Chanel 28 La Pausa by Jacques Polge for Les Exclusifs de Chanel 2007


Post by Dionne


All the Iris Fiends in the House say Yeah…

Hey, my niche nerds!
Today I’ll wax effusive about one of my all-time favorite frags, 28 La Pausa. Not only is this my numero uno iris pick, but it sits in my all-time top three perfumes.

Now I don’t know if anyone else is like this, but as I get to know a perfume, associations start to develop: an image or a painting, a texture, a feeling or scenario, a specific memory, a color, a place. Everything eventually gets a story. And for me, the iris note has turned into a woman. She’s tall and slender, blond hair done up in a chignon, elegant and intelligent and often intimidating. I like that about her, her cool strength. And I borrow some of that strength when I wear iris, it’s emotional armor for me.

Chanel 28 La Pausa Quentin Bryce WikiMediaPhoto Stolen WikiMedia

My mental image for 28 La Pausa is that lovely woman now in her early 70’s. She’s still tall and slender, still elegant with her white hair in a chic short cut, but the steel is now tempered with kindness. She adores her grandchildren and has a gentle, easy humor and is quick to smile. Her mind is sharp, but she’s become a master at putting you at your ease. (OK, I’m totally cheating with this particular image, because I know someone exactly like this. She’s marvelous, a good friend, and the perfect match in my mind for 28 LP.)

28 La Pausa by Chanel 2007

Chanel 28 La Pausa FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these featured accords in one line:
Leather, rose, orris

If I was to place 28 La Pausa in the iris continuum, it’s towards the violet end instead of the carrot, woodsy instead of metallic. Nowhere near as powdery as Infusion d’Iris, and it doesn’t have the cosmetics vibe of Dior Homme, either; the powder aspect in this just seems more natural, like nothing’s been added to augment it. Not as cool as Iris Silver Mist because it’s got a hint of musk, but not as warm as Equistrius either. If you’re starting to sense a Goldilocks theme here, you’re right. This hits my sweet spot of juuuust right in the iris line-up; no wonder it’s in my top three.

Chanel 28 La Pausa Iris Alaska WikiMediaPhoto Stolen WikiMedia

Also, there’s one thing about 28 La Pausa that I’ve never encountered in another iris frag, and that’s the vetiver hanging out in the background. Luca Turin’s review in Perfumes: The Guide mentions the vetiver in the base, and for the longest time I had no idea what he was talking about. And then all of a sudden one day there it was…. Tadaa! How did I ever miss it? Actually, I know exactly how I missed it. Somehow Jacques Polge managed to wrestle this very distinctive note into playing backup, which to my mind is no small feat. Ladies and gentleman, this is how you blend perfumery notes. Kudos, Monsieur Polge. It’s interesting to see notes listed for 28 La Pausa, as sometimes vetiver isn’t even listed.

Further reading: Perfume Shrine and Olfactoria’s Travels
28 La Pausa is still available in CHANEL Boutiques, you may have to hurry though (the SA in Sydney’s Bondi Junction has it in stock)
Surrender To Chance starts at $4/ml

Chanel 28 La Pausa vanrah DeviantArtPhoto Stolen DeviantArt

Last off, a caveat and a heads-up. You’ve likely heard about 28 LP’s poor longevity. It’s true that scent-glue skin is a real advantage when wearing this frag, but even if you don’t, the quietness of the sillage means you can go crazy with the sprays without gassing out the neighborhood, and the pale color of the just means you can spray on fabric without staining.

If you haven’t had a chance yet to try this lovely fragrance, now would be a good time. With the introduction of 1932 to the Les Exclusifs line, 28 La Pausa is being discontinued. I wish Chanel hadn’t made that decision, but economics rule. And remember how 200ml seemed so large when the line first came out? If you’re going to stock up, it’s good to have options.

Happy spraying!

21 thoughts on “Chanel 28 La Pausa by Jacques Polge for Les Exclusifs de Chanel 2007

  1. Wha….at? Discontinued? Aaaargh!
    I love La Pausa and debated this or Cuir de Russie at the Chanel boutique, because of the longevity issue. Shoulda bought them both.
    Kicks self.


    • Ha Ha ha! It wasn’t meant to be then. The SA today when I phoned for confirmation told me that CHANEL had never discontinued a fragrance. I laughed in her ear,
      Portia xx


    • Jackie, one of the reasons I chose to review 28 La Pausa was to give people a potential heads-up, but I don’t think we’re at panic-buying just yet. (And full disclosure, there are conflicting reports on the web. Persolaise says it’s not going to be dc’ed, Smelly Vagabond reports his local SA says it is. I’m trying to remember now where I heard it, as it’s been a few months, but it was from more than one source.

