Collection Rouge No.1 by Jean-Claude Astier for M. Micallef 2013


Post by Azar


Hello APJ,

Late in September of last year I won a draw for samples of M. Micallef Collection Rouge I and II. Before these arrived I read several reviews that were less than enthusiastic. By the time I tried the samples in October I was so influenced by the negative press that I realized my impressions of these fragrances were not my own and that I needed to wait awhile to get over what I’d read in order to be able to formulate my own opinions.

Collection Rouge No.1 by Jean-Claude Astier for M. Micallef 2013

Soap Operas

Collection Rouge No1 M. Micallef  FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Peach, tangerine
Heart: Ylang-ylang, jasmine, rose
Base: White musk, vanilla, benzoin

Just the other day I tracked down the samples and gave them both another try. No. II still did not work for me. But there was something about Rouge No. I that was so familiar and such a blast from the past that I decided to try it again and yet again. I remembered what Ellen Covey had written in her October 2, 2013 review. She described the Rouge No.I dry down as something like “a new vinyl shower curtain”. She also mentioned the mid 20th century aesthetic “clean is queen”. Her words and my impressions of a sort of soapy nostalgia revealed to me the essence of No. I – the smell of Pink Camay bath and beauty bar!

“You’ll be a little lovelier each day with fabulous Pink Camay…the soap that says ‘I love you’ to your skin.”

I grew up the oldest of a large family of girls (and one lonely brother). My mother bought Pink Camay by the carton. Compared to the other soaps available at the time Camay did seem to make our skin feel good. We all loved the fragrance. Camay was advertised as being “scented like perfume from Paris that would cost $25 an ounce…” and it was “blended with pink cold cream.” Who could ask for more!

Zena Holloway "Chinese Camay ad - Flower" Plum Leaves FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Camay was first introduced by Proctor and Gamble as a white bath and beauty bar in 1926. The name referenced the cameo that used to appear on every bar of soap. In the 1930s P&G began sponsoring radio shows that evolved into what we now call “soap operas”. Sometime in the late 1940s Camay appeared in pink, infused with a new light, floral fragrance. When the “soaps” hit the TV screens in the 1950s the new scented Pink Camay sponsored such classic daytime dramas as “Search for Tomorrow” and “As the World Turns”. By 1958 the beauty and bath bar was available in a range of colors including white, pink, blue, green and yellow. I don’t remember if each color had a different fragrance because we insisted on using only the pink variety. At about the same time Camay debuted in the UK and eventually made its way to more than 60 countries around the world. By the 1960s soap advertisements and soap operas had become such a part of mid century Americana that no one gave a second thought to the barely disguised references to Camay that appeared in mainstream movies like the 1963 comedy “The Thrill of It All” starring Doris Day and James Garner.

Zena Holloway "Chinese Camay ad - Heart girl" Plum Leaves FlickrPhoto Stolen Flickr

Today’s Camay, if you can find it, has suffered, like many of our favorite perfumes, from a series of reformulations. The current Camay Classic, produced by Proctor and Gamble in Ontario, Canada, is still pink but there is no longer a cameo on the bar and the fragrance is, how should I put it, washed out and “all washed up”.

Now back to M. Micallef Rouge No. I : The notes listed for No. 1 are peach, tangerine, ylang ylang, rose, jasmine, white musk, vanilla and benzoin. On my skin it is simply the original Pink Camay all the way, from top to bottom with a bit of the new vinyl shower curtain at the heart finishing with a light, musky vanilla base. The sillage is moderate and the longevity up to 10 hours on clothing and at least 6 hours on my skin. I liked Rouge No. I enough to buy a full 100 ml bottle (but I have to admit that I found it at less than a quarter of the list price).

Giveaway Time sassisamblogPhoto Stolen sassisamblog

Rouge No. 1 GIVEAWAY


This week’s draw is for one prize that includes
1.5ml samples (or decants) of both M. Micallef Rouge No. I and Rouge No. II
A small wrapped vintage 1960s bar of Pink Camay soap
P&H Anywhere in the world


Open to everyone worldwide who follows AustralianPerfumeJunkies via eMail, WordPress, Bloglovin or RSS. Please leave how you follow in the comments to be eligible. I must be able to check that you follow so if you have an email address on your gravatar that’s different to your follow address then please email me so I know. Yes, you can start following to enter, in fact it’s encouraged.

