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Having spent quite a lot of money on a perfume some time ago which I really love but was disappointed with the poor staying power, I did some online research to discover that there was another scent out there which was a fraction of the price which smelt very similar. What's the name of this scent? Quite simply put; it's 4711 (or sometimes referred to as Muelhens 4711).
~WHAT IS IT?~
4711 is an Eau de Cologne (or "Echt Kölnisch Wasser" as it's translated in German) produced in Germany by Maurer & Wirtz. Wilhelm Muelhens was the creator of the fragrance which has been around since 1792! It's one of the oldest fragrances around that's still being produced and sold.
4711 is a unisex scent (i.e. for both men and women). It's an extremely refreshing scent and apparently its secret lies in its natural ingredients. It is a citrus based scent which settles into a floral and woody fragrance once warmed. This is a cologne rather than a perfume.
The top notes for 4711 are bergamot, orange oil, peach, basil and lemon with middle notes of jasmine, Bulgarian rose, lily, melon, lavender, rosemary and cyclamen. The base notes contain neroli, musk, sandalwood, patchouli, oakmoss, cedar and Tahitian vetiver.
From personal experience the most obvious notes are lemon, neroli and jasmine. The neroli scent is the one that seems to have become a real favourite of mine and it's really evident in this refreshing scent.
As with my other very similar smelling perfume the longevity of this scent is not the greatest. I notice that within an hour or so there is barely a trace of the scent at all. It was very frustrating with a scent that cost £135 for 50ml but for this scent I don't have any complaints as it's just so cheap that I can afford to apply it as often as I want or need to. As 4711 is cologne it doesn't claim to be a perfume nor does it claim to have good staying power.
~THE OTHER STUFF, OPINION, HISTORY, PACKAGING, ETC~
As I mentioned, this scent has been around for well over 200 years. I understand it was originally given to the then very important Wilhelm Muelhens as a wedding gift by a monk as a health tonic and Muelhens went on to make it into a scent from his home which had been renamed as 4711. The original tonic Muelhens was given was supposed to contain a secret formula, a "miracle water" if you will.
The zesty scent has lived on throughout the centuries and no one can deny that this is a refreshing scent. It has fast become one of my favourite scents and at such a cheap price I can buy endless bottles of the spray on cologne, the body spray and the Eau de Cologne cool stick which are available in Boots to purchase or many online websites too.
The box the scent comes in is a luxurious looking turquoise box with gold lettering and designs very much like the other scent this resembles although the fact that this has been around for well over 200 years leads me to believe the other scent is an expensive copy of this but with the longevity not being any better than this one.
The bottle itself is quite simple looking with a large turquoise and gold label covering most of the bottle. I understand the bottle shape (with 6 sides) was designed in order to make it easier to transport as previously the scent had been put into bottles which could only be stored on their sides and were rather difficult to transport.
4711 is really refreshing and won't knock anyone else out by being overpowering. I have received some lovely comments from complete strangers when wearing this scent, both male and female. A tip for this is to spray some on your hair and work it in with your fingers and even on your clothes as the scent last longer this way. The refreshing scent is so "cool" that the fragrance can be rubbed into your forehead if you're feeling stressed, even better, use the Cool Stick for this or across the back of your neck to provide refreshing relaxation.
I have really become quite addicted to this scent and am happy to say that even though it's unisex, hubby has learnt to keep his mitts off of it, although it's so cheap I don't mind sharing this particular one!
Some facts about 4711:
* This cologne is used in the novella Breakfast at Tiffany's
* During World War II the German Navy was issued with 4711 in U-Boats due to limited bathing facilities. The scent was supposed to be used to improve the odour on board but most of the crew would give the scent to their wives, girlfriends or mothers instead.
* Supposedly was Napoleon' favourite cologne
From what I understand the exact composition of 4711 is still a closely guarded secret but it amuses me that Tom Ford's Neroli Portofino is very similar scent-wise costing ten times as much but still has poor longevity!
4711 is easily available in Boots stores and many online sites at a very reasonable price. Samples prices at time of writing are £11.50 for 100ml Eau de Cologne Splash or 60ml Cologne Spray or £40 for a huge 800ml bottle from Amazon or CheapSmells. The range also includes Cream Soap, Eau de Cologne 300ml, Aftershave Lotion, Cool Stick 20ml, Shower Gel 200ml, by Muelhens Body Spray 100ml, by Muelhens Tissue Pack
I would give 4711 a very strong 4 out of 5 with a recommendation for day wear and especially in the summer months. This is a truly delicious scent which I hope will be easily available for years to come!
Alcohol, Aqua (Water), Parfum (Fragrance), Limonene, Linalool, Citral,
Hydroxycitronellal, Geraniol, Citronellol
This fragrance was originally launched in 1792 / It is a refreshing citrus based fragrance that warms to a light floral woody base /