The History of Vintage Avon Perfume
For over 130 years, Avon has been producing signature fragrances, as well as cosmetics and home goods, that have become a staple in homes all over the world. In fact, that's where we started — selling perfume! It's certainly no surprise that many of our fragrances have become household names and have a vintage appeal. Today, I'm going to share my top 5 Avon cult classic scents.
“Little Dot Perfumes” was the first product sold by the California Perfume Company. There were five single-note fragrances — Lily of the Valley, Violet, Heliotrope, White Rose and Hyacinth.
A Quick Look at Old Avon Perfumes
|Date of Release||Seasonal Use||Day or Night||Everyday or Special Occasion|
Spring or Summer
Summer or Fall
Fall or Winter
Everyday or Special Occasion
Day or Night
#1: Sweet Honesty
A personal favorite of mine, Sweet Honesty captures the essence of youth and femininity since it's introduction to the market in 1973. Flirty and very floral, it recaptures a simpler time for many. I have a special connection to this perfume because it was one of the first fragrances I experienced in an Avon brochure. I alternate between this and Haiku Kyoto Flower, which I will soon be replacing with our upcoming Haiku Reflection, all which are soft, fresh, scents. Sweet Honesty makes a great spring, daytime fragrance and is recommended for a younger crowd. It is also known for it's soft, yet long-lasting aroma. Powdery smells are a favorite of mine and I would highly recommend it.
Fragrance Notes of Sweet Honesty
- Top Notes: floral aldehydes, fresh citrus
- Middle Notes: jasmine, rose, geranium, lily of the valley, sweet honey
- Bottom Notes: benzoin, sandalwood, vanilla, musk
Similar Perfumes and Colognes to Sweet Honesty
- Entebaa by Rasasi
- Bluramine II by Bluramine
- Love's Baby Soft by Dana
This mature fragrance has been around since 1977, and it's no wonder why. Candid is the perfect way to add a touch of elegant glamour to any outfit. Exotic, woodsy, and fresh, Candid remains a show-stopper and an Avon customer favorite. It's known for being long-lasting with a moderate sillage. Candid makes a wonderful scent for everyday or special events. It's warm, calming scent makes it perfect for fall or late summer.
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Fragrance Notes for Candid
- Top Notes: sparkling bergamot, jasmine
- Middle Notes: blooming tuberose, ylang-ylang
- Bottom Notes: sandalwood, vetiver, sensual patchouli
Similar Perfumes and Colognes to Candid
- Jontue by Revlon
- Tweed by Fine Fragrances & Cosmetics
- Glorious by Gloria Vanderbilt
Aptly named, Timeless has stood the test of time since it's inception in 1974. Woody and down-to-earth, this perfume is a perfect daily fragrance with long-lasting notes. Many of my own customers cite a beautiful musky/woodsy note, while finishing into a clean, powdery smell. While the bottle has gone through many reincarnations through its time, it has always retained the same luxurious, classic feel. This is a popular smell for more mature women, but a new generation is beginning to understand why Timeless seems to be truly an eternal scent. Because of its long-lasting wear and heavier aroma, Timeless is often used as a night-time scent and makes a perfect fall or winter fragrance.
Fragrance Notes for Timeless
- Top Notes: fresh greens, sheer florals
- Middle Notes: jasmine, patchouli, vetiver
- Base Notes: amber, oakmoss, musk
Wearing Odyssey is like taking a tropical cruise - cool, sweet, and intoxicating. It is ladylike, almost stately, and many of my own customers report feeling like a queen when they spray a little on their wrists. Avon customers have been wearing this vacation in a bottle since 1981 - and it has become a classic fragrance ever since. It's one of out lesser-known scents but maintains a steady following. With moderate longevity and the perfect balance of wear, Odyssey is a wonderful signature scent for the day and cooler months.
Fragrance Notes of Odyssey
- Top Notes: jasmine, tuberose
- Middle Notes: ylang-ylang
- Bottom Notes: sandalwood, vetiver
Similar Perfumes and Colognes to Odyssey
- Night Odyssey by Avon
- White Woods by Clean
- Paco Rabanne Pour Homme by Paco Rabanne
#5: Night Magic
Iconic, seductive, and powerful - some may even call it intoxicating, Night Magic is all that and more. Elegant yet sultry, Night Magic starts off heady and addictive with notes of incense and musk but settles into a beautiful sandalwood and cedar base. Born in the 1980's, it has gained an almost instant cult following and is often paired with another daytime fragrance as part as a signature scent regimen. Of course, Night Magic makes a wonderful night-time scent. It's elegant and cool, so it makes a wonderful winter fragrance, but reminds me of a beautiful spring night as well.
Fragrance Notes of Night Magic
- Top Notes: Neroli, Muguet, Jasmine
- Middle Notes: Rose, Ylang-Ylang, Sandalwood,
- Bottom Notes: Amber, Incense, Musk
When I was young, I remember many of these perfumes in brochures and wanted to have them when I grew up. Which fragrance is your favorite? Do you have any happy memories of Avon attached to these perfumes?
Let me know in the comments below!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2017 Dani Merrier
Michelle on January 20, 2020:
I have been a customer of Avon ever since 2004...colognes, unique wristwatches (have over 50!) and sneakers (over 5 pairs), but my Avon dealer recently died and I don't know how I will ever order any more Avon products.
Mags on November 05, 2019:
To A Wild Rose - Mommy used to spritz us with it before attending a special occasion.
I really enjoyed your Avon fragrance favorites write-up.
Twana on October 18, 2018:
Do you know how we can get roses roses
Jacqui Milner on November 09, 2017:
I loved a fragrance called Bird of Paradise, I couldn't get enough of it, I loved it so much and was heartbroken when I couldn't get it any more, is there anyway I can find out what the top, middle and bottom notes are so I can try to replicate it?
Dani Merrier (author) from United States on August 29, 2017:
I'm sorry, we don't carry that fragrance anymore. There is are some new perfumes that may have similar scents if you would like to take a look on our website. There is a link on my homepage and I would be happy to help you!
Dani Merrier (author) from United States on August 29, 2017:
We don't carry that fragrance anymore, I'm sorry. I've looked for similar fragrances and the closest one I could recommend would be Sweet Honesty. They do sometimes bring back vintage scents though, so don't lose hope!
Norma T from WV on August 24, 2017:
My grandma used to wear a avon perfume called roses roses. Growing up i loved that scent. now that i am grown i cant find it anywhere. do they ever bring it back?
B.fairman. on August 14, 2017:
Can I get a perfume nearly the same as Avon elegance in a bottle white lady in a evening dress
Dani Merrier (author) from United States on June 07, 2017:
Those memories are one of the reasons I started to sell Avon! I love the brochures and hearing stories from customers.
Sweet Honesty is one of my favorites too.
Sharbear38 from Ohio on June 07, 2017:
I love your article, it takes me back to when I was a kid and my mom sold Avon. Sweet Honesty is my all time favorite.