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4711 Original is an eau de cologne that was created by Muelhens in 1792! It has since been bought by Maurer & Wirtz, but is often still referred to as Muelhens 4711 Original.
It is a unisex fragrance. The nose behind the fragrance is Wilhelm Muelhens.
~ Price ~
It is very cheap. I bought a 25ml 'watch bottle', which is small, round and flat like a watch for £3.99 from allbeauty.com.
A 100ml bottle costs £8.85.
~ Bottle ~
My watch bottle is very small and cute. It has the recognisable gold and turquoise, busy design on the label on the front and it comes with a cute gold coloured lid with a red top and '4711' imprinted onto it.
~ Scent ~
The scent is very strong in the bottle. It is very citrusy when first applied. It is zesty and refreshing, but sharp like lemon can be.
The top notes are orange oil, peach, basil, bergamot and lemon.
The heart notes are cyclamen, lily, melon, jasmine and Bulgarian rose.
The base notes are patchouli, Tahitian vetiver, musk, sandalwood, oakmoss and cedar.
About 5- 10 minutes after application the fragrance starts to develop and the citrusy notes calm down a bit. The scent starts to become quite soapy and the floral notes start to come through.
The floral notes have a slight sharpness, but as the fragrance is quite subtle I don't think anyone would find it offensive.
The fragrance is very light and fresh. It doesn't smell too masculine or too feminine.
Being an eau de cologne the fragrance does not have good projection and it does not last long. It lasts on your skin for around 2-3 hours before wearing away. My smaller bottle is handy to keep with me if I need to top up the scent, but unless someone was close to me within the first few minutes of application I doubt that anyone would notice this scent on me.
I think it is a nice fragrance and I would wear it for work or when I am pottering about, but I think, as I have such a small bottle it is one that I will carry around with me and I will use it later in the day when my perfume has worn away and I want to freshen up.
I am glad I bought this fragrance, but I don't think I will buy it again in the future.
I remember when I was young my grandmother always loved 4711 eau de cologne which she used as an ordinary cologne but also as a cure for headaches - by putting it on her temples NOT by drinking it I must stress! Ever since then it is a fragrance that I have loved!
Referring it back to my grandmother makes it sound an old ladies fragrance but in my opinion that isn't the case - I actually think that it is suitable for any age and indeed either sex for that matter.
The company that makes 4711 - incidentally I always say it four seven eleven but I know some people go for forty seven eleven - is
Maurer & Wirtz who, because they were based in Cologne, called the new product eau de cologne which translates as water of Cologne.
4711 was originally created in 1792 but the name 4711 only came into existence in 1881 when a court case prevented the company from using the original name - details on Wikipedia if you are interested - and Ferdinand Mullhens then used his old house number to rename the product and 4711 as we know it today was born.
I don't actually think that the design of the bottles has changed much since my grandmother's day. The label is still an intricate design in blue and gold looking very traditional and high quality.
The wording across the top of the label is Echt Kolnisch Wasser with the English words Original Eau De Cologne written underneath. The number 4711 appears in the centre of label.
The bottles have a traditional gold coloured screw top sealed with red paper. The whole thing looks very smart and special.
I have taken a look on the Boots website and the range that they currently offer is as follows:
25ml bottle (the one my grandmother always had in her handbag) at £6.49
50ml bottle at £11.49
100ml bottle at £17.49
100ml body spray at £4.39
20ml cologne stick at £5.99
Pack of 10 refreshing tissues at £3.29
There are currently offers of one third off the 4711 range at Boots so if it is something that you like it might be worth a visit to Boots.
The Technical Stuff
Now I freely admit that I know nothing about top notes and bottom notes so I have done some research on the Internet and discovered the following information.
The top notes of 4711 are made up of orange, peach, basil, lemon and bergamot.
The middle notes are made up of cyclamen, lily, melon, jasmine and Bulgarian rose.
The bottom notes are made up of patchouli, Tahitian vetiver, musk, oak moss and cedar.
So what you end up with is a cologne with an initial light, fresh almost fruity fragrance with undertones that are slightly heavier and muskier.
The Eau De Cologne In Use
Information that I have discovered on the Boots website says that
'4711 Original Eau de Cologne has been one of Cologne's greatest gifts to the world. The unique composition of 4711 has a positive effect on the mind & body, producing a feeling of well-being.'
This reinforces my grandmother's use of 4711 all those years ago.
I find that this cologne is refreshing to use, especially when applied as the body spray, and I do find that the mixture of light fruitiness and flowery fragrances help to lift my general mood.
Although this product does definitely make me feel uplifted I don't find that it is able to cure headaches so i will stick to Paracetemol for those rare occasions!
I don't find this cologne heavy in any way - for me the bottom notes just help to prolong the effect of the cologne. Having said this I must stress that this particular fragrance is not a long lasting one. I find that I have to reapply every four hours or so if I want to enjoy the effects of this fragrance all day.
I think that 4711 is a lovely traditional fragrance that won't be disappearing from the shelves anytime soon.
