Thursday, May 31, 2007

Jean Patou Joy

This is long overdue; I need to sing my praises for Jean Patou's famous Joy perfume. I have this in just about every concentration: parfum (which is glorious and I'm almost out so I need to replace it soon), Eau de Joy (eau de parfum), eau de toilette, and although I didn't keep these, I also used to have body cream (no sparkling top notes so I thought it was too muted--you might prefer it if the top notes are too heady) and parfum solide (same problem I had with the body cream--too muted, no bright sparkle). Joy was one of my mother's signatures when I was growing up, and it's a perfume I instantly loved at first sniff. Some people are sensitive to the indolic character of this scent. I only smell pure flowers, but of a rich, unflowery type (it's more abstract and sweet to me, probably thanks to aldehydes and narcotic white florals). How would I describe its scent? It's an intoxicating, dazzling Floral blend of pure jasmine and rose, with other elements that are only there to support these two notes, the heart of perfumery, so they could take center stage and shine. I'd heard a couple of years ago that Joy (parfum) is one of two perfumes that are still made with real Grasse jasmine and rose essential oils (the other being Chanel No.5 parfum). I hope Joy is never, ever discontinued or changed, and may its quality stay with us for as long as we have love for Joy.

"The costliest perfume in the world" was created in 1930 during the Depression to give American women a chance to wear the very best perfume when they could no longer afford couture clothing. The perfume is said to have been created to be "free of vulgarity...impudent, crazy and extravagant beyond reason" (from "Bombshell Manual of Style" by Laren Stover). Famous wearers of Joy include Marilyn Monroe, Josephine Baker and Jackie Onassis.

Michael Edwards' notes in Perfume Legends: French Feminine Fragrances
"Joy is a floral bouquet based on a very rich accord of two natural notes: jasmine and rose." -Jean Patou

Top notes: Bulgarian rose, tuberose, ylang-ylang
Heart notes: Jasmine, May rose
Base notes: Jasmine, May rose

Jan Moran's notes:
Year Introduced: 1930
Scent Type: Floral
Top Notes: Aldehydes, peach, greens, calyx
Heart Notes: Jasmine, Bulgarian rose, ylang-ylang, orchid, lily of the valley, orris, tuberose
Base Notes: Sandalwood, musk, civet