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

By Evie C.

A woman’s perfume tells more about her than her handwriting.
Christian Dior

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

My perfume adventure is not going well.  I have discovered that I have neither the taste of Turin nor the omnivoric appetites of those perfumistas who post such regular and explicit reviews.  It seems my nose is tone deaf.  I should not be writing about perfume at all.

I googled perfume quotes in an attempt to find inspiration for this blog and the first two that appeared are above.   Coco Chanel’s seemed particularly ominous.

I started a new job today.   Before she left for the day one of my new colleagues sprayed herself with Paul Smith’s ‘Rose’.  Several people commented and it was indeed a lovely counterpoint to a long day but not something I would have wanted to be surrounded by all day.  I envied her that signature scent though, as it clearly had meaning for her and seemed a fabulous pick-me-up at the end of the day.

I don’t know how you all do it.  ‘Best-of’ lists and trying to settle on a favourite genre/note are clearly not the way forward.  I see now that one cannot be scientific about trying to identify a favourite.  Perhaps someone out there has broken a similar olfactory block?  Or perhaps some of us just don’t get it? Discuss . . .


8 comments on ““A woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future” Coco Chanel

  1. HAH! Do I sense grumpy Evie C? Don’t worry darling.
    Try some perfume every day, as you leave work seems like a good time to do it. You get to spend the time on your way home with it and if it offends there is a shower waiting. You have plenty of samples in your trousseau and should you ever run out there are hundreds here. On your way home write a few words in your phone about the scent, for yourself.
    Portia xx

  2. Ari says:

    Oh, Evie, please don’t get discouraged! You won’t find anyone in the perfume blogging community who will tell you that having Luca Turin’s tastes automatically equals good taste, I can promise you that! And Coco didn’t know a damn thing about perfume (in addition to being kind of a Nazi).
    It seemed like what you were drawn to was the meaning that the Paul Smith Rose held for your coworker, so perhaps when you are reading reviews to try to decide which perfumes to try, don’t look at the notes- look for how the reviewer says the perfume makes him or her feel. Best of luck to you!

  3. Dionne says:

    Would it help to know that I think Coco’s quote is absolutely ridiculous? I mean, c’mon, if it read something like “A woman who doesn’t know how to read has no future” I’d be taking it seriously, but perfume? Fragrance is lovely and fun, and I really enjoy wearing it and reading about it, but it’s certainly not the end-all be-all.

    And part of the perfume journey is learning to trust your own tastes. My copy of Perfumes: the Guide is battered and marked up, but I find I don’t open it very much these days. I’ve also found that I don’t fall madly in love with a fragrance as often as others; in the course of a year of regular sampling, there are usually 3 or 4 out of the myriad samples that I really, REALLY swoon over. There’s no one right way to do this.

    As another new blogger, I can completely relate to the feeling of wondering if I should be writing anything, but the community has been so welcoming it’s worth it. So I say, stay. If your opinion is a bit different than the majority, that makes it *more* interesting, not less.

  4. Undina says:


    There are roughly two approaches to blogging: either you make a job out of it or it’s a hobby.

    If you look at it as a job, you just set goals (e.g. I’ll write about something once/twice/every day a week/month/etc.) and then try following it. You do not have to love things you’re writing about – just test them, compile your thoughts together – and voilà.

    If testing perfumes and writing about it is your hobby, take your own pace. Write when there is something you want to share with us and don’t when you do not feel like doing that. Especially since you have such a great blog partner as Portia who has enough enthusiasm for both of you!

    I’ve never read The Guide completely. I have it and consult it from time to time but at some point I decided that I do not really care what LT or TS think about perfumes I love or like (though for those I do read their take), I check how they described perfumes I disliked and I never read what they say about perfumes I haven’t tried yet because I don’t want to be influenced.

    As for the favorite scent(s), do not push yourself! If you want to wear a perfume – wear it. If you have nothing that fits your mood, keep looking when you have a chance. And if in the end you decide you do not need/want perfumes that much – even better: you’ll save a LOT of money! 😉

  5. Natalie says:

    Completely agree with what others have said. There are as many ways to enjoy and write about perfumes as there are people. Do what you enjoy, whether it means writing or not, having a signature scent or not, etc.

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