“What’s in a name?” Once again about Miss Dior

 

Feeling emotionally connected to Miss Dior perfume for a while I considered risking an eBay purchase of another bottle of it. But then I finally tested a decant of the modern (pre-renaming-nonsense) version sent to me by Natalie (Another Perfume Blog) – and I liked it. So I figured I’d try to find Miss Dior not marked as “Originale.” It might be not as great as the older version but it would have taken away possible disappointment that comes with a spoiled vintage purchase.

Last year, when the news about Dior‘s decision to use the name of this classic perfume for the reformulated beyond recognition Miss Dior Cherie hit the Blogosphere, there was no lack of strong emotions. Perfume enthusiasts thought it was an awful decision that was really unfair towards both consumers and perfume’s legacy. I remember commenting somewhere that the next generation of customers will have no idea they smell a completely different perfume and will be really puzzled reading older reviews.

Little did I know how fast my prediction would come true!

In November I participated in the Perfume Posse’s swap event. It was mostly successful for me (one full bottle and multiple decants exchange). One of the perfumes I tried to add to my collection was Miss Dior. A member who offered a bottle for a swap mentioned that it had been bought from Saks and was definitely not Miss Dior Cherie. Since I was fine with any of real Miss Dior‘s existing formulations I asked only if it came with the original box – and we agreed on the swap terms.

When the package arrived I didn’t even have to smell it (though I did) to realize that I’ve got the officially authorized imposter.

Miss Dior Cherie

The sad thing was that the sender was genuinely surprised: she was sure she had real Miss Dior that just didn’t work for her. Yes, she’s probably not the most experienced perfumista but she reads at least Perfume Posse. There is nothing to expect from a regular consumer. Dior has successfully rewritten the history.

Off to eBay for the vintage Miss Dior hunting.

 

Image: my own.

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24 thoughts on ““What’s in a name?” Once again about Miss Dior

  1. Yes; the renaming has a sort of toddler “Nyah!” air about it, doesn’t it? “You think that we just kinda sorta don’t respect our perfumes? We’ll show you a _whole new level_ of disrespect for our perfumes, so there!”

    But I’m not clear on why you wouldn’t want Originale – or, that is, want to try it? I thought from what I’d read (am I wrong?) that Originale is very much like the last Miss Dior immediately before the renaming – that, in other words, the reformulation had already happened and they didn’t go out of their way to butcher it even more before they changed the bottle. :)

    I just tried and reviewed Originale a little while ago, and while it doesn’t have the attitude of a real vintage perfume, I think it’s pretty nice. I also have a vial of vintage (exactly which decade, I don’t know) Miss Dior, which taught me that my aldehyde tolerance has still not grown to enable me to thoroughly appreciate certain vintage fragrances. I’m embarrassed to say that at the moment, I prefer the modern.

    If you did try it and I’m confused, of course, I take it all back. :)

    • I read your review yesterday and was thinking about trying the newest version. I was/am reluctant because I was afraid it couldn’t avoid being re-worked once again during the transition. But maybe I should give it a try anyway.

  2. We live in annoying times for Perfumistas Undina. I am wondering if we will come through it all happier on the other side and laughing about how upset we were. I don’t think so but it has happened to me before about stuff I thought was absolutely outrageous when it was changed.
    You’ve made me think again, that’s more than twice this year…
    Portia xx

  3. Hi Undina,

    A great post and I agree the fate of Miss Dior is terribly sad and awful. A whole new generation of perfumistas will have no idea of Miss Dior’s heritage and iconic status. Rewritten history indeed but for the very worst. I still cannot believe what they have done.

    Madeleine

    • What I cannot figure out is why did they have to do it. Miss Dior Cherie was a super popular perfume that sold much better than the iconic perfume so I just can’t see what was the benefit in renaming a more economically successful currently perfume into the less successful one.

  4. What a perfect, though depressing, example of the results of this infuriating re-naming.

    I hope you find your vintage Miss Dior and that it’s in good condition.

    • I’d prefer if they would have just discontinued the original one instead of doing all that switcheroo.

      I’ll report back on the success I hope :) ) with my vintage hunt.

  5. IBM gave a name of their widely successful DB2 database to their new mediocre database about a decade ago. This caused all kinds of confusion between two DB2s (maybe that’s why there is a 2 in the name?). Also, their joint success was way below the initial DB2. BUT: the second DB2 would have not been able to take off without the name of its better and older namesake. The difference between databases and perfumes though that databases can improve in every new release.

    • Theoretically ;) perfumes might improve as well.

      I wouldn’t have been surprised if Dior had decided to use the more popular/known name for the less popular perfume to improve its chances/sales. But in this case it was the opposite! Miss Dior Cherie, even in a butchered variation of it, sold better at the time than the original Miss Dior.

    • Today I wore Miss Dior from your decant again and thought how much I liked it. I won’t probably finish that decant until I get a bigger bottle – to have a reference point.

  6. I remember being in store a few months ago and reaching to smell “Miss Dior” I’ve heard so many good things about and thinking ‘this smells like miss dior cherie, only worse’…Only afterwards I read about the re-naming of MIss Dior Cherie to Miss Dior. I don’t think it was such a good idea, it’s confusing.

    Miss Dior Cherie (slightly teeny bopper to me) -> Miss Dior (Worse)
    MIss Dior (probably great, but I haven’t smell it) ->MIss Dior Originale? Chances are, in 10 years time people when call Miss Dior a bad fragrance, not knowing they are referring to the wrong scent. Sad indeed.

  7. It is so disappointing when a beloved fragrance gets altered (or in this case, completely changed!). I had the same reaction when I purchased a bottle of Calyx which was the skeleton of the original: a muted down soft citrus floral and not the overripe fruity tart cacophony that it was back in the late 80s. I have never done the e-bay thing…too scared as I have heard too many horror stories! So all of my favorite vintage live on in my olfactory memory with their own little stories :) !! Hope you find a pristine vintage bottle of Miss Dior :D !!

  8. I was talking to someone about Christmas gifts the other day and they said they were going to buy someone a bottle of Miss Dior, as that was one of this person’s favourite scents. Needless to say, I told them to exercise great caution in their shopping mission!

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