      The Chanel boutique in Calgary didn’t know anything, but they did have to order in my bottle from another store….. take that as you will. Next time I’m in I’ll ask again.

      And remember, it can take a while for stock to completely disappear. I scored a bottle of Vetiver pour Elle a couple of months ago from a Guerlain boutique in Florida, courtesy of Master Enabler Miss Ruth, and that’s been dc’ed for a while now.

      Good hunting!


  2. I love iris fragrances. I think Dionne mentioned all the irises I have and then some. When I heard that La Pausa was being discontinued I called my Chanel guy and ordered a large bottle pronto. I casually mentioned that I heard about the discontinuation and his reply was along the lines of, “The word gets around rather quickly, doesn’t it?” and then, “I’m not going to confirm or deny that. My information is that they’ve haven’t completely decided whether it stays or goes, but it looks likely it will be discontinued.”

    As far as the longevity goes, the other day we had rather warm weather for autumn 83F/28C, and I wore La Pausa. I sprayed with abandon (well abandon for me, who has a sensitive nose and is afraid to gas anybody out). Six sprays, some of it getting on my sleeves, and it surprisingly lasted most of the day. Very quiet and close to the skin, but it was there and I was delighted to catch glimpses of it so late in the day.

    Debating whether or not I should purchase yet another back-up bottle.


    • Hey Tatiana,
      Yes, I am not surprised to read that at all. Remember when I got told about Mitzah by DIOR? Now gone.
      If you really love it and will go through that amount then maybe a back up bottle. Honestly though I find it hard to imagine going through my bottle of Mitzah, let alone a back up.
      There is too much else in my wardrobe that needs some loving.
      Portia x


      • A back up bottle of La Pausa is only required because it takes so many darn sprays for it to attain longevity on my skin, so it gets used up quicker. I’m just an iris slut. What can I say?
        I also tend to wear my Chanel fragrances more often than anything else in my collection.


  3. Tatiana, always good to meet another iris ho and Chanel fan. I own more irises than were mentioned in my post (Iris 39, Hiris, Iris Nazarena, Silver Iris, Iris Nobile, TDC’s Bois d’Iris, Mythique, and post-2011 Après l’Ondée), and have sampled even more than that, but I think it’d be overkill to list them all.

    I’m with you in considering a second bottle. Like Portia, I wonder if I’d ever get through it, but when it’s in my top three? Bel Respiro was next on my list as I’ve got maybe one more wearing in my decant, but still.


  4. I love the way you imagine this perfume as a person. This is also one of my favorite irises (and there are many–most of which you’ve mentioned). It would be sad if they discontinue it.


    • Thanks, Janice! It wasn’t something conscious at all, iris as a person just kind of evolved. I’ve got a crazy mix in my head of colors/paintings/music/places that pop up when I smell or think about perfume. I think my literary background has ensured that I love metaphor.

      And yeah, why get rid of such a gorgeous scent? It makes me sad (and also a bit snobbish towards the masses: seriously, people, how could you prefer something like Beige over this? I guess we perfumista types just have better taste.;) )


    • It is glorious, isn’t it? I feel spoiled, because very occasionally I’ll have something disappear quickly on me (cough *Osmanthe Yunnan* cough) and I think, “Man, this sucks. Is this what it’s like for scent-eating skin?” Of course, I can only wear one frag a day, so don’t get the variety of SotM/SotA/SotE.


  5. I like La Pausa… during all 15-20 minutes it stays on my skin. Probably the result would have been better if I sprayed wet from a real bottle but I decided that I have enough beautiful iris perfumes that do not require that type of an application and didn’t go beyond my official sample. But still I’m upset when another perfume loved by many gets discontinued.


    • I hear you, Undina. I’m reminded of a post that Avery Gilbert wrote over at First Nerve that talked about the human tendency to like the thing that we’re exposed to first, and once we’ve chosen it, we like it even more. If I’d tried a bunch of other irises first, would I still love 28 LP as much? It’s food for thought. I’ve tried iris frags that I like, but don’t get because they’re not distinctive enough from the ones I already have.

      Undina, what are your favorite iris perfumes?


  6. 28 La Pausa will be discontinued!? What! Thanks for the lovely writeup for this fragrance. I don’t own it, but I received a sample with my other Les Exclusifs fragrances – I do remember thinking it’s lovely (and reminded me slightly of Pleasures!)

    I will wear this again this week and if I like it I will pick it up (before I won’t find it again) 🙂


    • It’s a bummer, isn’t it? I would’ve liked to see Chanel come out with an EDP formulaton of 28 La Pausa first to see if that would solve the longevity issues. I wonder if that was one the things affecting sales.


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