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Vintage Perfumes: The Fragrances that Defined Each Decade

Promitif by Max Factor perfume advert 1960s

Nothing can transport you back in time like a fragrance. They say that your sense of smell is the most powerful and evocative sense, and it’s true: Chanel No. 5 will forever remind me of my mum, Armani pour Homme is my husband, and Brut – well that reminds me of staying out late as a teenager…

“A woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future.” – Coco Chanel

This may have been a dramatic overstatement, but if I was in the business of selling perfume I would probably come up with some outrageous quotes about how indispensable it is too! And it worked, Chanel No. 5 is one of the most popular fragrances of all time, a bottle of it is sold every 30 seconds.

Coco Chanel also stated that women should wear perfume wherever they hoped to be kissed. Wise words indeed – please note that this does not mean ‘layered’ in perfume as perfume counter girls will advise you. We’ve all got into a lift with someone who smells overwhelmingly (and gaggingly) of some cloying scent, and you don’t want to be THAT person.  No one should be able to smell your perfume unless they’re that little bit closer than is polite, then it should be something delicious and intoxicating.

Whilst researching which perfumes were popular over the decades I was surprised how many of these I’ve actually owned. Over the years I’ve tried Blue Grass, Miss Dior, Diorissimo, Chanel No. 19, Anais Anais and L’eur du Temps before I finally settled on Chanel No. 5. Sadly I chose one of the most expensive perfumes on the market, but I guess there’s a good reason why it’s been a bestseller since it was launched in 1921!

It’s surprising how many of these perfumes are still best sellers even now, but I suppose if the perfumes were popular then why would they go out of fashion?

Here are the most popular perfumes from the 1920s – 1970s. Have I missed any out? And do you wear any of these?

Popular Perfumes in the 1920s

  • Chanel No. 5 was launched in 1921 and was an immediate Shalimar by Guerlain Perfumesuccess, even though perfume was very much the preserve of the rich at this time. Famously worn by Marilyn Monroe, the square bottle design is rumoured to have been inspired by the design of a whiskey decanter, and has even been immortalised as pop-art by Andy Warhol.
  • Guerlain’s Shalimar launched first in 1925. It is one of the most popular fragrances of all time and was supposedly inspired by Mumtaz Mahal, the women for whom the Taj Mahal was built. The perfume was named after the Gardens of Shalimar in Lahore, Pakistan, which were also built for her.

Popular Perfumes in the 1930s

  • Tabu by DanaFragrances which were popular in the 1930s included Tabu by Dana (a sexy evening perfume), which was launched in 1932 and Je Reviens by House of Worth, both of which remain available today.
  • In 1934 Elizabeth Arden developed Blue Grass (we’ve all been given that at some point).
  • Perhaps the most notable perfume of the 1930s was Joy by Jean Patou which was voted Scent of the 20th Century at the Fragrance Foundation FiFi awards 2000. It was created in 1929 (the year of the Wall Street Crash) and even though it was marketed as ‘the world’s most expensive perfume’ it was a huge hit. It is considered to be one of the greatest floral fragrances of all time.

Popular Perfumes in the 1940s

  • L'Air du Temps by Nina RicciAfter the war lighter and fresher perfumes became more popular, one of which was the still-popular Miss Dior by Christian Dior in 1947
  • L’eur du Temps by Nina Ricci was released in 1948. I remember having a bottle of this flowery perfume on my dressing table as a teenager and I adored the pretty glass bottle with 2 kissing doves as it’s bottle stopper.

Popular Perfumes in the 1950s

  • Femme de Rochas was a rich, sultry perfume aimed at the femme fatale created in 1944.
  • Arpege by Lanvin is a floral romantic perfume which was created in 1927 but which became particularly popular during the 1950s.
  • Max Factor’s Hypnotique and Primitif (as advertised by Jean Patchett above) were popular and an affordable perfume for the masses compared to the fragrances by the big fashion houses.
  • Soir de Paris by Bourjois was a popular fragrance amongst teenagers during the 1950s. It was discontinued in 1969, but relaunched in 1992

Popular Perfumes in the 1960s

  • Oh! de London by TuvacheYSL Rive Gauche was a popular 1960s scent
  • Hubert de Givenchy created L’Interdit for Audrey Hepburn and she wore the perfume for many years before it was released to the public in 1957. She featured in the adverts for L’Interdit throughout the 1960s (although she looked rather glassy-eyed and fed-up in the ads if I’m honest).
  • Tuvache’s Oh! de London is a bright sparkling scent which perfectly captured the mood of the swinging sixties.
  • Guerlain introduced the heady oriental scent Chamade in 1969.

