Iconic Ads: Chanel N 5 – Share The Fantasy -Pool

chanel n 5

Chanel was able to tap into the potency of sensuality without crossing the line into repugnance because of the emphasis on imagination

Since its debut on May 5, 1921, Chanel No. 5 has been one of the world’s best-selling fragrances, despite its high price tag. Almost nothing about the packaging has changed since French fashion designer Coco Chanel initially tried out the fragrance in a vial labelled Chanel No. 5.

When the advertisement debuted in 1979, it became a turning point for advertising for both perfume and fashion brands, particularly in France.  The House of Chanel’s reputation had suffered since Coco Chanel died in 1971, and this campaign was only one aspect of a larger attempt to restore it. The campaign was a crucial part of the company’s strategy to reposition itself for the long term.

Perfumes may be described using the adjectives strong and subtle. After the passing of Coco Chanel (1971), Chanel took this step to reinvigorate the company’s perfume line.

The Commercial

In 1979, when sexually explicit commercials were still frowned upon, the slogan “Share the Fantasy” was used prominently in the TV commercial. The sensual commercial stood out since it did not include any overtly sexual content or provocative touches. The concept was communicated so well that even a sensually unorthodox spot was praised both inside and outside the business.

The 30-second clip featured a lady relaxing by the pool, taking in the rays and the scent of the pool’s pristine blue water, while an aeroplane flies by. “I am made of blue sky and golden light, and I will feel this way forever” a soft voice in the background whispers. A tall, dark, and attractive man arrives in the following scene, plunging into the pool from the other side, swimming over to the woman’s side, and then disappearing before your eyes. That’s when you gently hear John Huston in the background delivering the three key words, ‘Share the Fantasy’.

Many people of the era believe that by leaving certain visual details vague, the TVC introduces a pleasant, sensual concept that is in no way offensive or obscene. Despite the lack of any carnal overtones or aggressive sexual solicitations, the commercial manages to leave a lasting impression.

The commercial was developed internally by Chanel under the supervision of Jacques Helleu, the organization’s longstanding creative director. Thelma & Louise, Blade Runner, and Alien are just a few of the films that British director Ridley Scott has gone on to direct. It was a gorgeous place, full of vibrant colours, and it seemed like a peaceful dream.

The album China by Greek musician Vangelis Papathanassious provided a mesmerising score.

The producers decided not to include the slogan in the French version of the commercial because they believed Chanel’s reputation would speak for itself. Experts in the field of branding have called this initiative a breakthrough in the company’s long-term repositioning. Since then, Chanel No. 5 has always been one of the world’s best-selling fragrances.


In contrast to other fragrance commercials of the period, this one doesn’t have any overt sexual references or scenes. Chanel was able to tap into the potency of sensuality without crossing the line into repugnance because of the emphasis on imagination. Considering that the intended audience was composed mostly of mature women, a more understated method was needed. The ads are seductive without being sexist or offensive. This was one of five commercials made for the campaign; “Pool” aired from 1979 until at least 1985 (and perhaps for much longer).


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