare them to something else, BUT if you don't use them you won't learn them, or enjoy them."

The latter argument wins for me every time. It's the enjoyment that clinches it.

Emeraude is still the only Coty I've tried.

Edit: Not true. I've also tried two versions of La Rose Jacqueminot. I liked it. I like vintage smelling fragrances, and I like roses.
 

Earlyn

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 14, 2019
There is a fascinating 2017 Basenotes article by Nick Gilbert about the recreation of L’Origan for a recent scent exhibition at Somerset House, London, curated by Claire Catterall and Lizzie Ostrom here:
http://www.basenotes.net/features/3531-recreating-lorigan
Thanks for hi lighting this great article. I have so much respect for the work of these present day perfumers - chemical archeologists really.

View attachment 106394
Generally, with what is available to me, I'd agree the Pfizer Cotys aren't as interesting ....
Well, not finding much dating info on the gold crown bottles - rarely show up in ads or with boxes. Assumed they were Pfizer but just has Coty is printed on them.-
Tested twice on opposing wrists - older EDT in the middle with EDP on the right. (haven't uncorked the little perfume that came as a set with the older EDT yet) -
To my novice nose these start out nearly indistinguishable in composition and strength. The Wiccan biscotti mentioned is accompanied by a cup of Chai and a vase of flowers. Under the overarching clove in the older vintage, the spice is more forward and the florals present as a bit more varied than the newer vintage which is slightly flatter and encapsulated. They become more similar in the heart but the newer vintage has a sweet (musky?) underlayment (perhaps this is what gave the feeling of encapsulation at the beginning) that shows itself as the most signifiant difference between the two during the dry down. The older vintage maintains a clear spice with more of a sweet resin rather than musk and adds a bit of powder and something else at the very end underneath that I can't identify. Longevity and projection seems similar. This was not a blind test as it should have been so I can't speak to any mental bias or expectation that may have altered my response.

Even with the differences I perceived (due to formulation, age, storage???), I can say that both bottles are unmistakably L'Origan. I enjoy wearing history, and I would be happy wearing either of these particular bottles (which is an infinitely calming thought to me).

The latter argument wins for me every time. It's the enjoyment that clinches it.
Emeraude is still the only Coty I've tried.
Edit: Not true. I've also tried two versions of La Rose Jacqueminot. I liked it. I like vintage smelling fragrances, and I like roses.
Yes, hurray to enjoyment!
So what did you think of the Emeraude, and do you agree with the offspring that are commonly mentioned?
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
Well, not finding much dating info on the gold crown bottles - rarely show up in ads or with boxes. Assumed they were Pfizer but just has Coty is printed on them.

Not sure on what grounds, perhaps a now forgotten source, but I think of the crown bottles as dating from the 1960's.

Tested twice on opposing wrists - older EDT in the middle with EDP on the right. (haven't uncorked the little perfume that came as a set with the older EDT yet)...

Wonderful observations on L'Origan! I agree 100% that the older Coty EDT's are equivalent to the 1960's PDT's. I remember reading a lot of strong praise for the crown PDT's but I have found them to be acceptable but not all out amazing. I think you are going to be in for a treat when you uncork that little parfum, though.

Here's my L'Origan line up ...
5A38EB03-C069-4641-ACD9-78CAF580D916.jpg

L'Origan parfum is so richly textured, spicy, and resinous. I've almost used up the small parfum, and I thoroughly enjoyed doing so.
 

N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer

Semi-Retirement
Basenotes Plus
Jul 1, 2011
Yes, hurray to enjoyment!
So what did you think of the Emeraude, and do you agree with the offspring that are commonly mentioned?

I was able to try the perfume concentration of Emerald from the 1950s recently. It was really potent. I recalled getting a fusion of Shalimar and L'Heure Bleue. It was nice but it was a bit much at times.
 

theladymay

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 6, 2015
What a wonderful thread, how didn't I see it until now? I have a weakness/passion for the gold labelled little L'Aimants and L'Origans in particular; one of my earliest girly scent make-up memories was the Coty Air Spun on both my grandmother and aunt's bureaus. It kind of kills me how the you tube peeps complain about the scent. (Kids these days, etc!) I also really like the original Imprevu very much though it seems not to get a lot of love. L'Aimant pre 70s, particularly Parfum, makes my heart beat faster. Dated, I guess, but it's indubitably what angels smell like unless they're wearing No. 22. And for an aldehyde junkie, Lady Stetson - especially the perfumes and "precious blend perfume sprays" - is remarkably good.
Thank you for such interesting reading =)
 

