Floral Aldehydes: Twenty More

Worth Je ReviensMaybe you’ve already tried the classic floral aldehydes reviewed this week and you’re ready to dig into this genre of perfume more deeply. If so, this article is for you.

Caron Fleurs de Rocailles is an innocent, gentle aldehydic floral loaded with clover, lily of the valley, and lilac. I think it would be a perfect first perfume for a girl, and it’s a good napping scent. If you plan on looking it up on Osmoz, beware: the description of Fleurs de Rocailles is mixed up with “Fleur” de Rocailles, a different fragrance altogether.

Worth Je Reviens is another classic of the genre that you just might find at your local TJ Maxx, although I wonder if its formula has suffered over the years (if you’ve compared the old and the new, please tell me what you think). Rochas Mystère is an aldehydic floral chypre that smells to me like soapy plums. Chanel No. 22 is a dream of white flowers and incense glowing with aldehydes. Because it’s just so plain beautiful, No. 22 might be a good one to try if you’re wary of aldehydes. Jean-Charles Brosseau Ombre Rose is another aldehydic floral that is popular.

For aldehydic time travel, Halston is a good way to go (cue the disco music, please). Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche and Paco Rabanne Calandre remind me of the 1970s with their metallic edges. I know Hermes Calèche is timeless, but it reminds me of the 1970s, too.

I’ll also list a few hard-to-find aldehydic scents to keep a lookout for. Millot Crèpe de Chine is one of them. I have only a tiny sample of Crèpe de Chine, and it smells moody to me, not as sunny as many aldehydic scents. Myrurgia Joya, on the other hand, is a really sunny scent. Joya was first made in 1950 and used to be sold in Spanish drugstores. Its coriander reminds me of another aldehydic floral, Estée Lauder Estée. Guerlain Liu is a regular violin solo of aldehydes. Finally, pre-2002 Givenchy L’Interdit is a wonderful aldehydic floral with strawberries. It somehow smells naive and experienced at the same time.

For contemporary floral aldehydes, if you get the chance to try Divine L’Ame Soeur or Le Labo Aldehyde 44 don’t pass it up. Although they’re distinctly different, they were both created by the same perfumer, Yann Vasnier, who just might be our new master of aldehydes. Also, the new release of Piguet Baghari packs a tidy aldehydic kick.

Some aldehydic florals I haven’t tried (or tried lately) but have had recommended to me are Molyneux Vivre, Caron Nocturnes, and Lancome Climat.

After a week of wearing dabs of different aldehydic florals up and down my arms, I’m ready for a change. I’m probably truly an aldehydic floral type of woman only once or twice a week, and when I press the “send” button on this article I’ll go find my decant of Champaca. But I’m glad I did aldehyde boot camp. My perfumista muscles are stronger for it.

Note: image of Worth Je Reviens via Parfum de Pub.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I have enjoyed this week's reviews so much! You mention Liu above…this fragrance has eluded me for years, and I've been obsessed with trying to find some. I know it was discontinued some years back and then there was a very brief reissue (whether it was a reformulation or not, I don't know) – Bergdorf Goodman had it around Xmas a couple years back. But I never made it uptown to sniff it, and it since seems to have disappeared. (Occasionally a bottle comes up on ebay, going for its weight in gold!) Would you have any leads? I've loved the description of this scent and the cool, art deco bottle forever!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thank you! I saw Liu at Bergdorf's last September, although I don't know if they still have it. I've only been able to smell it because it was in a display bottle chained to an old Guerlain display, even though the store hadn't sold it in years.

    Good luck finding it!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Beware claims of innocence! :-) Have you tried Fleurs de Rocaille in the extrait? I happened to be wearing it last night. After many hours, it was down to the base. I noticed–brace yourself!–musk! :-) Hmmm, not so innocent, I thought.
    It's a gorgeously smooth fragrance. I admit I wore it when I was an adolescent–in eau de toilette form. I'm upset with the house of Caron (which I otherwise revere) for naming an upstart impostor Fleur de Caron. I tried it once thinking it was the real thing–and what a shock!

  4. Anonymous says:

    I haven't tried Fleurs in extrait, but now I really want to! I always sort of wondered if there was a little leather in its base, too. It's so faint, if it's there, that I'm not sure.

    I know what you mean about Fleurs vs. Fleur. And then there's Miss Rocailles, too!

  5. Anonymous says:

    So glad to hear you're off for a little Champaca – I always got to that scent, too, when I want something a little different to relax me. Interesting to note, as regards your topic, that Robin wrote this is her Champaca review: “One of the things I adore about the Ormonde Jayne line, and Champaca is no exception, is that while the fragrances are composed of modern materials, the individual notes maintain an old-fashioned, pre-aldehydic kind of distinctness.” I love No. 22, but I don't wear many aldehydes otherwise – still, I have enjoyed this week's reviews, not least because you got me interested in learning all sorts of things about Gene Tierny.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Angela, this was a great series! I have a lot of these on my list to try and/or buy. I am lucky enough to have a decant of Liu, and I think it would be my second favorite Guerlain, behind Vol de Nuit, if they hadn't stopped production .
    Champaca is always a treat, too, anytime!
    (BTW, I posted the other day about all the perfumes you've “made” me buy, and later when I read your response I realized you probably didn't know who “Priscilla” was…I'm greeneyes/Sweet Diva. (-: )

  7. Anonymous says:

    I cherish that decant of Champaca (thank you!) and it is sort of a “pause that refreshes”. I'm glad you enjoyed aldehyde week, because I don't think it's been very popular. People are probably chomping at the bit for Robin to come back and write about something new that they might actually want to wear.

    Isn't Gene Tierney great? So beautiful. I think I'll stop by the video store tonight and see if I can't find something with her in it.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Of course I know who you are! You're the reader of Capture the Castle, which I recently read, too, and you were my introduction to Iris Poudre, which I must have a bottle of someday.

    I wonder what my second favorite Guerlain would be (after Vol de Nuit)? Maybe Chamade, but possibly L'Heure Bleue.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for doing the heavy lifting for us Angela! If other readers are like me, it may be that we are reading avidly, but not posting because we are learning…
    I think I'll spritz a little Chanel 22 if I can find some at Nordstrom's or Neiman's tomorrow…

  10. Anonymous says:

    You are so nice! I'd love to know what you think of No. 22. It's definitely jam-packed with aldehydes, but it settles down so nicely. It must be the most feminine fragrance I own.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Thank you, Angela, for doing this week's review of aldehydic perfumes. I enjoyed reading it immensely. I may not ever buy one of those perfumes again, but remembering some of those I had in years past was so much fun. And with my softspot for pretty bottles, getting the visuals was just as enjoyable.

    I understand what you said the other day about not buying many bottles these days because of the decants and samples you have, and I'm in the same predicament here. But dream I will, about having another one (or two or three) of those gorgeous bottles on my vanity.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I'll be dreaming of more bottles along with you. Although I won't be able to finish every bottle I own (and will probably buy sometime in the future) at least it makes it easier to share with other perfume lovers.

  13. Anonymous says:

    it's too bad you did not think it was very popular. I really enjoyed reading your articles all week. I love aldehydes, but I just did not think I had much to contribute. Perhaps we are all just shy this week (or too exhausted from the heat to comment much). I especially liked your wrap-up article, pointing out the lesser known (at least to me) aldehydic fragrances – I added a few things to my to-be-smelled list.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I'm glad you enjoyed the series! I keep a list of to-be-smelled, too, on index cards. Every once in a while, when the cards are too full of crossed-out names and cryptic notes or too mangled from being jostled on my desk or in my purse, I rewrite the list. It's fun, actually.

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