Popular Perfumes in the 1970s

  • Charlie by Revlon was marketed asDiorella by Christian Dior a perfume for the independent woman who has everything and was very popular.
  • Opium by Yves Saint Laurent was launched in 1977 and was a heady, rich oriental evening perfume.
  • Christian Dior released the classic perfume Diorella by 1972 which combines citrus and musky notes.
  • Anais Anais by Cacharel was launched in 1978 and was also an immediate hit.

Did (or do) you wear any of these fragrances? Have I missed any out which you remember being really popular? Let me know!

Top photo source and copyright: Used with kind permission from JeanPatchett.com

181 thoughts on “Vintage Perfumes: The Fragrances that Defined Each Decade

  1. Helene Fallows

    Could ‘smell’ these fragrances as I read your BLOG, especially blue grass. Although sadly the only ones on your list I have personally owned are Shalimar & Charlie…always been a classy lady!
    Remember Tramp? thankfully I was never bought that either. Helene@revivalvintage x

    Reply
    • Mary, WHV

      LOL sadly I don’t remember a perfume called Tramp – I love the idea of someone buying that for their girlfriend/wife – that would just go down a treat! I can still remember the smell of blue grass now too – and Old Spice!

      Reply
      • Joy Dickinson

        This is really interesting. I hope you can help me find a fragrance I have been searching for for years and years, it has special reminders of special times and people in the early sixties.
        It was called LADY MANHATTAN and was in a blackish bottle. I would be so happy if I could find it again. Does anyone else remember it?

        Reply
        • Marilyn

          Yes I remember this it was made by Max Factor and the box was black New York sky line, I too have fond memories of this Fragance

          Reply
          • Pamela

            See my comment (which I put in the wrong place) below. This is as much as I have found out about Lady Manhattan so far. If anybody has any info on it I would love to hear it.

        • Pamela

          I loved this perfume and have been trying to get more information on it. The best I have come up with (and it isn’t easy as the history of ownership is so complicated) is that it was originally put out as by “Field’s of Bond St” (or J.C. & J Fields Ltd) which was apparently bought out by Goya in the 50’s and then Goya (or D.R. Collins Ltd) subsequently sold out to Reckitt & Sons Ltd in the 1960’s. So exactly who formulated it and when seems to be a mystery. I was aware of it in the mid 60’s and always had some so it must have been available for quite a few years. I recently bought a well kept vintage bottle of the perfume on e-bay (they are out there if you keep looking) and it smelled as good as I remember. I would love to know who was responsible for this wonderful stuff and what it is made up from. The search for information continues as it has become a bit of a quest!

          Reply
          • Pamela

            The above comment is made in reply to Joy Dickinson about Lady Manhattan (just realised I didn’t mention the name of it – woops!)

  2. Missy

    I had an older friend that had been a model in the 50’s and 60’s who wore Joy … Charlie came out about the same time I started going with my ex, Charlie, so I was given that … I love Opium and also Calvin Klein’s Obsession … My Mom wore Emeraude by Coty since it debuted in the 20’s and though it was not expensive I will always associate it’s scent with great pleasure … I remember my sister receiving White Shoulders from her boyfriend in the 60’s … Another fragrance I remember from that period was My Sin … I was wearing what I received for Christmas on Easter and it was a hit till I told them it was Lady Gaga’s Fame … lol … Suddenly they didn’t like it anymore …!

    Reply
    • Nancy L.

      Missy, I too have been searching for My Sin, I remember that wonderful light floral, not overpowering scent. I remember it as one as a romantic expression, My then high school boyfriend Lou would always comment on the scent and was glad it wasn’t one (as he would say) that could knock him out or would know my whereabouts way before seeing me. Chanel No.5, Beautiful, Charlie, White Shoulders are my favorites. Can anyone help to locate a place to purchase My Sin is there not a company allowed to produce. Wouldn’t you agree IF that were possible there would be no problem with countless purchases. I am certain it couldn’t happen due to infringement. 43yrs married,. still madly in Love… had to say this it is not because of the colone LOL . Be well! Nancy L.

      Reply
      • nicolette.

        ” my sin ” was by Lanvin.
        Anyone remember, ” FLAIR” by Yardley. The slogan was, ” whatever you wear, wear it with Flair!:-)
        They made a bath essense as well. Just a few drops and your bath water turned blue, and this lovely floral aroma wafted out!
        Wish that this could make a come back!

        Reply
  3. Weldergirl

    In the late twenties, my Mum wore ‘June’, Evening in Paris’, ‘Shem el Nessam’ and ‘Californian Poppy’. In the forties, I loved Nina Ricci’s ‘Fille d’ Eve’. Wish it were still made. My husband to be bought me this in Paris.

