The brand See by Chloé is a less expensive, trendy sibling to the sophisticated Chloé fashion line. Of course, less expensive is relative–a See by Chloé mini skirt goes for about €300, but if you compare See by Chloé perfume with the Chloé’s richer florals, it will definitely seem more playful. I also give props to See by Chloé for being such a clever fruity floral. Whereas most fragrances of its type take a sweet, cloying direction, See by Chloé has a bitter twist.
See by Chloé was created by perfumer Michel Almairac, who has authored most of Chloé’s collection. Almairac is undoubtedly one of the best perfumers working today, and although I don’t always love his commercial work (his talent can do only so much against the demands of the marketplace and the fragrance managers), I admire the interesting touches he adds to the most mundane compositions.
See by Chloé is a good illustration. It starts out on a tart green apple note with a wispy touch of sheer jasmine, and you think, “ok, so far nothing special.” And then the fragrance begins to turn nutty and milky. It’s as if you bit into an apple and chewed on a bitter seed. Experienced against the juicy apple, it’s a pleasant sensation. It also prevents See by Chloé from smelling like the original Herbal Essence shampoo, and while it’s a simple fragrance, it’s well-crafted and fun.
To see the bitterness in action, be sure to try See by Chloé on skin, because on a blotter the green apple notes linger much longer. The nutty almond milk notes remain in the drydown that’s accented with musk and sandalwood. The combination reminds me both of Indian sandalwood soap and Sicilian almond milk granita! It has a great tenacity and sillage, but it would be appropriate for daytime, school, and college.
While the pretty and easygoing perfume is exactly on the mark for the young, trendy clientele that Chloé wants to target with this launch, it’s one of the better fruity floral examples. I personally find it too fruity for me, but I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a bottle for my teenaged cousins. I would much rather smell this on teens than the typical sugar-high fragrances aimed at the “young” market.
See by Chloé Eau de Parfum includes notes of bergamot, apple blossom, jasmine, ylang-ylang, vanilla, sandalwood. Available at Sephora, Nordstrom and other department stores. 30ml bottles are especially adorable (it’s also available in 50 and 75 ml atomizers).
Sample: my own acquisition