Oscar
Oscar de la Renta
1977 Parfum

Version from 1977
Oscar / Oscar de la Renta (1977) (Parfum) by Oscar de la Renta
Bottle Design Serge Mansau
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7.8 / 10 116 Ratings
Oscar is a popular perfume by Oscar de la Renta for women and was released in 1977. The scent is floral-spicy. The longevity is above-average. It was last marketed by Parfums Stern / Parfums Phénix.
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Fragrance Notes

Top Notes Top Notes BasilBasil CascarillaCascarilla CorianderCoriander Orange blossomOrange blossom
Heart Notes Heart Notes BroomBroom JasmineJasmine RoseRose TuberoseTuberose Ylang-ylangYlang-ylang
Base Notes Base Notes CastoreumCastoreum MyrrhMyrrh PatchouliPatchouli SandalwoodSandalwood VanillaVanilla VetiverVetiver

Perfumer

Ratings
Scent
7.8116 Ratings
Longevity
8.189 Ratings
Sillage
7.283 Ratings
Bottle
7.999 Ratings
Submitted by Loreley, last update on 16.01.2023.
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Reviews

9 in-depth fragrance descriptions
jtd

484 Reviews
jtd
jtd
Helpful Review 5  
Oscar
Perfumer Jean-Louis Sieuzac made some of the most memorable and influential perfumes of the 1970s-1990s.

Yves Saint Laurent’s era-defining Opium (1977) smothered the oriental genre in spice, making the previous big-girls like Shalimar and Youth Dew seem quaint. In the 1980s Sieuzac skipped the match, but piled on the gasoline to redefine leather with the twin brutes Hermès Bel Ami (1986) and Christian Dior Fahrenheit (1988). As if to stuff the genie that he released with Opium back into the bottle, in 1991 he composed Christian Dior Dune, an eerie beauty that gives me a shiver every time I put it on. It has the jarring capacity to make opposing qualities fit together that renders it both off-putting and seductive. In retrospect, Dune is the the perfume that sat aloof and alone at the cusp of the 80s and 90s. It managed simultaneously to refer to the disproportionate scale of 1980s perfumery yet usher in the sense of concession and atonement of the perfumes of the early 1990s.

In 1977 Sieuzac also made Oscar for Oscar de la Renta. Though it won the 1978 Women’s Fragrance of the Year Fifi Award it was overshadowed by its its own sibling Opium, which crushed everything in its trajectory. Compared to Opium, whose name and scent suggest the unquestioning pursuit of pleasure (ahhh…the 70s), Oscar’s terse mixed floral tone might well have coined the phrase ‘old lady perfume.’ Oscar is a sharp, starched white floriental perfume that leans more toward the dry sting of carnation and the remoteness of gardenia than the lushness of jasmine or tuberose. Opium’s relationship to tradition was to break from it by surpassing it. Oscar could not have been more different in its aspiration. It was in the lineage of Caron Bellodgia, Dior Dioressence and Guerlain l’Heure Bleue—perfumes that might not have been intended to be distant, but came to be seen as remote standard-bearers. In fact Oscar shares l’Heure Bleue’s classic bittersweetness with a similar midpoint between glacé resinousness and acrid powder. It is a potent, almost forceful fragrance but its tone was so conservative compared to its contemporaries that wearing it gives the sensation of falling backward, stepping away from the accelerating dynamic of the late 1970s.

I doubt that a lot of people in the late 70s wore both Opium and Oscar. They capture the two sides of what would very soon come to be called America’s “culture war.” Sieuzac deserves great credit for straddling this nascent divide and creating two exceptional compositions in the process. It cannot have happened inadvertently. Oscar suited the de la Renta brand’s goal of dressing the ladies-who-lunch, the women who aspired to the society-set. Opium captured the Yves Saint Laurent brand’s desire for a new chic: the androgyny, the Studio 54 vibe, the casual affluence.

Perfume’s language is an openly debated question in 2015. Jean-Louis Sieuzac’s perfumes from 1977 comment subtly but precisely on this issues of the day and are a record of how perfumery speaks and can be read. It’s unfortunate that in 1977 the work of the perfumer wasn’t publicly attributed to him. Within the next two decades that closet door would start to open. Better late than never, my hat is off to Jean-Louis Sieuzac.

