Timeless fragrance never went out of fashion

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In an era of endless half rate celebrity fragrances – we often forget the heritage of perfume and what it means to us.  The memory of a mother’s perfume or a former partner – those perfumes that stand the test of time are often the ones we go back to once the brief excitement of a flanker or new release wears off.  New fragrances are trotted out several times a year and often it’s a flanker fragrance (Flanker: a “sequel” fragrance that capitalizes on the success of a master brand or “pillar fragrance”) or a watered down version of the original.

So what makes a timeless fragrance?  Is it when it was made?  Guerlain’s “Imperiale Cologne” was created in 1893 inspired by the Empress Eugenie and still stands on the counter to this day as a outstanding version of the brand as well as being a modern scent that reaches across eras.

Is it the heritage of the brand and fragrance – such as Chanel No5? The EDT was created in 1919 and became iconic almost overnight. when it went on general sale in 1924.  Thanks to quotes from the likes of Marilyn Monroe – this fragrance survives as the best selling of all time.  Millions of women worldwide rate this as their favourite fragrance – it’s certainly one of mine .

Or is it the juice itself?  A simple bottle, limited marketing – just a gifted parfumier and his vision – like my other favourite – Shalimar.  Even in a world bombarded with marketing messages of which fragrance to wear – Guerlain continue to fly their flagship fragrance under the radar – it still receives next to no marketing compared to other brands yet is their best seller and has been since its creation in 1921.  This is THE original oriental, from which all others take their inspiration.  Very few other brands have created such a beautiful oriental (with the exception of Coco and Opium) and that is largely due to the legendary skills of master parfumier Jacques Guerlain.  It is the ultimate signature fragrance – I’d have one bottle of this to wear every day than a thousand celebrity perfumes.

So with this in mind, House of Bath are stocking a range of “hard to find” fragrances that take you back to a simpler time of fragrance – you had one and you stuck to it like glue – it was the one your mother and grandmother wore everyday and created all those memories of being close to that person.

Remember – fragrance is a very individual thing, what smells great in the bottle or on your friend may not smell amazing on you – depending on your body chemistry.  My top tip is to either get a sample or “spray and walk away” as the initial top notes are never what you are left with and you may love the initial hit but hate the base notes and the base notes are what you have to live with for 8 hours!

My top ticks from House of Bath;

Je Reviens

Violet, bergamot, jasmine and narcissus, first launched in 1932 by the House of Worth.   I love violet in a fragrance (if it’s done well – if it’s done badly it smells of powdery parma violets) and this one is a great example.  Blended with my favourite essence, Bergamot, some of the sweetness is taken away and replaced with the zingy citrusy bergamot and complimented by the ever classic floral jasmine.  They even do buy one get one free on this.  Two perfumes for the price of one?  That’s my kind of offer!  It’s a spring/summer fragrance but also lends itself well to lifting the dreariness of Autumn.  £16.29 for 50mls but remember you get two!

Youth Dew – Estee Lauder 1953

This irresistible fragrance has floral top notes of rose jonquil and lavender intensified by delicious spices and precious woods.

4711 Cologne – 1792 (yes really!)

This is a wonderfully fresh fragrance – totally unisex and perfect for holidays, freshening up and getting that just out of the shower feel.  Top Notes – Bergamot, Lemon, Orange, Petitgrain, Neroli, heart notes – Rosemary, Rose, Base Notes –Musk, Woody Notes. This was the predecessor of Eau Dynamisante as a go anywhere, do anything fragrance to make the wearer feel great.  In fact it was the predecessor of all colognes!  £13.45 for 50ml

 They also sell White Diamonds, Anais Anais (oh the arguments we had at school how to pronounce this!), Blue Grass and L’aimant by Coty.  It’s worth dropping by to see if they have your favourite!

House of Bath online store.

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