A sniff and one can tell that Bleu de Chanel is not so concerned about originality and memorable character. What matters is that it simply needs to sell and the fragrance division ought to play safe with the demographic to which it is marketed. The result is thus something well-liked by the mass, and such a creation tends to get lost in the crowded shelf. It is difficult to recall its scent amidst the sea of other similar beings.
But, once you have picked out the full-bodied citrus and the transparent ambery-woody warmth in Bleu de Chanel, it is not entirely impossible. The composition may not stand out at all, but the promise of quality makes it decent. Its balanced composition and quality materials might even rank it above many of its brethren.
The framework of Bleu de Chanel is a contrast between citrusy freshness and ambery-woody warmth. A juicy citrus with hints of fresh lavender-recalling dihydromyrcenol creates the freshness. The woody centre takes to nutmeg, dry woods, and warm ambery notes. The contrast is there, but it does not create much of an impact because such a theme has been done countless of times. Nor can the fresh marine accents and fine musky quality towards the end impart any signature.
Yes, it is unoriginal, and I find it hard to be impressed. But it is not a ‘bad’ composition. After all, it strikes a balance between bright freshness and warm sensuality. And, its ingredients smell plenty of quality: round and clear citrus, spicy nutmeg, warm crisp ambery note, and subtle musks. Hence, even if Bleu de Chanel does not break new grounds, its balance and quality result in a nice smell, decent sillage, and longevity.
A side note on the name: The current Bleu de Chanel (2010) bears no relation to the vintage perfumes from the Le 1940 de Chanel collection that includes Bleu de Chanel, Beige de Chanel, and Rouge de Chanel.
Sources: chanelperfumebottles.blospot.com, Scent and Chemistry The Molecular World of Odors, odlewkiperfum.pl