Couronne de Violette

Well-known member
Apr 14, 2019
[QUOTE "Don't use those early vintages - save them until you are SURE you can commit them to memory, because if you use them up then they will be gone from your cabinet and from your head FOREVER when you want to compare them to something else, BUT if you don't use them you won't learn them, or enjoy them." - so around and around goes the hamster wheel. The death of fun.[/QUOTE]

"Hamster wheel" is a nice way of characterizing this habit. It's a combination of conserving the precious, curation of olfactory art, anticipation of a near-religious experience, and hedonistic consumerism. I will soon be the owner of vintage Crepe de Chine and a little extrait of L'Origan with the round label. I attempted to purchase the EDT of L'Origan but the ebay seller can't seem to get the shipment to move, and is now not communicating. It's great to have your experience expanded with beauty, at the very least.
 

Earlyn

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 14, 2019
"Hamster wheel" is a nice way of characterizing this habit. It's a combination of conserving the precious, curation of olfactory art, anticipation of a near-religious experience, and hedonistic consumerism. I will soon be the owner of vintage Crepe de Chine and a little extrait of L'Origan with the round label. I attempted to purchase the EDT of L'Origan but the ebay seller can't seem to get the shipment to move, and is now not communicating. It's great to have your experience expanded with beauty, at the very least.

You certainly laid out all the points of obsession. The anticipation of fragrance delivery is expecially exciting, particularly with vintages. Sorry to hear about the L”Origan EDT - hope it gets back on track and pops up at your door. Both the Crepe de Chine extrait and the EDC are beautiful. In honor of your impending L’Origan extrait ownership I will bravely uncork my little bottle and give it a wear this week! Might do that with some other Cotys I’ve been waffling about as well. Please share what you think about the L’Origan.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
what did you think of the Emeraude, and do you agree with the offspring that are commonly mentioned?

These were my smelling notes at the time:

Bavard: This smells like a 1920s release, in the realm of things like L'Heure Bleue, from 1912, and Shalimar, from 1925. This is the kind of perfume I expect to grow on me as I get to know it, as L'Heure Bleue did. This has a dark, woodsy, powdery vanilla smell, a real treat for smelling so historical, deep, and complex, yet smooth.

I liked it, but I haven't worn it since. The Guerlain alternatives whet my appetite a little more.
 

Couronne de Violette

Well-known member
Apr 14, 2019
You certainly laid out all the points of obsession. The anticipation of fragrance delivery is expecially exciting, particularly with vintages. Sorry to hear about the L”Origan EDT - hope it gets back on track and pops up at your door. Both the Crepe de Chine extrait and the EDC are beautiful. In honor of your impending L’Origan extrait ownership I will bravely uncork my little bottle and give it a wear this week! Might do that with some other Cotys I’ve been waffling about as well. Please share what you think about the L’Origan.

This little beauty just arrived, and I love it! More than L'Aimant, although they share some dna...love the clovey, medicinal aspect. I definitely get the peach (an apple-like peach), blended with florals. There is a face powder/makeup note as it dries that resembles almond biscotti. I'm already wearing something else, so not giving it the full skin review. Dammit, still haven't mastered editing for images on this interface...
 

Attachments

  • L'Origan .jpg
    L'Origan .jpg
    51.7 KB · Views: 168

Earlyn

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jun 14, 2019
This little beauty just arrived, and I love it! More than L'Aimant, although they share some dna...love the clovey, medicinal aspect. I definitely get the peach (an apple-like peach), blended with florals. There is a face powder/makeup note as it dries that resembles almond biscotti. I'm already wearing something else, so not giving it the full skin review. Dammit, still haven't mastered editing for images on this interface...

I think the pic looks fine. Very nice bottle! Is it Friday already? I was going to uncork my dram of L'Origan this week but got distracted by other fragrances. I'm definitely going to wear it for my vintage SOTD tomorrow. What you have described in your perfume so far sounds familiar to the EDT I've tried.

I'm just learning these Coty vintages so I'm loving all the history and the notes about these fragrances.
I'm still making my way through all the links of information in the thread so far but I'm looking forward to more discussion from the BN vintigistas, and even feeling fine about my guilty pleasure yard sale find of Lady Stetson.


L'Origan has gone viral!

Considering his marketing approach I'd have to think Coty would be proud. Do you think Coty could ever envision L'Origan being talked about (and actually floating in the atmosphere) in 2019? Amazing!
 

