Close To Perfection – Review: Caron Infini

Hiya Olfactoria’s Travelers,

Portia from Australian Perfume Junkies and Perfume Posse back on the OTs.

A while ago I found a small bottle of vintage Infini parfum on one of the Facebook pages For Sale lists and though there was only about 2ml left I grabbed it. Thick, orange and viscous it arrived and I thought I’d share with you my first wear.

Infini was created by Gerard Lefortis for Caron in 1970.

Infini Caron FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Jasmine, aldehydes, narcissus, lily of the valley
Heart: Iris, tuberose, lilac, rose
Base: Vetiver, musk, tonka, amber, sandalwood

Infini was reformulated from Ernest Daltroff’s original in 1970 and we are dealing with a parfum of that era.

Firstly, I love that the featured notes contain no citruses, and the narcissus in Infini is very like the Narcissus fragrance that CB I Hate Perfumes brought out last year.

Infini is so different to modern perfumery in that the opening, particularly in this aged state, is not friendly or warm but ferocious. It has that remarkable inky metallic edge that tells you the aldehydes are still in full force, maybe even turning, but if you hold on tight for about 5 minutes everything starts to smooth out and become rounded. That furniture polish squeak goes and a balmy bouquet is revealed.

The heart is a quieter purr of flowers, resins and animalics. Things I can smell not mentioned include civet, honey and wee but I’m pretty sure they can be attributed to the narcissus, tuberose and musk but really they read much more feral to my nose. Not feral in a bad way but beautiful, deep, intense, majestic and funnily enough soft and furry.

Here is fragrance to really lift you into a completely different mindset. Though I’m sitting here in Sydney on a cool Spring morning writing to you I could be a golden years of Hollywood movie star playing a Queen, or a strong woman brought low, a glittering ingenue or my favourite of them all Helen Lawson, played by Susan Haywood, singing I’ll Plant My Own Tree in Valley Of the Dolls.

Infini parfum takes forever to go through its stages and five hours later the bouquet has mainly gone, still a shiver of narcissus, and I am left with the warmest, most opaque amber and musk with what could very well be the real deal sandalwood. Obviously the blending is so superb that I’m not getting notes per se but impressions of notes hiding within a beautiful soft amber haze. This is about as close to perfection in vintage fragrance as I can imagine.

Further reading: Yesterday’s Perfume and The Non-Blonde
Beauty Encounter has $120/15ml parfum
Surrender To Chance starts at $4/ml

What about you? Do you have a favourite vintage fragrance?
Portia xx


About Olfactoria

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7 Responses to Close To Perfection – Review: Caron Infini

  1. Hi Portia! Thanks for sharing your beautiful findings with us! Always a pleasure to read your articles! Lots of xx


  2. Tara says:

    Portia, I loved reading your experience of vintage Infini. Narcissus is an amazing material.

    Those pre-reformulation Carons are real heart-breakers. I’m haunted by Tabac Blond since trying it at the Osmotheque.

  3. Sandra says:

    Portia, what a lovely review. Infini is wonderful come spring or summer. what are you wearing in the cold? xo

  4. As you know, J’ADORE this perfume. Love it love it love it. So beautiful. I will keep an eye open for you in case it turns up again at the flea market.

  5. JennyJo says:

    Infini is on my list of favourite vintage perfumes, I loved it and still miss it very much. Sadly, I wasn’t so lucky as you; I bought a bottle of vintage Infini, for a lot of money, but sadly it had gone off and never reached its smooth and rounded stage but continued to smell like burned rubber. 😦

  6. Michael says:

    Lovely review!
    It’s really a few old Guerlain’s that I love. Djedi, and Vol de Nuit mainly. Parure is also great.
    I would love a bottle of Iris Gris, but wouldn’t we all 🙂

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