Monday, March 7, 2011

Read: The Secret of Chanel No. 5

buy here
I was at the library the other week and this book caught my eye.  I do realize it was probably because of the weird neon colors usually found on bouncy balls and rarely on books, but I love learning how things become popular and how trends start.  (Side note: if you also find that interesting, read Malcolm Gladwell's The Tipping Point.)  So I brought the book home, and I did enjoy reading it.  It was so fascinating to learn about the things in Coco Chanel's life that influenced the developing of her most popular fragrance.  The number five was her lucky number, but it also had significant religious meaning to her.  She grew up in a nunnery, which gave her an appreciation for clean lines, white space, and a simplistic look; the basis for the now iconic bottle that holds Chanel No. 5.  There has been hardly any advertising for Chanel No. 5, yet it remains the most popular perfume in the world to this day.  A bottle sells every 30 seconds!  And at $260 for 1 ounce!  After I finished reading the book I decided I needed to smell Chanel No. 5 again.  I was pretty sure I had smelled it before and didn't like it. When Caleb and I went to the mall the other week, we went to Macy's so I could give it another chance.  He and I both sniffed the bottle, and I liked it!  I was relieved that I wasn't the only girl in the whole world who doesn't like Chanel No. 5.  So I decided to spritz on a little so I could smell fabulously sexy for the rest of the day.  Well that's where my short-lived love for Chanel No. 5 died.  So much perfume squirted out of the bottle, there were huge droplets of perfume on my chest!  For someone who prefers a more subtle scent, this is not a selling point.  I tried to wipe off as much as I could, but all of those aldehydes I read about in the book were doing their job and I was drenched (and I mean drrrr-enched.  Movie anyone?) in Chanel No. 5.  Caleb later told me to go to the bathroom and try to wipe it off.  Even with those smelly brown paper towels, the scent stayed with me for the rest of the day.  And after our dinner at Outback, my shirt smelled like a nasty combination of Chanel No. 5 and bloomin' onion.  So I am sad to say, I once again am that girl who doesn't like the most popular perfume in the world.  But I did like the book, so doesn't that count for something?


  1. 1. I can't believe that there is a book written about a bottle of perfume.
    2. I can't believe that one ounce of this perfume sells for almost as much as my monthly grocery budget.
    3. I can't believe there are enough people in the world with enough money to spend on perfume that a bottle is sold every 30 seconds.
    4. I bet Caleb is thankful that this perfume didn't end up on your "needs" list.

  2. Movie Quote: Anne of Green Gables

  3. Wow, what an interesting post. Thanks for sharing.

    Xoxo ♥

    Rocio R.