Couronne de Violette

Well-known member
Apr 14, 2019
I think the pic looks fine. Very nice bottle! Is it Friday already? I was going to uncork my dram of L'Origan this week but got distracted by other fragrances. I'm definitely going to wear it for my vintage SOTD tomorrow. What you have described in your perfume so far sounds familiar to the EDT I've tried.

I'm just learning these Coty vintages so I'm loving all the history and the notes about these fragrances.
I'm still making my way through all the links of information in the thread so far but I'm looking forward to more discussion from the BN vintigistas, and even feeling fine about my guilty pleasure yard sale find of Lady Stetson.




Considering his marketing approach I'd have to think Coty would be proud. Do you think Coty could ever envision L'Origan being talked about (and actually floating in the atmosphere) in 2019? Amazing!

I would hope so; I read that François Coty died in poverty after being one of the richest men in Europe for defining desire in the form of fragrance. After a nice 8 hour skin test, L'Origan lives up to every accolade. A masterpiece.
 

Couronne de Violette

Well-known member
Apr 14, 2019
L'Origan and L'Heure Bleue is probably more removed from each other compared to the former two pairing, with L'Heure Bleue taking the almond-y heliotrope-tonka-orange blossom core of L'Origan and rendering it more polished with the addition of signature Guerlinade. But in this case, I much prefer the seemingly more crude L'Origan, with its heavy dose of spicy clove (probably the Diathine base?) providing a more vivid contrast to the more delicate herbal sweetness of violet (a base of ionone if I remember correctly) and the creamy, enveloping almond-y heliotrope-tonka-orange blossom heart.
.

I received a L'Origan EdT today, probably 50s era, and the spices are very prominent; almost like clove oil but with nutmeg softening. Beautiful interplay between the two and the spice note lasts all the way through. Orange blossom is very dim, but the floral violet/heliotrope and tonka are even softer than in the parfum. My little parfum version has a very definite peach/orange blossom opening on a bed of spice, then turning to almond powder. In love with this scent; one of the greats, even if not as thrilling and evocative as L'HB. Wish I had the budget of some on this board to sample all the vintage Cotys.
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
Alright f*ck it.

I just blind bought some vintage L'Origan parfum. Couronne de Violette's description made my mouth water.

Resistance is futile, sir. Can't wait to hear what you think of the parfum when you get it.

Here's a quirky, surrealist L'Origan ad from 1940 with a large femme fatale taking aim. The L'Origan ad taglines were usually "The Golden" or. "For Your Golden Moments."

283AD7B0-F6BF-4D7E-9199-DFB1EE121E41.jpeg
 

mikeperez23

Be Here. Now.
Basenotes Plus
Dec 31, 2006
Resistance is futile, sir. Can't wait to hear what you think of the parfum when you get it.

Here's a quirky, surrealist L'Origan ad from 1940 with a large femme fatale taking aim. The L'Origan ad taglines were usually "The Golden" or. "For Your Golden Moments."

View attachment 107724

Haha, I love that. The man *has* to walk through the L'Origan door to get the girl. That's me! I'm the guy!! lol
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
I received a L'Origan EdT today, probably 50s era, and the spices are very prominent; almost like clove oil but with nutmeg softening. Beautiful interplay between the two and the spice note lasts all the way through. Orange blossom is very dim, but the floral violet/heliotrope and tonka are even softer than in the parfum. My little parfum version has a very definite peach/orange blossom opening on a bed of spice, then turning to almond powder. In love with this scent; one of the greats, even if not as thrilling and evocative as L'HB. Wish I had the budget of some on this board to sample all the vintage Cotys.

I agree with these notes on L'Origan edt. I get clove and it's not as involved as L'Heure Bleue, but I imagine most L'Heure Bleue fans, such as myself, would like it. It is so agreeable.

Someone in the reviews mentioned civet, and that would help explain why I like it so much. This edt mini is an inexpensive way to try some nice, animalic (and powdery) vintage.
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
My L'Origan Parfum arrived safely (thank you for not coming Hurricane Dorian!). I will wear it soon and post my thoughts.

Mine looks just like the one grayspoole posted above, on the right, in this pic.. Grayspoole, what circa year is this one, do you think?

I don’t know this with certainty, just from gazing at vintage ads, but I think these bottles date from the 1960’s-70’s. The bottles with the gold embossed labels (like the one on the left) are older. I look forward to hearing what you think.

