Beauty,  Fragrance

Chanel No 5 L’Eau

Tomorrow is the fragrance launch of the year, in my opinion.

The iconic Chanel No 5 gets a modern twist in the form of L’Eau. Inspired by the original and developed around the prominent not of May rose from Grasse, this new, exciting scent has been a three year labour of love for Oliver Polge (the nose behind the likes of Armani Code, the Jimmy Choo scents, Lancôme La Vie Est Belle and Chanel Chance Eau Vive).

While I’ve always appreciated the pedigree of the original No 5, I’ve never actually been a huge fan of the scent. I’ve worn it on the odd occasion, but always feel like a bit of a fraud when wearing it. It doesn’t settle well on me, and feels like it should be for someone far more sophisticated.

This younger, fresher version however is possibly my favourite fragrance launch of the last 5 years. The fresh, citrus top notes of lemon, mandarin, orange, neroli and aldehydes gives way to a delicate floral heart of May rose, ylang-ylang and jasmine. The base is rich yet subtle thanks to cedar and white musk.


Simplicity was key in the development of the new scent. From the cleanness of the packaging to the almost water-like appearance of the juice to the practically invisible dispenser tube, everything possible has been pared back to create an elegant understated scent, worthy of the No 5 label.

Chanel No 5 L’Eau lands on counters countrywide tomorrow in 50ml EDT, R1600 and 100ml EDT, R2270.