White Shoulders

 White Shoulders

3.7

76 reviews

68% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.5

Price: $$

Package Quality: 3.5

Price: $$

INGREDIENTS



Age: 44-55

Skin: Normal, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Red, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Ahhhh, so classic, so feminine, and so perfect! In my top 5, and I own >100 perfumes. Pro tip: just skip the EA Fragrances formulation now sold in drugstores & discount stores; it's harsh, cheap, and quite a departure from the original. The Evyan Perfumes original formula is readily and cheaply available all over eBay, and I'll give pointers for telling the versions apart at the end of my review. This 5-Lippie review is for Evyan White Shoulders.

Certain fragrances just light up my subconscious upon first sniff and make me joyful. WS does that even before the first sniff, with its wildly adorable pink-cameo packaging and etched bottles. The fragrance itself is a jaw-droppingly gorgeous and perfectly orchestrated expression of every tropical white flower there is: tuberose, jasmine, gardenia, narcissus, with softly interwoven lilac and greenery. From the list of notes, WS sounds like it would overwhelm; indeed, the first spray or dab is like being smacked in the face with 50 Hawaiian leis, but it quickly settles into a delicate, ladylike, but enduring halo of pure floral beauty. WS smells like natural flowers. It's a hopeful spring day in a bottle.

I've loved WS since my grandma Esther had a bottle on her dresser in a lacy pink hatbox that just sent my sensibilities in a swoon. I wasn't a particularly girlie girl but I enjoyed trying on that identity sometimes, and really, what could be more traditionally girlie than a scent like this? A whiff of the splash bottle was just so utterly transporting to me. I remember at the time I had recently been given a "make your own perfume" kit for girls, that included cheap synthetic lilac and rose, and WS expressed that same straightforwardly bubbly, flowery feel-- but with utter class and the best quality.

I'm not always in the mood to smell like WS, but I wear it quite frequently and I'm never sorry to have put it on. As for being "grandma-ish" and "sexless": are you kidding me?!? Get the original version and tell me if the scent of fresh, warm, creamy flowers wafting up from cleavage isn't sexy. WS is beautiful, unmistakably itself, and probably the reason so many people were born after WWII :)

Now, a note on finding original Evyan bottles. Look for three things:

1) the box should say Evyan Perfumes on the back, NOT EA Fragrances or Parfums International

2) the bottle should say "Evyan White Shoulders," not just "White Shoulders," and the lady etched on the bottle should have circular curls in her hair

3) the cap of the bottle should have a crown and/or a cursive "E" embossed on it



5 of 5 people found this helpful.



Age: 36-43

Skin: Other, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

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.

3 of 4 people found this helpful.


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Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

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.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.


on 11/28/2015 2:52:00 AM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

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.

3 of 4 people found this helpful.


on 12/13/2014 3:32:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Other, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

Just a little trivia for the White Shoulders lovers on this site... My dad was the perfume chemist who created this scent back in the 1940's. He was working on salary for DuPont, who sold the formula to Evyan, and was paid nothing for the creation of this extremely successful product but his weekly salary. He was also prohibited from disclosing her participation in the scent's creation by the company. He went on to open a long-time successful custom perfume shop that he ran until he passed away 11 years ago. White Shoulders smells different in it's present form, as the company who has rights to it seems to have changed the quality of ingredients. But it is still a sweet reminder of my dad for me.

38 of 38 people found this helpful.


Age: 44-55

Skin: Dry, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brown, Wavy, Coarse

Eyes: Brown

I don't actually wear White Shoulders and never have. But when I was a kid (I'm in late Middle Age now) my mother, who was "just a mom" by day but transformed into this elegant creature by night (usually in hand beaded gowns of her own design and execution!). And White Shoulders was one of the fragrances she wore and there was always a bottle on her dressing table. She would come in to kiss me goodnight when she was ready to leave and had applied this perfume - such graceful glamour on all counts! In my little kid mind, I thought the woman on the front of the bottle was actually MY MOTHER. I don't know if White Shoulders is still being made or if it's sold in Canada and I have the feeling that even if it is, it's probably been reformulated and may not smell the same at all. But I am so tempted to buy a bottle, if I can find one, just for the memories and out of sentimentality (or "scent-imentality"?).

7 of 9 people found this helpful.


Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Normal, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

I haven't worn White Shoulders in years and didn't realize it had been reformulated. I got it the other day at Wal-Mart and though it may be slightly different from the past it still is a delightful scent. After spraying my old Evyan scent on one wrist and the new scent on the other there is a difference but they both are lovely perfumes.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.


Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

My husband gave this to me for my birthday when we first started dating. He knew that I love fragrances, and not really knowing what I would like, he chose White Shoulders.

I had never smelled it before then. It has a very "classic" scent...you can definitely tell this is a fragrance that was designed a long time ago. It's not new, but seems so fresh and different compared to today's perfumes. It is a soft, sweet floral perfume that clings delicately to you. It lingers softly throughout the day, gentle florals wafts...it is noticeable, without being aggressive. It's ladylike.

There's something so traditionally feminine and sweet about White Shoulders. The next day after my birthday, I wore the perfume. When I went to hug my husband, he closed his eyes and sighed that I smelled wonderful. He was happy to know it was the White Shoulders he gave me.

The fragrance reminds me of that first year of us dating before we married. It makes me think of fresh, new love.

4 of 4 people found this helpful.


Age: 30-35

Skin: Normal, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Blue

When I was in Jr High, the mother of one of my friend's wore this. I always thought she smelled lovely and one time when I was visiting my friend she went into her parents' room to get something and I spied this on her mother's dressing table. I didn't know what it was called but remembered the bottle. Flash forward a few years later around Christmas, and I was in a drugstore and spotted the bottle as part of a giftset, so now I had the name of this gorgeous elixir. For whatever reason, I never bought it. Still, in my mind, the fragrance was etched in my mind so I knew it whenever I smelled it on someone. Well, last week, I was online at Walgreens and spotted some for sale. I ordered that along with another giftset of Toujours Moi, the closest thing I have to a signature right now, along with the bathpowder of White Shoulders. The bathpowder arrived first and I opened it right away. The powder was beautifully scented and exactly how I remember. Then the giftset arrived today and I opened it and dabbed on a little of the parfum. Lovely. It also came with hand cream and a large 4.5 oz bottle of Eau de Cologne. I am really enjoying this. There's something about it that smells almost like you'd expect the hand cream in a fancy bathroom to smell. Large white flower bouquet fully enveloping you, but with a creamy hint to it. Overall, it's not an every day perfume for me, but something I can see me wearing frequently.

2 of 3 people found this helpful.


on 6/15/2013 9:23:00 PM

Age: Unknown

Skin: Normal, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

A whiff of Evyan White Shoulders in Fall of 1969 is what began my obsession with perfume. I was a high school senior, sitting in the first desk of the center row of my homeroom class. The girl who sat directly behind me in homeroom (Janet) came into the room and passed in front of me to get to her desk -- swishing past me and throwing a GLORIOUS scent in my direction.

OOOOOH!! The impact of that unbelievable swoosh of perfume changed my life forever! She took her seat behind me, and I spun around to face her. I told her she smelled sooooo good, and what was that scent she was wearing? She said "my mother's White Shoulders bath powder".

My experience of perfume to that point had only been what my mother wore. She had always worn loud, strong perfumey perfumes, chiefly Tigress, which choked her whole family. Until I smelled Janet's White Shoulders bath powder, I had never known that soft perfumes even existed. I was 17 and thought all perfumes were strong. Evyan White Shoulders was new and different to me in that it was SOFT! I thought it was the most gorgeous scent I had ever smelled.

That evening, when I got home from school, I remember the exact spot & time in our kitchen that I approached my mother. I asked her, "Have you ever heard of White Shoulders perfume?" and she said "Sure!", so I said, "Well, I'd like some for Christmas please!" and told her about that heavenly whiff.

Lo and behold, I found a splash bottle under the Christmas tree in 1969. I spent the whole day inhaling from the bottle (as well as wearing it). I was deeply in love with Evyan White Shoulders, and I had been introduced to the power and joy of perfume. I've been mad about perfume ever since. Athough it's been reformulated and has lost considerable of the original magic of Evyan, I still have a bottle of White Shoulders today, in the new formula.

I would give 5 stars for the original Evyan and for its importance in my life, but to the new reformulation, I would give 3 1/2 stars.

16 of 16 people found this helpful.

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