    Reply
      • Val Martleton

        June was made by Saville and my friend always wore it. Saville made a range of perfumes but I cannot remember their names. It was a very small bottle about 3ml (1 fl.oz) and they could usually be bought from your local chemist. A lot of perfumes were just attached to a card and not in a box. Dont know if you can still get it.

        Reply
  4. Camielle Steele

    In the 70’s, Merle Norman sold a perfume called Blue Fox. The most wonderful fragrance I have ever had the pleasure of wearing. The company that made it, called Miahti, sold the company to someone else, who promised to continue to make Blue Fox. I haven’t been able to find it since. Does anyone know if this wonderful fragrance is available anywhere???

    Reply
    • Adrian

      I’m a perfume collector and I have a bottle of Blue Fox By Miahti 2 OZ full bottle never used in my perfume collection. If you want to own it please contact me at my email.

      Reply
  5. Sam

    REMEMBERING THE 80’S IS HARD FOR AN OLD MAN, BUT i REMEMBER A VERY SPECIAL PERFUME, JUST NOT VERY CLEARLY. IT WAS A PRICEY FRAGRANCE IN A DARK BOTTLE AND A LEAPING BLACK PANTHER LOGO, THE NAME WAS PANTARA OR PHANTARA OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT AND THE FRAGRANCE WAS OUTSTANDING. IT WAS A MUSK THAT TRULY AFFECTED THE LIBIDO. {mine, anyway} does anyone remember it?

    Reply
  6. Debby

    You missed one of the most iconic perfumes of the 70’s: Jovan Musk. Not to mention Halston,Lauren and Babe by Faberge.

    Reply
  7. Debby

    Here’s some more: Loves Baby Soft (when it was made by Menley&James),Aviance,Estee Lauder Cinnabar,Coty Wild Musk,Chanel No.19,Enjoli,Shulton Blue Jeans and Skinny Dip for the teen set,Cardin de Pierre Cardin,Cie and so many others that I remember but not enough space to list.

    Reply
      • Laura McCloskey

        Many of the fragrances I loved during the ’60’s were left behind or misplaced or lost over the years. My Mom did have some, however, and I found that the majority of essences and fragrances just smell ‘old’. Do you agree? Have you managed to hold on to something that essentially just plain deteriorates ? Their true value basically retained by the beautiful bottles they were sold in.

        And I would love to know if, in the websites or stores where these fragrances are sold are true new merchandise or something just as old as the one you own.
        Shalimar, Chanel No5,, L’Air du Temps. I know these three are actually sold right now in stores and they are just as beautiful now as they were then.

        The rub comes in when our own chemistry reacts completely different than all so long ago.

        May youth embrace their essences, scent, and wonderful memories as we all have had.

        Reply
  8. Janice

    Popular in the 80’s: Dior’s ‘Poison’ (1986), Ralph Lauren (late 70’s through 80’s), Karl Lagerfeld’s ‘Chloe’ (late 70’s through 80’s), Calvin Klein’s ‘Obsession’ (1984), Calvin Klein’s ‘Eternity’ (1988), Shalimar (classic), YSL’s ‘Paris’ (1984), Oscar de La Renta (1985), Oscar de La Renta’s ‘Ruffles’ (1984), Anne Klein (1985), Paloma Picasso (1986), Nikke de Saint Phalle (1985), Giorgio (1985), Elizabeth Taylor’s ‘Passion’ (1987), Opium (late 70’s through 80’s), Houbigant’s ‘Rafinee’ (1982), Estee Lauder’s ‘Beautiful’ (1986). The years are when I either purchased them, they debuted, I recall them being the craze, or all three.

    Reply
    • alison ryan

      omg! rafinee , ive been racking my brains to remember the that name, i remember having a tiny tester sample that i used very
      sparingly as i could never afford a large bottle it lasted for ages as it was very concentrated . This particular scent has very special memories for me as i met a very special person whom has been im my life ever since.xxx

      Reply
    • Jean

      Oh my goodness, I used to love Oscar de la rente!! I also used to wear Moondrops by Revlon, wish I could still get it!! My best friend always wore Intimate, also by Revlon. I remember someone bought me a Rive Gauche one year and when I put it on it just smelled like I’d been dipped in a pepper pot, must have been my skin type because it smelled lovely on everyone else!!

      Reply
      • Kathy Conrad

        Moondrops can be purchased on EBay. I just looked and they have multiple item for “Moondrops” by Revlon. Do a search for it.

