Jean Patou 1000 (Mille) : Fragrance Review

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So, you’ve worn fragrances in the days when the dangers of oakmoss didn’t occupy the bright minds in the EU’s governing bodies. Perfume to you means character and statement, not something that smelled blindly could be mistaken for shampoo or a flavor compound mistakenly rerouted from a candy factory. Or you simply love scents that have curves and glamour, just like the stars in your favorite black-and-white films. Well, I have three words for you–Jean Patou Mille. Or let’s just make it a number–1000.

1000

Although Jean Patou’s fame owes much to its 1930s bombshell Joy, 1000 is my favorite from the collection. It packs as much old-school glamour as a reasonable person could take, but that’s what makes it interesting. You can certainly find plenty of dramatic perfumes with a touch of vintage glamour, from Chanel to Frédéric Malle, from Guerlain to Parfums de Nicolaï, but 1000 holds its own next to No 5, Hermès Calèche and Madame Rochas.

Created by Jean Kerléo in 1972, 1000 is from the generation of perfumes that followed the dictum of “more is more,” and you have to be prepared for it. You have to like the starchy crinkle of aldehydes, the buttery richness of rose and iris, the heft of creamy woods, and the inky darkness of oakmoss. It skimps on nothing, which makes it both fun and challenging.

1000 has an unpromising opening of strong aldehydes (starched linen crossed with overheated metal) and green, crushed leaf notes, which smells plain old-fashioned. But this phase is immediately taken over by the dark violets and sandalwood, which give 1000 a soft, rich feel. The longer the perfume stays on your skin, the more layers it develops, and at some point, you no longer notice the individual notes. 1000 smells the way Muscat wine tastes–golden, spicy and warm.

Parts of 1000 recall the cool elegance of No 5 and Calèche, and you get lulled into thinking that it will just cruise along on the same note. But then the beige trench coat of aldehydes and flowers slides off, and you discover that 1000 wears a flower child outfit of patchouli, Indian incense and sandalwood. I’ve been wearing 1000 on and off for the past 5 years, and this part still comes as a surprise. If you like animalic notes, you’ll also be in for a treat, because 1000 has lashings of animalic musk to round out its drydown.

1000 is too glamorous to wear when impeccably coiffed, lipsticked and manicured. Then it seems a bit too perfect, too conventional. But dab a few drop under the most casual outfit, and you’ll experience the power of scent to make you feel like a starlet on her way down the red carpet. It’s not one of my staple perfumes, but like a pair of satin red shoes in my closet, 1000 is an occasional dose of glamour required by even the low-maintenance types like me.

Jean Patou 1000 Eau de Parfum includes notes of coriander, green notes, bergamot, tangerine, violet leaf, iris, violet, jasmine, osmanthus, lily-of-the-valley, rose, geranium, sandalwood, amber, musk, patchouli, civet, oakmoss and vetiver. Eau de Parfum 2.5 oz (75ml)/$190. Extrait de Parfum 0.5 oz (15ml)/$350

This review is based on my one year old bottle of Eau de Parfum, the formulation available at counters today. If you’ve tried the older versions of 1000 and compared them to the new one, please comment.

Extra: I Love Aldehydes :: Iconic Perfumes :: Classics and Vintages

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120 Comments

  • Cornelia Blimber: Thank you for this detailled and evocative review! I wear 1000 often, it is an absolute favourite.
    I have smelled 1000 in the 70s (it had a beautiful green stone bottle with a red stopper), I remember it as dryer, less flowery, also when I sniff the faint smell in the little jar. It was the pure extrait, now I have the Edp. June 16, 2014 at 7:20am Reply

    • Victoria: I believe the extrait still comes in that jade green bottle, which is also used for Joy. At least, I saw it at the store at one point. It’s one of my favorite bottles, and it feels like a little jewel.

      My current 1000 is the Eau de Parfum too. It’s plenty dramatic and rich, and I like that it has a bigger sillage in comparison to the parfum. June 16, 2014 at 9:01am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: I saw Joy in a black jar with a red stopper. I didn’t know the extrait still existed! I like the dry 1000 as I remember it better than the current edp. June 16, 2014 at 12:19pm Reply

        • Victoria: Yes, it exists for Joy, 1000, and some other perfumes in the collection too. You can easily find it online and at stores, but I haven’t been tempted by it myself, because 1000 is not my staple, and I’m happy enough with the EDP. June 16, 2014 at 12:23pm Reply

      • Steven Verstraete: Dear Victoria,
        Unfortunately, the green jade bottles are no longer made… Such a pity… 🙁 June 17, 2014 at 12:13am Reply

