Chanel Les Exclusifs No. 18 EDT Perfume Review

Chanel No. 18 perfume


Over the past few years something unpredictable has happened. I’ve become a Chanel fangirl. I can’t get enough of aldehydes, iris and in general, aloof compositions. And if this is what you’re into, Chanel is the brand for you. And to me, it seems rather punk¹ for me to wear such austere, “official” perfumes. Over the past few years, I’ve welcomed quite a fe Chanels into my life. No. 18 from Les Exclusifs has been one that I’ve worn a lot of. It’s a minimalist yet very “Chanel” take on ambrette.

No. 18 is like a really, fresh and green olive oil with a minty, tangy geranium. It also opens with a bergamot green tea, so like an Earl Grey with green tea instead of black. There’s a green, spicy yet slightly fruity note in No. 18 that accents a very whispy, very Chanel-ish iris. The heart is like a “green”, living iris. It dries down to a warm “laundry fresh” ambrette. No. 18 is a rather minimalist fragrance. It’s like a vegetal ambrette, a “green” musk.

No. 18 is inspired by jewelry but it reminds me of dew drops on a spring iris. This is the image that comes to mind when I wear No. 18. And really that image could be the entire review, but I’m wordy.

Fanny Ardant

Notes listed include geranium, iris, ambrette and white musk. Launched 2007. PERFUMER – Jacques Polge

Give No. 18 a try if you like fresh iris scents or ambrette. Or if you like perfumes like Diptyque Geranium Odorata, Annick Goutal Vent de Folie, Le Labo Ambrette 9 and/or Malle Geranium Pour Monsieur. 

Projection and longevity are average for an EDT. I think a lot of people, because of the price, expect for Les Exclusifs to wear like an EDP. The fact is, they aren’t. And No. 18 wears like an EDT. I get about 4-5 hours of wear.

No. 18 comes in two sizes (2.5 and 6.8 oz) with prices ranging from $160 to $180 at Chanel.

Victoria’s Final EauPINIONVegetal ambrette with a green iris. I love it when Polge goes minimalist.

¹Being that bold color hair, piercings, etc. are all now mainstream. I say that punk is the new pretty and pretty is the new punk.

Want more reviews? Try…

Bois de Jasmin

Australian Perfume Junkies

Olfactoria’s Travels

Perfume-Smellin’ Things

Nathan Branch

For the Love of Perfume


*Bottle purchased by me. Fanny Ardant pic from First pic is mine.

10 thoughts on “Chanel Les Exclusifs No. 18 EDT Perfume Review

  1. Hey there Victoria,
    Though I’ve not really known you I am surprised that you weren’t a CHANEL fangirl until recently. Your writing always seems so polished and poised, exactly as I would expect from someone rocking the CHANEL line. They are grand and comfortable, and I love most of the line too.
    Thanks for the Link Love.
    Portia xx

    1. It is surprising? I actually considered myself a “Guerlain Gal” and had a love for Caron. I mean, I still love both of those but I’m now really into Chanel. I can’t live without them! Seriously.

      Thanks for commenting and you know I love APJ!

      1. I hear you and I consider myself Guerlain all the way in my heart too. The problem is that Guerlain hasn’t made much lately that makes me reach for my wallet. I understand that they need to move with the times etc and I loved the Arabian set and Mon Precieux Nectar but everything else has left me looking elsewhere.
        Portia x

        1. I agree that Guerlain hasn’t wow’d me in years. Chanel has made me part ways with my money. I bought Misia and yes, I even liked Coco Noir.

  2. So great to finally hear your opinion on No.18. It has been a favorite of mine from the very first time I sampled it at the downtown Seattle Nordstrom. I don’t always wear it, but when I do, it is usually for weeks…..I just can’t get enough of the dry down. It wears masculine on me, yet it reminds me of my grandmother somehow (maybe she wore it?) – which is another reason why I love the fragrance.

    Great review and spot-on description!

    1. I love it. It was love at first sniff for me. I love how it’s green but not green (if that makes any sense). And I love ambrette and this is one of the best for when I need an ambrette fix.

  3. I’m surprised No.18 gets overlooked so much!People mostly rave about Cuir de Russie and Bois de Isles!To my nose it’s the best one from the range!Rosy-cheeked pale dewy iris!LoveLove!I have perfume loving skin,I mean I get a good 8-10 hours from 28 La Pausa without topping up!No.18 lasts forever on my skin too.Gorgeous stuff.

    1. I tend to like the Les Exclusifs that nobody else likes. Now I know I’m not alone, lol.

      I love No. 18. It’s fleeting but that doesn’t bother me. Actually, the other ones that I have like 28 La Pausa last forever on my skin.

  4. […] Fleur de Louis reminds me of the sort of perfumes for people that want to smell like perfume. And I love that. Not smelling like perfume came into vogue. I’ve been ready to smell like “perfume” for a long time now. I want aldehydes, powder, animalic notes and flowers. Fleur de Louis brings to mind perfumes that weren’t ashamed of being a perfume. I can see people liking this one if they like the classics or perfumes along the aesthetic of Parfums Divine or Chanel Les Exclusifs.  […]

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