We’ve had a good bit of rain around these parts (thankfully), and the happy, lush emerald lawns I pass each day remind me of one of my favorite colors and scent families. And fittingly, it just so happens that I’ve recently rediscovered a beloved fragrance from years past: Gucci Envy.
It stood out to me back then (1997) not only for its unusual treatment of lily of the valley, but also its dual personality: On one hand, it possessed an appealingly fresh, grassy vibe; on the other, an aura of near-bitter green aloofness, with almost a crisp white-shirt formality to it.
I had a small bottle then and used it up, meaning to get more, but you know how it is, life intervened, and I just sort of forgot about it. So when I began craving it again, I found it’s no longer at Sephora to test (at least none near me), having been replaced on the shelves by Envy Me and Envy Me 2. I’ve since heard it’s been discontinued but didn’t investigate further, although I do see it at several discounters.
Instead, I hightailed it over to Surrender to Chance and snagged a bit, and yes — it’s still the same great green stunner. The New York Times’ Chandler Burr called it “a masterpiece of olfactory art” and Luca Turin in the Guide gave it 5 stars, but hinted late in the review at something darker, perhaps even a bit of rage.
I don’t find it so much menacing in any way as being very strong-willed. No spineless green this; its metallic tinge lends it a steely backbone, like a a beautiful grande dame with an iron fist swathed in a velvet glove. But she’s so lovely that you wouldn’t dream of crossing her, so you really don’t mind at all.
Even the bottle is perfectly suited: It stands sleek and tall, proudly bearing its green juice.
Envy was the elegant yet firm mother to a whole crop of green/fresh florals that came after; and upon wearing her again on several occasions I think she has stood the test of time quite well. There are other, more friendly greens out there that I enjoy, but I’ll gladly clasp her velvet glove any day.
Are there any fragrances from your past that you find still hold up well, or that when you wear them now reveal new facets of themselves to you?