        Reply
  9. Janice

    Popular in the 80’s: Dior’s ‘Poison’ (1986), Ralph Lauren (late 70’s through 80’s), Karl Lagerfeld’s ‘Chloe’ (late 70’s through 80’s), Calvin Klein’s ‘Obsession’ (1984), Calvin Klein’s ‘Eternity’ (1988), Shalimar (classic), YSL’s ‘Paris’ (1984), Oscar de La Renta (1985), Oscar de La Renta’s ‘Ruffles’ (1984), Anne Klein (1985), Paloma Picasso (1986), Nikke de Saint Phalle (1985), Giorgio (1985), Elizabeth Taylor’s ‘Passion’ (1987), Opium (late 70’s through 80’s), Houbigant’s ‘Rafinee’ (1982), Estee Lauder’s ‘Beautiful’ (1986). The years are when I either purchased them, they debuted, I recall them being the craze, or all three.

    Reply
    • Lee

      Speaking as a man, Paloma Picasso was, and still is, stunning. I’ve given it as a gift several times over the years. I don’t know whats in it, but it has an absolutely hypnotic (for want of a better word) efffect on me. A gorgeous, lush, and slghtly louche perfume.

      Reply
  10. Robin

    wasnt there a perfume called intoxication in the ’50’s, a Beverly Hills perfume in the late ’70’s and magi noir in the ’80’s?

    Reply
  11. Lynne Mobus

    I remember a cologne that I LOVED and it drove my mother crazy because she didn’t like it, Heaven Scent . It was my all time favorite. That was in the early 1960’s. I even remember the song that they sang on the TV commercial The words were…..suddenly, you are all of the things that you want to be, suddenly your a little bit naughty but heavenly…..with Heaven Scent . Do they still make it? I would LOVE to smell it again for “old time sake”. .

    Reply
    • Laurel Irmen

      I also loved Heaven Scent! I would also love to smell it again! It brings back tons of memories for me. Aahhhh……
      If you ever run across it can you let me know?

      Reply
    • Stephanie

      I remember Heaven Sent by Helena Rubenstein. Like your Mother, I so didn’t like it!! Heavy, overpowering, sickly as My memory tells me. I worked for 3 years with a lovely girl called Jill Matthews who wore it every day – my poor nostrils. While I’m here, I Googled to try and find out which company made Passport. Early ’60’s, as a teenager, I enjoyed it. Not expensive, similar to Coty L’Aimant. Oh, and Heaven Sent and Lentheric’s Tweed! Thankyou for reading…

      Reply
  12. Lynne Mobus

    Another one that I loved was called.. Zen in a black spray bottle. I think it was in the early 1980’s. Great scent.

    Reply
    • Kathy Conrad

      I purchased Zen from Dillard’s a year ago. Check it out. If you can find it anywhere, I can sell you mine for $40.
      Kathy Conrad

      Reply
  13. Laurel Irmen

    I remember a perfume called “A Touch of Class”. I thought it was a Max Factor but I could be wrong. I think it was the early 80’s. Anyone else remember this? I absolutely loved it and all searches come up empty.

    Reply
  14. Suzy

    I’m not sure of the name. I thought it was a Dior. The bottle had a bow and the bottom of the bottle was checkerboard. Anyone know?

    Reply
  15. Caroline

    Would love to find L.A spray cologne. Reminds me of the 80s when I always used it. Is in tube length glass bottle about 5 inches long with purple top.

    Reply
    • Susan Scoggins

      It was a Victoria’s Secret perfume that I don’t know the name of. I had this very bottle and I cant find out the name of it to see if I can still get it. It is glorious. If you know please let me know.

      Reply
  16. Therese

    Dec 19,2015
    Anyone remember when Estee Lauder’s White Linen first debuted in the 1979s? It was introduced as one of a trio, each to be used individually or together. Besides White Linen there was Celadon and Pavilion. I loved them all

    Reply
  17. Eva N

    I have been searching…trying to catch a smell like soft….light natural spice flower???? Makes sense?
    Yes i think Lady Manhatten…would have to see bottle

    Reply
  18. Jacqueline. Rowell

    I’mlooking for a parfumerie named pagan by pivot.i wore it for many years starting in the 70’s.i came to Australia in1981 and could never get it. So many happy memories. Both my sister and I would love to find it again Regards Jacqui.

    Reply
      • Val Martleton

        Good news you can still buy Pagan. It was by Picot but now it is by a company called Mayfair. It was my mother’s favourite perfume and imagine my delight when I spotted it last week at my local Boundary Mill store but you can buy it on Ebay. They now do a body spray and cologne. It evoked memories of my mum and it smells as good as it always did.

