There have been a few times when I’ve wondered what perfume my favorite classic stars wore. I have imagined what scent they left when they entered a scene, graced the red carpet or when signing autographs and their fans got a whiff of the star’s personality. With little to no success of answers, or finding out their iconic scent is no longer created – you can imagine the disappointment it gives to a vintage-loving gal.
Not everyone becomes a Hollywood star who remains an icon for many generations, and not everyone has a fragrance created in her honor nonetheless created by her daughters.
Actress Natalie Wood is best recognized for her starring roles in Rebel Without a Cause (1955), which earned her an Academy Award nomination, and let’s not forget West Side Story (1961), Love With The Proper Stranger (1963), Inside Daisy Clover (1965), among others. Born in San Francisco to Russian immigrants, Natalie Wood began working in films at a very young age. Miracle on 34th Street (1947) became the movie from which she won audiences’ hearts and launched her to stardom.
What was the favorite scent of the woman so beautifully breathtaking who became an acclaimed actress? Gardenias. This flower had lingered on Wood throughout her life since she was a child. In the comedy film The Bride Wore Boots (1946) Wood played the daughter of legendary actress Barbara Stanwyck who sent her a bottle of her gardenia perfume as a gift. When Wood was old enough to wear it, she adapted the exotic gardenia perfume as her own signature scent.
In a 1963 Life magazine story it was reported that 25-year-old Wood began ordering pure gardenia oil from Egypt and “drenching herself” in it. Her photographer had said a room “changed color” when she stepped in because of her charisma and “delicious” gardenia fragrance. When Wood received compliments for her signature scent she would send them a bottle of the perfume just as Barbara Stanwyck did with her years prior.
Natalie Wood’s gardenia aroma is best lived in the memories of her two daughters Natasha Gregson Wagner and Courtney Wagner. “A waft of gardenia could bring me back to private moments with my mom,” Natasha has said. “Her laugh. Her hugs. Her effervescence. Her cozy nightgowns. Her fragrance made me feel close to her.”
Celebrating their mother’s memory, the two sisters have captured their mother’s gardenia scent into the ultimate tribute available to fans of the actress, and for mothers and daughters who wish to create memories of their own. Inspired by their mother’s iconic gardenia perfume, Natalie is made with pure distilled essential oils and all-natural ingredients. A mixture of freesia, orange flower, and vanilla are mixed with Natalie Wood’s favorite flower. It smells like spring: bright and floral, and it’s perfect for a day at the amusement park, vintage shopping or romantic dinner. The perfume evokes classic Hollywood glamour with a modern twist for the vintage gal at heart.
Natalie is available in a 1.7 ounce perfume ($95), two different sets ($75-80), rollerball ($25) and sample size ($6), and it can be purchased at nataliefragrance.com.
By Leticia Lopez