The Smell of Old Money

Vintage Coty Ad

We couldn't pass it up: A luxury lifestyle company offered to send us a list of 'the perfume choices of the super rich'. Don't roll your eyes. Three cost less than a manicure and only one is out of production.

We know that manicures in London are not exactly the bargain they are in other cities in the world (or in New York, anyway). But still. We were quite surprised by the list, which includes nothing released after 1966. It was compiled by Insignia Lifestyle Management, who teamed up with perfume connoisseur, Frederic Malle, and interviewed 100 of its 'super rich' members.

1. Après l’Ondée – Guerlain (1906)
For youth and delicacy. This perfume is a beautiful mixture of aniseed, rose and iris root.
Available here.

2. Le Chypre – Coty (1917)
For love. A perfume named after the birthplace of Venus. This perfume is made up of oak, moss, iris, musk, labdanum, amber and bergamot
(Ed - No longer available.)

3. Chanel No. 5 – Chanel (1921)
For elegance and classic standards. Key notes include; jasmine rose, ylang ylang, iris, lily of the valley, amber, patchouli and vanilla
(Ed - Read a tale of enduring love in the Telegraph)

4. Fracas – Robert Piguet (1948)
For seduction on the Riviera. Fracas is made up of tuberose, jasmine, orange blossom, carnation and pink geranium
(Ed - Reissued in 1998, thank goodness.)

5. L’Air du Temps – Nina Ricci (1948)
For springtime. This perfume includes delicious notes of carnation, rosewood, bergamot, violet, iris, amber and sandalwood
Available here.

6. Emeraude – Coty (1921)
For spice and energy. Infused with jasmine, orange, citrus florals, sandalwood and spices
(Ed - This is the first 'in lieu of a manicure' option.)

7. Diorissimo – Christian Dior (1956)
For freshness. Diorissimo consists of lily of the valley, ylang-ylang, rosewood, amaryllis, boronia and jasmine
Available here.

8. Je Reviens – Worth (1932)
For purity. This perfume is made up of lime, lemon, lavender, vetiver, patchouli, moss and musk
(Ed - This is the second.)

9. L’Origan – Coty (1905)
For warmth. This perfume is made up of bergamot, orange, neroli and ylang-ylang
(Ed - And this is the third.)

10. Eau Sauvage – Christian Dior (1966)
For masculinity. Crisp lemon and rosemary with a masculine vetiver base note
(Ed - Finally, back to a price point with which we're comfortable.)


Product information based on the joint research of Frederic Malle and Insignia Lifestyle Management, who interviewed 100 of their ultra-high net worth members.

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