Deneuve Dupe? Le Labo Belle Du Soir
By Patti F
Ms. Blogdorf and I love to make a quick stop in the Anthropologie store in Cleveland, on our way to visit the
gang for a day of shopping, lunching, shopping, sniffing new perfumes, trying on shoes, and chatting over coffee. We browse Anthropologie in search of any new fragrances, checking sale racks, and loving the decorator section of the store with its pretty dishes and lovely linens. A few months ago, on our little stop in the store, we discovered the brown bottles of Le Labo For Anthropologie perfumes. There were no blotter sticks or test strips in sight. We went to the register area to ask, but we were only given a little strip of cash register paper. Back to the display we went.
We sprayed all of the perfumes onto pieces of that register tape. I smelled mostly paper, but I knew immediately that these were all such lovely, thoughtful perfumes, well-blended, and made in the tradition of classic perfumery. They don't smell like any of the Le Labo that I have tried. We fell in love with them, and Ms. Blogdorf wisely caved on two of them right then and there. I was not so smart. I loved two of them but did not cave. I neglected to try them on my wrists. I should have, because then I would not have had to wait to make the most amazing discovery of all my perfume-loving years.
A week or so later, I was corresponding with a fragrance pal, and she told me she had ordered the Belle Du Soir from the Anthro website but she did not care much for it. I offered to buy it from her and we made our transaction and her bottle arrived quickly at my door. I sprayed on Belle. It was a remarkable moment of instant recognition! Belle Du Soir is DENEUVE! My most beloved perfume of all time, in this little brown bottle! I could not wait to find out
if indeed it was true. I sent a few samples to some other pals to see if they agreed, and they did. I wanted to know for sure, so I wrote to the Le Labo perfumers by contacting them on their website.
As I was waiting to hear from Le Labo, I bought another bottle of Belle from the Anthropologie website. Nobody at the actual store in Cleveland could tell us if these were going to be permanent offerings by Anthro, or if they would be gone when they sold out. At least now I had a backup. I wore it constantly for two solid weeks. Every time I put on Belle Du Soir, I was more and more convinced that the Le Labo perfumers had known the original Deneuve and had set out to recreate it.
When I finally heard from Le Labo, Monsieur Fabrice did not confirm or deny my suspicions, but they did appreciate my note, or so they said. They were happy to hear from a perfume lover who appreciates their fragrances. End of note.
The Anthropologie website shows "historically-inspired scents" in their description of Le Labo For Anthropologie. Here is a clip from their website description:
five historically inspired scents that pay tribute to the era of perfumery when artisans crafted small batches using the highest quality natural ingredients.
So, now that we know these are historically inspired, I told Ms. Blogdorf that we have to report to the BlogdorfGoodman readers about this remarkable discovery! Annie has written about Bouquet Blanc, the best lilac fragrance she and I have ever smelled. Lilac isn't even listed in the fragrance notes on the Anthropologie website. Chant De Bois is a gorgeous classic chypre in the tradition of the old revered Guerlains. It is a must-try for any oakmoss lovers. All of the Le Labo For Anthropologie are beautiful and worthy of trying in person if you're in an Anthropologie store. Do it soon and back up your loves with an extra bottle. And please, if you detect any similarity to other scents, please let us know.
Belle Du Soir and the other Le Labo For Anthropologie perfumes are EDP's in a two ounce bottle for about $62. Solid perfumes in cute little metal containers are also available for $28.
Photo Credit: Patti F
Review by Patti F