        Reply
  19. Pamela

    I remember lots of these perfumes and what memories of the 70s they bring. Rive Gauche,Tabu, Cinnabar and my favourite Blue Grass. I also adored the Avon Pretty Peach range, heavenly. Transports me back to my 11yr old self.

    Reply
  20. Tonya

    I am looking for some info on a fragrance my mom wore when I was really young. I came across a bottle on her vanity while cleaning and all I get from it is, It has a faux tiger cap. I cannot read anything on the bottle and there is no longer a sticker on the bottom of the bottle. This would have been around in the early ’70’s until about the mid ’80’s I would guess.

    Reply
    • SteffKnits

      I think the fragrance was Faberge’s Tigress. The cap had a faux tiger pattern all around it. My mother wore this fragrance in the late 60s and early 70s along with Faberge’s Woodhue.

      Reply
  21. Grace Raker

    What is the truly “headache-inducing” perfume that I always smell I the stores I shop in? All the old ladies wear it….anyone know? Absolutely nauseating and apparently very popular among the older generation, and someone told me they thought it was Coty Wind Song

    Reply
    • Lisa P.

      Wind Song is similar to L’air de Temp; I used to buy it when I was broke and ran out of the latter. Not really a heavy fragrance. When I read your description , though, I immediately thought of Tabu. I still cringe when an older woman walks by me wearing that fragrance.

      Reply
    • Madeline Carver

      The fragrance you’re thinking about is White Shoulders! Everyone over seventy wears it daily!!!

      Reply
  22. Patricia Allen

    My favorite was and always will be ‘Crepe de Chine’. Absolutely the most fabulous scent! If anyone ever re-released it I would be thrilled!

    Reply
  23. Anne K

    Lady Manhatton, was in a black box with a ribbon streamer. I was trying to find the history of it today and its mentioned with affection in many places on line, My great aunt always used it and I can remember being bought some probably for Christmas. Pagan and Jovan Musk also tripping nostalgia.

    Reply
  24. Natasha

    Fragrances are so tied in with memories…I remember ‘Evening in Paris’ and Yardley’s ‘Field of Flowers’
    from when I was 10.( Was sold at our little town’s drug store – the same one that still had a soda counter ) Also, ‘Tigress’ which my fourth grade teacher wore everyday. Then there was ‘Jean Nate’ . Also ‘Charlie’, both of which I got for my 16th birthday…
    On our first date, my husband wore ‘Mr. Carven’…We’ve been happily married for over 32 years. I have looked for that scent, but have not been able to find it for years. I can go on and on… Wonderful fragrances throughout the decades, and wonderful memories. Thank you for triggering the flood of nostalgia.. .:^)

    Reply
  25. Eileen Broadhead

    My favourite of all time was Charlie. I know there are different colours now but which one matches the original or nearest to it, does anyone know. I also liked Faberge Kiku and Xanadu, Chloe, Calvin Klein Eternity and Fiji.

    Reply
  26. Jackie Lee

    The most absolutely most beautiful fragrance that I have ever used (back in the seventies and eighties) was called Pierre Cardin. I have not been able to find it anywhere. It appears that the company makes it for men and I don’t know if they still make the same fragrance for women. It looks like the womens fragrances in that company (Pierre Cardin) were made in 2007 so I don’t think it’s the same fragrance. Please please help me find this fragrance thank you so very much Jackie

    Reply
  27. ladyandherdogs

    Does anyone remember, Heaven Scent. It had a soft baby powdery scent. I know it wasn’t by no big name designer, I remember Avon had a lot of popular fragrances in the 60s and 70s. I also want to note, I wore Tabu, until something in my body chemistry changed and the last time I bought a bottle, I put it on and it smelled like cornbread on me. I haven’t wore it since.

    Reply
    • Val Martleton

      Yes I remember Heaven Scent and I think it was by Helena Rubenstein. If I remember rightly Apple Blossom was in a pink, Heaven Scent was in blue and there was another in pale green. I remember because my friend and I after we had finished work went into the big department stores trying all the different perfumes.

      Reply
    • Lisa P.

      My best friend in the late 70’s/early 80’s wore Ciara. It was wonderful on her…terrible on me. Fond memories of our “girl’s nights out dancing” when we were single. It is a wonderful fragrance..very unique.

      Reply
  28. Janet Owens

    I used to wear Oscar de la Renta by Oscar de la Renta, his original perfume launched in the early 70’s. Fabulous floral scent. Unfortunately I cant find it anywhere anymore, he has replaced it with one called Oscar, which is nothing like the original. If you know of anywhere that I can source it I will be delighted, I have even thought of writing to him to ask him to re-launch it!!

