Cordon Rouge

2015-03-03 09.46.12 (2) Cordon Rouge (or Red Cord in English) was introduced by Coty in the early 1900’s (possibly 1909 specifically) and, when I first smelled a bit of it, from my vintage (probably 1930’s?) unopened bottle, I was gobsmacked.  It was like time traveling or seeing a ghost.  I’ve never (other than perhaps a very vintage bottle of nearly unused L’Origan) smelled anything so of the past and yet totally alive and intact.  I almost feel a bit guilty for breaking that seal after all these years…

I’m not sure what the notes of this fragrance are because it’s incredibly hard to find much of anything about it (it may have been discontinued in the late 1930’s), but it reminds me of a lot of L’Origan and No. 4711 and that’s far from surprising considering that Coty debuted L’Origan in 1905.  It’s spicy, powdery, balsamic and deeply romantic in a leisurely yet refined sort of way, with notes of perhaps vetiver, musk (?) and sandalwood.  I’m kind of in love this scent, and while I have a nice sized bottle, I doubt another one will be even remotely easy to find (hopefully I’m wrong).

2015-03-03 09.46.37 (2)2015-03-03 09.47.05 (2)

A vintage ad written in French, describes Cordon Rouge as a “…source of freshness…”  and a “…”high class product.”  And, after smelling it frequently enough to write this post, I suddenly feel a need to watch Jacque Tati’s, Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot, (Mr. Hulot’s Holiday) – a wonderful film from 1953 with a gorgeous score written by Alain Romans.  That movie, about a man who decides to take a holiday by the sea in Brittany, fits the mood of Cordon Rouge very well…

Cordon Rouge has a warm, sweet spicy opening and an airy but strong masculine drydown (it almost smells contemporary – a little like a fragance by Tom Ford).  Basically, it’s just fantastic.  Sigh.  🙂

3 thoughts on “Cordon Rouge

  1. Pingback: Les diaboliques (1955) | Born Unicorn

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s