You must tell me how you follow APJ


Please leave a comment about your favorite scented soap, about any version of Camay or either of the fragrances in the M. Micallef Collection Rouge.

Extra Chance?
Tweet: @OzPerfumeJunkie Micallef Rouge No.1 GIVEAWAY #Perfume #Giveaway @MicallefPerfume


Entries Close Thursday 24th April 2014 10pm Australian EST and winners will be announced in a separate post.
Winners will be chosen any fab way that Azar decides
The winners will have till Sunday 27th April 2014 to get in touch (portia underscore turbo at yahoo dot com dot au) with their address or the prize will go to someone else.
No responsibility taken for lost or damaged goods in transit.

Azar xx

44 comments on “Collection Rouge No.1 by Jean-Claude Astier for M. Micallef 2013

  1. australianperfumejunkies says:

    LOVING the Camay references Azar. Those video ads are so funny. Loved finding the Chinese Camay ads too.
    Portia xx

    • Azar says:

      Hi Portia,
      I had a great time looking through the vintage Camay ads on You tube, not as gut busting funny as the new old spice commercials but great windows onto another time. I brought some of the Classic Fragrance Camay soap to an older relative the other day. She was able to share a lot of memories triggered by the fragrance.
      Azar xx

  2. Rene Groyer says:

    Follow by e mail and have not experienced any of these fragrances or soap in my country but would really love too.Have tweeted contest @ReneGroyer

  3. Connie says:

    I follow by email, but I have to admit to not having used many scented soaps- they interfere too much with my perfume needs. I do have Fico di Amalfi, which is quite nice, and though I haven’t tried it, the Lush Rose Jam shower gel seems very tempting.

    • Azar says:

      Hi Connie,
      I agree that scented soap can interfere but I just have to have it around sometimes. I like Ellen Covey’s Patchouli soap as well as the soaps that compliment some of my older favorite vintage perfumes. Your shower gels ARE very tempting! You are IN the draw!
      Azar xx

  4. Jackie b says:

    What a fascinating read, never knew why we have ‘soap operas’!
    Also have never tried any colour of Camay, (I make my own soap, including a Rose Jam scented one, as mentioned above) but would like to try the Micallefs.
    I follow by email.

    • Azar says:

      Hello Jackie b,
      You make your own soap? Wow. A Rose Jam soap sounds delicious. Lately I’ve seen handmade soap in the shape of cupcakes…not great if kids are around, though. One of my sister used to make her own soap too. You are IN!
      Azar xx

  5. Patty Pong says:

    I follow by e-mail 🙂

    I’m going to try the Dove pistachio soap soon. How can that be bad?

    • Azar says:

      Dove pistachio soap? Unusual idea, Patty! I haven’t seen it but I haven’t been looking for it either. I’ll try to find it. BTW you are IN!
      Azar xx

  6. JMR says:

    Right now, my favorite soap is Archipelago Boticario de Havana. It’s got coffee beans and tobacco flower as well as extracts of orange, pineapple, and sugar cane. I’m on my second bar at the moment. I like that it’s light for the warmer months, but it’s got the jolt of coffee to wake you up… the coffee beans also make for good exfoliants.

    I follow via email.

    • Azar says:

      Wow! JMR, this soap sounds fabulous! Thank you for this comment. You are so IN! I have a friend who has had to stop drinking coffee. Maybe this soap would be a good alternative!
      Azar xx

  7. Lyubov says:

    Hallo, Azar!
    Thanks for the chance to try something unavailable around!
    Well, I’m a kind of classic-loving girl – original Dove, Nivea and Palmolive soap bars are my kind of clean smell! I also love violet scented soaps, but I get them usually handmade. Love all the Lush soap delights and always get out of their shop with at least two bars…The last one was Figs and Leaves. Once I was gifted with Diptyque Figuier. Though fine and luxurious, I expected it to be like Philosykos, but it wasn’t. Not as fresh and succulent.
    I don’t remember Pink Camay, but I remember the black Camay Chic from the 90s. It was deep oriental – floral and woody, and somehow yummy. The scent lingered on the skin for hours after washing, the whole bathroom smelled fluffy and ..pinky, yes! I doubt it was close to Pink Camay, but I liked it.
    I always look up to M. Micallef perfumes – each one I tested (the Seasons, the Aouds, the Pomelos, Sous La Figuier) is dense and intense, with the refined outline of a fume Grace Kelly.
    I follow by email and on FB.

