3.8

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80 reviews
71%
would repurchase
3.5/5
package quality

price range

Reviews


5.0
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3 months ago

Current Elizabeth Arden version is okay, and will give you a rough sketch of the White Shoulders fragrance pyramid, but it’s made cheaply and it shows. It can be sweet and cloying, and has a bit of a clove oil/dentist-office quality in the dry down that I don’t like. In its vintage Evyan version, which is of amazing quality and readily available on eBay, White Shoulders is a *breathtakingly* gorgeous white- floral garland that smells timeless, not dated. What you’d imagine smelling as you walked through a lush tropical garden after the rain. So gorgeous, in fact, that I can’t stop sniffing my wrist as the naturalistic gardenia, tuberose, and lilac unfold, right down to the sun-warmed nectar and the fresh green stems. This stuff just brings me joy! The best versions are the pure perfume and the “youth & beauty bath oil.” The cologne is pretty swank too, but not as concentrated. Don’t be afraid to purchase vintage Evyan online. The bottles are sealed with a plastic stopper that perfectly preserves the juice. I have a late-1950s bottle of parfum that smells perfect, and a 1970s bottle of bath oil that does too. Now— is the name dumb and racist and a product of its time? Yes. Does the cutesy pink-cameo packaging remind you of McCarthy-era sexual repression? Also yes. But don’t let that stop you! This is an astoundingly well-constructed fragrance. .

About reviewer (227 reviews)

Age44-55

SkinNormal, Fair, Not Sure

HairRed, Other, Other

EyesBrown



5.0
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7 months ago

These reviews took me back. This was the first perfume my mom gave me. So grown up to wear perfume. I remember gentle gardenia smell. Sad if reformulated and not the same scent. Off to eBay to find a vintage bottle.

About reviewer (76 reviews)

Age56 & Over

SkinSensitive, Fair, Neutral

HairBlond, Wavy, Fine

EyesBlue


3.0
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a year ago

What can you say about WHITE SHOULDERS? I've gone through three flacons over the last 12 years or so, all of it purchased relatively inexpensively at Walgreen's. It's kind of a "guilty pleasure" because it's no longer really a "haute" fragrance. And it's ultra-femme, but sometimes I like to spritz it on, anyway. My current flacon is one my grandmother "bequeathed" me when she died recently. A glance on the underside says it's the Parfums International version, NYC, NY, in EDC strength. At present, all the essences in WS smell very artificial to me. (That's not necessarily a "diss": many great numbers are all-synth). I doubt, frankly, if it now contains any real floral EO's at all. Probably all synthetic. The opening spritz *almost* smells like some natural floralcy is involved, but the drydown is pure synthetic... I would even say glaringly so. Like a very nice shampoo or hand lotion, say. Nevertheless, I perversely like it, somehow. Even though I cannot detect some of the supporting notes claimed for it, like peach, spices and civet. I just get a big confluence of gardenia, lilac, jasmin and tuberose, and a hint of muguet. What I'm wondering is: in its initial debut in the 1940's, whether it was once considered a more "haute", fine fragrance... I wonder if it once contained natural floral EO's? If so, it must've been absolutely glorious. Or whether it's always been a drugstore-tier number, happily composed of all-synths as it is today? Can anyone here comment on this? My maternal grandmother wore this, as did my own mother. Also: Do you know of any modern available perfume that is basically the WHITE SHOULDERS idea-- with a very similar olfactive pyramid-- but expensively composed of high-end and natural EO's? The only one I can think of offhand might be Annick Goutal SONGES.

About reviewer (67 reviews)

