Suggestive perfume names are not a new trend. Indiscret by Lucien Lelong was launched around 1936 (though the ad above is a much later version). It was composed by perfumer Jean Carles who gave us notorious skank bombs like Tabu and Shocking (Schiaparelli), but also the impeccably coiffed Miss Dior and Ma Griffe. On this spectrum, Indiscret is actually closer to the ladylike end of the spectrum, pretty much in line with Lucien Lelong's gowns. Though, the lady might as well be a tramp.
|Lisa Fonssagrives wearing a Lucien Lelong dress. Photo by Erwin Blumenfeld, French Vogue, May 1939|
Indiscret is a heavily spiced floral. The top notes of my vintage bottle are probably not what they used to be, but what's left is dark green and quite crisp. The galbanum is restrained and not as bitter as it can be, but it leads the way nicely to the floral-spice-powder heart, which is quite hefty. I smell clove. Lots and lots of clove, and maybe even nutmeg and allspice. The rose geranium smells like it was just picked from the garden, and it plays well with the dry powdery orris. Indiscret has a noticable presence. It's not trying to hide, though it's well-mannered and not really shocking. As a matter of fact, to my modern nose this feminine Lucien Lelong perfume could have been presented as a spicy masculine in today's market.
Indiscret dries down into a dry wood and musk fragrance that has a surprising longevity for an eau de cologne. It remains noticable on my skin for 4-6 hours, with some remnants on my clothes or pillow. I have to say that I like it a lot. I like Lucien Lelong's idea of femininity; I enjoy the strength and distinct character behind the well-mannered facade, and the uncompromising statement Indiscret makes as it enters the room. I'm also happy with the absence of aldehydes, which means that this fragrance doesn't give an immediate vintage vibe (well, not until the oakmoss makes itself known).
Notes: mandarin, neroli, tiger orchid, bergamot, white peach blossom, galbanum and orange flower, jasmine, cypress, basil, clove, violet, ylang-ylang, tuberose, rose geranium, iris, oak moss, vetiver, patchouli, guaiac wood, white musk and amber.