Chanel Misia Perfume Review

Chanel Misia is the latest Les Exclusifs launch in 2015.  Inspired by Coco Chanel’s great friend, Misia Sert, it looks longingly over its cute little shoulder at a much more perfumed perfume of yesteryear.

Chanel Misia perfume

Misia Sert had a Parisian salon frequented by a fairly impressive list of Parisian and from-elsewhere artists and writers like Renoir, Proust, Monet, etc.  An accomplished pianist, she had an amazing life.  I recommend further reading, her life and influence on Parisian artists is fascinating.  She said Coco Chanel attracted her because of ““her genius, lethal wit, sarcasm and maniacal destructiveness, which intrigued and appalled everyone.”

But Chanel Misia perfume!  Mai oui.  Notes of Iris root, Turkish rose, rose from Grasse, violet, tonka bean, benzoin and sandalwood.  Seems like a fairly standard note list from Chanel.  Heavy on powdery elements, I swear it smells like I just stuck my nose in my grandmother’s makeup bag.  I don’t like it as much on the open as I do later, when the violet asserts itself with less powder show.  I’m not a powder fan, so take that into account.

Chanel Misia is cunningly crafted.  Parisian – beautiful, complicated, nothing exactly what you think it will be, charming, hiding its aim and purpose. It’s the smell of lipstick over plump lips, whispers suggesting more private moments are possible.  It appears very old world, but the development is spare and ends with a very faint nod to retro perfume.  If you hate Frederic Malle’s Lipstick Rose, you are bound to hate Chanel Misia for some of the same reasons – though it has a much lighter touch than Lipstick Rose and develops much differently.  They are a celebration of femininity and all the things that surround women being women.

An hour into the drydown, I wound up liking/loving it as it shed the powder for a plush tonka/benzoin/sandalwood accord. It started with a dramatic swoop of a beautifully tailored hat into the past and carried all of that forward into a modern take of a very perfumey perfume.  If this is an example of what the new inhouse perfumer, Olivier Polge, will be bringing us from Chanel, I’m pretty excited to see the future.  Brilliant.  Even if it’s not to your exact taste, you will appreciate the artistry of what he’s done..

Winners from the drawing for the Serge Lutens La Religieuse – Lorinda, Eloquaint, magmat412, Kandice, Tiffanie, and Brenda Pace.  Just click on Drop Us a Note at the top of the blog, send me an e-mail with your address and reminding me what you’ve won. I’ll send you a quick “got it” e-mail so you know it didn’t circle the junk mail drain and then get it sent out to you.

And let’s do a drawing for some Chanel Misia samples. Same deal, comment to be entered, and I’ll give away 6 samples to commenters from a random draw.  Favorite Les Exclusif?  Yasssss or nahhhh on powdery perfumes?

  • ROBERTO says:

    I’m in love with MISIA, although my favorite is COROMANDEL

  • joannawnyc says:

    Haven’t tried any of the Les Exclusifs but used to looove Coco back in the 80s. Haven’t worn any CHanel is quite some time, will have to check this out. Thanks for the review!

  • macflora says:

    I love Bois des Iles and Coromandel, Rue Cambon too, but I find myself wearing it less. I also love Bel Respiro too, but wish it had more longevity. Powder for me depends on the particular perfume. Some powder is too much, but just a touch adds an old-fashioned femininity that I find appealing on certain occasions.

  • Julie L says:

    Coromandel, hands down! Bois des lies is yummy too. I have this very curious feeling about the”lipstick” note everyone speaks of, live Chanels in general. So I would be honored to enter your nene round draw to try the Misia! Thank you!

  • KVA says:

    It has to be Coromandel of course. Cuir de Russie comes in second. Powdery is just fine so long as the whole experience isn’t just powdery.

  • Pascale says:

    Absolute yes on the powdery, thought I’d find it stuffy but after I found Kenzo Flower I dove off the deep end into L’Heure Bleue and Love, Chloé…been wanting to try Misia forever !!

