An extremely rare jewel of a perfume. Khadine was released circa 1967 (1) with some of the most beautiful presentation and promotional material of that decade.
Khadine was marketed as an Arabic influenced fragrance named after a presumably fictional character of a harem dwelling princess. The box reads “Who was Khadine? She was The Favoured One, chosen by the greatest ruler in all the East to be the favourite of his harem. The most desirable woman in the land…surrounded always by a subtle, luxurious fragrance. Such a fragrance as this…”
This work of art was used for in-store displays, which shows the expense and effort put into this launch.
This is described as “Vintage storefront decoration that was used in a Yardley of London store in New York City, to advertise their line of “Khadine” perfumes in the 1960’s. Approx. 22.5″ tall, 9″ wide, and 6″ deep. Made out of a thick plaster/plastic material. Marked “1967 Yardley of London, Inc.” on the back”.
This magazine ad from 1968 has a truly magical quality. The gauze like veil and contemplative beauty of the model create an illusion of a faraway time and place where women were pampered and doted on with exotic fragrant oils and creams.
This American ad also from 1968 is directed at men, subtly comparing them with the owner of women, directing them to choose which woman they want the most, thereby including men in the harem fantasy world in a dangerously sexist way.
On the positive side the packaging is stunningly colourful and detailed. Vivid flowers with gold edging covers boxes of intricately moulded soaps, an elephant shaped amulet, and assorted perfumes and bath oil.
I think the whole promotion did not work well, it may have been too artful or too distant from real life, and there was a complete design change circa 1972.
The new packaging was purple and white, featuring a stylized window overlapping in paler purple. The word Khadine was embossed in gold. The lid was a classical dome in matching purple.
This was discontinued around the early 1980s, and the trademark was abandoned entirely in 1992.
Opening notes: Incense, iris, and violet.
Middle notes: Carnation, lily-of-the-valley, and galbanum.
Base notes: Sandalwood and musk.
This is not as alluring and exotic as I had hoped. This is a pleasant floriental, but it isn’t transporting me to ancient Arabia. The ingredients seem muted and don’t fully bloom. It has a bitter element from the galbanum, without a sweet enough note to balance and lift it. I think ultimately Khadine’s demise came about because the fragrance just wasn’t good enough.
Suited to: Winter evenings when you want to spice up your love life with some passion from paradise.
Rating: I give this a bronze medal, it won’t suit everyone.
Price: Rarely available so search eBay and etsy and hope to be lucky.
Images from Pinterest.