Everybody has been buzzing about Chanel No 5 L’Eau, the latest fragrance launch from the luxury French house.
If you haven’t caught on, Chanel No 5 L’Eau is a fresher, younger incarnation of the iconic Chanel No 5. Because all the focus is on youth and freshness I was expecting just that, but that’s not quite how I’m experiencing the scent.
When I sniff the scent I get feint citrus, a whiff of the original No 5 and then soft, powdery floral notes with a slight muskiness. It’s definitely lighter and less sharp than the original No 5, but it’s not as fresh and uplifting as I expected it to be.
Try as I might, the original No 5 is a fragrance I’ve never been able to pull off. When I try to wear it I smell it with every move I make, and it never quite settles – it wears me, I don’t wear it. I can happily wear No 5 L’Eau though – it wears beautifully throughout the day, and if it wasn’t for the powdery aspect I would have worn it every day (and night).
Officially the notes are lemon, mandarin, neroli, mandarin, aldehydes (chemical compounds that have a fresh/green smell), may rose, ylang-ylang, jasmine, cedar and white musk. I do wish the citrus notes came through a little stronger, but on me they’re not very prominent.
I do love that original No 5 is recognisable in L’Eau, but that the fragrance is different enough to appeal to an entirely different woman. All in all I think it’s a beautiful flanker that falls nicely between the stronger, more powerful Chanel scents and the light, fresh Chanel Chance fragrances (see my review of the last one here). And the classic minimalist bottle design and typography has my heart – so Chanel.
Chanel No 5 L’Eau is already in stores, get 50ml for R1600 and 100ml for R2270. If you’re taking the plunge, do it properly and pay the R670 extra for 100ml.