Dior put his love of things British to good commercial use and came up with a name, "Miss Dior." after his younger sister, Catherine. The fragrance itself was conceived by Christian and his childhood friend, Serge Heftler-Louiche, whom was a manager for Coty perfumes for twenty five years and owned a perfume distribution company SFD. Dior later made him the director of Parfums Dior.
It was said that Dior held samples under the noses of every woman he knew and they hated it, probably because it was such a unique and strong fragrance for the time. But, Dior was undeterred, he was convinced of the perfume's quality and gave the production the go ahead.
France Actuelle, reported that Dior had only sold exactly 150 bottles of Miss Dior in 1947, but in 1967, Parfums Dior sold 9,000,000 of its fragrance articles. The book Fashions in the Forties states that "In the first year a small factory of six hands produced 283 bottles (twenty-five years later eleven million bottles were being turned out by the 700 employees of Dior Perfumes Ltd)."
The houndstooth design for the box came a few days later, at Victor Grandpierre's suggestion, inspired by one of the fabrics in the collection.
So what does it smell like? It was originally classified as an aldehydic chypre fragrance for women made up of 350 different ingredients. It starts with a green aldehydic top, followed by a narcotic floral heart, resting on a warm, woody, mossy base.
- Top notes: aldehydes, galbanum, bergamot, clary sage, gardenia
- Middle notes: celery seed, lily of the valley, neroli, narcissus, carnation, rose de Chêne, jasmine, orris
- Base notes: labdanum, patchouli, cistus, amber, oakmoss, leather, sandalwood, vetiver
Perfumery: Practice and Principles, 1994:
"Although the central chypre accord of bergamot, jasmine, oakmoss, patchouli, vetiveryl acetate, labdanum and animalic notes comprises some 60% of the formula, the perfume, at the time of its launch, was one of startling originality. The emphasis on green notes was taken up in Miss Dior, combining galbanum with the accord between the aldehydes C11 undecyclenic and C10, with styrallyl acetate, and a styrax notes. In addition there is a dry spicy note based on pepper and coriander, as well as lavender and neroli.
A conventional jasmin base again provides the main floral aspect of the perfume. In more modern versions, for example, as in the Eau de Toilette, Lyral is used to replace part or all of the hydroxycitronellal. The styrax note may be reinforced by the use of phenylpropyl alcohol, one of its major constituents. The base note has a high level of patchouli 10%.
Contrasting with the somewhat harsh top note of the perfume are warm amber and animalic notes, and the powdery softness of orris and vanillin. Natural jasmin and tuberose may be used to give richness to the perfume. A trace of celery seed oil also forms an interesting accord with the tuberose.
At the time when Miss Dior was created most natural tuberose was obtained by the traditional enfleurage process. Today, partly because of high labor cost but also because of the religious restriction on the use of animal fats in producing countries such as India, most tuberose absolutes are obtained by solvent extraction. The two types of product are very different in olfactory character, with the more modern product being greener and lacking much of the “jammy” richness of the original, which was so important in many of the earlier perfumes."
Ancillaries & Flankers:
- Eau de Parfum
- Esprit de Parfum
- Eau de Toilette
- Eau de Cologne
- Moisturizing Body Milk/Perfumed Body Moisturizer
- Body Cream/Crème Parfumée pour le Corps
- Bath Oil
- Body Lotion/Eau de Satin
- Deodorant Spray
- Dusting Powder
- Talcum Powder
- Foaming Milk Bath
- Shower Gel
Miss Dior Esprit de Parfum was launched in 1984. Esprit de Parfum — rich and long-lasting, yet light and refreshing was also available in Diorissimo.
Miss Dior was housed in various bottles over the years including exquisite Baccarat crystal flacons..
Amphore de Parfum Flacon (Amphora/Urn Bottle):
"PERFUME NEWS Below, left: Dior makes refills for his deluxe urns in both Miss Dior and Diorama. Refill for the $30 bottle. $20."
"Miss Dior perfume in Baccarat flacon, $100*, Christian Dior."
In 1950, Christian Dior introduced the famous houndstooth design for his parfum packaging. Frosted embossing gives a charming light-and-shadow effect which makes the lovely liquid gleam like gold behind the crystal walls.
By 1952, the Eau de Toilette is presented in a deluxe flacon as elegant as if it were for the parfum itself.
These rectangular bottles were available in three sizes: 2 oz, 4 oz and 8 oz.