    • Azar says:

      Hello Lyubov,
      All your soaps sound wonderful, especially the handmade violets! I wish I had tried that Black Camay Chic. I also appreciate how the scent of these Camay soaps linger on the skin and in the air wherever they are used! Thank you for joining the draw. You are IN!
      Azar xx

  8. sweetharmony8 says:

    I follow by email. My favorite scented soap is milk and honey by privee moments.

  9. Haha, Camay soaps! When I was living in Egypt, they were the ones we used to use! If I recall correctly, we used to buy ones called Passion, Romantic and something like Elegant Aroma. But I preferred Imperial Leather soaps. 😀
    Thanks for the draw and I follow via email. 🙂

    • Azar says:

      Hello thinkingmagpie,
      Yes, Camay was really international! I don’ remember Camay in Tehran, though, but I liked the soaps made there, especially the ones that smelled like jasmine. Thank you for entering the draw. You are IN!
      Azar xx

  10. maggiecat says:

    I am such a scented soap junkie that it’s hard to specify a favorite. My current obsession is a lemon verbena bar made for World Market/Cost Plus in France. It’s inexpensive ($4) and a great way to wake up in the morning. L’Occitane also makes fantastic soaps – their Milk, Verbena, and Jasmin and Bergamote are all standards in my closet. I follow APJ via e-mail and also on Facebook (because who could ever get enough APJ?)

    • Azar says:

      WHOA! I’m going over to World Market! Thanks for the tip, maggiecat. L’Occitane has beautiful soaps too. You are so IN!
      Azar xx

  11. edith says:

    follow by email. i love Camay soaps ! as i do most of the hotel soaps as well 🙂 current fav is an indonesian mango soap 🙂

    • Azar says:

      Indonesian mango? That sounds delicious! You are IN, Edith. Thank you for the comment and for joining the draw.
      Azar xx

  12. Jaybee says:

    Hi Azar! There are local soapmakers around here that make every soap you can think of, and I’m partial to those with lemon verbena, eucalyptus and other similar fresh scents. 🙂 I’m an email follower!

    • Azar says:

      Hi Jaybee,
      Eucalyptus is a favorite of mine as well. Its great to have local soap makers using the best ingredients. I have yet to try my hand at making my own soap but it sounds like fun! Thank you for joining the draw!
      Azar xx

  13. Kandice says:

    I remember the old pink Camay bars – my mom bought them too! I never tried the other colors, and I haven’t tried the soap since I grew up as I was afraid I’d be very disappointed. I would love to be entered in the draw as I remember the scent and would love to see how the perfume is similar. I haven’t heard much about the other fragrance, so I’d be happily surprised to try it. Thanks for the review that brought back happy memories 🙂 (I follow via email.)

    • Azar says:

      You are welcome, Kandice! This post has been lots of fun to write. I was initially disappointed in the Classic Camay (the new version) but have been using it lately and the scent really does remind me of the older Camay. The soap included in the draw is an older one from the 1960s or so. It is wrapped so I don’t really know how well it has retained its fragrance. Thank you for joining the draw and for your comments. You are IN!
      Azar xx

  14. willa says:

    I’m very partial to triple-milled French soaps but like my mum, I keep the most fragranced ones to scent the underwear draw. Also, I share a bathroom with my cousin, who’s been known to wash knickers using whatever soap I keep around! I have a bar of L’air du temps I can’t wait to break open as soon as my cousin moves out! I follow by email.

