Chloe Narcisse: Busy As A Bee


I have happy memories of Chloe Narcisse. It was created in 1992 and I remember coming back from my local House of Fraser with a bottle of it in a little beribboned gift bag. For about two months I smelled of this every day before ending my fling and returning to my old faithful Chanel Cristalle. It was great whilst it lasted and we had some good times.


However, I tried it again more recently and I’m on the fence about it.  It has too many yellow flowers and honeyed sweetness for my taste these days, but it’s not unpleasant, it’s a bestseller, it’s good quality and very cheap (around 10GBP for 30ml).

The opening notes are bright and sillage can fill a room.  Sticky Marigold, yellow Narcissus , Sweet orange blossom and even  sweeter peaches.  The problem here is that my dislike of peaches means I can pick out the slightest hint from a mile off and this is a turn off alongside other sweet flowers.

The middle is equally sweet and reminds me of a very hot day: so sunny you can’t move for the heat, and a loud buzzing of bees in the overwhelmingly overstuffed flower beds. It’s all a little too much. Thankfully the pineapple that’s alleged to be present is not present, at least to my nose.  Many a pineapple has ruined a perfume for me. They are strictly for eating only.narcisse ad

The base is a little calmer, with surprisingly, Tolu balsam as a base note. There is a little spice and sandalwood and I think I prefer the base notes to the rest of it.  It’s like the smell that lingers after the overly lavish bouquet has been taken out of the room.  A faint trace that flowers were here once, but what remains is much more palatable.

I bought a bottle of this last year and had such mixed feelings about  it that I ended up selling it on eBay.  I can’t hate it, it gives me happy memories and I love the little green metallic neck on the bottle, but try as I might, my nose has changed too much to still be that 22 year old with the little gift bag and the free body lotion.


5 thoughts on “Chloe Narcisse: Busy As A Bee”

  1. One of my co-workers wore this back when it was first released in the early nineties, and she sprayed it on lavishly . Another co-worker complained about it to other people (but not to the wearer’s boss). I laughed about the situation because although it was kind of strong for an office environment, I thought it smelled nice.

  2. Dearest Iscent
    “Sticky marigold”. Oh dear. Quite apart from the rubber glove associations, this is one yellow flower bomb I am not enamoured with!
    Perhaps one to give a wide birth to, at least until spring.
    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

    1. Dear Mr Dandy,

      Yes indeed, the Marigold is well and truly sticky and sweet. I can almost see the Dandy’s nose wrinkling! This is far too “yellow flowers” for me and would benefit from less sweetness and more Greenery.

      Your friend

  3. Well I don’t have any prior happy memories of this, so I can safely say I *do* hate it 🙂 I have come across several bottles at estate sales and have had no problem reselling them on eBay so someone loves it, but ugh! Top – too sweet, middle – too sweet – I don’t actually recall ever getting to the base/dry down because it became a candidate for scrubbing!

    1. Hello Sally,

      How funny! Yes I think it only stays in my good books by the seat of its pants and that’s thanks to nostalgia. No nostalgia- no likey!
      Thanks for making me smile.

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