PERFUME IN MOSCOW: a look into Soviet scent







I have never been to Russia, much as I would love to. This article has just appeared in the Guardian, though, providing an intriguing insight into Soviet perfume culture in the days when even perfume could be seen as political.


Filed under Flowers

15 responses to “PERFUME IN MOSCOW: a look into Soviet scent

  1. jennyredhen

    Theres a Russian perfume called Maroussia by Slava Zaitsev that you can buy here online that is quite reasonably priced. I have never bought it but I have been tempted as its had a few good write ups and it is cheap. has anyone else tried it??

  2. No I have not but it sounds very intriguing.

  3. That’s a fascinating history!

  4. jennyredhen

    When I was inJjapan I was surprised to see the orientation towards Russia especially in Niigata and Northern Hokkaido. I believe there is quite a lot of sea trade between Russia and those 2 places especially.

  5. Very interesting. When I was working in the industry, the one thing that was always amazing was the love for Lancome Climat by all my Russian clientele. It was one of the few readily available western fragrances and it was widely forged; which is why it is so difficult to find a really good vintage bottle, most are fakes.

    • I don’t know that one well enough. Explique le moi s’il te plait! I have misty associations of suggestive aldehydics…..I have smelled it, certainly, but can’t quite remember it.

      • Climat is just one of the most glorious aldehydic florals from the late 60’s. It gas a slight touch of greenness to it which hints at a chypre quality, yet it us really not one. It is based around a floral accord comprising rose, violet, narcissus, jasmin, tuberose and lily of the valley. It opens with a fresh breath of bergamot and the aldehydes come along to lighten and brighten the composition, but most definitely are not the star players here. Through the whole runs a glorious touch of peach and mimosa which sweeten it up and give it a youthful feel and even though there is nothing ever said of it, I feel there is some honeysuckle in here also. The base is a classic musk, civet, amber, sandalwood, along with tonka bean and vetiver. The scent just always makes me feel as if a spring day were upon me, full of optimism and promises of sunny days and happiness ahead. The scent has, sadly, been mutilated (there is our word) to within an iota of its being, not to mention forged supremely well over the years. So truly finding a great vintage version would be a great quest for you in Japan, I feel more hopeful for you than for me trying my luck here in the states.
        I will have to toss some of this into your package and let you smell it again.

  6. *has (damned autocorrect )

  7. Jo

    Moscow is a fantastic city – I went this year in June, when it’s heady with the scent of lime blossom. The Georgian restaurants are especially good for worderfully fresh food, and great wines. There’s a great natural cosmetics company called Natura Siberica which make deliciously scented organic plant-based products, although I don’t know if they sell actual fragrances- probably only a matter of time. Definitely worth a try/smell.

  8. Jo

    PS I’ve just looked on their website and I see you can get them in Tokyo, although apparently not the UK yet, sadly…

  9. I have no warm feelings/recollections for any of the Soviet perfumes or cosmetics. I think most were really bad. But Lancôme Climat mentioned above was indeed a widely loved perfume. It was my first perfume love and still is one of my absolute favorites.

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