During the Nineties, Jean Paul Gaultier co hosted the late night post pub TV programme Eurotrash with the equally bonkers Antoine de Caunes. With his iconic Breton tops and kilts, and that Gallic twinkle in his smiley eyes, I was a fan of Jean Paul from the start.
In 1992 he launched Jean Paul Gaultier Eau de Parfum, now called Classique, thanks to a plethora of confusingly named flankers. I recall reading an interview with him around this time, though I sadly cannot find it now. The gist of it was that he wanted to base a perfume on the matriarchs in his family and he said that his Mother and Grandmother smelled of nail polish remover and face powder and he wanted to include that in his scent.
He was as good as his word and I can never smell Classique without thinking how he understands that women, gorgeous as we are, often have messy handbags which smell of stuff we’ve spilled. It’s human. We don’t need to be perfect or smell perfect. A smell is a memory encapsulated in a bottle. As a result of this charming vignette, I have always had a soft spot for JPG , or Jpeg as we call him in the Digital Age (joke).
I haven’t ever owned a bottle of Classique myself since I once knew someone for whom this was a signature scent to the power of a thousand. However, in isolation, it is marvellous. It’s sweet with Vanilla, but not Britney Vanilla, and has a touch of Anise and Pear which evoke the strange chemical hint of nail polish remover. It’s floral and feminine with Roses, Tuberose and Neroli, and beds down into a sandy finish with rich Amber and powdery Musk.
Bravo Jean Paul!
… and now a clip of some very large European breasts. Bon nuit mes little British chums and faîtes des bonnes rêves!