This famous fragrance from the ‘50s is back with an irresistible edge

26 September 2018
By Fashion Quarterly

Everyone loves a comeback.

The only thing to spur more impulsive sales of one particular item than the news of a discontinuation is a restock. In the case of Givenchy’s L’Interdit made famous by icon Audrey Hepburn in the ’50s, a modern edge has been introduced to the sought-after fragrance (and we can’t get enough!).


The famous friendship and complementary tastes shared between Hubert de Givenchy and Audrey Hepburn was the quintessence of a new generation. His audacious, timeless fashion and her slender, mischievous femininity were made for each other. In 1954, Givenchy developed a fragrance exclusively for Audrey as the ultimate gift. When the fashion house expanded to include a perfumery years later, Givenchy approached Audrey in an attempt to send the fragrance to market in 1957, to which she replied “I forbid you”, and the name ‘L’Interdit’ (French for forbidden) was born.

Fast forward more than 60 years and L’Interdit has been reimagined by perfumers Dominique Ropion, Anne Flipo and Fanny Bal with the strength of a modern woman in mind, and a new face to match; two-time Oscar-nominated American actress Rooney Mara.


“The fact that the original L’Interdit was Audrey Hepburn’s perfume fascinated me. It felt very special to be asked to be part of bringing the fragrance back to life,” says Mara.

As for the scent behind the history, for perfumer Fanny Bal, “it was obvious that this major Givenchy fragrance should have a luminous and elegant floral signature, but we also wanted to convey the House’s daring approach.”

“To capture this creative force, we shook up the luminous floral bouquet with a powerful and sophisticated contrast. We imagined a dark underground wood full of strength and mystery, embodied by vetiver root.”


Notes include a particular extract of orange blossom and opulent, feminine notes of jasmine, tuberose alongside darker, intense woody base notes of vetiver and patchouli. The stark contrast essentially crossing the line in the world of fragrance fittingly playing into the “thrill of forbidden”.

So if you’re one to embrace your singularity, defying convention and forbidding yourself nothing – or if this sounds like a woman in your life – unleash with this new release from Givenchy.

Givenchy L’Interdit EDP, 35ml, $111 from Farmers.
Givenchy L’Interdit EDP, 50ml, $163   from Farmers.
Givenchy L’Interdit EDP, 8oml, $203 from Farmers.

Words: Terri Dunn
Photos: Supplied

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