Thwarted: Clive Christian V for Women

VI write thwarted because I can’t call this a true review because A) the sample I got was minuscule and B) two days after trying it I came down with a cold, which I still have. The only good part of the cold is that I get to postpone a trip to the dentist. I hope it lasts long enough that it will get me out of Jury Duty Monday..

In any case, my friend gave me her Christmas gift to me, some scented hand soap from Neiman Marcus. Also in the bag were some perfume samples- I think she had asked for V Men, but the SA must have grabbed V Woman by mistake. Or my friend is wearing V Man right now.

At one point I nearly vaulted a counter at Neiman’s when confronted with an SA that was going spritz me with the original Clive Christian or damned well die trying. I didn’t want to try it- it was something like $800 ay the time when Uncle Serge was charging $92. I think I read that Tom Cruise wore it when he married Katie Holmes (she wore the women’s.) The last thing I needed then was to fall for a perfume that cost more than most of my rent. Much later I did try it, and it’s nice. It’s just not JAR nice. JAR I can see where my $800 went. I didn’t see that with that.

This one is far less expensive: a mere $405 for 50ML. Notes (From LuckyScent): Peach, neroli, bergamot, jasmine, carnation, ylang-ylang, rose, gardenia, orange blossom, pink and black pepper, chamomile, lavender, liatris, heliotrope, coriander, honey, sandalwood, ambrette seed, benzoin, amber, oakmoss, patchouli, leather, frankincense, labdanum and musk.

It opened on my with sweet, kind of fizzy peach. Fizzy peach is good. In a cocktail, say. For me in a perfume, not so much. For a perfume that lists so many ingredients I was kind of shocked at how rather listless and fleeting the scent was, but that may have to do with (apparently since it’s so pricey) the fact that the sample is a pull-out carded affair with a small bellows that hold about two teensy spritzes before giving up the ghost. I would have for you, Tonstant Weader, manfully set forth to Neiman’s, ScentBar and Saks to properly marinate myself in this to give a full report. Then came the cold and my nose gave up the ghost.

Anyone have an opinion on V? Let us know in the comments.

$405 for 50ML at Neiman Marcus, Saks, LuckyScent, Bergdorf Goodman and wherever else Clive Christian is sold. My sample was cadged from Neiman Marcus.

Image credit: Luckyscent

  • Tara says:

    Like Ann, I preferred the C for women – enough to purchase it, which is saying a lot. I did get it for a decent price on ebay (at least 25% off list). As for V, it was good but did not make my credit card levitate out of my wallet. I found it quite strong, and not better than the other chypres in my closet.

    • Ann says:

      Yay, Tara — another C lover! I wore that for our 25th wedding anniversary dinner and felt like a million bucks all night! Hope you guys are doing well and staying warm 🙂

  • eldarwen22 says:

    The price point is why I avoid the Clive Christian and a few other houses. It can be so hard to justify spending some serious money equivilant to a car payment or a good chunk of rent on a perfume. Is it me or does many of Clive’s perfumes contain tons of citrus?

  • Lisa D says:

    It’s not just that CC is stupendously overpriced in a world of already-too-expensive perfumes. On second thought, it is mostly that. Plus the irritatingly difficult to use sample packaging. And the motto.

    I’d be happier with multiple FBs from several other fine perfume houses for my $800 (or $405).

  • Ann says:

    Happy New Year, Tom! I was pretty “meh” about CC for ages and ages, until one day I chanced upon the Clive C for Women. Oh, my — love at first sniff — it was so gorgeous! But still way too spendy. Luckily, a very sweet SA friend of mine would spray some in little foundation sample bottles from time to time to keep me in it. I did try the V and thought, like Sherri, that it is a nice-enough classic-style chypre that’s a little on the heavy side. I would like to explore several of CC’s men’s scents one day when I’m in the big city and have spare skin, but I’m not expecting lightning to strike twice.

  • Sherri says:

    Well, V Woman is really not a bad fragrance, imho. It’s a chypre, very classic, a little retro. It is a heavier perfume, and definitely unisex.

    Chypres are a hard sell anyway, to me, having Mitsouko, Jubilation 25, and Party in Manhattan as the gold standards. V is different enough, slightly more floral (but by no means soprano). I, too was intrigued by the teeny tiny sample from N-M, enough to order a spend 2 ml spray from STC (even that size was $$) but I think my 2 ml will do me just fine.

    There are so many beauties (Ashoka, Amouage Fate, the FM’s, high-end Guerlains, and a slew of new niche releases) at that price point to compete for my perfume $. This one is still nice, but I’d rank it at about #25 on my “to purchase” list. I do give CC credit in that none of their perfumes have bothered my allergies. Also, in the case of “V”, I feel like less is more! It’s a heavy perfume and one of the few I prefer dabbed, as I remember.

  • Musette says:

    OMG! those prices remind me of my early days shoe-shopping – and we’re talking Boul Mich & Oak Street in Chicago. I remember the first time my bf and I saw a shoe priced over $100 – I even remember the shoe (tan and white spectator pump) – we were aghast! Alas, within a year ALL those damn shoes were up over $100 and now….? sigh.

    What has that got to do with Clive? Nothing. Just nattering down Memory Lane. I have never been able to get with the program re Clive. They all smell really nice. But that’s pretty much it for me.


    • Tom says:

      I’ll give you another one- I remember my mother at the car dealer window shopping for a new one while ours was being serviced. We looked at the then brand new “International sized” 1976 Seville. My mother’s reaction? “$12,000.00!?! And it’s so SMALL!!”

  • I spend enough on fragrance at decent prices Tom without having to mortgage my house. These aspirational prices are beyond my purse strings sadly.
    Happily I will spritz Serge, Hermes, Guerlain, Aftelier, Vero, Mona dO, Olympic Orchids and JPG and not wish beyond my pocket.
    Portia xx