Alyssa Ashley for Houbigant Civet Spray Mist
Year Introduced: 1974 - Feminine
Civet was part of the Houbigant Alyssa Ashley Primitive Naturals line. "The first scents with a power to stir up new beginnings. Wear one and evoke a primal response. Come on! Explore. Civet - Spirit of fire. A wild, free scent with a secret inner self, waiting to light up. (It's catching.)"
In a review of Civet from Barbara Herman's Scent and Subversion: Decoding a Century of Provocative Perfume, she says:
"I've been fascinated by Alyssa Ashley's cult hit Civet for some time, dying to know how a 1970s perfume that dared to name itself after the fecal-smelling base note would smell. I also wanted to know why a bottle of Civet is now on eBay for $700. (Two answers to the latter question:  The bottles are almost extinct; and  It's an animalic beauty). After three years of searching, I finally found it on a decant site for (gulp) $20 per 1/4ml. What a strange, mysterious treat this was. It starts off green and fresh. There's an herbal, barely detectable mint aspect to Civet which reminds me just for a moment of Serge Luten's Tubereuse Criminelle, with its crazy camphory minty opening notes. Soon, Civet develops into a fresh, creamy white floral - my guess is gardenia. In my first few whiffs, I was certain that this perfume was animalic in name alone. If there was civet in this polite floral, I thought, it's working subliminally. Its heart is a soft, creamy floral. Boy, was I wrong. After days of sniffing nothing and hence resetting my nose, I decided to pull out my tiny decant again and dip a tiny wand into a tiny vial, which gathered a few tiny drops that I smeared on my skin. Wow - how did I miss this, I wondered. Civet in all its stinky glory had been there all along, hiding amid the indolic, rottenish facets of its white flowers, like the bruised, brown petal of a gardenia that's been sitting around too long."
Civet has a cult-like following and for good reason! It is fabulous.
Civet has been discontinued. We are decanting out of a boxed original bottle of the Houbigant Alyssa Ashley Civet Spray Mist in the black bottle with the eye logo on the front. Unbelievably gorgeous!!