        • Cornelia Blimber: Dear Steven Verstraete, is the extrait still made, in the glass bottle? June 17, 2014 at 4:19am Reply

        • Victoria: Oh, no! Can someone please convince JP to bring them back? They are such quintessential Patou flacons! June 17, 2014 at 6:39am Reply

  • cookie queen: Oh my gosh – I want to try this enough to comment!! On my hit list. Thanks. 😉 June 16, 2014 at 9:05am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s still fairly easy to find, and it’s less expensive than many niche perfumes that explore similar retro style. Definitely worth trying, but consider yourself warned–it’s beautiful but can be very unpredictable and challenging if one is not used to this kind of rich, vintage glamour perfume. 🙂 June 16, 2014 at 9:16am Reply

  • jtd: My mother’s special occasion perfume was Joy and I loved raiding her bureau to sniff it. No wonder I love 1000 so much. I was trained to.

    I have a vintish edt that i enjoy even more than the edp I’ve sampled. It’s a bit less lush than the edp, but has a sting that emphasizes the range where woody and floral tones converge. June 16, 2014 at 9:21am Reply

    • Victoria: You put it on, and everything feels festive and glamorous! 🙂 I’m wearing it right now, as I’m dressed in my “working from home” outfit of yoga paints and a t-shirt, and it’s perfect.

      A great description of the EDT! You’re making me miss my bottle, which is in storage right now. I only have the modern EDP. June 16, 2014 at 9:29am Reply

    • leathermountain: Do tell me more, if you would, please! I think I’ve just learned that I have some EdT as well, provenance unknown…. June 17, 2014 at 5:34pm Reply

  • Bastet: Thank you for this review! I recently sampled 1000 in EDP and loved it – it is now on my wish list. However, I am considering the EDT due to the price. Does anyone know how the current EDT compares to the EDP? June 16, 2014 at 9:22am Reply

    • Victoria: I haven’t seen the EDT around here, so maybe it’s simply not available at the local stores. I had the older bottle of the EDT from the 80s, and I seem to recall that it was brighter and more aldehydic on top and less sweet in the drydown. But this is just speaking from memory; I don’t have it on hand to compare side by side. So, I’m curious to read other opinions. June 16, 2014 at 9:27am Reply

    • Steven Verstraete: The EDT is no longer made. June 17, 2014 at 12:14am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: I saw a bottle of 1000 edt in Amsterdam. Thrustworthy perfume shop.
        But I bought the edp. again. January 7, 2017 at 4:11pm Reply

  • Annunziata: Thank you for writing so beautifully about one of my perennial favorites. 1000 is just gorgeous, I love it. June 16, 2014 at 9:29am Reply

    • Victoria: Another fan! 🙂 Which concentration do you wear? June 16, 2014 at 10:04am Reply

      • Annunziata: Anything I can get my hands on!! 😀
        I generally prefer the EDP. June 16, 2014 at 2:57pm Reply

        • Victoria: Sounds like we agree! 🙂 June 17, 2014 at 6:24am Reply

  • FeralJasmine: I got a bit of this back when I first got one foot in the rabbithole, and was vaguely horrified by it. Bet I’d love it now! I will have to find my mini. June 16, 2014 at 10:03am Reply

    • Victoria: I can imagine why! I was horrified by Joy and 1000 when I first tried them in the early days of my perfume love affair, but while I never warmed up to Joy (it’s still one of my least favorite classics), 1000 has captured my heart. I don’t wear it often, but on days when something big, bold and dramatic is a must, few other scents will do. June 16, 2014 at 10:06am Reply

  • Anita Monroe: Thank you for reviewing 1000. It has been one of my favorites for over twenty years. I have two of those jade bottles, now empty, and have searched all the regular places to find another one, but haven’t been able to find it. It was Jacqueline Kennedy’s favorite fragrance. She chose it after being put off by some of her relatives overdoing it with Shalimar. One of my former students worked in a perfume shop. One day when I was shopping there, she told me that she had found a perfect fragrance that she wanted to wear “forever”. It was 1000. I understood how she felt. June 16, 2014 at 10:11am Reply

    • Victoria: I didn’t realize that it was Jacqueline Kennedy’s perfume, but I can imagine her wearing it. It’s utterly elegant, but it also has many twists and it can be unpredictable. The way it changes on skin never fails to catch my attention, even though I’ve been wearing 1000 for a while. June 16, 2014 at 11:50am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: I once saw a tv film about the White House, and there stood a half full bottle of Arpège. June 16, 2014 at 12:24pm Reply

        • Victoria: She then clearly loved aldehydic florals!