    Favorite Les Exclusifs is probably Bois des Iles or Cuir de Russie 🙂 The only one I didn’t quite care for was Coromandel actually (I know, blasphemy !) But on my skin it goes a sort of herbal, minty bitter ? Luxurious Chinese lacquered screens were nowhere to be found. Sigh…

  • stina says:

    My favorite Exclusif would be Sycomore.

    No, Eau de Cologne… no, wait, 28 La Pausa!

    Well, any of those three really.

    I hated powdery frags for a long time, but I’ve been slowly coming around to their charms. Have been reading about Misia for a while now and would love to try it!

  • katrin says:

    I love powdery scents as long as the violet doesn’t dominate. There are several exclusifs I love if I must pick a favorite it would be perhaps no 18, or 31 Rue Cambon. Misia sounds intriguing…

  • Carol Sasich says:

    I have. Really been wanting to try Misia and now , well YES . I love powdery roses and iris , after all I wore YSL Paris in the 80s . Exclusively for about 6 years ! OY .
    Most Chanel scents don’ t work for me ( gasp ) but I keep trying . I want to love Coromandel , and DO love Cuir de Russie but only in theory . Thanks for the draw , keeping my fingers crossed cuz this little farmer has no budget to buy any !
    I’ d swap a jar of my organic honey for some….

  • Nemo says:

    Powdery is a maybe, and violet is a note I am slowly growing to enjoy! I haven’t tried any of the other Les Exclusifs yet. Thank you!

  • Ashley A says:

    I LOVE powdery fragrances, and am a huge sucker for a good violet-rose accord. I love the smell of makeup; it reminds me of my mom and so desperately wanting to wear something that glamorous myself. My favorite Les Exclusifs are Beige and Bois des Iles. I cannot, cannot wait to try this one. I love FM Lipstick Rose, but like the idea of something a little quieter and less fruity. Thanks so much for the draw!

  • Sassa says:

    I refuse to choose a favorite from the LE collection. However, I will give you my top 3, no, 4.
    Bois des Iles
    No 22
    Cuir de Russie
    Whoops! How did that 5th one sneak in there?
    Anyway, looking at this list I realize that I am very fond of the older scents. Hopefully Misia will have a more vintage feel.

  • Hana says:

    I have to be in the right mood for a powdery fragrance. On the wrong day I tend to find them overwhelming. My favourite exclusif is Bois des iles.

  • Peppermoon says:

    I started out HATING powdery fragrances, but in my sampling adventures I’ve encountered some lovely powdery scents that have changed my stance on powder.

  • Brooke says:

    I love powder, the more the better! If they had a powdered donut scented perfume, i would buy a hundred bottles! My fave LE is No. 22. Thanks for the drawing!

  • Powdery is fine with me, as long as there’s something stronger underlying it.

  • foxbins says:

    I like some powder as long as it isn’t gourmand–Legrand Heliotrope Blanc was almondy baby powder on me and a definite no-go. I am sure Chanel has done a beautiful job with Misia, as all the Les Exclusives are well-done. My favorite is BdI. Thanks for the draw!

  • Bastet says:

    I have not tried any of the Chanel exclusifs but would love to try Misia. I do like powdery fragrances such as Love, Cloe, Noa, and Chanel 19 Poudre.

  • Janice says:

    DNEM because I’ve already had a chance to try this, but I just want to say that I really hate Lipstick Rose (to me it has something like artificial raspberry flavor… I know, I’m definitely in the minority here), but I liked Misia a lot. Not sure I need a full bottle, but as you say they develop quite differently and Misia’s drydown is beautiful. I do like powdery scents, though, so that probably helps.

    • Tara C says:

      Same for me – dislike Lipstick Rose and love Misia. I get a ton of violet in Misia. Just wish it lasted longer on my skin.

