* Prices may differ from that shown
My husband bought some men's cologne in Selfridges a while back and picked up some perfume samples for me, one of which was First by Van Cleef & Arpels, I had never heard of this scent before (neither had hubby) but really liked the smell of this on me from the sample (as did hubby) so I went online and purchased a 60ml EDP for around £30.
~VAN CLEEF WHO?~
Van Cleef & Arpels is a French company which has been around since 1906. They specialise in jewellery, watches and fragrances. First was created by Pierre Arpels of Van Cleef and Arpels in 1976 and given the name First as it was the jeweller's first fragrance.
First perfumes are presented in a simple box white in front and back and black on sides with a gold border. The bottles are an elegant shape, like a jewel, with feminine curves; the shape was inspired by the jewellers Snowflake earrings. The cleverly shaped lid can be removed to spray the scent or left on as well so you can spray with ease. I found this pretty handy and unusual in a perfume.
The top notes are: aldehyde, raspberry, peach and hyacinth.
The heart notes consist of: mayrose, tuberose, carnation, jasmin, orchid, lily of the valley and orris.
And the bottom notes contain: oakmoss, amber, civet, sandalwood, vetiver and honey.
When you first spray this perfume the immediate sensation is that of aldehydes with hyacinth. It's very feminine and elegant. The next most evident scents are the jasmine and rose and once settled sandalwood and amber are left behind. These are all scents I adore in a perfume so First has fast become a favourite of mine.
~ANY OTHER THOUGHTS~
I feel this is a really grown up scent for women who like to smell luxurious and who are not afraid to be feminine. It's definitely not a unisex scent and can be worn during the day; when out socially or to work. It works well in the evenings as well and I have received compliments from complete strangers when wearing this, asking what the scent is as it's quite different to anything that's commonly available as far as I'm aware. It's not over-powering as to annoy other people around that you have to share an office with.
Since buying the 60ml EDP bottle online I have also purchased a 30ml EDT spray to use as a handbag size. I paid £20 for the 30ml bottle at Beauty Base. At the time of writing 100ml EDT of First is available for £27.94 at fragrancex.com, 60ml EDP is available from Amazon for £34.99 and 30ml EDT is available from Beauty Base for £19.99.
Although this is a luxurious scent, the price is quite affordable and it is well worth its price especially as the EDP has good longevity. I have worn the EDP out to work in the morning and returning home 9 or 10 hours later hubby has recognised the scent (and it's not like I tell him every day which scent I'm going to be wearing) but I have to admit I prefer to wear this scent when out socially rather than to work.
The EDT lasts for around 3-4 hours which is still pretty good and I do quite enjoy using the handbag sized 30ml EDT bottle I bought so I can re-apply during the day and get another fresh whiff of the top notes when first spraying.
As mentioned First has become a firm favourite of mine and I am happy to give this delightfully feminine scent full marks of 5 out of 5. It's a scent that is going to remain in my permanent collection and I hope to wear it for many years to come. It might be a cheap scent (price-wise) but it's not a cheap-scent (quality-wise).
Alcohol, Parfum (Fragrance), Aqua (Water), Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Alpha-Methyl Ionone, Hydroxycitronellal, Linalool, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Benzyl Benzoate, Eugenol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Geraniol, Benzyl Alcohol, Coumarin, Citronellol, Propylene Glycol, Benzyl Cinnamate, Evernia Furfuracea (Treemoss) Extract, Isoeugenol, Citral, Farnesol, Cinnamyl Alcohol, Amyl Cinnamal, CI 19140 (Yellow 5), CI 14700 (Red 4), CI 42090 (Blue 1)
Van Cleef and Arpels originated in 1906 as a jewellery design.
In 1976, Van Cleef and Arpels released their debut fragrance aptly named "First". Today, this fragrance is available in an eau de parfum, eau de toilette, shower gel and body cream. This review discusses the EDP.
First is described as being "A Floral Aldehyde, because it relies on only the prime choice of noble components and on white flowers, the most luxurious and seductive of all components". It claims to be a tribure to femininity.
The EDP and EDT are presented in identical bottles with the exception lying within the depth of the liquid inside. The bottle is unusual..a bit of triangular, circular shaped, thick glass bottle. The gold sprayer is never fully covered thanks to the large, horseshoe shaped lid which can be fully removed or kept in place and the spray will still work.
First EDP has been created using various sets of fragrance notes..
*Top notes - raspberry, hyacinth, aldehyde and peach
*Heart notes - jasmin, orchid, lily of the valley, orris, tuberose, carnation and mayrose
*Base notes - amber, civet, honey, sandalwood, oakmoss and vetiver
*~*Availability and Price*~*
First EDP is available online from various retailers in 30ml, 60ml and 100ml sizes.
*www.escentual.com : £27.57 - £61.27
*www.strawberrynet.com : £41.00 - £55.00
I happily accept any perfumes when people are sorting through their collections and much of my collection is made up of "rejects" from my Mum, sister and best friend. Anyway, I had never heard of Van Cleef and Arpels until my sister offered me a 3/4 full (60ml) bottle of First. She had been given it as a gift from her now ex Mother in law and really wasn't keen on it..I can't say I am either so decided to review it before seeing if Mum or my Mum in Law would like it!
The bottle is of a high quality in design but very old fashioned in my opinion..you can certainly tell it was made in the 1970s. The liquid is a deep golden colour which adds to the old fashioned feel and often deeply coloured perfumes make me think of something my wee Granny should be wearing and not myself (I am 23). It isn't the cheapest of scents and in all honesty, I feel the EDT would have been a lighter, pleasant variation and one I would have preferred.
*~*There's A First For Everything...*~*
I sprayed this with caution, not wishing to douse myself incase I didn't like this perfume. The sprayer releases a short, sharp burst of scent to the skin and despite the golden colour, doesn't leave a colour trace on my skin. First is a very powerful scent which on first spray, I immediately took a dislike too. It is very cloying, heady and far too mature for my young skin. I suppose looking at the notes, we could expect a fruity opening but the hyacinth pushed ahead cancelling out anything that could have made this scent sweet which is disappointing.
It doesn't really get any better with the heart. It is perhaps a little lighter in strength but there is far too much going on. I feel Van Cleef have just thrown some floral notes into a bottle a they aren't distinctive enough to create a desirable scent. Perhaps a more "mature" wearer could appreciate the "flower shop" type smell but I couldn't get used to it and found it rather nauseating for the full 6hours it inflicted itself on my skin for!
The base is slightly more favourable but doesn't compete with other fragrances. It is quite heady with a smooth, warm blend which is led by the sweet honey inclusion. It offers the right amount of sweetness and has a delicate, creamy and intense earthy edge. It is quite pleasant and rounds off a rather yucky scent with a hint of classiness.
No offence to older readers but First EDP is suited to the older generation. I don't consider 60 as old but perhaps edge 80s - 90s? This may sound a bit cheeky but that is my view as it's that type of scent. If you really love heavy, confusing scents then also go for this. It lasts all day (longest days of my life) so could be sprayed in the morning and it will linger.
*~*Recommendation and Conclusion*~*
This doesn't suit me one little bit I am sure someone else could appreciate its powerful scent. It lasts while which is a bonus if you like it but is quite pricey. If you like the sound of this scent but not the strength then perhaps sampling the EDT would be the best option.
Thanks for reading x
Launched by Van Cleef in 1976, this is a luxurious, gentle, floral fragrance recommended for romantic wear. It contains a blend of peach, jasmine, and lilly of the valley accented with tuberose, blackcurrant, vetiver and oak moss.