          By the way, I love spotting perfume bottles in films. June 16, 2014 at 12:28pm Reply

          • Cornelia Blimber: Me too! 🙂 June 16, 2014 at 1:06pm Reply

            • Felicia: Me three. Love and wear 1000 often. Thank you,V for a wonderful discussion. I am so happy, even with the reformulation, it is still a lovely fragrance to wear and enjoy! June 26, 2015 at 12:46am Reply

  • Cynthia: What a great and descriptive review. Another one to add to my list to try! June 16, 2014 at 10:44am Reply

    • Victoria: As a friend who wears it says, “they don’t make ’em like this anymore.” And I have to agree! June 16, 2014 at 11:51am Reply

  • Johanob: Very accurate and marvelous review of my favorite Sandalwood perfume EVER!!My 1000 is from 1988,and we have not as yet received newer bottles in S-Africa.I’ve got to say that NOTHING beats real Mysore Sandalwood.Creamy,lush and spicy!I wear this mostly during winter(which is now underway),but on sultry African summer nights,it’s unbeatable in the sensuality-stakes!
    The great thing about living in Africa is that we have loads of old,dusty perfume shops,and very few hardcore perfumistas who know “the good stuff”!This is how I found treasures like vintage Mitsouko,Mystere,L’Heure Bleue,Jicky Parfum…and 1000!:-)) June 16, 2014 at 10:49am Reply

    • Victoria: Ah, so true. The real Mysore sandalwood is almost gourmand in its creamy, rich aroma. And it’s hard to see how anything can replace it perfectly. But I still enjoy fragrances like Guerlain’s Samsara, which were once chockful of it and are now reformulated. It was done well, I thought. In 1000, sandalwood is still there, and it’s less creamy and milky. There are other notes and accents, and overall, it’s beautiful. June 16, 2014 at 11:53am Reply

      • johanob: I will certainly look out for newer versions of 1000 as well! June 16, 2014 at 1:17pm Reply

        • Victoria: Let me know what you think. June 17, 2014 at 6:20am Reply

    • annemariec: Envious of your perfume shops! I’m in Australia and I have never encountered anything like that. How I long for a time machine that could take me back for an original bottle of Miss Dior or Dioressence! June 17, 2014 at 5:32am Reply

      • Victoria: It exists, and it’s called the Osmotheque, but I’m sure you know about it already. If some organization in Australia wanted to have an Osmotheque presentation (say, the local branch of Alliance Française), I don’t see why it wouldn’t be possible to arrange. I’m not affiliated with the organization, but I admire what they do. It’s really one of a kind perfume conservatory. June 17, 2014 at 6:46am Reply

  • Phyllis Iervello: My bottles (EDT and EDP) are also from the 80″s. I have sampled versions older than mine and think they smell almost the same. June 16, 2014 at 11:13am Reply

    • Victoria: I also imagine that anything newer compared to the 80s bottles would smell different, but that the 80s version is pretty true to the original June 16, 2014 at 11:58am Reply

  • Rafael: I have a vintage extrait that I pull out in Winter for nights that involve dark places and smoke-filled rooms. Any other time the 1000 Pour le Bain, especially in Summer, Eau de Toilette is the BEST! also, the shower gel is amazing! June 16, 2014 at 11:16am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s such a cozy image!
      I wonder if they still make the bath & body products? June 16, 2014 at 12:00pm Reply

  • Jillie: I had a perfume smelling expedition to Harrods in the 80s and tried this and Joy – I much preferred 1000, but couldn’t afford to buy it! I can’t remember what I went for in the end – probably Diorissimo. June 16, 2014 at 11:21am Reply

    • Victoria: Diorissimo is a wonderful choice, either way! 🙂 June 16, 2014 at 12:00pm Reply

  • Annette Reynolds: Oh, I cannot WAIT to try it! (And I’m thinking I’ve never tried it up until now because I was never a fan of Joy…) I’m ordering a sample as soon as I stop typing this comment.
    Thanks, Victoria!
    (Is this anything like Elizabeth & James “Nirvana for Her?” I just got a roll-on of that and rather like it, but not sure if the spray will work for me.) June 16, 2014 at 12:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: I haven’t tried Nirvana for Her, so I can’t compare, but if you know Caleche, imagine something even more baroque and ornate. The top notes are not my favorites (I love aldehydes, but something about the combination in 1000 puts me off), but the rest of it is so good that I don’t mind the first 15 minutes. June 16, 2014 at 12:10pm Reply

