Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Yves Saint Laurent- Parisienne

The first time I tried Parisienne, the new perfume from YSL, I hated it. I thought it was one of those chemical warfare perfumes- all synthetic berries, plastic flowers and that ubiquitous modern patchouli note. It's not like I was expecting a lot. I can't stand Elle, YSL's previous release, and while I appreciate the idea of the original Paris, something there was lost in translation between the bottle and my skin. There's also the obvious reformulation of Paris (I assume it's IFRA-related. Luca Turin had mentioned damascone as one of the newly restricted ingredients), which no longer smells the way it used to when I made every attempt to wear it in 1989-1990. Combined with having Kate Moss, a model I absolutely loathe, being the face of the Parisienne campaign and the way was paved for that instant dislike.

I've done my duty, though, and tried it again and again. Eventually, I got used to that plastic feel- they call it a vinyl accord, I call it a cover-up for cheap raw materials. But I have to admit that a rose that doesn't turn sour on me is a welcome change, and the berry notes aren't half bad. They are sunny and cheerful, something I actually enjoyed here and there as a guilty pleasure when the weather started getting cold. Parisienne has a youthful feel without insulting one's intelligence or good taste. And it makes me think of wearing a poodle skirt, so it can't be all that bad.

Yves Saint Laurent Parisienne ($39 for 1 oz, $65 for 1.6 oz EDP) is available from Sephora and most department stores. I got a couple of samples with various online purchases.

Image: www.suzi.se/blog


  1. I'm still reeling from the mention that damascone is now a restricted material. What on earth will our rose based fragrances do without them???? They are actually raping our great fragrance classics. This is all about exerting power. Grrrr. I'm furious. I have a bottle of Paris (about 7 years old) that I shall now lock away in a dark room, as I'm petrified at trying the new stuff. Not only are IFRA affecting new fragrances on the market, they're affecting our enjoyment of our existing stash as we start to hoard (not use) our old pre-reformulation scents.

    Rant rant rant. If I can't have my original Paris, I don't want to try the new Parisienne. (sniff).

  2. I found it ridiculous that Kate Moss is the adv girl for Parisienne and if I'd be a Parisienne I'd feel offended. I very much share your loathing for her and she made me absoluely uninterested in the perfume itself. I haven't even tried it yet.

  3. I really wanted to snark on this one too, but it's kind of grown on me. I look at it as my non-complicated fragrance. The one I spray on when I want a simple day.

  4. WAIT!!!
    YSL has been very consistent in saying that the creative concept behind Parisienne was NOT a woman from Paris. It is supposed to evoke a woman from anywhere in the world except Paris... that the city "adopts her" because of her vibrant and sensual lifestyle/tastes. This is why they chose Kate Moss. I never used to like Ms. Moss, but I think her photos/video for Parisienne capture exactly what they wanted.

    As for the perfume itself, I loved the original Paris - but it was always too heavy a rose for me personally to wear - I've always been more of a Habanita, Mitsouko, or La Nuit de Paco kinda gal... liking my perfumes a bit darker than Paris. This new Parisienne gives a polite nod to her gorgeous big sister Paris of old, but makes no attempt to replace her, going it's own way - all I can say is that when I wear it I feel joyful and lovely. Men go nuts for it, which isn't the reason I wear perfume but a side effect I can learn to live with. It is unfortunate that the name chosen makes it hard to be judged on its own worth.


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