RETRO - Revlon Jean Naté Concentrated Cologne
Year Introduced: 1935 (Charles of the Ritz) 1987 (Revlon) - Feminine
Notes: Lavender, jasmine, rose, carnation, lily of the valley, cedar, tonka bean, musk and sandalwood
In 1935, Charles of the Ritz launched the highly successful Jean Naté line of body splashes and fragrance. In 1987, Charles of the Ritz was sold to Revlon but under Revlon, the brand began to slip in image and prestige. After several years of unsuccessful revival attempts and facing massive debt, Revlon put the line for sale, but had no takers. Analysts suggested the very name — Charles of the Ritz — lacked consumer recognition.
The 1970s and 1980s were the heyday of Jean Naté which is why we have it listed as a Retro fragrance. Well that and because this is for the Revlon version of the fragrance and they did not take over distribution until 1987.
The sun makes everything smell so fresh and everybody feel so good just like Jean Nate. I call it bottled sunshine. The Jean Nate fragrance is so fresh and clean I can feel it. Like the sun tingling and waking my body to a new day. I don't know of any other fragrance I could call bottled sunshine. Jean Nate, they put the sun in a bottle for me and for you.
Jean Nate after bath splash is for people who want to TAKE CHAAARRRGE of their life....use your body and your mind…so fresh so new…you get the feeling there’s NOTHING you can’t do. Jean Nate, Jean Nate. It's Jean Nate for a beautiful day. Is she the Jean Nate type? Don't give her perfume, give her Jean Nate. All of it. What a splash!
An excerpt of a review from Yesterday's Perfume:
If a lemon went to finishing school, it would smell like Jean Naté.
Soft, powdery, complex and sophisticated, this old gem (the old school Charles of the Ritz cologne spray, anyway) is sunny without being ditzy. It starts out at the gate (cue the 70s commercial above with the female jockey) all lemon. Even Lemon Pledge, uncannily. But soon enough, before you can disparage the old gal, she tosses off a bon mot or two, talks about a summer she spent in Tangiers, and soon you realize you're dealing with something refined and special.
The tonka and sandalwood give it a roundness and woody complexity at the end. The lavender probably contributes to the slight medicinal/cleaner note at the beginning. (I even get a herbal tarragon note occasionally.) Spraying it several times, I realize that there's no getting around a kind of bug-spray screech that, strangely, isn't off-putting to me. The more I sniff Jean Naté and let its nuances speak, the less the lemon (lemongrass, maybe?) grabs my attention, and the more its sensuous base sings out.
Lemon scents were pretty popular in the 1970s, which is why Jean Naté (born in 1935) was popular through that sporty-scented decade. (There was Love's Fresh Lemon, Revlon Wild Lemon, and Skinny Dip, just to name a few.) Perhaps that note seems too crass now, too easy. But I imagine that for a perfumer to replicate lemon and, at the same time, transform it, is akin to using a primary color as a painter to novel effect.
An excerpt from a review on Basenotes:
The concentrated cologne spray lasts all day, and due to its sharpness, may not be a perfect analog for the after bath splash with which most are familiar. It definitely skews unisex, with the musky bergamot and lemon combo bringing the classic masculine eau de cologne couple to the party. I also get the sandalwood and jasmine. This is definitely old school so try before you buy.
Revlon is still producing Jean Naté.
We are decanting out of an unopened bottle of the original concentrated cologne by Revlon from the late 1980s.