      • Annette Reynolds: 1000 sounds so fascinating that I’m going to sample it no matter what. Have a good week, Victoria! June 16, 2014 at 12:31pm Reply

        • Victoria: Hope that you will like it, Annette! Please let me know your thoughts when the sample arrives. June 17, 2014 at 6:13am Reply

  • Joy: I loved this perfume in the 80’s. It was so complex and intense. I never liked Joy due to the heavy tea rose, but 1000 was completely different. Having been disappointed by so many of the new perfumes and recent iterations of older perfumes, I recently tried 1000 on a trip to San Francisco. I could not believe how much the same it was. From just a few drops, it stayed with me all day.
    Thank you for the update on this gorgeous perfume which coincides with my recent experience. June 16, 2014 at 12:11pm Reply

    • Victoria: So happy to read this comment, because you, as someone who has worn 1000 a lot, know it better than I do and are in the best position to compare the versions. The EDP today definitely doesn’t smell “modernized”, and if one wants a dose of vintage allure, it will deliver.

      And yes, I agree, it lasts forever. I usually apply very little, so that I can only smell it on myself and not to leave a long trail behind. June 16, 2014 at 12:27pm Reply

    • Joy: I wore this with my beautifully tailored wool suits and silk blouses, which we wore to work in the 80’s. The women of my place of work also brought their perfume to work to refresh the scent during the day! The men in the office must have been fainting. There were no complaints about perfume in those days. at least they could tell where each of us was. In this current time a small spritz is all that I use. June 16, 2014 at 12:49pm Reply

      • Victoria: I don’t even smell that much perfume on people today, and the most you notice is the smell of their laundry detergent. Of course, the smells of laundry detergents have gotten more sophisticated and interesting over the years, but I still miss smelling real perfume. June 17, 2014 at 6:14am Reply

    • johanob: Good to hear about good results from comparisons between old and new!Now I really want to find some new 1000! June 16, 2014 at 1:20pm Reply

  • Austenfan: On my to try list it goes! It sounds wonderful I quite like powerhouses these days. And I love aldehydic florals. June 16, 2014 at 12:19pm Reply

    • Victoria: It’s a powerhouse, and it lasts really well. Which means that my small bottle of the EDP will last me for ages. I usually apply only a few drops, and it seems to be plenty. June 16, 2014 at 12:25pm Reply

      • V: The perfume lasts forever, I usually wear 1000 to winter parties and my coats smell of Mille for ages…I was lucky to have received a flaçon of it in the jade green bottle with the red stopper, a HUGE bottle of edp and both shower gel and body lotion. Sandalwood overload!!! July 29, 2014 at 11:22pm Reply

        • Victoria: It really does! One of the best rich sillage perfumes! July 30, 2014 at 6:44pm Reply

  • spe: Great review! I’ve given away and sold all of my vintage 1000. Others love it whereas I enjoy it once every few years. Would you please elaborate on which current fragrances you think have the same glamour / vintage vibe as 1000? Particularly with regard to the Malle line? Thank you and I very much enjoy your blog! June 16, 2014 at 1:10pm Reply

    • Victoria: If you don’t wear it that often, then yes, it doesn’t make sense to keep it. Perfume doesn’t stay fresh forever. I also don’t wear mine that often, but then I have an excuse that I need it for work (to compare to other fragrances from the period or the current ones). 🙂

      Tom Ford dips heavily into the vintage themes for his perfumes, as well (Noir de Noir, Japon Noir, Tom Ford Noir, Black Orchid). Frederic Malle’s Une Fleur de Cassie and Iris Poudre have a vintage glamour vibe, and so does Lipstick Rose. Among Parfums de Nicolai, SacreBleu and Number One stand out. Amouage’s collection is also very vintage glamour inspired (Amouage Gold is essentially Madame Rochas). June 17, 2014 at 6:19am Reply

      • Austenfan: I had heard about the link between Madame Rochas and Gold. Is Madame Rochas still in reasonable shape? It will go on my to try list as I adore Gold. June 17, 2014 at 8:04am Reply

        • Victoria: I haven’t tried it for a long time, and I really don’t know what it’s like now. But even Gold has been reformulated quite a bit. June 17, 2014 at 11:30am Reply

  • Andy: As I was reading, I thought, oh, this must be a review for the vintage version of 1000, I may never get to try it. But I was happily mistaken! And I too like to do a sort of high-low mix and match when it comes to perfume and my outfit. Jeans and cowboy boots with Lolita Lempicka? Yes, please! June 16, 2014 at 2:08pm Reply

    • Victoria: I love reading about vintage perfumes, but then it’s frustrating, because they are so hard to find. In some cases, the reformulations may smell very different but still be good perfumes, but it seems from the comments that the new version is true to the original.