  • AnnieA says:

    Might try Misia and Lipstick Rose side by side at Holts if the former is in yet.

  • Sapphire says:

    Favorite Exclusif is Bois des Iles. Not sure where I stand on powdery perfumes, but thanks for the drawing.

  • jirish says:

    I like powdery perfumes, and am looking forward to trying this. Can’t believe it, but I still haven’t tried any of the Chanel exclusives, although there are several I think I would love.

  • JillM says:

    I think I maybe like powdery perfumes, some I love and some I loathe, baby powder scents are a definite no. But cosmetic or Violet powderiness can be nice. My favorite LE is 28 La Pausa.

  • Dina C. says:

    I’m greatly looking forward to trying this one since I love and have many of the exclusives from Chanel and this list of notes is like a top ten of all my favorites. I generally like powdery scents, see Chamade and a very, very long list of iris and galbanum scents. I think I’ll wear a dab of my Chamade extrait today in anticipation of spring. Thanks for the drawing Patty! 🙂

  • Queen Cupcake says:

    Love your description, Patty! I think I could fall for Misia.

  • AllGirlMafia says:

    I am generally a fan of Chanel fragrances. I haven’t tried many of the exclusifs but I do enjoy Cuir de Russie and 1932. I am a powder fan as well ; )

  • greennote2 says:

    Favourites in the Les Exclusifs include Sycomore, Bois des Îles and a Cuir de Russie. Not a big powder fan so please DNEM and let somebody else love it.

  • Neva says:

    Funny, for years the only Misia I heard of was the Portuguese fado singer…now there’s Misia Sert AND Misia from Chanel!
    My favourite Les Exclusive is Bel Respiro. I love powdery scents and would like to try this one. Thanks for giving us the chance.

  • Mariann says:

    So far i’ve only tried Cuir de Russie & Bois des Iles, which I love. So far not a big powder fan (yet), but would love to try this one. Thanks for the draw!

  • Scentella says:

    I haven’t dared to enter the Chanel store yet so I don’t know the favourite Exclusif yet. I like powdery notes.

  • Ingeborg says:

    I am not a big fan of powdery perfumes, but sometimes it is fine with me. My favourite in the line is Coromandel (I have a bottle) and also love the Gardenia one (got a generous sample made by the SA when i shopped in Copenhagen). These are not available to me locally, I might have found several more to put on my wish list..

  • Brad (Scudder) says:

    Cuir de Russie, of course……but then there’s La Pausa.

  • Vanie says:

    I quite like powdery perfumes.
    I haven’t explorer the whole range yet, but my favourite from Les Exclusifs is probably Bois des Iles, followed by Cuir de Russie. I can’t wait tro try Misia.

  • Eloquaint says:

    Cuir de Russie was my first dazzling, I-must-have-this leather, so my loyalty will always be with it.

  • FeralJasmine says:

    Would love to try this one. So far my favorite in the line is Coromandel. I used to say snarky things about powdery perfumes, but my tastes seem to be expanding, or age is mellowing me.

  • Spiker says:

    I haven’t tried that many of the Exclusifs, but I absolutely love Bois des Iles. That was the first perfume I ever bought and still a favorite.

  • Bobbie says:

    Looking forward to trying Misia – sounds like an interesting addition to the line. I enjoy 31 Rue Cambon and the Eau de Cologne. Thanks for the review and draw.

  • Suzy Q says:

    Favorite Les Exclusif is Bois des Isles. I can’t wait to smell this new one.

  • Glannys says:

    I cannot say I am a huge fan of everything powdery, but I like the “lipstick” combination of rose and violet. I have two favorites in Las Exclusif range: Coromandel and Cuir de Russie. I really cannot choose between them.

  • Hi there! I’m on the fence about if I like powder still. I think it can be good in some cases, but other times it can be boring, suffocating or annoying. So I’m interested to see how this one will fare for me! So far the only LE I’ve tried is Gardenia, but I really liked it! It was sweet like an apple juice floral. Simple but yummy. Thanks for the draw! 🙂

  • eldarwen22 says:

    My favorite LE is CUir de Russie followed by no 22. Powder and me can be a crap shoot but will eventually give this a go.