I agree with these notes on L'Origan edt. I get clove and it's not as involved as L'Heure Bleue, but I imagine most L'Heure Bleue fans, such as myself, would like it. It is so agreeable.

Someone in the reviews mentioned civet, and that would help explain why I like it so much. This edt mini is an inexpensive way to try some nice, animalic (and powdery) vintage.

Although the comparison with LHB is seemingly inevitable, the more I wear these perfumes, the more different they seem. Of course, any comparisons will vary depending on which versions/formulations you are testing. My LHB extract from 1960-67 has an almost shocking amount of civet, which is completely absent in the pâtisserie of my newer, circa 2000 LHB.

I’m completely captivated by the dry down of L’Origan. Without the heavier vanillin of the Guerlain, the Coty perfume weaves a more subtle, complex spell of nitromusks, lingering floral notes, and civet. The notes seem to flicker in and out of my perception. I believe Coty did not appreciate the Guerlain vanillin. I wonder if Coty’s use of natural tinctures, as reported by Coifan and others, along with more typical, heavier perfume ingredients, provides this rich but transparent quality to the composition.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
Although the comparison with LHB is seemingly inevitable, the more I wear these perfumes, the more different they seem. Of course, any comparisons will vary depending on which versions/formulations you are testing. My LHB extract from 1960-67 has an almost shocking amount of civet, which is completely absent in the pâtisserie of my newer, circa 2000 LHB.

I’m completely captivated by the dry down of L’Origan. Without the heavier vanillin of the Guerlain, the Coty perfume weaves a more subtle, complex spell of nitromusks, lingering floral notes, and civet. The notes seem to flicker in and out of my perception. I believe Coty did not appreciate the Guerlain vanillin. I wonder if Coty’s use of natural tinctures, as reported by Coifan and others, along with more typical, heavier perfume ingredients, provides this rich but transparent quality to the composition.

Inevitable, but fleeting. I agree it's different enough to distance itself. I keep thinking that if someone likes one of them, they would probably like the other.

I like Guerlain vanilla. Chanel used a variation on it for the original Pour Monsieur Concentree. I've stocked up on that and Habit Rouge, and I have a smattering of other Guerlains to sample when the mood strikes. I'm a fan, but I don't miss the vanilla when it's not there, in this case, at least.
 

grayspoole

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 4, 2014
I like Guerlain vanilla. Chanel used a variation on it for the original Pour Monsieur Concentree. I've stocked up on that and Habit Rouge, and I have a smattering of other Guerlains to sample when the mood strikes. I'm a fan, but I don't miss the vanilla when it's not there, in this case, at least.

Oh, believe me, I also like the use of vanillin in classic Guerlains—a beautiful, essential component in Shalimar, LHB, Vol de Nuit. I am just speculating on why/how L’Origan and LHB feel like they have such different textures and degrees of transparency on the skin.
 

mikeperez23

Be Here. Now.
Basenotes Plus
Dec 31, 2006
I don’t know this with certainty, just from gazing at vintage ads, but I think these bottles date from the 1960’s-70’s. The bottles with the gold embossed labels (like the one on the left) are older. I look forward to hearing what you think.

I wore it to bed a couple days ago. Too quick to post a full review but I immediately recognized the L'Heure Bleue connection (I have owned vintage LhB in the EdC and PdT formulations). But...I do know this - in the morning I couldn't smell the Coty at all. Whereas, when I have worn LHB to bed...I can clearly smell it on me in the morning. So perhaps I'm experiencing the same 'transparency' as others in this thread, when it comes to L'Origan versus it's peers.
 

Bavard

Wearing Perfume Right Now
Moderator
Basenotes Plus
Jul 20, 2015
Rose Jacqueminot (1904)
L'Origan (1905)
Styx (1911)
Chypre (1913)
Muguet de Bois (1913)
Emeraude (1918)
Paris (1922)
L'Aimant (1927)

A'Suma (1934)

I've now tried the ones in bold. I think L'Origan and L'Aimant smell like fragrances of a similar style, with warm, sweet bases.

Overall, I'm more excited by these than, say, the Godet's from the MixerScent pass.

I've mostly been impressed with vintage Coty. I certainly like it more than modern fragrances.
 

cacio

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Nov 5, 2010
Thanks for the heads up! Very nice read.
The impossibility of bringing these back, of course, is not just that Coty is now more interested in a different market segment. It's that IFRA made almost all of these perfume impossible.
cacio
 

Latest News

Top