      When everything matches a bit too well, it’s not as much fun. 🙂 June 17, 2014 at 6:23am Reply

  • Jeffrey: I just want to add, I think the current formulation of the EDP is excellent. I recently purchased a new EDP from 2012 when P&G still made it. I love wearing it and it just great, but the newer one is a cut above in my opinion. June 16, 2014 at 2:13pm Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you, Jeffrey. Mine is from last year or so, and it must be already the post-P&G batch. June 17, 2014 at 6:23am Reply

  • solanace: Yeah, gimme curvy and complicated! Cannot wait to try this one, it sounds like something I might enjoy very much.
    Recently rediscovered a NR Farouche bottle and can´t get enough of it. Its silky texture feels perfect on the strangely warm winter days we are having. Does it compare to 1000 in any way? June 16, 2014 at 3:21pm Reply

    • Victoria: I don’t remember enough what Farouche smells like to compare, but I thought that it was much greener. I need to dig out my bottle! June 17, 2014 at 6:25am Reply

  • Ann: Victoria, I agree with you completely on everything you’ve said in this wonderful review! I also never warmed up to Joy, but 1000 is another story completely.
    Your feeling that it goes better with “everyday” wear is right-on. Always keep a little surprise up your sleeve. Or under it, lol!
    This one is what I call a stealth-bomb. June 16, 2014 at 3:42pm Reply

    • Victoria: I love that way to describe it, because yes, it builds up to its dramatic climax little by little. Whenever I wear 1000, I realize how enjoyable these symphonic perfumes are. They always keep you guessing. June 17, 2014 at 6:26am Reply

  • G: Thanks for your review, Victoria! I have only smelled Joy, out of a budding perfumista obligation, and was not enthralled. This definitely sounds more palatable. Dark violets and sandalwood sound so comforting on this rainy evening… June 16, 2014 at 3:55pm Reply

    • Victoria: Joy is an impressive perfume in terms of quality, and I enjoy the smell of it on others. But whenever I wear it, I find it heavy and oily, especially the vintage versions. 1000 is also rich and has plenty of heft, but all of its twists make it memorable. Still, not an easy perfume to wear, but there is something special about it. June 17, 2014 at 6:28am Reply

      • V: I was told JOY is a blonde’s perfume…as a redhead I tend to like aldehydes, chypres, fougeres and dry woods. No spicy, oriental types for me. And gprmands work usually as well…1000 is the quintessential fair skinned, redheads perfume… July 29, 2014 at 11:30pm Reply

  • Annikky: Wonderful review, thank you. I think I’ve made the same mistake others have mentioned – never tried it because Joy doesn’t work for me. But I was pleasantly surprised by Eau de Patou, so I really should give it a go. June 16, 2014 at 5:30pm Reply

    • Victoria: Sublime is another one worth trying. Also good for days when you want “more is more”. 🙂 June 17, 2014 at 6:34am Reply

  • leathermountain: Anyone know anything about “Eau de 1000?” June 16, 2014 at 6:01pm Reply

    • Victoria: Wasn’t it just the Eau de Toilette version? June 17, 2014 at 6:34am Reply

      • leathermountain: Quite possibly. So, anyone know anything about the EdT? June 17, 2014 at 4:26pm Reply

        • Victoria: There were a couple of comments earlier in the thread, along with my reply. I don’t have it on hand, but you could ask JTD, who commented on it for more details. June 17, 2014 at 4:36pm Reply

          • leathermountain: Done! Thanks for pointing me in that direction. June 17, 2014 at 5:35pm Reply

            • Victoria: If I find out anything more, I will let you know. Will see if I took any more notes on the EDT. June 18, 2014 at 5:33am Reply

          • jtd: Hi, V and Leathermountain. I have an EDT of 1000 that likely dates from the late 80s-early 90s. I’ve compared it to EDT and EDP from the P & G years. My EDT is a densely layered animalic woody-floral. It feel less voluptuous than it does compressed. I’ve described putting it on as thumbing through a brand stiff, new hard-back book. The animalic qualities are potent but serve to emphasize the tartness of the sandalwood and the dryness of the flowers. The later EDT was a thinner, flatter version, but to its credit was not at all blurred. The EDP I’ve tried (post P & G I believe) is a creamier, cozier, richer take. Very full, a bit less aggressive, not quite as searing. More at ease than the EDT, which stands at attention for 12 hours before loosening the collar a bit.