Vintage Screw Cap Travel Bottles with Houndstooth Accents:
This bottle was used for Eau de Toilette, and Eau de Cologne.
Other Parfum Bottles:
The beautiful presentation box is a heavy, ribbed cardstock covered in the famous Dior Dove Grey color, and it's label matches the one on the bottle. The elegant dove gray shade, a favorite of Christian Dior, was originally used in the immaculate Maison Dior flagship boutique in Paris, coupled with white plaster moldings. This presentation is notable because it does not feature the black and white houndstooth pattern.
Crystal Travel Flacons for Parfum:
In the late 1940s, Fernand Guerycolas designed a sumptuous cut crystal obelisk flacon for Dior based on an obelisk at the place de la Concorde. Manufactured by Baccarat, the bottle holds 2 ounces of pure parfum, it was packaged with a mirrored stand. The obelisk was used for various Dior perfumes including Diorama.
"You get two ounces of either in a splendid obelisk of a bottle, enshrined before a triple mirror, for $78. (There are toilet waters in these fragrances, too, in lovely, lacy, four-ounce bottles, for $9.)"
"Miss Dior and Diorama. Miss Dior, as you might guess from her name, is very propre et bien elevee, all flowers and sunshine. Diorama is a great, big, grown-up girl, rich and heady, suitable for after dark. Dior scents range in price from $4 (for the eau de toilette) to $65 for a perfume-filled obelisk in a three-paneled, mirror-lined vanity box."
"Christian Dior encases lipstick in a chiseled crystal obelisk. $10."
""Christian Dior has just introduced a complete aerosol perfume collection. In addition to the purse-size atomizer (at $5), you can now color-select your favorite in three sizes — Miss Dior in white package, Diorama in grey, Diorissimo in pink, and Diorling in yellow. They tell me that there is absolutely no change in the formula.""
Esprit de Parfum:
"He is launching the latest marketing ploy, the Miss Dior Esprit de Parfum, which the perfume purists put somewhere between an eau de toilette and a concentrate."
"According to the company, Esprit de Parfum is for "a woman who desires more than a light fragrance, but something less than a full blossoming ... Esprit de Parfum is designed to be portable, in a refillable frosted bottle, topped with a gold cap."
"For women who are firmly wedded to one fragrance, perfume houses continue to introduce less-concentrated versions of best- selling scents— many in eau de parfum and esprit de parfum, both of which are lighter than perfume but longer lasting than eau de toilette."
"Hence the success of the less concentrated eaux de parfum. baptized fleur de parfum, soie de parfum, or esprit de parfum, depending on the make. Their arrival on the market in tin; 1970s coincided with the development of feminism. "
Fate of the Fragrance:
Miss Dior has suffered from various reformulations, most notably in 1982, 1992, and 2012.
Miss Dior Today:
The success of Miss Dior has resulted in several flanker scents and limited edition bottles:
- 2005 Miss Dior Chérie (currently discontinued)
- 2005 Miss Dior Cherie Extrait de Parfum
- 2007 Miss Dior Chérie (reformulation)
- 2007 Miss Dior Chérie Eau de Toilette
- 2008 Miss Dior Chérie Blooming Bouquet (limited edition summer fragrance)
- 2008 Miss Dior Chérie Eau de Printemps
- 2009 Miss Dior Cherie L`Eau (currently discontinued)
- 2010 Miss Dior Cherie Eau De Toilette (reformulation)
- 2011 Miss Dior Couture Edition
- 2011 Miss Dior Eau de Toilette Originale
- 2011 Miss Dior Cherie Eau de Parfum
- 2011 Miss Dior Cherie Blooming Bouquet (limited edition summer fragrance)
- 2011 Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet Couture Edition
- 2011 Miss Dior Esprit de Parfum
- 2012 Miss Dior (new)
- 2012 Miss Dior Le Parfum
- 2012 Miss Dior Eau Fraîche
- 2013 Miss Dior Eau De Toilette
- 2013 Miss Dior Le Parfum Edition d’Exception
- 2014 Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet
- 2014 Miss Dior Extrait de Parfum
- 2014 Miss Dior Original Extrait de Parfum
- 2015 Miss Dior Edition d’Exception
- 2015 Miss Dior Parfum pour Cheveux
- 2016 Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming
- 2016 Miss Dior Brume Soyeuse pour le Corps