I first tried Chanel’s Jersey a couple of months ago when I was visiting London. I happened to be there during this summer’s infamous heat wave when it was the hottest day in London on record. On this record-breaking hot day, a friend and I decided to take a shopping trip to Harrod’s because, if everyone is going to be sweating anyway, why not do it in style? Jersey is a lavender-centric fragrance, and it ended up being exactly the type of refreshing scent required by such a hot day. I liked it so much that I ended up ordering a sample once I was back at home.
Just as you might expect, Jersey opens with a strong wave of lavender. It’s difficult not to think of fresh laundry or clean linen simply because of the association with lavender, but Jersey doesn’t come off as being terribly soapy to me. Or maybe, it’s just the right amount of clean because this fragrance is definitely about balance.
The opening lavender note is a little bit bracing, but not overly sharp. It settles down into a clean and refreshing scent, but not overly soapy to my nose. It has a green tinge that becomes more pronounced leading into the middle stage of the fragrance. I suppose this comes from the grass note, and this helps maintain the sense of freshness.
Jersey may be lavender-centric, but it’s not linear. The musk doesn’t make much of an appearance on my skin, but the vanilla most definitely does. This is a very Chanel vanilla in that it’s soft and creamy, but still elegant. It never turns into a gourmand vanilla, yet still adds a richness of texture to the fragrance.
Then the tonka bean comes in and really emphasizes the creamy texture just in case you weren’t getting enough from the vanilla. When I first noticed this change in texture, I panicked that the scent would become too heavy and figured that I’d have to wash it off. But again, perfumer Jacques Polge is all about balance, and the creamy texture here is rendered with an incredibly soft touch that’s more like cashmere than a down comforter. It makes for a dry down that’s both lovely and very wearable.
If you’re not a fan of lavender in general, Jersey probably isn’t for you. However, if you enjoy lavender, Jersey is one to try. I love lavender fragrances, so this has been perfect for me, particularly for summer wear. It’s recently gotten me though some of those late summer days where almost any fragrance feels too heavy in the humidity. Even the dry down has been wearable, and I think the echo of the lavender helps keep the composition on the lighter side in general. Jersey may not be the most complex scent out there. And again, the clean laundry associations will haunt almost any lavender fragrance, but Jersey gives off the proper air of elegance you’d expect from Chanel. Plus, it just smells great, which is all I can ask for, especially in these last days of summer.
Les Exclusifs de Chanel are available directly from Chanel and at Chanel boutiques. They are also available in person at some department stores such as Bergdorf’s and Harrods. Jersey samples and decants are available from The Posh Peasant and The Perfumed Court, which is where I got my sample.