    Reply
  29. Shelia

    My great grandmother had a perfume that she wore. I can not for the life of my remember what it was. But it had a sweet smell and it came in a solid also. My daughter bought me a scented wax cube from ScentSationals called vintage lace that hit me hard with memories of that perfume. I would love to know what tha name was. She bought the wax cubes from walmart. Does anyone know what that scent is?

    Reply
  30. Rachel Auty

    ‘My’ fragrances for many years have been L’Air du Temps and Joy. I also adore Chanel No 5 (but my budget doesn’t!). Arpege was the fragrance my mother wore for evenings all through my childhood. I didn’t realise Tabu had been around for so long – somehow in my mind it is totally tied up with the 80s – when I know I had at least one bottle of Charlie :-)

    Reply
    • Emma

      I was thinking and thinking about a cologne I wore in the 50″s and arpege came to my mind and said was that a cologne then and sure enough I looked on here and found some had worn it too.

      Reply
  31. P johnson

    In 1976 My high school girl friend wore masumi by cody. I’ll never forget her. I sure miss her.

    Reply
  32. Jillian

    My mom always wore Intimate when I was a kid. Found it in a solid ladybug locket on a chain on ebay and it kept the scent perfectly. Wear it on a chain next to my heart, the perfect place. Also my favorite in college was a solid, Coty Sweet Earth trio in a compact. Probably cost about $6!

    Reply
  33. Christine

    Let’s see for me, since the mid 80’s my signature scent has been and always will be Calyx (originally put out by Prescriptives) now continued by Clinique. Great light, clean, citrus. Diane Von Furtenburg’s Tatiana; Cachet – another by Evyan was Great Lady the bottle all gold that was discontinued but more popular White Shoulders is still around. l’air du temps, Coriandre by Jean Couturier, Jontue. I can recall that even the less expensive fragrances as some including myself mentioned had lingering power; the scents while they would fade or be slightly more faint they would remain. I notice today this not the case. Would anyone else agree?

    Reply
  34. kate schofield

    is anyone familiar with a perfume called Antilope by Weil, OMG I would give anything to smell that again

    Reply
  35. Marco Baldi

    In the late 70’s there was a men’s cologne with a great smell called “de Havilland”, I don’t know who made it or if it has a different name… any ideas? been wandering about this one for years !

    Reply
  36. Norma Latshaw

    I remember Faberge’s “Tigress,” “Woodhue” and another fragrance called “Straw Hat” that I really liked. Also, probably in the 70s was a fragrance promoted by Zsa Zsa Gabor called “Zig Zag,” which is the only fragrance I ever encountered that REALLY smelled like fresh flowers. It wasn’t around very long. There was also a men’s fragrance that I found that would cause any gal’s knees to buckle, called “Zizanie.” I think Jean Pierre Aumont did the commercial. That was another that disappeared quickly. I always felt both fragrances probably used so many flowers in their manufacture that they were unsustainable. I recently rediscovered a fragrance I loved 50 years ago, “Blue Grass” by Elizabeth Arden. Great fragrance – light but long-lasting. The fragrance most of the “older ladies” seemed to wear was “Youth Dew” by Estee Lauder.

    Reply
    • Jen

      Back in the mid to early 80’s my friend bought me a bottle of a little known perfume she got in Chicago. I want to say it was azzaro or something like that but when i google azzaro, a mans fragrance appears. It had a light spicy scent. I know it’s a long shot but does anyone remember it and what it was called? I would love to get some again if I could find it.

      Reply
    • marcy Goldman

      I remember a perfume called Arrogance, Me. (also Danse Arrogance). It was in a pink box and was from Italy I think. Does anyone remember Ma Griffe or Calandre or a Poco Rabanne for Women? Perfumes went from woods and chypres in the 80’s (and orientals) to a ton of white florals, then fruit/berries and vanilla (thank you celebrity perfumes!) and it seems we’re back into musks and leathers or unisex fragrances (try Sarah Jessica Parker’s Stash for that matter)

      Reply
  37. Ruth

    I am an older lady that used to wear Woodhue, Bluegrass, Pink Satin, White Satin, Arpege, and many other fragrances from the past. Unfortunately so many are no longer being sold.

    Reply
  38. Sherwin craigs

    I would love to know where I can buy masumi , kiku, memoir cherie, and my sin. I am an vi perfume collected and woul love to re awaken the memories from these wonderful perfumes sherwin craigs

    Reply
    • Lisa P.

      L’air du temps has two kissing doves. I wore it for nearly twenty years. Still love it but found Lancome Miracle and love it more.

