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.
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?