Monday, April 16, 2007

Guerlain Jicky - The Herald of Modern Perfumery

Created in 1889 by Aimé Guerlain, the son of the great perfume house founder, Jicky heralded the modern age of perfumery. Before Jicky, perfumes had been nothing more than single-scented floral compositions, similar to nature. Jicky was the first fragrance to combine natural essences and synthetic essences, which give it not only its many facets (fresh, floral, spicy, oriental) but also its strength and staying power. For being revolutionary during that time, Jicky was often thought of as an "impressionist" perfume.

Composed of lavender, lemon, vanilla and bergamot in the top and middle notes, and civet (an ingredient from the sexual glands of a large Ethiopian cat) women weren't immediately taken with the musky smell. Men, however, loved it and started wearing it. In 1904, Guerlain created Mouchoir de Monsieur based on Jicky's notes and became the first commercially available aftershave.

For years, it was thought that Jicky is the name of Aimé's youth sweetheart. It was, however, established later that Jicky was actually the nickname of Aimé's nephew. The bottle is inspired by a 19th-century medicine jar. Its stopper, shaped like a champagne cork, evokes movement and celebration.

Classic and timeless, Jicky today continues to be one of the best selling perfume.

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