Skip to main content

L de Lubin – Blithe spirit – May 14, 2012 New Fragrance Listing

L de Lubin has been one of my favourite fragrances since I bought my first bottle a few years ago. And, maybe it’s the time of year or maybe it’s the time of man, but it is my favourite fragrance to wear going into the long, carefree days of summer.

I confess, I do have a soft spot for Lubin fragrances. Luxurious, exclusive perfumes made with high quality ingredients, by noses like Henri Giboulet, who reformulated the 1955 version of Joy, and Olivia Giacobetti Lubin also has a fascinating history.
Founded by Pierre François Lubin in 1798, the company originally furnished scented fashion accessories like rice powders and masks to "Les Merveilleuses”, the wealthy nouveaux riches fashion divas of the aristocratic subculture that emerged after the French Revolution. These ladies shocked Paris with their revealing, diaphanous, Greek inspired tunic dresses, multicolored wigs, enormous hats and Roman sandals tied with ribbons scented with Lubin perfume or stings of pearls.

Over time, Lubin won over the Imperial Court and at one point all the crowned heads of Europe were wearing Lubin perfumes. Imagine what that must have smelled like!

In 1974, Lubin launched L de Lubin. In their promotional material, it’s described as “The heady scent for the 70’s, it was favoured by the pop idols on the disco dance floors.” Pop idols of the 70’s? Those fashion divas that shocked the establishment with their revealing hot pants in hotter colours, tank tops and    halter dresses with ethnic inspired patterns all atop four-inch platform shoes?

Interesting – sounds like history repeating. No, I don’t mean the outrageous fashions but the fact that Lubin perfumes seems to be so relevant at both those times in history. Know what’s even more interesting? L de Lubin is relevant today.

Reformulated in 2008 so as to conform to new health restrictions, by Lucien Ferrero, who created the original L de Lubin in 1974, the new L is virtually indistinguishable from the vintage.

Does it capture the disco era? That is open to interpretation – flashbacks are so personal – but what is certain is that L de Lubin is the perfect scent for right now. This very minute – now - because it is the perfect summer scent.

Lemon and bergamot give it a fresh, citrus start before yielding to tropical white  gardenia and ylang ylang warmed up with spicy black pepper. Close your eyes and you will find yourself in someplace exotic and warm. Exhale slowly. As it blooms on the skin, fragrant jasmine extends the white floral opening to the heart. Lush rose rounds out the jasmine while iris and lily add depth and dimension. Clove gives it a warm spiciness, while the chocolate/vanilla of tonka bean gives it a note of sweetness and along with a gourmand vibe. The base is softly woody, from rosewood and sandalwood.  Patchouli gives it an earthiness, vanilla gives it a slight sweetness, while heliotrope gives it an almond kiss. Musk mellows out the drydown, so that it’s refined and elegant, not loud and 'beachy'.

L de Lubin is a chypre, but not in the heavy, classical vein. It smells voluptuous and luxurious and at the same time fresh and modern, albeit with a retro wink. And, as much as I hate the masculine/feminine divide, this is a totally feminine fragrance. It has an exotic floral/woody warm sensuality that is lighthearted and happy-go-lucky, just like the days of summer. In fact, I’m wearing it right now.
L de Lubin is listed in our Decant Store. Decants are $5.00 for 1 ml.