Thursday, April 05, 2007

Chanel Les Exclusifs Eau de Cologne

Cologne can mean one of two things in perfumespeak: 1. a concentration of perfume that's lighter than eau de toilette known as eau de cologne, or 2. one of those light, often lemon-scented splashes almost anyone can wear (if you like lemon scents; some people find them too sharp) because it's fleetingly sheer and relatively unobtrusive, making them great daytime/office scents and perfect for active lifestyles. I'm referring to the latter definition in this post. Some famous citrusy, zingy eaux include Mülhens 4711 (created in the year 1772), Guerlain Eau du Coq (1892), Eau de Rochas (1970), Acqua di Parma Colonia (1916), Annick Goutal Eau d'Hadrien (1981) and Bulgari Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert (1992). Many eau de colognes are similar in style, composed using citrus notes such as bergamot, lemon, lime, orange or modern notes such as yuzu and green tea, but as similar as they may be, I still have favorites in this genre. Unless you're a diehard citrus aficionado, many of these would smell similar enough that you may not feel the need for variations. Have you ever met a lemon you loved? Here's one bitter fruit that stole my heart recently, although I don't have a bottle of it yet and am in no rush to buy (but really want one day):

Chanel Eau de Cologne (2007):
This is a good basic eau de cologne for people who like a slight bit of floralcy and depth to their fresh lemony-bergamot scent. At first sniff, it reminded me very much of Le Labo Jasmin 17, a floral blend of citrus and jasmine with a very light vanillic base, only Chanel EDC is much simpler, with more citrus and less floral. For another comparison, it's fresher than Chanel Cristalle to me because Cristalle is a chypre and this is not a round and heavy-ish, mossy-woody type of citrus to me but a more modern and straightforward one (although, I could be wrong and this could be a light chypre like Cristalle or Eau de Rochas). I thought I got a very sheer vanillic base from Eau de Cologne but after just an hour, it's hard to detect on my skin (this scent fades quickly on me). The only reason I might resist buying it is because I think it smells enough like 4711 that I don't have to shell out so heftily for something so similar and simple; however, I can also find it uniquely appealing and this could easily become a new shared favorite if I bought it and gifted it to my loved one.

It's only sold in a huge 200ml size, plus it's part of the Exclusifs line which makes it harder to find and obtain than their more mainstream offerings. As much as I adore the complex beauty that is 31 Rue Cambon, I find Eau de Cologne the easiest to wear among the new collection.