Age44-55

SkinCombination, Medium, Cool

HairSilver, Straight, Coarse

EyesGreen


5.0
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a year ago

Classic, timeless, beautiful, feminine, unique…a fragrance made in a different era and made in America around 1945. Now, 73 years later, it is still around the most under priced fragrance ever. White Shoulders was the first perfume that I loved. I discovered it when I was around 7 years old, on my grandmother’s dresser. My mother almost always wore Chanel No 5 and a couple of others that I don’t recall the names of. None particularly thrilled me. One day at my grandmother’s house I put on her White Shoulders and I was in love. That is the fragrance that started my love of fragrances. To this day, many, MANY years later, I still love it. I found an article online about the history of it and I will post it after my review. I have a bottle of the vintage White Shoulders, the square bottle with the pink cap. They can be found on ebay at decent prices sometimes. I have also tried the Perfume International version that came after Evyan and before Elizabeth Arden took it over and I actually prefer the current Elizabeth Arden to that one. Note in the original are: Top- Neroli, Tuberose, Aldehydes Middle- Gardenia, Jasmine, Orris, LOTV, Rose, Lilac Base- Sandalwood, Amber, Musk, Oakmoss, Civet, Benzion Yes, there is a difference in the vintage Evyan and the new Elizabeth Arden but there is no way anyone would mistake that it smells very similar to the original. The original is more complex for sure but I find the Elizabeth Arden just as nice, just different. For me, the EA is easier to wear on hot summer days and I smell a lot more lilac than I do in the original. I like that I can spray it all over and it’s never over powering. I can’t do that with the original. It is sweeter, more complex, more potent and I smell a lot more of the white florals and much less lilac and I love lilac. One thing I do not like about the original is that after a few hours sometimes it almost has a stale smell to it, that does not occur with the newer EA, it just softly fades away. I love both, but they are a bit different and it just depends what you like. The current EA is so cheap, around 15.00 for 4.5 ounces, but honestly if this were at Aedes or Luckyscents, made in Paris and had a 250.00 price tag on it, I would feel the same way about it and that it was worth the price. No …I do not think it smells like an old lady fragrance, I never did. If anything , to me it smells like a young girls fragrance, My daughter loves it also and a bottle always sits amongst her expensive fragrances. I notice her White Shoulders is always well used and replaced when empty as is mine. It is so inexpensive that I like to spray some into my bath water. Just a couple sprays leaves me and the bathroom smelling heavenly.It never gives me headache, is never overpowering and I have never had anyone say it bothers them, even people that are sensitive to perfumes It is not long lasting and disappears after 3-4 hours so does haveto be reapplied. I don’t find any difference in longevity between the original and the current. It may not be for everyone, but I am never without a bottle and it is and always will be one of my top 5 fragrances ever. Below is an article I found online from the perfume vault a while ago and saved. I thought it was interesting and was not sure if links were allowed so I will post it here: WHITE SHOULDERS was launched by the design house of Evyan sometime in 1940s (dates vary from 1943 to 1949!). Very early on the Evyan company was apparently called by another name, albeit briefly- Hartnell. And so some of the older most original White Shoulders presentations are bottled under a Hartnell label. But soon enough the company was called Lady Evyan (and later, just Evyan) = Evelyn Diane Westall, the wife of company owner Dr Walter Langer. Evyan boasted at the time that White Shoulders (and their other perfumes) were prime examples of fine American perfumery. Everything, so it was told, was strictly produced in USA. So White Shoulders was meant to be the perfume to show that Americans could compete with the best of what was being produced in Europe (and specifically, in France). Now this was happening during the years of American involvement in WWII, feelings of patriotism were running high. Americans of the day wanted (and needed) to spend their luxury dollars at home. Indeed it is worth noting that prices for White Shoulders were initially set rather high- beginning around $3 at a time when many "fine" perfumes of that day offered products priced beginning at around $1. Over time White Shoulders has remained very popular; it's seen in both vintage and new formulations in thrift shops, antiques markets, modern drugstores and of course everywhere on-line. Although the perfume has changed hands from Hartnell/Evyan to Elizabeth Arden, the packaging- peach and lace, and later with a lovely feminine silhouette- has remained and is familiar to most American women. And there isn't any mistake about why its become and stayed so successful- White Shoulders is an iconic fragrance. Actually, it is probably the iconic American fragrance. Classified as a Floral Aldehyde, it is: beautiful, sweet, sexy, powdery, radiant, maternal, refined, approachable, fresh, gracious and warm but at it's core- very "night"... The original presentation of White Shoulders was packaged in round peach satin and cream lace powder style boxes. The bottles were square, decorated with vertically cut pinstripes alternating with plain glass stripes and topped by a stout round stopper.

About reviewer (781 reviews)

Age44-55

SkinNormal, Fair-Medium, Warm

HairBlond, Straight, Medium

EyesBlue


4.0
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2 years ago

I have used white shoulders for over 30 years. The last 2 bottles that I have bought do not have the flowery smell that I have always enjoyed. Did you change the formulation? If so what is compable. r

About reviewer (1 reviews)

Age56 & Over

SkinCombination, Fair

HairOther

EyesHazel


5.0
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2 years ago

Love this scent so much that I dreamt the other night that I was writing a review about it ,so here I am. This is all about the HONEYSUCKLE. Oh wow, so dreamy and femme. It lasts all day. I have the vintage Evyan version both in cologne and perfume strength and both last all day. I dab some on myself and rub some on a cotton ball and tuck it into my bra and I'm good to go. Your body heat just warms up the scent, sending pleasant wafts as you move. In one day I received 2 compliments on it. I was craving it so much the other day that I wore it again and received another compliment. I don't go fishing for compliments, I just wear what I like; but it's always nice to get positive feedback! I have my eye on the dusting powder on ebay- just have to wait until payday. If I can find the dusting powder on any of my scents, I'm all over it. Nice to put on after a bath and slipping into your most comfy pj's. In the "The Guide", Tania Sanchez called this "mumsy". Pfft! It's for anyone who enjoys and appreciates classic, ladylike florals. P.S. I found "The Guide" offensive on so many of its reviews, I actually gave it away. It's a free country and all, but I have no desire to read such utterly snobbish garbage again.

