I bought White Linen a part of a set of mini Estee Lauder fragrances. Given its name, I expected White Linen to be light and soapy, but it's actually a rather strong floral. Peronally, I find it to be a bit harsh. Although it's not a terrible perfume, I probably won't repurchase.
White Linen has been one of the primary perfumes in my life. I wore it throughout the 80's and 90's, I've used several bottles of it -- and it's my DH's all-time favorite perfume. I still wear it sometimes, especially on our dates and vacations -- and I'll always have a bottle on hand.
White Linen is a clean floral but so much more -- there's a mystique about it, I think. I find it alluring and magnetic.
Personal story: In the 80's I was once at a Christmas party with my husband (I was wearing Cinnabar) -- and I sniffed a fabulous perfume coming off a young 20-something slim pretty blonde girl who was sitting by herself.
Her perfume was a "drawing in" scent to the max -- it was mysterious, compelling, alluring, and had a pull like a strong magnet. Irresistible. I thought she was bound to attract men like flies, just so they could get better whiffs of that perfume! It was mysterious, hypnotic, & spellbinding to me.
I approached her and said, "I have to ask you -- what is that perfume you're wearing, it just smells so good!" -- to which she said "White Linen".
Huh? White Linen? That was my husband's fave on me, and I had already gone through at least 2 bottles and had another at home. Yet I didn't recognize it? I never thought of it as a wintery or Christmasy or particularly mysterious/hypnotic/spellbinding fragrance before, but on her, it reeeeeeally was! It made me appreciate it even more, getting that "outsider" perspective.
Revisiting White Linen 20+ years after I used to wear it, and it's somehow shot into my top 5, for all time. A beautiful floating bubble of aldehydes and pale greens, this scent grounds me and erases all the messy pencil strokes to reveal the tidy lines underneath.
It's modern (in the classic sense), and clean without being ascetic. I'll love it for the feeling it gives me - comfortable, capable, calm.
Lovely floral with a soapy quality, to me. IMO, one of the best iterations of "soapy/clean." Not boring, long-lasting, and does not take on any "dirty" quality. Within its kind, the best.
Does anybody think the current White Linen is TOTALLY DIFFERENT than how it used to be???? I have a friend who used it in the late 80's early 90's and I remember it VIVIDLY... but when I smell it in stores now, it's not the same. Am I alone in this opinion? Did they change the formula?
I sniffed it more than once now, once tested it on my skin and came to the conclusion: it has the right to exist, but as a tiny amount in my closet. Main reasons why I would not wear it daily: 1. it is hardly a man magnet, and I don't want my husband to be reminded that he's behind ( again! ) with helping me to do the laundlry! :) 2. in winter this scent does not work at all and definitely doesn't bring any warmth or cosyness one craves in those months. 3. It is hardly long-lasting ( at least on me ), and I absolutely hate having to reapply, knowing that this is no bargain price buy. Now, when I WOULD wear this: 1. at a very serious business meeting where you want to blend with those who "have a pair" and not be singled out as a weaker sex individual right away. 2. After a big uncluttering spring clean of the house, when everything is finally sparkling, the rooms are aired and I want to sit down and enjoy the fruits of my labour feeling the surge of "cleanliness and order " before the family ride into this picture of domestic perfection altering it to the point of unrecognizeable. 3. When I teach / help with homework etc. : this scent has discipline in it, and it sort of helps to focus in my view, like all clean ascetic scents.
4. If I have a baby and am still breastfeeding: the powder's calming effect and cosyness of fresh fabric is what babies appreciate much more than adults. Because it has such a narrow usage span for me, I am rating it not higher than 3 lippies: versatility is something that is probably the hardest in perfumery to achieve, and here the task has not been acomplished.
I purchased a mini of this parfum spray after reading several reviews of Chanel No. 22 that mentioned that White Linen was a dup for 22. After having tested it for a full day I definitely see why people think that, it is remarkably similar. The woody base notes, vetiver, vanilla, sandalwood, blended with the florals, jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang, and the aldehydes create a very good dup for no. 22. But it's the starchy, fresh out of the dryer cotton note that separates this as distinct from no. 22. I have to say that I'm really quite impressed with how effectively White Linen conveys the scent of freshly laundered linen. It really does mix the smell of freshly dried laundry into the base and transforms what would otherwise be a recreation of 22 into a unique fragrance. This starchy laundry scent stays through to the end of this incredibly long lasting perfume.
I doubt I would purchase a full size, but I will use my mini and see how it goes. I prefer no. 22, I really don't personally care to smell like fresh laundry/cotton, but I understand why a lot of people love those types of scents.
This was my signature scent some 20 years ago. When I smell this now, it brings back memories and it's a bit nostalgic. No modern designer would have the proverbial eggs to make something like this. That's what I find about some older fragrances, compared to new ones. They are in your face with one facet and proud of it. This one is very much what it is - powdery, light, white, and unabashed about it. For some, powdery (Shalimar) = old lady. Well, I am a firm believer there is a time and a place for everything. Fruity florals and heavy spices are hard to wear in the workplace, especially mine (a small dental office). I would never dare wear Angel, Opium, Fantasy, or Gucci Guilty for a day at the office when I could very well suffocate a patient with a sensitive sniffer. I could wear White Linen. What are they going to say? I smelled clean and powdery? No problem with that.
Here's to body chemistry. I have never smelled this on any person that it did not smell downright beautiful. Soft, very white-linen-ish. Some variance from person to person, perhaps one might pull off more of a powdery nuance, another might be fresh-sharp but all in all the same White Linen. Put it on my skin and you get a greasy-metallic, dirty ash tray. Why oh why but why?
I'm going to give this one middle of the road ratings because of this.