Overall, I give this perfume 4.5/5. I have both the EDT and the EDP. I like fragrances that are soft, mellow, comfortable, divine, elegant, simple but unique. I do not like sharp notes as I find them headache-inducing and offensive. I wore this fragrance when I was in my early twenties and I went on a closet clearing spree one day and figured I'd give away some of my fragrances (I have a lot---shhh my husband hasn't clued in on my perfumery hoarding). Anyway, the "cleaning" or "clearing" made me feel good as I have a lot of perfumes I would rotate through and I had not worn Chanel no 19 in a while so I figured I'd share some of my fragrance wealth. I had forgotten all about my love for this scent. Now, in my 30's , I have recently rekindled my nose to the Chanel no 19 scent and I realize how I missed it. It is such a unique, classic, elegant smell. There is an initial sting to the smell right after spraying it...it smells a bit busy and chemical-reaction like, and you would think " ugh, what was I thinking??", then in about 3-5 minutes -- it smells absolutely amazing. There's a sweetness yet clean, sophisticated smell to it. Some people describe the scent as being a bitchy smell ... And I would agree. It's a bitchy smell in an assertive, "I have things under control" smell "and even if I momentarily lose control, I'll regain it back on my bloody own" kind-of smell. I could only wish to embody that image to its fullest but Chanel no 19 dupes you into thinking you are that kind of bitch, everytime you wear this fragrance. It's a soft, mellow, comfortable, divine, and elegant smell...but it's got so much character. You could tell the difference between the Chanel line of fragrances where most of the scents are classic VS some other designer perfumes where the smell seems to be very similar to other perfumes in the market.. very commercial. If you are looking for a unique scent; this would be it. I date most perfumes but I marry Chanel no 19.
This is for current formulation of EDP only.
Be warned: This is downright awful on the wrong skin. No question about it. Do test on skin before you purchase. Sniffing No19 on a strip or from the bottle repells me and tells me nothing about what's to come. Old lady perfume gone bad anyone? Those top notes are a wreck!
But I'm willing to suffer through this, because as soon as I'm rid of the top, the orris kicks in and softens the greens and the galbanum to a powdery spring forest filled with violets and lifts the leather to more of a living skin scent on me. It stays close to my person and doesn't demand a lot of space.
This is not a revolutionary or supersexy perfume. It's ideal for situations where I don't want to be perceived as sexy, flirty, shady/mysterious, odd or excentric. Where I just want to smell well groomed and professional. Relaxed yet clean. Classy but not attention grabbing. It's a classic for a good reason.
This used to be a five star perfume imo 20 years ago, it's now a four because it's been reformulated. It's a pity every reformulation is always a step down in quality (=aromachemicals replacing naturals). Never a step up. Sorry for the language but I mean it: D**n IFRA and what they do to perfumery!
I was first introduced to No. 19 when I was 21 and bought a bottle at the Chanel store on Rodeo Drive. From the first time I used the tester to try it out, I was hooked. It has a wonderfully clean, botanical fragrance -- the top notes are "green notes" and bergamot, middle notes of iris and rose, with the base notes being oak moss, vetiver, and leather. The base notes give No. 19 a natural, earthy tone without being overpowering, and they are wonderfully balanced out by the rose, iris, bergamot, and the green notes, giving it a fresh and clean fragrance that it sexy, understated, and extremely natural (or at least, with my skin's own chemistry, that was how it turned out after I applied it.
It's a wonderful fragrance for both day and night, and is an ideal fragrance during the Spring, Summer, and early Autumn -- in the Winter, however, it may be too light of a Fragrance during Winter.
I much prefer the vintage cut-glass bottle of the EDP to the boring rectanguar shape of the EDT Spray. Although it's definitely pricey, it is IMO worth every cent.
Simply stated it is sophistication in a bottle. Slight hints of leather among a fresh green scent. It is not a pretty floral scent. It is soft yet empowering and timeless
I've repurchased Chanel 19 Eau de Parfum and Eau de Toilette many times over the years because it smells heavently and it never goes out of fashion. It's green, it's fresh, it's sophisticated, exotic and uplifting! Love!
