No5: A Look at the Past and 90 Years on

 "A woman should wear perfume where ever she would like to be kissed," famous worlds, still uttered today, said by Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel.
 It was in the year 1921 that Gabrielle Coco Chanel was presented with vials of perfume, two groups, the first labelled 1-5 and the second labelled 20-24. Coco Chanel chose number 5 without a doubt.
 Why? From a young age she always had a strong affinity with the number five, due to it's mysterious nature and her faith.
 She had such a faith in the number she decided to simply name it after the number of the vial, 'No5' and release it on the fifth day of the fifth month, like she did her previous collections, as she stated;
"I present my dress collections on the fifth of May, the fifth month of the year and so we will let this sample number five keep the name it has already, it will bring good luck."
 Now ninety years on and No5 is undoubtedly the most famous and recognisable perfume in the world, statistics showing that one bottle of the perfume is sold every 30 seconds.
 The bottle of No5 was said to be designed after the Charvet toiletries that her lover, Arther 'Boy' Cap carried around with him, the beveled lines of the bottle also matched the militaristic menswear design that inspired the famous Chanel jacket and the stopper cut like a diamond inspired after the layout of the Plaçe Vendome.
 The scent was designed by French perfumer Ernest Beaux, who she employed to make not just a single flower fragrance, but one of multiple scents so it has an air of mystery to it. Ernest Beaux rose to the challenge and No5 has more than eighty components to it that accentuate each other, including an abundance of jasmine, the most luxurious of the scent of the time.
 The perfume has seen it's advance through history in a multiple of ways, one being that bottles of it were handed out as a free promotional gift to any American soldiers willing to que outside 31 Rue Camdon after WW2, where the brand Chanel suffered controversy after it was rumoured Coco herself had a relationship with a German soldier, another time was when Andy Warhol compiled an exhibit of stills he took of the perfume, it was also the first perfume to be advertised during the Super Bowl, the popularity grew even more for the amber liquid when Marilyn Monroe said in an interview all she wore to bed was "five drops of Chanel No5" and most recently in 2012 when Brad Pitt agreed to represent No5, still unheard of, a man representing a woman's fragrance!
 While I have to admit No5 is not my favourite perfume, there is something so elegant, femine and mysterious about it that cannot be compared to any other fragrance, which makes it the reason it is so iconic and eternal, the chemistry of the perfume is as innovative at it's launch as it is now, even the clean, simplistic lines and contemperary design of bottle were outstanding and unheard of at the time.
 Chanel No5 became so hugely popular nearly a century ago because it was innovative, contemporary yet elegant and overall conveyed a sense of mystery that no other fragrance could compare too, and it is for all these reasons that are still relevant to the perfume today that makes No5 so iconic and still coveted after by a multitude of women worldwide.
 The perfume has barely changed in its' 90 years being sold, like the saying goes, "if it's not broke, don't fix it!" and Chanel No5 certainly isn't going anywhere, it truly is a marvel, what else has been a number one selling product in it's field for now 90 years?
 No5 really is a icon only Chanel could have made, the designer as mysterious and elusive as her beloved perfume.
 Gabrielle x

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