  • Lena says:

    My favorite LE is Bel Raspiro. I am looking forward to trying Misia.
    By the way, how is lasting power?

  • Gigi says:

    Mais oui! to powdery and am dying to try Misia. I’m not sure if anything could knock Bois des Iles from the pedestal I have it on, though.

  • JoDee says:

    Hello! I’m 8 months down the perfume rabbit hole and so far have sampled only 3 of the Les Exclusifs. My favorite has been Bois des Iles, and it is a huge favorite. There is something fabulous about its warmth and sophistication. As for powdery scents, I find that I really enjoy Après L’Ondée and then also Léa by Calypso St. Barth and What We Do In Paris is Secret by A Lab on Fire.

  • flowergirlbee! says:

    i love powdery perfume and am a big fan of lipstick rose,can’t wait to try this one!! thanks for the draw : )

  • chasa says:

    Powder, hmmm…depends upon the day and the temperature for me, certainly not a quality I want every day. And favorite “new wave” Les Exclusif (like others, I wouldn’t be able choose between classic favorites) is 31 Rue Cambon, which reminds me that I don’t have any of it and should really remedy that! Anyway, Misia sounds very interesting – thanks for the review!

  • ElizabethC says:

    I love powdery perfumes and I love, love, love lipstick rose – so this is definitely one that I need to try 🙂 As for my favorite LE, it is Coromandel – absolutely beautiful!

  • KimB says:

    Not a huge fan of powder but can handle it in the background but a HUGE Chanel fan so am excited to try Misia.
    Favourite Les Exclusif? Can’t pick one since I have been wearing the parfums for years (Cuir de Russie, Bois des Iles, No 22). But if I could take only 1 of the newer Les Exclusifs it would be 31 Rue Cambon – has almost replaced my beloved No 5 extrait as my daily perfume.

  • Beth says:

    I’m dying to try this since it sounds not only up my alley, but like something my boyfriend would love. He’s a huge fan lipstick rose.

    My fave LE right now is Coromandel but I think that’s due to the polar vortex around here. Come spring it may be Gardenia and summer’s heat may change my mind yet again to 1932 or Jersey. That’s the great thing about Chanel to me, they fit my moods and seasons. Today for a power black and white suit, No5 was perfect. Tomorrow I may decide I need Bois des Iles or 31 Rue Cambon.

  • Shirley Munoz says:

    I love the scent of powder and the perfumes of the past that signal romance and feminity. I am game to try it. Thanks for the review.

  • Tiffanie says:

    Favorite Les Exclusif — Gardenia.
    So excited to hear about Misia. I love powdery fragrances. A new fragrance without patchouli – yes, please. A Chanel without aldehydes — yaaaasss. A Chanel with roses, roses — yaaasss, yaaasss!

  • RuthF says:

    I love Lipstick Rose so I can’t wait to try this!

  • Maya says:

    I have no favorite Les Exclusif, but do tend to like many powdery perfumes.

  • jaime says:

    Love all those notes — this exclusif sounds heavenly! I’ve been waiting for the PP review on this latest release. And what a way to debut Polge Jr’s perfumery skills, with such an intriguing launch.

    My fave of the line is Coromandel, though 28 La Pausa is a close second for how easy, breezy it is in any occasion and venue.

  • Donna S says:

    Hey! I’m not a fan of the powdery but love Chanel and am looking forward to trying this one. Every review so far has been very positive. My fave les exclusifs is Gardenia. I always get excited with a new Chanel release! Tks for the draw!!!

  • Caroline says:

    I used to detest powdery frags, but now I’m changing my mind, and have even come to enjoy Shalimar. Preferred Exclusif is 31 Rue Cambon.