When I'm having a shitty day I spray on #19 and my mood is instantly lifted. Beautiful, timeless classic, especially in cold weather.
With No. 19 anybody enters the area of serious perfumery. The green, dry, yet immediately recognisable iris opening is one of the best top notes that are out there and its evolution into the middle and bottom notes is one of the more harmonious and seamless in transition that I ever experienced. Similar to only a very few, and different from the rest of the other perfurmes, I can never say about no. 19 that it evokes to me this or that picture, season, "cashmere feeling", "sunny day", or whatever any other impressions or images I could associate with other fragrances. I have a hard time finding such associations because this is such a solid piece of fragrance, so well done, so complete and round in itself that it does not need any images of embelishment. Actually, the perfect commercial for it would be just a picture of it and that's it. Bottom line, this is not a perfume that makes me daylight dream. But who needs to dream when such a solid beauty exists right there without dreaming. It speaks by itself, almost wears itself and I can't find a moment or occasion when it would not fit, as it if had always been there. It is not trying to be either too nice or too sweet, or too sexy or too dark or anything in fashion. And neither does it try too much to please everybody, so for me it beats No. 5 in the race. It's a back-to-(perfect)-basics perfume, to be enjoyed straight-up, no ice, no sugar.
I'm sorry to all wearers who love #19, but I feel like I must make a public service announcement and warn those tempted to jump on the #19 bandwagon and order it unsniffed, based upon board raves only. Please test first or order samples.
To me this perfume is terrible! Awful !! I've tried both EDP and EDT and dislike both. It doesn't even smell like perfume at all -- it's harsh, biting, chemical, aromatic, mouthwash-y, & astringent. I sniff the bottle and practically recoil from the pungent fumes.
To me, it smells remarkably like Pine Sol cleaning liquid. Pine Sol and Leather. It's medicinal and smells like a mentholated pine-oil scented industrial cleaner. With its heavy mossy/woody anchoring basenotes (see below), it's a throwback to old-school perfumes that previous generations wore (and still do).
Here are #19's notes, per parfumo.net:
Top Notes: Bergamot, Galbanum, Hyacinth, Neroli
Heart Notes: Iris, Jasmine, Lily-of-the-valley, Narcissus, Rose, Ylang-ylang
Base Notes: **Oakmoss, Leather, Musk, Sandalwood, Cedarwood **
I much prefer the below (more modern & updated) green fragrances over #19 --:
1. Chanel Sycomore (in their Exclusifs line) is similar to #19-- ie, a foresty scent -- but is *far* superior to #19, in my humble opinion -- much more modern and wearable than #19. I received a big compliment on Sycomore two years ago at my vet's office, from a young 20-something vet tech who ran into the waiting room to ask my perfume's name and then told me I smelled "just lovely!".
2. For a light, fresh, sparkling green scent, I like Chanel Chance Eau Fraiche -- or Cabotine EDT by Gres. Or Calyx. Or any of the green tea scents.
I don't find #19 EDT or EDP to be light, fresh, uplifting, or sparkling at *all* -- quite the opposite -- #19 contains heavy murky basenotes resembling the scent of dank rotting leaves and decaying forest floor (it's the oakmoss, leather, musk, sandalwood, & cedarwood notes!). It smells like a dark brooding haunted forest..
#19 launched in 1971, and it was constructed using the notes and perfume-making technology of its time -- which was nearly half a century ago.
This fragrance is very light, very fresh, very green!!! Its as if im in a rainforest with its fresh dew aroma. The scent is mild and refreshing but the staying power is quite disappointing. Not long lasting on me. Love.love.love
Beautiful muted green, grassy fragrance, and I still smell a bit of leather. Both simple and complex, and beautifully blended. Makes me think of urban settings, perhaps a bit of rain and a chic trenchcoat. Unfortunately it's too pale on me with weak lasting power. Otherwise it's divine.