      Reply
  39. Dr. Bob

    The lady in the Promitif ad is my mother.
    Susan Spinner!!! Thank you. Thank you It was so great to see!!!!

    Reply
  40. elizabeth auchterlonie

    what was the scent used in amami wave set setting lotion? When dancing the boys all liked the smell of my hair. 60 years go

    Reply
  41. Jen

    I remember my mum wearing Elizabeth Arden Green Tea it’s a classic. People have kept this scent for ages. Least turnover.

    Been struggling to discover new scents, hate change.
    Love to have your thoughts/comments on this new idea I had that’s related to the perfume industry. Trying to figure out a new method to help people find the fragrance thats right for them.

    The landing page is here :http://sniffory.pagedemo.co

    Could i get your thoughts on this?

    Reply
  42. Cujo McCloskey

    From the ’60s, scents have been very strong. It has calmed me down over the last fifty years. Too bad there are not other ones listed here. There were even novels about perfume makers, I do not remember the names now. Do you remember them? Let me know. I’ll let you know which ones were my favorites. Fragrances were an integral part of my life.

    Reply
    • Windi

      I remember a perfume my teacher wore in the early 60s. Had a slight smell of oatmeal. I was on a bus recently an smelled the fragrance but did not know whom it was coming from. does that sound the same??

      Reply
  43. PATRICIA DUDZIK

    Oh I’ve worn Joy, I have that now and Shalimar,and Riches perfumes many of them still today and Chloe and Tabu

    Reply
  44. Linda

    I swear I had a perfume in the 1970s = Gianni F-something I think, don’t think it was Versace and I absolutely loved that stuff! Happened one day upon something in JCPenney, in a white frosted bottle with, started with a C I believe, if I could see the names I would recognize them. Sorry for the lack of info but I would love to have these fragrances again! I felt so “rich” when I wore them, I wasn’t but I felt like a million bucks! If you can help me at all I would so appreciate it, little to go on I know.

    Reply
  45. Maria Alicea

    Somebody knows about a little bottle of perfume named Cundeamor, I buying when was a teenager because was cheap $1.00 in the 70′ I like to know if stills available or history, thanks

    Reply
  46. edna

    In high school in the 60’s, I wore “Woody Glen” by Tillman. It was sutle and fleeting, yet come hither.
    One could purchase it in the drugstore but that did not diminish its classiness. It delivered a sweet lilting
    note whenever one passed by causing one to ask, “What fragrance are you wearing? It’s very pretty.”
    Please help me find it or what happened to it. Thanks.

    Reply
  47. JB

    I’m trying to remember a fragrance I wore in the 70’s & 80’s — all I recall is that it smelled very similar to Avon’s Candid. Any thoughts?

    Reply
  48. Janice Gass

    My grandmother had a bottle of Jungle Gardenia that I understand was introduced in the 1930’s and was worn by various stars of the Silver Screen including Joan Crawford. It was reported to have been an aphrodisiac. Unfortunately it broke in my dresser drawer and I was surrounded by the overpowering, heady fragrance until I got new furniture.

    Reply
  49. Vicki

    My favourite of all time is Talisman by Balenciaga. No longer made, which is sad. I see it on ebay but it worries me that it might be “off”. Has anyone had good experiences with deleted/discontinued perfume lines on ebay? Or bad experiences! For some reason, I thought that Talisman reminded me of a perfume I received when I was 15. I think it was Suki, or sukiarki or something like that. After reading the posts above, maybe it was faberge kuka or kuki! Great thread!

    Reply
    • Pamela

      You should go for it Vicki. I have bought some fabulous vintage perfumes on eBay. If it has been sealed and kept in the dark it should be fine. It is always a gamble though as it can be off. I managed to get some Kiku (I loved it too) but Kiku does not age well I don’t think. I never heard of Balenciaga Talisman but I like most of their perfumes. I’m sure a good bottle will turn up one day – keep looking. xx

      Reply
  50. Virginia smith

    My mother wore Tweed sixty years ago. I found it about ten years ago at The Vermont Store, of all places: still pleasant today…

    Reply
  51. Kalee Stata

    My mom has been asking me to find this perfume she said it was her absolute favorite she rhinks it was called petruly or pettrulli ? Or something of the sort I think she said it was in a Crystal looking bottle and smelled sweet lol I don’t have much more info than that lol bit she said one of her friends had it in the 80’s & ive been trying to find it for her !! All that I ever seem to find is “patrouli” which is not it that is an incense smell or oil …. Please help thanks

    Reply
  52. Phyllisl Pituch

    Does anyone remember a perfume from the 70’s that advertised a different scent on every woman. I had received it as a Xmas gift and loved it. Also Loves Lemon lift.

