Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Mitsouko - The Fragrance of Mystery and Romance

The legendary perfume Mitsouko was created by Jacques Guerlain in 1919 at the end of the Great War, a time of great fascination with the Japanese culture and aesthetics. 

The creation of Mitsouko was inspired by the heroine of Claude Farrère's novel "La bataille", a story of an impossible love between Mitsouko - a wife of Japanese Admiral Togo - and a British officer. The story takes place in 1905, during the war between Russia and Japan. Both men go to war, and Mitsouko, hiding her feelings with dignity, waits for the outcome of the battle to discover which of the two men will come back to her and be her companion.

Mitsouko is a mysterious fragrance that does not simply reveal its beauty to everyone. The opening is long, like a play of all beautiful notes, and, of course, this fragrance is not for ordinary day use. On the skin it sounds as if it starts from far away, without any allusion to its intensity and sensual side. 

Mitsouko is one of the well known aromas of chypre olfactory group with cool top notes and oak moss in the base. But it also has a note of a juicy peach, which gives a clear and quite gourmand nuance. It features bergamot, peach, jasmine, may rose, spices such as cinnamon, oak moss, vetiver, and wood. The fragrance is exuberant, unusual and very elegant. It is neither too sweet, nor too heavy, well balanced and never overwhelming. Eau de Toilette is a bit more aggressive, while Eau de Perfume is warmer and nicer. The full richness of the composition, however, is revealed only in the perfume concentration.  

Mitsouko is said to herald the end of World War I. Because of the shortage of glass bottles at the end of the war, this perfume was marketed in the bottle of its predecessor, the L'Heure Bleue which was created in 1912. Mitsouko is sometimes considered to be the warm and much more cheerful counterpart of the melancholic L'Heure Bleue.