            1000 gives me the Chanel 19 dilemma. Where I usually land on one concentration of a perfume that suits me, for both 19 and 1000, I want both the EDT and EDP of each! June 18, 2014 at 1:09pm Reply

  • Loric: Your review makes me want to try this! I have recently begun wearing Chanel No 22 which opens up with aldehydes but calms into a beautiful vanilla in the dry down. The civet sounds quite interesting – I love my Le Labo Labdanum 18 so I really think I would love 1000! Thanks for another great review! June 16, 2014 at 8:57pm Reply

    • Victoria: This is much more flamboyant next to No 22, but if you’re already used to the aldehydes and the vintage floral motifs, then you will enjoy 1000. And civet, with its sweet, musky, old fur note, give the perfume a very interesting drydown. June 17, 2014 at 6:37am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: Not natural civet, I hope. June 17, 2014 at 6:58am Reply

        • Victoria: I doubt it. June 17, 2014 at 7:09am Reply

          • Cornelia Blimber: Do you mean that there is a real chance that the civet is natural?
            If so, I don’t trew away my 1000, but will not buy a new bottle . June 17, 2014 at 7:16am Reply

            • Victoria: Natural civet is very rarely used in commercial perfumery, with the exception of natural perfume lines which often openly advertise their animalics (civet, ambergris) as natural. It’s very expensive and its availability is limited. For a perfume produced in large volumes, it’s simply not that feasible to use real civet. June 17, 2014 at 7:34am Reply

              • Cornelia Blimber: Thank you for your patience, answering again my question about real civet. You said this already , but ”I doubt it ” made me hesitate, Patou is not that commercial.
                Thanks again, my 1000 is nearly finished and I want to buy a new bottle! June 17, 2014 at 7:43am Reply

                • Victoria: Patou is a large enough brand, but of course, if you want to be 100% certain what’s in your fragrance, the best bet is to contact the manufacturer directly. June 17, 2014 at 11:29am Reply

                  • Cornelia Blimber: Yes, but do they speak the truth? June 17, 2014 at 11:49am Reply

                    • Victoria: If they don’t tell you the truth, then you won’t know for sure anyway. Only the person with a formula can tell you with exact certainty what’s in the perfume. I only infer based on the standard industry practices.

                      But if your bottle of perfume is anytime before 2000, it’s likely to contain natural civet. June 17, 2014 at 11:59am

                    • Cornelia Blimber: Thank you, that’s good to know! I thought it was before 1998. Well, I will not threw away my perfumes predating 2000, but I am glad that I am better informed now.

                      I send a note to Patou, curious whether they will answer or not! June 17, 2014 at 12:19pm

                    • Victoria: Please let me know what they respond!

                      Chanel stopped using natural tinctures as of 1998, but this is not to say that the date applies to all other companies. June 17, 2014 at 4:17pm

  • Mel: What a provocative rave! I certainly could have used 1000 today – it would have been a cool kick feeling like a starlet as I cleaned up around here, fertilized my tomatoes, made a rhubarb cake, picked up dry-cleaning, and took the dog to the groomers! But just READING your review was enough of a lift! Thanks, V! June 16, 2014 at 9:48pm Reply

    • Victoria: Wow, what a productive day! I spent yesterday doing so much less–mostly tried to answer hundreds of emails that have accumulated over the past week. But a rhubarb cake sounds like a good idea. Rainboweyes, who comments here, left a few interesting recipe links in the comments, and one of them is a coconut rhubarb cake, which has been on my to-do list for ages.

      And thank you for a nice compliment! 🙂 June 17, 2014 at 6:38am Reply

  • Daniel Jeter: Hello Victoria,
    is this the Thomas Fontaine reformulation or some vintage jus? I haven’t smelled any of the recent reformulations made under the new ownership but I have owned Joy, Sublime and Mille in their older iterations so it’s a bit scary for me! I hope they live up to my memories. xx June 17, 2014 at 4:38am Reply

    • Victoria: Daniel, as I mentioned in the review, it’s based on my 1 year old bottle, so it’s fairly recent. I don’t have vintage samples on hand to compare, but several commenters above mentioned that the versions compare well. If you try it, please share your thoughts. June 17, 2014 at 6:40am Reply

  • Michaela: I’ll certainly give ‘1000’ a try if I have the chance! Just wanted to say how much I love this review, especially these wonderfully formulated statements (which amuse and make me sad in the same time):

