Chanel - Égoïste

Égoïste by Chanel first came onto the market in September 1990, at least as far as I can recall. I remember buying my first bottle in November of that year. At the time, I was a student with limited financial resources but that didn't sway me from the charms of the beautiful sales assistant at the Chanel counter when I should have been using the money for food.

At the time, I was living in a semi-dilapidated Victorian house. I would spray this on in the evenings while listening to the Cocteau Twins new album 'Heaven Or Las Vegas'. Then I would head out onto the town, congratulating myself on how cultured I had become. Young and naive.

There was, during the period of 1987-1989, an even earlier edition called 'Bois Noir' which is now almost impossible to find. I'm not sure it even made it to the consumer market. It was sold almost exclusively in Chanel boutiques.

I have a number of vintage bottles of Égoïste, the earliest is the one you see here. The batch code is 7102 which would place manufacture at some point between October 1988 and August 1989.

Needless to say, it still smells exquisite. It's just simply unmistakeable. At the time, it was a very bold effort by Chanel but certainly didn't set the world alight. So much so that by 1995, 'Égoïste Platinum' was released. Platinum is a different fragrance in its own right but for me cannot compete with this masterpiece.

In my humble opinion, it represents the last of a trinity of releases (Pour Monsieur, Antaeus, Égoïste) that the fragrance house have never bettered in now almost a quarter of a century.