    • Azar says:

      Oh NO! Keep that soap away from the cousin! Thanks for joining the draw, Willa. BTW I am posting your Antonia’s Flowers Draw tomorrow!
      Azar xx

  15. Laurels says:

    (Don’t enter me in the draw, please, as I already have minis of both Rouges.) I don’t smell Camay at all in Rouge No. 1, although the version of the soap I know is from the ’80s, when my father became very partial to it. (I never liked the smell of it, although the fact that it gave me a rash might have caused a negative association.) I don’t smell soap or vinyl, in fact; to me it smells very perfumey in a good way. It may be because I’m still a newbie, or because so far I can’t seem to smell musks described as sexy, but the white musk in the Micallefs that I’ve tried strikes me as quite pleasant and unobtrusive, in contrast to the dryer-sheet variety. Rouge No. 1 evokes a 1950s sort of sexy for me, like something an attractive housewife might have worn with a cashmere sweater set. Re-reading your review, I think we actually agree on the virtues of the perfume; I just don’t want anyone to be scared off by references to vinyl and Camay, as I would be.

    • Azar says:

      Hi Laurels,
      I really love the smell of Camay and so when I found the same fragrance in Rouge No. 1, I bought the 100 ml bottle. This is not meant to be a bad review but just my impressions of No. 1. I’m glad it works for you too. Other perfume junkies might smell something totally different in this fragrance!
      Azar xx

  16. hajusuuri says:

    I see that I am not the only soap junkie here – Atelier Cologne soaps, triple-milled soaps, locally made soaps sold by weight (from Whole Foods in NYC), Lush, unscented soaps from several Etsy sellers, L’Occitane (I love the now discontinued Olive soap), Oregon Soap Company (Soapman soaps! which I first encountered at Saturday Market) and I shouldn’t forget Urbane Zen (Portland, OR) soap, too bad it is now closed … – I love them all :-).

    DNEM as I have samples of 1 & 2 from a super perfume blogger.

    • Azar says:

      Ah, Hajusuuri! So many soaps, so little time! I loved that olive soap too! I haven’t seen it around for awhile. Is it really discontinued – even the olive and lavender?
      Azar xx

  17. Peppy says:

    I follow by email. My favorite soap is Opium soap bar.

    • Azar says:

      I love the vintage opium soap too, Peppy! Oh, are you talking about the YSL (for women or men) or one of the other Opium soaps that are out there? You are IN!
      Azar xx

  18. Katrina says:

    Hi Azar

    I love the smell or a new vinyl shower curtain! I follow by email.

    Katrina xx

  19. Annamaria says:

    Hi Azar, I follow by bloglovin. Nowdays I use shower gel, but as a child I used to collect fancy shaped soaps. Even so, I remember as a five year old, thinking that Cleopatra soap, with its musky jasmine and picture of Cleopatra was the coolest thing ever!

    • Azar says:

      Hi Annamaria,
      A Cleopatra soap! How cool. I have some beautiful soaps that I can’t bring myself to use. I just don’t won’t to see the lovely shaped bouquets of flowers melting away in the soap dish. Thank you so much for your memories. You are IN!
      Azar xx

  20. Debi Nelson says:

    I follow by email.

    • Azar says:

      Hello Debi!
      Do you have a favorite scented soap? Have you tried either of the Micallef Rouge fragrances?
      Azar xx

  21. Vaishali mhatre says:

    Dear madam/ sir,
    im frm India, Mumbai. im searchng camay chic soap, uk mfg frm last 4 yrs, in mumbai. Can u help me out with email id of d concern person who can help me to get ths soap in india, mumbai. Pls help me with ur reply on email

  22. Vaishali says:

    Im searching camay chic or majestic soap uk mfg by p&g from last 4 yrs in mumbai, india. Bt not getting it. I could see ths soap is available in uk n france n russian country. Can u help me to get email id or contact detail of any of d distributor or mfg. Of camay chic soap uk mfg. Pls let me knw by my email. Thank u

  23. […] From what I hear it is almost impossible to avoid exposure to phthalates. They are present, in one form or another, in cosmetics, hair care, deodorants, soaps, perfumes, cleaning and laundry products, shower curtains, candles, garden hoses, lawn furniture, toys, roof shingles, carpeting, automotive interiors…There is even one fragrance that is reminiscent of the smell of a new plastic shower curtain. […]

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