    ‘So, you’ve worn fragrances in the days when the dangers of oakmoss didn’t occupy the bright minds in the EU’s governing bodies. Perfume to you means character and statement, not something that smelled blindly could be mistaken for shampoo or a flavor compound mistakenly rerouted from a candy factory.’ June 17, 2014 at 5:20am Reply

    • Victoria: Thank you, Michaela! Just being a bit cheeky. 🙂 I love perfumes made today and wear more modern blends than vintage, but I get frustrated with the brands who market test their fragrances to death and release one copycat after another. June 17, 2014 at 6:43am Reply

  • carole macleod: Thank you for this review. I bought this for my birthday, after reading Anjelica Huston’s autobiography. It’s a great book plus there are tons of references to perfume!

    What an incredible scent. I sprayed a little bit, hoping it would be good. The rich smell of jasmine and rose and…eucalyptus. Wonderful! And it sort of stayed close to the body but swirled around, if that makes sense. All day long I kept catching wonderful bits of scent-and it was me. Fumes like this are the reason I love fumes.

    My perfume store also had a bottle of Eau de Patou, and they gave it to me. That’s another wonderful scent-very refreshing and womanly. Also I think it’s the only nasturtiam scent I own. Both are very very high quality, and a pleasure to wear. After years of searching I think that Dans Tes Bras and Mille are my signature scents. June 17, 2014 at 8:40am Reply

    • Victoria: You’ve described exactly what I love about 1000–it swirls around you, and catching a whiff now and then is such a pleasure. I imagine that it’s a very distinctive and beautiful signature scent for anyone. June 17, 2014 at 11:37am Reply

  • SophieC: This sounds really interesting. I haven’t tried it as far as I remember, but I regularly wear Joy and love it’s feel of sun and warmth as it hits my skin. It smells almost sunny and alive if that makes sense. This sounds very tempting with violets and sandalwood – is it at all like bois de violette? June 17, 2014 at 11:01am Reply

    • Victoria: The violets and sandalwood are only two accents of this perfume, and there is so much more going on. So, 1000 doesn’t resemble Bois de Violette at all. If anything, it’s closer to Joy (without smelling exactly like it), but made darker, spicier, more flamboyant, more woody. June 17, 2014 at 11:52am Reply

      • SophieC: Ah understood and thank you! I will definitely make a note to try 1000 it sounds lovely. June 17, 2014 at 10:17pm Reply

        • Victoria: If 1000 were a person, it would be quite a colorful character. 🙂 June 18, 2014 at 5:36am Reply

  • OperaFan: Hello Dear V – Late to the discussion, but since it’s 1000 I have to join. You described the exact feeling I have when wearing this scent – Glamourous with a capital “G.” In fact, I rarely wear it because I find it requires far more glamour than I can ever carry off, LoL!

    I first read about 1000 in a perfume article from the late ’80s. The article mentioned several celebrities who wore 1000 as their signature scents, among them was Liza Minelli. I remember obtaining a tiny mini of the edt and finding it too “big” for me. I had a very demure personality in those days and favored the likes of Laura Ashley No. 1 and Nina Ricci’s original Nina.

    From the start of my perfume love affair I have loved aldehydic florals with a mossy sandalwood drydown. I find that a lot of classics were reformulated with a heavier dose of vanilla at the base to compensate for the reduced sandalwood and oakmoss. Consequently, I end up with a preference for the vintage versions of fragrances like First and No 5.

    About a year ago I managed to obtain a vintage (partial) bottle of the perfume in the crystal flacon. Not sure how old it is, but it has a surprising low-keyed sillage and that mossy sandalwood base. I love how all the notes come together in a seamless manner. It’s still too glamourous for me, but I love to wear from time to time for personal enjoyment. I haven’t tried the newer versions, so am glad to know 1000 still holds up to the high standards under which it was originally conceived. June 17, 2014 at 2:10pm Reply

    • Victoria: How true! I was smelling No 5 at the Osmotheque, which is formulated as close to the original as possible, and I was amazed how much vanilla I could smell and yet how smoothly it wrapped around the rich moss, sandalwood and animalic notes (all natural, alas!) So, I know what you mean. In the end, I’ve approached the current version as new perfumes, and some of them I ended up loving too and others not so much.

      I love your 1000 story, and I can just imagine how this perfume could be both glamorous, perfect for Liza Minelli and suitable for someone who wants a bit of fantasy. June 17, 2014 at 4:34pm Reply

      • OperaFan: Liza was still very much admired at that time, and a strong and dynamic personality as well. It was that association that piqued my curiosity to try 1000.

