The camellia flower is native to Japan and various parts of Asia, it's also the chosen flower of Chanel. The only thing is the camellia flower bares no discernible scent; turns out this was a sticking point for such a notable couturier and perfumer. Fortunately the gardenia's physical attributes and geographic location made up for what the camellia lacks, a scent.
And this is how Chanel's Gardenia, part of the Les Exclusifs De Chanel perfume collection, came to be.
Gardenia starts out very robust, but it quickly quiets down. Chanel describes the scent as exhibiting "green notes, its creamy heart, and a trail full of fantasy." Yet when I smell it, call me crazy, I think of the colour purple.
This particular bottle is a major investment, as a result I read loads of reviews and boy are they mixed. One reviewer said, "Even the best sometimes fail and, here, Chanel failed. A harsh and cheap plastic/coconut white floral that would be an awful choice even as a freshener for a dog's basket. Meh..." His commentary made me smile and it reaffirmed we all don't have to like the same things. I also found that Gardenia was repeatedly compared to Dior's Poison, perhaps an affordable dupe?
Others complained about Gardenia's longevity or lack thereof and I'd have to agree. Gardenia is unfortunately one of those perfumes that requires reapplication throughout the day. It's even suggested by layering Gardenia over freshly applied moisturiser will help with its lasting power.
Gardenia is exclusively sold online and at Chanel Beauty and Perfume Boutiques.