Over the Christmas break, I read Tilar J. Mazzeo’s engaging biography “The Secret of Chanel No. 5”. I am conducting research for my novel which includes a perfumer during the 1920s, so this book provided fantastic information about the industry and how Chanel No. 5 became a cultural icon of both the past and present. I wanted to share some of the fascinating facts I learned about this delectable perfume with all of you.
The heart of Coco Chanel’s style arises from her time spent at the orphanage called Aubazine in France, a Cistercian order which prized simplicity, cleanliness, and purity. The monks also used perfumes and ointments in prayers and rituals of purification. Although she was deeply unhappy there as a child, she carried it with her always because it was essentially her first home.