        You have an excellent point on how to regard newer formulations on classics. It’s really not fair to expect formulas to remain constant when everything around them change so much. By regarding them as new compositions it avoids disappointments from unrealistic expectations and gives the newer formula a chance to thrive. June 17, 2014 at 10:21pm Reply

        • Victoria: True. Even if the formula stayed exactly the same, the perfumes would still not smell similar to what they used to be, because the production methods don’t remain the same. And I’m not talking just about the naturals, which change year to year depending on the weather and soil conditions. The synthetics have changed as the technology evolved. It’s unrealistic to expect something so delicate and intangible as perfume to remain completely unchanged. But of course, the brands have historically been cagey about the changes they make, so it’s still a frustrating realization that something has been altered. June 18, 2014 at 5:39am Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: I absolutely loathe violet notes in perfume, so this one is near the top of my hate list! I find Joy to be cloying, sticky sweet and too rich, kind of like an over-layered marzipan pastry. However, the less known but divine “Sublime” is a luscious, creamy vanilla that I adore and find very sexy. Do you think they will revive the Patou fashion house as they have with Nina Ricci and Balenciaga? June 17, 2014 at 5:35pm Reply

    • Victoria: For me, it’s there, but it’s a flash before something else takes over. But I recall from your other comments that you’re very sensitive to violet, so I’m not surprise you’re reacting so strongly.

      I love Sublime too.

      And yes, why not? If they get enough funding and someone with a vision, they can always revive the fashion house. June 18, 2014 at 5:35am Reply

  • Cornelia Blimber: I am a lonely Joy-lover, so it seems!
    I have a strange experience with Sublime: I can hardly smell it. June 17, 2014 at 6:01pm Reply

    • OperaFan: Oh no, not at all – I love Joy! So much that it Was one of 2 fragrances i wore on my wedding day. It’s a top 10 contender for sure. Although I did recently become a bit more sensitive to the civet at the base of my vintage perfume, so my current preference goes to the edp. June 17, 2014 at 10:12pm Reply

    • Victoria: You’re not at all! There are many Joy lovers here. June 18, 2014 at 5:36am Reply

      • Cornelia Blimber: Ha, that makes me feel in good company! June 18, 2014 at 6:12am Reply

  • Anne of Green Gables: Thanks for reviewing this classic, Victoria. I tested it last week and it presented me with many surprises. The violet leaf cutting through the creamy floral/woody background was the largest surprise. I’m usually not so fond of this note but the way it’s been juxtaposed in this perfume was so beautiful and it made me smile. And then came a kaleidoscope of different florals but jasmine was most prominent to my nose. The drydown was a little too animalic for me. It was like reading a long suspense novel with many twists and turns! June 24, 2014 at 7:06am Reply

    • Victoria: Violet leaf is an excellent note to boost floral and green nuances, and it also has its own strong character. It doesn’t smell like violet, of course, but it fits well with the candy-like violet flower notes. I notice both here. And yes, I completely agree with your comparison; 1000 is like a long novel full of twists and subplots. 🙂 June 24, 2014 at 9:44am Reply

  • Loric: I finally tried 1000 and I love it! It is multi-faceted and very elegant but not so sophisticated that it doesn’t work with my jeans. Thank you so much for your blog – without it I wouldn’t have known about this wonderful fragrance. I am definitely purchasing a bottle of the EdP. June 28, 2014 at 7:00pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’m very happy to hear this! 1000 is worth revisiting, because it’s one of the most elegant and glamorous perfumes and yet it’s not too high-maintenance and fussy. The drydown is always a pleasure to arrive to. June 29, 2014 at 1:47pm Reply

  • Daisy: That sounds incredible. I must chase it down!!! July 1, 2014 at 12:05am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s one of those classics that sometimes get short shrift next to their more illustrious cousins (like Joy, in this case). But I prefer 1000 to Joy hands down. July 1, 2014 at 5:48am Reply

  • Mary: I’ve been wearing 1000 since the 70s. Kept the beautiful crystal flacons as well as the green bottles with red stoppers, so i had several of all sizes. I still wear the parfum at night. Men adore it. Recently i decided to sell my bottles and their boxes. I was astounded at how quickly they sold and the prices I got for them! I had no idea they would be so collectible. This will continue to be my favorite perfume as long as they make it. Just perfect for my body chemistry. I also have worn Yves St Laurent Y frequently and presently am enjoying Donna Karin Pure for a light daytime fragrance. May 2, 2016 at 11:43am Reply

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