I find it is a lovely summery cologne that gives my mood a boost and also reminds me of a happy childhood so I will be recommending it with five stars.
4711 Eau de Cologne is the 'original' cologne, dating back over 200 years to that city. It is still widely available in Boots branches, where it can be found with the other inexpensive perfumes (such as L'Aimant, Charlie, and so forth). It has distinctive, ornate packaging with a turquoise and gold colour scheme, and it is suitable for both men and women.
I treated myself to a bottle when it was on a half-price offer. I purchased the 50ml bottle, which is usually priced at £11.18. It is presented in a box, within which the glass bottle is packaged. I was disappointed to find that it was a 'splash' bottle, rather than a natural-spray, which is what I had expected. However, the bottle's design prevents too much cologne from splashing out at once, so this is not too much of a problem.
The scent of the cologne is citrus mixed with neroli, although the precise composition remains a secret. It is a wonderful, natural-smelling citrus; not an artificial type Lemsip or bathroom cleaner fragrance. It is a refreshing, lemon-and-bergamot dominated fragrance, and smells almost as nice, to me, as the vastly more expensive Chanel Cristalle Eau Verte. However, unlike Chanel's citrus offering, 4711 has no real sillage (scent trail) and not much staying power to speak of.
My first impression of 4711, when I tested it in Boots a few years ago, having been enticed by the packaging, was that it was at once very familiar, and rather overpowering. I do think that it is probably worn widely due to its heritage, familiarity, availability and reasonable price. I have no idea why I found it overpowering (almost disinfectant-like, at that stage), because now I find it very fresh, but not at all headache-inducing, artificial, or even strong.
It is a nice fragrance to use every day; I feel it is likely to have an entirely 'natural' composition, with no dubious ingredients, although I have no proof for that assertion. Although it doesn't really last on the skin at all, it is a wonderfully refreshing scent to apply. If you're on a long car journey and don't wish to wear a strong perfume in case it causes a headache in another passenger, I would consider this ideal. I am considering buying a small atomiser bottle so that I can keep some in my handbag, ready for re-application. Sometimes it is nice to wear a scent that is androgynous, rather than overwhelmingly feminine, and it is also nice to wear a piece of history. Some people may consider it old-fashioned, but it smells fresh, and modern, to me - it is not like wearing a heavy, powdery 1980s scent, for instance (although I quite like those in moderation, too).
You can also purchase a 4711 cologne-stick, and scented tissues, although I have not tried these out myself.
I remember one day picking up my friend, Eileen, and commenting that I liked her really distinctive perfume. Eileen remembered and on Xmas morning I opened a pressie to find a bottle of 4711 Eau de Cologne and she said that was the perfume I liked. I was really unsure about this gift as I always thought that Eau de Cologne was after shaves and so a male fragrance. A little bit of research shows that 4711 is a unisex fragrance with an impressive history having first been formulated in 1792.
The first impressions of the 50ml glass bottle are that it looks cheap with a simple round glass bottle with a gold plastic screw top. The label also looks fairly masculine so it doesn't really look great on your dressing table and won't win any prizes for design.
The Eau de Cologne is made up of top notes of orange, peach, basil, lemon and bergamont. The citrus is very apparent when you first apply the fragrance with a light a fresh scent and the oranges being the thing I can most easily identify. This fruitiness is also mixed with something greener which I am guessing is the basil coming through which cuts through any harshness that the citrus notes may have otherwise had.
The initial strong fruity scent dies away fairly quickly and the middle notes of cyclamen, lily, melon, jasmine and Bulgarian rose make an appearance. The fragrance is very soft at this point, the melon is the most predominent smell which mingles well with the floral scents and is surprisingly not a flowery smell at all.
Again the middle notes fade away really quickly and you are left with the base notes of patachouli, tahitian vetiver, musk, oakmoss and cedar and the middle notes are replaced with a woody scent which is a bit too masculine for me. The muskiness comes through giving a warm and earthy feel to the scent and it feels like a warm autumn day.
The base notes also do not last for very long, the whole scent has largely disappeared after a couple of hours and even sniffing really hard on my wrist I can no longer detect any smell at all.
4711 is a surprisingly young and fresh scent, if I did not know the history I would have guessed it was a more modern fragrance. The scent is clean and fresh and although it is marketed as unisex it may be slightly too masculine for a woman to wear while most men will prefer something a bit bolder. The Eau de Cologne does not smell at all artificial but like good quality oils have been used to make the scent. I would say that due to the woodiness it is more a daytime autumnal scent than a summery or nighttime perfume.
4711 is surprisingly cheap too, a 50ml bottle will set you back just over £8 from Boots. It is just a pity that it is slightly too woody for me to feel feminine wearing it and that it doesn't have great staying power.
Numbers are fun things. Did you know that a certain zip-code named TV show may be read as 9-0-2-1-0 in English but is 90-2-10 in German? Or that the old band 911 is only 9-1-1 in English, but 9-11 in some other places?
