Old School Simplicity – Review: Chanel Eau de Cologne

Dearest and most delightful Olfactoria’s Travelers,

Portia in the OT house from Australian Perfume Junkies and Perfume Posse.

I am not really the cool, crisp and classy kinda guy or gal on most occasions, there are plenty of words to describe me (some of them even printable in a family blog such as this) but those three seem elusive, to say the least. Yet there are moments in my life where that is exactly what is called for, a fragrant veneer of respectable that can help me fake it till I make it. Large fundraisers when I am a guest, business lunches, weddings and funerals all require something old school and debonair. Where else would I look for such a thing than the hallowed halls of CHANEL?

Eau de Cologne was created by Jacques Polge for CHANEL in 2007.

Chanel Eau de Cologne Chanel FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Lemon, bergamot, citruses, green notes
Heart: Pettigrain,. neroli, spicy notes
Base: Tonka bean, musk

I have not smelled the original 1924 Ernest Beaux composition but I read that this incarnation has little to do with it.

Fresh, bright cool and retro CHANEL Eau de Cologne is like a school tie, it announces you as a cool cat from the right side of the tracks, with an air of savoir-faire.

Here is a sharp and pared down version of the classic and historic cologne done seamlessly with a lovely furry orange pith and a hint of fresh torn leaves and branch, backed up by a spicy herbaceous harmony that floats perfectly above rich tonka and softly animalic musk.

I have read that there is vetiver in the mix too but though I do get some dry green it’s too amorphous for me to really specify it. It is the most straight forward and simple cologne, uncluttered and minimalist.

Chanel Eau de Cologne Chanel  Churchill Hall GeographPhoto Stolen GeographUK

This is a genre of fragrance I don’t have a lot to do with but I’ve sampled some of the ones people talk of as benchmarks. Eau de Cologne du 68 Guerlain wears warmer and more perfume-y on me, Eau de Cologne du Coq Guerlain is a more floral version (but for the price is much better value), Tabac Original Maurer & Wirtz costs next to nothing yet is a spicier and more interesting ride and it has excellent longevity (with attendant memories of my Dad who wore it) and on the same price level as CHANEL, Cologne Royale from the DIOR Prive line is also a very modern and simple look at Cologne but the longevity is better there.

Chanel Eau de Cologne Chanel picnic KHKarish Pixabay

I get around an hour and a half of fragrant before CHANEL Eau de Cologne fades to a very very soft hum of almost fragrance. Spritzing my hair and clothes adds another hour or two but I think the joy of wearing this would be respritzing regularly so it would probably make sense to have a bottle at home and one at work for post gym and lunch. If you are after a simple, clean and elegant scent that announces you have arrived or says that you are so comfortable in your position that simplicity is your trademark then I vote CHANEL Eau de Cologne.

Also, if you are buying your cologne as a piece of art to place on your dressing table I think the chic, square bottle a very nice statement piece of objet d’art in and of itself. It speaks to me of a life without clutter but where you have chosen to have only the very best.

Chanel Eau de Cologne Chanel Peder_Severin_Krøyer WikipediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

Further reading: Olfactoria’s Travels and Perfume Posse
CHANEL boutiques and beauty stand alone stores carry the CHANEL Les Exclusives or at larger retailers
Surrender To Chance has samples starting at $4/ml

What do you wear when you need to give the illusion of cool and crisp? Are you a CHANEL Les Exclusives fan? Which is your particular favourite?

Portia xx


About Olfactoria

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14 Responses to Old School Simplicity – Review: Chanel Eau de Cologne

  1. cookie queen says:

    Hi Honey! I wear Bois de Iles (Extrait and EdT together, always) and CdR (the same). Love them both totally. Interested to try Misia, the new one. Bussi. Oh – don’t care for the Eau de Cologne, but love how it looks in the bottle. xxxxx

  2. Tara says:

    Enjoyed your take on this one Portia. You must be enjoying cologne weather right now.

    I love the Exclusifs line and my current favourite is Coromandel, after finally falling for it late last year. I don’t think I could pay the same price for an Eau de Cologne though, as classy as it is.

    • Yes, these BIG bottles are not for such as we Tara. Yet I do have a quiet hankering to own this one and to spritz the shit out of myself whenever I please. The decant I have is pretty well dry.
      As I wrote above Coromandel is my Val fragrance memory, can’t wait to smell you in it and add happy memories of our times together with it.
      Portia x

  3. Alexandra says:

    Cool and crisp are not words I normally aim for (classy occasionally), but when I need to seem calm and professional I do reach for a Chanel Exclusives: Bois de Iles. Although it battles with Cuir de Russie to be called my favourite of the line….

    Huh! It seems Cookie Queen and I are in total agreement!

    • Happy days to have a scent twin only two responses above you Alexandra. I think my favourite of the line is 22. That rush on opening and the BIGNESS of it through its life are so marvelous to me. Walking through cool winter but sunny Paris with Michael after completely overspritzing 22 and loving it. I think it is 22 that reins supreme but I do have a selection of the others too.
      Portia xx

  4. annemariec says:

    I do make simplicity my trademark, or try to, but I don’t bother with Chanel’s EDC. Its poor longevity really annoys me. I just can’t be bothered, you know? I work hard and expect my perfume to work hard too. Darn it, what am I paying you for Chanel !

    You described Chanel’s EDC beautifully though. I recall it having a vanillin note – did you get that?

    For cool and crisp I go with Chanel No 19, or for a softer effect, Hermes’ incomparable Osmanthe Yunnan.

    • Hi there AnneMarieC,
      Yes, I can hear you on the longevity. It is good though for people who want to spritz something lovely in the morning but can’t be fragrant at work, or people who want a pick me up that livens them without being an all day experience maybe?
      Maybe what I think is the Tonka is really vanillin, it would not be the first time I have misread my nose.
      No 19 is another great fave for me also.
      Portia xx

  5. Sandra says:

    Hi Portia! I tried Chanel EDC last summer in the heat of Italy. I like it well enough but it has to be scorching hot for me to wear it. I also find myself respritzing all the time but the cost is quite high for what it is. i do love Bois des Iles, Cuir de Russie, Coromandel, No. 22 and Beige. Chanel does a great job for my daily needs. Sandra xo

    • Heya Sandra,
      Always nice to see you here. How is the painting going, and my buddy Sean, is he well?
      It’s interesting that you mention beige, it took me a long time to really enjoy it. Not that I was trying it often but it always seemed so overwhelmed by other exclusives that I kind of ignored it. Though I may never own a bottle of it I do now like it very much..
      Portia xx

  6. Rob Hack says:

    I certainly agree that the bottles are works of art; so solid, and the magnetic tops are the cherry on the sundae. I love Sycomore in the Summer, but am wearing tons of BdI in these sub-zero Montreal winter days.

  7. Michael says:

    I love the Chanel EdC too Portia. I just can’t bring myself to buy a full bottle of such a fleeting fragrance. I suppose traditional EdCs just aren’t for me.
    You know my favourite of the Les Exclusives is of course No22. It’s my favourite Chanel in fact. Otherwise I’m heading back to the standard line for No5 EdC, Poudre or Prem. No one quite does aldehydes like Chanel.

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