I've smelled a lot of things in my (admittedly short) life so I was not shocked when I tried this, although I'll say most people my age, who are used to wearing j. lo or clinique or whatever else, would probably find it very "old" smelling. Old is not bad in my book; one of my favorites is Hermes Caleche, for example. However, this perfume lacks spunk. While its top aldehydes are to be expected and quite similar to the Caleche SDP (not EDT), its powdery basenote reeks of pearl-sporting housewife of a Princeton alum, and I just can't stand it. This isn't "worldly"; it's plain boring.
I was pleasantly surprised by this classic perfume. My mom gave it to me because she thought it was boring, but on me, it smells so fresh & sultry at the same time- my husband goes crazy when i wear this to bed- i thought it would smell soapy and powdery, but it doesn't- guess it goes w/ my body chemistry
The wide disparity of opinion of this product made me curious enough to seek this out to smell it again (I had not knowingly smelled it in years). Imagine my surprise at being neither thrilled nor horrified at this perfume. I tried the EDP at Ulta. To me, it smells like a perfume that a dignified (but not necessarily old) woman of wealth or accomplishment would wear. I don't see it as "old-ladyish," like so many others do. It didn't seem particularly strong or long-lasting, but that may have been because I was testing it on a very warm, humid day. I don't know if this was the French-made or USA-made product. I'll check out the EDT & pure perfume to see if there's a substantial difference when I get the chance.
1/17/08 EDIT: the Ulta bottles are made in USA. I tried the EDT recently, and I wasn't impressed. Probably only worth buying in the EDP form.
I never did understand why this is so great. It does not please my nose. It gives me a stomachache. It smells so warm and funky, a cloying sickly sweet, heavy syrupy smell. Someone spilled the molassis. Makes me want to run away from it.
Well, I agree with previous opinions that you either LOVE it or HATE it. For me No.5 was a journey of growing up. As far as I remember I would go to local perfume shops and smell & sample fragrances. Back then No.5 was absotutely awful to me: yes, it did seem old-lady-like and terribly pungent. It wasn't until about a year ago that I decided to smell it again, just for the kicks, and what a surprise!!! I absolutely loved it! Maybe I grew up as a woman to appreciate it more and I honestly consider a possibility that something about my skin chemistry changed as now No.5 smells so alluringly on me. I went to my best friend and asked her to smell it for me: she hated the scent straight from the bottle but loved it on me. Ahhhh, the mysterious concoction of Ms. Chanel. I DO LOVE it: the soapy powdery smell of clean skin, and I'm sure it'll stay with me for quite some time (it's the only fragrance I've ever used 4 bottles of).
This is one of the most disgusting smells my nose has ever experienced. I can't believe how much hype it has got attached to it, simply because it is Chanel. Really, it smells repulsive, something like old ladies who died 2 days ago.
I have this in the EDT (because the parfum and EDP are too strong for me) and I really like it. It is a soft, utterly feminine scent. It envelops the wearer in a velvet blanket of ultra-feminine sensuality and then reaches through the air to any man in a half-mile radius pulling him in with it's soft pink wisps of seduction. Not an innocent scent at all, yet not mature either ... it is simply the embodiment of "female" in the purest sense of the word. Lovely.
What can I say that hasn't been said before? This is a classic for a reason, elegant, understated yet avant garde for its time. Whenever I catch a breeze of this either on myself or on somebody else...it always leaves me surprised...again -the sillage is amazing, smells much better swirling in the air than when sniffed up close. Because it's been around so long, it's really easy to take this one for granted -just try to imagine when this fragrance first came out -the scent, the packaging..so modern!
Chanel No.5 is one of my all time favorite fragrances - I always have a bottle of it. It's a wonderful, classic, floral aldehyde - heavenly IMO. I know several people who feel it's an old lady fragrance - I would presume that's because it's been around so long one is bound to know/have known older women who wear it, thus the association. I have worn Chanel No.5 since I was in my late teens - and still love it (although, I guess now one could say I'm definately old enough to wear it! LOL) Chanel No.5 works is best as an evening and/or winter fragrance - and be sure to use a light touch!
I love this classic perfume even more in the EDT than in the EDP or parfum. However so many people use this, I've read that it is one of the best selling fragrances, I decided to use something more obscure instead.