    Reply
  53. Walker

    I am in my 60s and the biggest scent to make a splash in the 70s was HALSTON it was incredible every time I wore it the guys went crazy and would fight just to sit near any gal that had it on. Another perfume which came in the mid 80s that everyone loved was GEORGIO which was simply devine.

    Reply
  54. Jayne Storer

    Hi I remember a body spray called Goya back in the 80s. I think it was in a green tin, but not sure. I used to love it, along with Jovan musk for women. I have found Jovan, but cannot find any trace of Goya. Can anyone remember it?

    Reply
    • Val Martleton

      Hi I think you will find that Goya was the maker of the perfume. They had a wide range but at the moment I cannot think of any although I do know I have used their perfumes.

      Reply
  55. Windi

    Does anyone remember a perfume that had a hint fragrance of oatmeal. I first smelled it when my teacher wore it in the early to mid 60s. Does this sound familiar to mayone?

    Reply
  56. Marcia A. Anderson

    My scent was Wicked Wahene and then Sunflowers at the age of 18 I stole my Grammar’s lil bottle of Shalimar. I still have it.. I still wear it, I turn 64 this year. Cashmere has become my go to.

    Reply
    • Opal Waters

      Marcia you are the only one I’ve seen mention Cashmere. That is my favorite. I remember mother wore Evening in Paris. As a kid I like loves baby soft, and then graduated in High school to L’air du temps, it was my early adult scent for many years until I lived in Germany and found Cashmere. I love that stuff!

      Reply
  57. Ansa Huovinen-Jansson

    I have used L’eur du Temps which was my first ‘real’ parfyme.My older sister gave it to me as a birthdaypresent.Later I have used Rive Gauche, Opium and Anais Anais which has been my great favorite many years.At the moment I use j’adore and Kenzos parfumes.I have bought most of my parfumes on my travels because it’s cheaper than in Finland where I live

    Reply
  58. Lisa P.

    I see little mentioned here about men’s fragrances but I wanted to share my thoughts on a really wonderful, sensual combo for men. If your man wears a leather jacket buy him some Chanel for men (the original; gray box). The combination is so clean yet manly! If he doesn’t wear leather…consider buying him both! It’s worth it!!!

    Reply
    • Colloni

      I wore a VS scent in the 90″s called Victoria. It smelled wonderful, Does anyone remember it? Also there was a Bill Blass scent from the 90’s unsure of name. The colors of the package were blue and yellow.

      Reply
  59. Renee D

    No one has mentioned the great vintage Desprez Bal a Versailles which I have worn since 1972. Also great is the original made in France Dana Tabu.

    Reply
  60. mrmooples

    Maybe someone in here can help me figure this out… Back in the mid 80’s I bought a 10ml bottle of roll on perfume in Pathmark. The bottle was clear with a white cap. The black writing on the bottle was fancy or script and the fragrance itself was yellow, very concentrated and sweet. Possibly orange blossom, jasmine, or honeysuckle-ish, or even gardenia, with some sort of musk or sandalwood… If my memory isn’t totally gone, I believe the name was a few words one of which was belle, and I could swear it said max factor on the bottle. It is definitely a summer fragrance. I am desperate to figure this out.. Anyone?

    Reply
  61. penny ewing

    I have worn Royal Secret for years , it was a Germaine Montel perfume in the day then was sold to Red Star who changed it several years ago and quit making the original.Has anyone out there saw the original on or in outlets or anywhere??

    Reply
    • Ann

      Don’t forget Givanchy’s Ysatis! A marvelous 80s scent that is still in formulation today. That and Joy are my signature scents, although truthfully, I’m such a perfume geek I wear a different one too often to really have a signature! It’s been great remembering all these old fragrances that got me addicted.

      Reply
  62. Karen Solberg

    My grandmother introduced me to a scent called eva Lynn. I saw it on e-bay but now am not spelling it correctly so I can’t find it. Help.

    Reply
  63. Caroline

    Vintage Maja by Myrurgia was a favorite of mine in the ’60s. They then reformulated it and the new version bears no resemblance to what I remembered. I recently found the classic version on Ebay and was delighted to receive it. I wouldn’t mind another bottle if I can locate one.

    Reply
  64. Lolly

    How about Cabochard de Gres? My gma had a wee bottle in a set of miniatures on her bathroom vanity next to the rosebud display soaps. There was Tabu, Je Reviens, Joy, and possibly Shalimar. I’d love to get my hands on that box set. Memories!

    Reply
  65. Colloni

    Does anyone remember the VS scent named Victoria? Also Bill Blass cologne unsure of name, packaging was blue and yellow.

    Reply

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