English Leather (1949) Cologne

English Leather (Cologne) by Dana
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English Leather (Cologne) is a perfume by Dana for men and was released in 1949. The scent is leathery-woody. It is still in production.

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Fragrance Notes

Top Notes Top NotesItalian bergamot, Kaffir lime
Heart Notes Heart NotesLeather, Oakmoss, Vetiver
Base Notes Base NotesSandalwood, Cedarwood, Musk



6.9 (33 Ratings)


6.8 (23 Ratings)


6.3 (26 Ratings)


6.5 (29 Ratings)
Submitted by Sani, last update on 24.01.2019
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7.5 10.0 7.5 9.0/10

87 Reviews
English tether, not...
The way this early postwar villain left me after first encountering it sometime around the mid 80's, could be summarised in just one (mostly british) word. Flabbergasted!

It was a Christmas gift for my father, by someone who kept ignoring that the only scent my father ever used was a lavender-lemon dirt cheap cologne that was sold not only in pharmacies but even in grocery stores. My father, being the exact opposite of my mother who was a zealot of the perfume cults, passed it to me, without bothering to give it a second sniff. If he had done so, maybe he would have realised that it was not exactly the kind of fragrance a teenager could handle. But apparently, being used to smell archetypical powerhouses like Macassar and Yatagan all around him, he probably didn't think this one could do any harm. He was wrong. For what it should be actually called was English Lewdness.

Before slapping it on my face for the first time, it raised its leatherclad hand and crowned me majestically. As if challenging me in a duel which proved nearly impossible to win. Not at least before I managed to wear the sucker instead of him wearing me. And that really took some time.

The commander of Her Majesty's shock troops came in a wooden box with a wooden stopper, bearing a wonderful embossed label in crimson and gold on its thick glass bottle. I guess it was some kind of a special edition which, as is the case with so many natural things nowadays, is nowhere to be found anymore. Being the first time I saw a fragrance not being in a carton box, I immediately jumped to the conclusion that this one had to be something extraordinary. And it was...
All the more that I love wood more than any other natural material, with the possible exception of emeralds.
In hindsight, I believe that even if someone failed to read the name on the doric bottle, this amount of wood was definitely not a harbinger of vanilla or cotton candy.

Until then it was hands down the dirtiest star ever to shine in my olfactory universe, and it still remains amongst the most prominent paragons of salaciousness. For some reason it turned otherwise cheerful and soothing notes like citruses, lavender and honey into guilty pleasures of which the world should never be aware of. It was as these notes had a dark and secret side that would take an arcane perfumer to expose. Unfortunately it seems that we'll never know who the conjurer behind its creation was, since even Dana doesn't bother to mention anything about him(?).

It seemed like it was enhanced with some shady age-boosting ingredient, for I felt like my years had doubled long before its top notes subsided.
First poured on one of my 16th year afternoons, evening found me flirting with 30 year olds, in places I was not supposed to enter. You know, just because of being 16. And I swear that I got some really funny looks overnight. And they were not of the miffed kind. It was like these ladies were weighing up the odds of making out with a splashy barefaced teen and get away with it. And not because of me being a male jailbait, since the claptrap called politically correctness was still a hazy dream in the minds of some self-righteous, self-appointed, self-centred pricks. You know, like the ones who would banish scents like English Leather if they had the power to do it. No, the ladies' only concern seemed to be how they would succeed in cornering me and being spared the excruciating details and the envious glances to an by their friends. God, how I miss those years!...

After blaring my silly cockiness for what I thought was enough, I went to sleep smiling with what I thought was a huge victory in the battle of sexes. And I dreamt of the leather chesterfield sofas in the House of Lords, where a slightly drunk young crossbencher had accidentally spilled a dram of rare Ardbeg, before escaping the boring meeting and driving with the sun on his back in his Triumph TR3, hastening to meet his concubine in Mayfair. In the morning I pledged to myself that I was going to be this man one day.

I never became a crossbencher or any kind of representative and I never came even close to having such a curvesome beaut (the wheels, not the girl). The successful part of fulfilling my dream was just tasting rare Ardbegs many times and spending some time in London. But I still remain a barefaced teen (although a little less splashy now) even though some 30 years have passed since that night. Especially when English Leather of yore joins me for a ride. Perhaps not in a TR3 but in an equally fascinating vehicle. The time machine that I have built in my mind, permanently programmed to the days of my youth.
7.5 5.0 5.0 6.0/10

83 Reviews
The original was an earthy leather that called out for attention.
Haven't seen this around for many years, used it a few decades back and enjoyed its feel and edge.

The leather aspect is obvious, but the support is strong with a woody, earthy presence and citrus for balance. The cedarwood and sandalwood oils form a strong base.

I recall it was very popular, low-priced, and I thought the bottle definitely classy, very masculine.
2.5 5.0 7.5 4.0/10

40 Reviews
Suffered in Reformulation But Still a Contender
Unlike Scentemental, I have tried and used the old MEM version (many bottles over the years). It had a bit more potentcy and swagger, along with a nicer leather note to it, along with what my nose picked up as a bit of floral. It was a bit of a "rough tough cream puff" fragrance, and I loved wearing it as a teen.

Today's version is more subdued, but still acceptable. The leather is muted, and the Dana version is sweeter because of it. I still like it for casual wear, and I still get okay sillage and very good longevity with it. Not bad for a drugstore fragrance. I don't use it nearly as much as I once did, but I still pull it out.

29 Reviews
Helpful Review    3
Cheap and classy
This is one of those fragrances that many people claim has suffered as a result of reformulation. Well I never tried the older MEM version, so I can only go on what I smell in the newer version. I bought a huge 240ml bottle for $19.90 ( about 13 Euros) and it can be found even cheaper. I only have the aftershave version, but it is still worthwhile. It has a soapy, leatheriness that I find very 'comfortable' and attractive. It reminds me of a soap called 'Imperial Leather' available in Australia. It also reminds me, of Guerlain vetiver (2000's version) minus the vetiver.

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