(Based on an excellently preserved bottle of eau de toilette from the early 1980s.)

from scenthurdle.com
0 Replies
7
Bottle
7
Sillage
8
Longevity
8.5
Scent
MasterLi

375 Reviews
MasterLi
MasterLi
Helpful Review 4  
Beautifully soft & elegant floral...
This is a fragrance which has significance to me, as it was my mother's first signature scent and favourite perfume. This one comes from an age where perfumes didn't need to be cloying or sugary sweet, but which emphasised nature and femininity.

Oscar by Oscar de la Renta is a wonderful perfume done in a very elegant style of perfumery. Like a white floral bouquet of jasmine, tuberose, lilly-of-the-valley & gardenia. There is also a spicy base of amber, myrrh and opoponax. I also get ylang-ylang and herbs and a few aromatic florals. What a mix!

This is a perfume for someone dressed up in my opinion, but it would also make a great signature scent and a spring/summer favourite. It is quite floral but at no point is this fragrance ever overwhelming. It is done with such style and mastery that you can tell it was not made today, but in a golden age of female marketed perfume. Incredible stuff! This is worth a try if you like floral bouquets and wedding/special occasion perfumes. Elegant and floral and never overwhelming. If you're interested in a classic yet youthful style, then try this one.
0 Replies
Krmarich

24 Reviews
Krmarich
Krmarich
5  
Exotic BRILLIANCE
I have detected Oscar here and there in my lifetime on various ladies. I found a vintage splash bottle dated 1977 this fall and have no problem wearing it as a man. I snatched it up, needing to experience the original masterwork. The bottle is iconic!

This is really a floriental that has been around since L'Heuer Bleue. Indeed Oscar loved it so much he launched this loving update into a commercial success that would appeal to American as well as European fans. Gone is the emotional heaviness of LB. It gets replaced with glamour.

Rich resin surround a redolent tropical bouquet of tuberose, jasmine, rose, gardenia and exotic orchids. It sits on a luscious bed of creamy amber, sandalwood, coconut, myrrh that if I am not careful, I may take a sip. Its anything but gourmand. Elegant, graceful and just plain wonderful.

It is retro, yet stylish as ever! Oscar is a very formal affair and if it has been a part of your life, you are very priveledged.
1 Reply
5
Bottle
7.5
Longevity
5
Scent
Katad

58 Reviews
Katad
Katad
Helpful Review 3  
Oscar - breaking up is hard to do...
My favorite 1980's date scent revisited in 2013. Things have changed over the years.

Huge soapiness and green at the opening, which fades to a gentle floral. I don't get too many of the listed notes, mostly just floral sweetness. What was once luscious to me now just feels banal. Maybe I have a reformulation as Sherapop has suggested. It didn't trigger any memory nodes for me either, which is a clue as scent memory is usually quite accurate. Oh well, another one bites the dust. My tastes have changed.

Sorry, Oscar, we have to break up. It's not you, it's me.
2 Replies
BrianBuchanan

329 Reviews
BrianBuchanan
BrianBuchanan
Helpful Review 2  
And the Oscar goes to ... Opium!
As jtd pointed out in his perceptive article below, Jean-Louis Sieuzac straddled the 80’s and 90’s with Dune, but that wasn’t the first time he’d crossed the decades.
With a sweet debut of orange flower and tuberose, Oscar has the elements of an 80’s honey monster - full and heady; but underneath that, there's a dusty green base that recalls the charming naiveté of Vacances (1936).
Oscar (1977) is both a bit brash - and lovely by turns, and this is one reason why it’s overshadowed by its big sister Opium, also 1977, and also composed by Sieuzac (et al). Where Opium is a juggernaut, Oscar is made of two parts - and doesn’t have the same force. It’s a liminal scent that spans the decades and pulls in two different directions, forward to the brave new world of Margaret Thatcher, and back to a romanticised flower meadow.

Review of a sample miniature EdT
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Statements

1 short view on the fragrance
CumulnimbusCumulnimbus 1 year ago
10
Bottle
7.5
Sillage
7.5
Longevity
8
Scent
Cold floral with a lot of powder and a spicy woody still not warm, drydown. A perfume for a woman with business authority, control.
0 Replies

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