About reviewer (122 reviews)

Age36-43

SkinCombination, Fair, Cool

HairBrunette, Curly, Coarse

EyesBlue


5.0
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3 years ago

I have the eau de parfum version from Elizabeth Arden. I found it on the internet. I've not tried the Evyan version. I also have some tiny bottles of the perfume, but I think the eau de parfum is better. This is one of my favorite fragrances. It's very feminine. I smell lilac and white flowers. The only con is I have to apply about 6 spritzes to get any sillage. However, it does last all day. The bottle is pretty, if a little cheap looking. White Shoulders is also very affordable. I definitely want to buy a backup bottle. If you like feminine, romantic fragrances, you will love this.

About reviewer (533 reviews)

Age36-43

SkinSensitive, Fair, Cool

HairBrown, Wavy, Medium

EyesGreen


4.0
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4 years ago

My grandmother use to wear this and I remembering it having a sweet scent like honeysuckle and lilac. When I was young it was one of the few designer fragrances that was classic. I don't prefer this for myself but it does bring me back to a memories of my mammaw.

About reviewer (104 reviews)

Age36-43

SkinOther, Olive, Neutral

HairBrunette, Wavy, Medium

EyesBrown


5.0
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4 years ago

I've been on a vintage fragrance kick for a few weeks now and White Shoulders was one of the perfumes I got. One by Evyan and one by Elizabeth Ardan. The Evyan version in Cologne is far more superior, this is a beautiful blossoming floral with a hint of black tea with a lovely musky floral drydown and noticable sillage. In the EA version in edt, I don't get the blossoming floral tea scent and hardly any sillage at all. It's basically a toned down floral with more soapy synthetic somewhat dryer sheet smell in the dry down. They do smell similar but I can definitely tell the difference. The EA version is sort of a travesty to this beautiful cologne imho. A shadow of its former self.

About reviewer (14 reviews)

Age44-55

SkinCombination, Fair-Medium, Warm

HairRed, Curly, Fine

EyesHazel


4.0
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4 years ago

To me this fragrance is the epitome of the saying an iron fist in a velvet glove. On the surface it's a hopelessly romantic white floral featuring orange blossom, lillies and jasmine, to be worn with soft summer dresses, pastel colours, and wide brimmed hats. Underneath, though, is a powerhouse bomb that lasts all day and leaves a fragrant trail in its wake. Tenacious is an understatement. I have skin that can eat some perfumes, but one spray of this at 7am in the morning is enough to see me through till midnight. If it gets on your clothing it's there until you wash the garment. Although it's a very feminine white floral, the inclusion of some heavy hitting base notes, such as civet, oakmoss, sandalwood, musk and benzoin give it this incredible longevity. Despite this, sillage is fairly moderate, which is a good thing. Lillies can be problematic in frgrances, giving many people headaches or making them feel ill. Given its longevity, one spray of this in your cleavage is really all you need. I'm reviewing a spray bottle marked Eau de Cologne, and it has more strength than most eau de parfums. Now that I've waxed lyrical, I'll tell you what it actually smells like on me. There is very little development in the fragrance. It goes on harsh and within 10 minutes begins to soften to a soapy, waxy floral dominated by orange blossom, lillies and jasmine. Aldehydes give it the soapy drydown and lillies contribute to the waxiness. The basenotes mentioned above are blended together so that no one of them stands out, instead contributing to a subtle animalic aura and giving it the aforementioned tenacity. This was a blind buy for me off Ebay. It's not at all right for me which is why I have not ticked that I would repurchase. This is a fragrance for eternal romantics who smell good in white florals, in particular lillies. If you smell good in Anais Anais, you will probably smell good in this. On Fragrantica many people are comparing it to either Anais Anais or J Lo Gow (which I personally have not smelt). I don't really think it smells much like Anais Anais except for the dominant note of lillies in both of them. So, here I am with 113ml bottle of something that doesn't really work on me but that I don't want to part with. I'm using it up by putting one spray in my bath water every now and then. That one spray not only perfumes my body, but my whole house. Once a week it's a lovely way to go to sleep. Used this way, not only will the bottle last for years, it will probably last longer than me. Edit: 13/12/15 - This is another perfume that works well layered. I've layered it with Jessica Simpson Fancy Nights. I love heavy orientals and really like Fancy Nights but have found it to be a very linear and simplistic fragrance. Prior to layering it, it was a fragrance that I tended to wear around the house in cold weather but not often wore when I went out. Once I tried layering it with White Shoulders several things happened. Two fairly linear fragrances became one much more complex sex bomb with absolutely phenomenal longevity. The waxiness of the lillies in White Shoulders was turned into powder instead. The amber/slightly chocolate drydown of Fancy Nights was turned uber sexy by the civet in White Shoulders and the hopeless romantic has become a woman of the world. I find that two parts Fancy Nights to one part White Shoulders works absolutely perfectly. Given how strong both of these fragrances are, there's no way of just layering them on the skin. Three sprays of would be overwhelming. Instead I mix them together in a small spray bottle and allow to age. That way, I have my favourite custom blend available whenever I want it.

About reviewer (816 reviews)

Age44-55

SkinCombination, Fair-Medium

HairBrunette

EyesBrown