Then there's this stuff. For years I've known it as 4-7-11 in English and 47-11 in German. Whatever you call it, though, it's the same stuff. A unisex scent best suited for crinkly old men or bony old women. Or me.
4711 is the original Eau de Cologne and comes from...Cologne (though ingredients-wise it's more 'alcool' than it is 'eau'. In fact, it originally came from a building at 4711 Glockengasse in the city, hence the name. The scent is now manufactured elsewhere in Germany, but the building remains and is now a shop where you can buy all things 4-7-11. I went there a few years ago while on a Christmas market trip, but you don't have to travel that far to stock up as this is one of the cheapest and most readily available fragrances here and in many countries worldwide.
I think my perceptions of the smell come from its appearance (an ornate gold and jade design covers all products in the range) and the fact that we always, without fail, brought some back for my Nanna whenever we went to Germany. They did then, and still do now, a fabulous set of mini bottles where you get more than a dozen in a little cardboard purse, just like those mini Dairy Milks you can get for the 2p desk-top machines, except unlike with the chocolate, the perfume was always shared.
To me though it's cheap in price, it's not a cheap, tacky scent, though it is a somewhat distinct and rather harsh smell that seems to induce an immediate love-it-or-hate-it reaction.
When you first apply it, or simply take off the lid and take a sniff, you're hit by the strong top notes which in this case are a citrussy mix of bergamot and orange, plus petitgrain, neroli and lemon, three things which make it slightly bitter rather than purely soft and fruity. I think it also has a clear stench of alcohol to it which makes sense as this is its main ingredient, even ahead of water.
The middle notes which waft up next - rosemary and rose - are slightly softer, but still with an earthy, natural feel, while the base notes which come out as time goes by include musk, thankfully the synthetic kind (did you know that, originally, musk came from a Musk Deer's rectum? Or that the word 'Musk' is Sanskrit for 'testicle'?)
This is not an overly flowery perfume and the rose, for example, has a definite artificial tinge to it, but nonetheless, combined, the three levels of notes give a very fresh and cooling scent. Though it's not available on the NHS, perhaps it should be - I brought some into work and one of the nurses' immediate response was that it was the best thing for bringing down a fever. It was originally developed for medicinal purposes, but is now known much more as a standard scent. Because it is fresh and cool it's great for summer - some other bottles I have work well for summer evenings but are too heady for during the day, but this is different. I do think 4711 is best known for its freshness and a number of other products in the range, for example moist wipes, build on this.
This is not a pricy scent, and therefore lacks the prestige of some others (c.f. Chanel No 5) but in my mind that makes it infinitely more accessible and wearable (as well as affordable). Prices below are taken from Boots.com in June 2010
4711 tissues cost £3 per pack
Body Spray £3.95
Perfume stick £5.50
Eau de Cologne
100ml £16.95 (compared to £70+ for the same amount of Chanel No 5)
I wouldn't necessarily choose to wear this all day every day as it can get a bit much, but when the mood strikes I will quite happily go through a phase of sniffing it a few times a day, if only for the happy memories it invokes.
I have been using 4711 since I was a teenager. I would describe it as unisex, rather than just for men. If you prefer perfumes with a lemony/citrus base, then this one is definitely worth a try. It's quite a light perfume, and doesn't have especially good staying power, but it's also not as expensive as other perfumes, so don't feel shy about putting plenty on. It's quite a tangy, invigorating scent, "get up and go" rather than sensual.
I have always used it in a "dab on" bottle, rather than a spray, because unfortunately with the spray on version, you are paying a lot for the container, which only holds a third of the volume of the bottle.
One thing that has irritated me over the years though is not being able to find a small handbag 50ml spray - the kind that you can get with some other perfumes, that has a shape a bit bigger than a lipstick. I tend not to carry this perfume around with me - the bottles are more suited to staying at home on the dressing table than being ferried around.
This is a perfume that has been around for generations. I have had a few comments over the years along the lines of "Your perfume smells nice, what is it?" ....."4711."......."Oh...right!....My grandmother uses that. I thought I knew the smell!" It's definitely stood the test of time.
I had not seen this for many years and then my mum bought me a bottle (as most people would think this is how 4711 is distributed!) of this for Christmas as it had appeared in Boots. I adore this and although many peopel may see this as extremely old fashioned it is superb as a refreshign pick me up when the wetaher is hot or also in winter when the central nheating dries you out. The smell is just like a lovely fresh citrus and pine scent and is fantastic to sniff when you have a headache or blocked nose as it is not as "brutal" as somebody like Olbas oil or Vicks. If you rub some on the pulse ppints of your wrist it soothes and cools you down. As the smell doesn't tend to linger for so long it is perfect in place of some overpowering scents that if you work in an open plan office tend to be rather offputting and cause headaches or allergies. A lovely blast from the past and perfectly relevant to today's market for men and women.
This fragrance was originally launched in 1792. It is a refreshing citrus-based fragrance that warms to a light floral, woody base.