Thierry Mugler Angel's Plural Formulations & Toxicity ? {The 5th Sense in the News}



Thierry Mugler Angel is periodically the object of scrutiny and attacks by a health foundation called National Toxic Encephalopathy Foundation. Why this perfume comes under attack only and in particular is not altogether clear as it would seem difficult to think that it contains such unique ingredients.

A new announcement was released yesterday which addresses renewed toxicity issues and linked to that, issues of information transparency with Clarins, the distributor for the Thierry Mugler brand. What we retain from the article is the fact that two chemical analyses of the composition of the perfume conducted in 2004 and 2007 have revealed that,

Based on the prior deformulation and the current listed ingredients, only 5 of the prior ingredients were incorporated into the current Angel formula.....


Moreover, we read here once more about the fact that separate perfume formulations are created for the European and American markets for the same product. 

As it happens a reader had asked us once if we knew of a difference in formulation existing between the Angel sold in France and the Angel sold in the US as that person had noticed a significant difference upon purchasing Angel in France. Later on, as we tested a 1992 French Angel version we own and a current US Angel side by side, differences were apparent that seemed moreover to correspond to known cultural preferences, the French version being more oriental and the US one more floral and aldehydic. The problem of course is that, in our case, the 1992 French perfume version is too far apart in time from the 2006 US sample to constitute a good basis of comparison since aging factors and possible, non-advertised reformulations would and might have intervened. On the other hand, Angel is such a global bestseller that it would sound a priori counter-intuitive to try to "fix" something that works. But maybe that might also explain better its global reach. Yet again, as we know that our perception of perfumes are influenced by advertising, images, and stories (which are adapted to particular markets by the way), it is not altogether impossible that some adjustments are made knowing that markets do react differently.

This type of information, if available, is not exactly official. Sometimes, perfumers do let out that certain markets are considered less choosy or have different tastes and some perfumes are indeed created with a certain market in mind. Well, if you happen to have a gas chromatography equipment at home....

According to the press release,

Mark Schapiro in his new book “Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products” he unmasks the truth regarding how companies have 2 versions of the same product. Since the European Union (EU) has complied a list of banned substances, apparently manufacturers are creating 2 versions of the same product, one that complies with the EU directives and the more toxic version for distribution in the United States. Which formulation of Angel is Clarins distributing to all its international retail outlets?
Read more...... 


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12 Comments | Leave a comment

  1. I've just read that article and it makes me laugh. sounds so stupid and the results of that lab have little in common with Angel. In fact, the components "disclosed" then and now are just a matter of legislation (european) about labelling. There is not necessary european and american versions but more... 2 different legislations for the market, different then and now. That guy should inform himself more before writing such nonsenses.
    In fact, coumarine that he didn't mention in the "previous" version is quintessential to an Angel accord. You cannot have angel without coumarine note as you cannot have No5 without aldehydes and ylang. I am so surprised how scientifical information and facts can be manipulated in such a hilarious way. :))
    And by the way, just looking at the ingredients of the "deformulated" angel... it smells nothing like angel.

  2. Do you know anything about different versions of the same perfume being prepared for different markets? Is that done?

  3. If I remember correctly the website you show belongs to a team of lawyers. and this may be a vendetta lawsuit but I'm not saying it is. Please don't sue me. I may just be having a senior moment.



    toxic encephalopathy is a garbage diagnoses

  5. Thank you:))

  6. I have no idea what's behind and also medecine is not my domain, but fragrance is. At least they should have consulted some fragrance expert from inside the industry before saying all that. :))
    I know that some perfumes had a different versions (US/Europe/Asia) but is less common today. It's not practical (for fragrances supposed to last a short period of time) and it would be a scandal if during their travels consumers would find that something is not OK with their fragrance.

  7. Ok, that makes sense. But I am also reminded of the rumor that Frederic Malle is offering a US version of French Lover with not only a different name but also a slightly different formulation.

  8. the National Toxic Encephalopathy Foundation website gets really interesting as you click around on it. Look at yourself and your surroundings. They probably have an expert witness to take your side in a lawsuit if you have mold in your peanut butter stored in cabinitry made by certain home constuctors. And look where they're located. Right in the heart of lobbyist land.

    Our tax dollars right at work. I think they latched on to Clarins because of the sucess Angel has been. And the perceived deep pockets.

  9. I have been reading about this since it first came out, in I think November of last year, as I do wear Angel and will continue to do so. I just had to follow up on this foundation.

    One thing that I find does not appear too kosher, in "The Rose Sheet" Clarins said that they were going to address the press release and reply.

    If everything this group keeps saying is false, why hasn't Clarins taken a very aggressive international legal campaign to either get a gag order or shut them down completely?

    As the information that they are presenting in world wide press releases, surely has to have some negative impact on the company's entire image.

    To appease my curiosity I had to research this recent press release.

    I called the foundation and was able to speak with the president directly, as she promptly returned my call.

    When I asked about the laboratory analysis, she claimed that the lab will confirm that they did do the deformulation and did a comparison from a bottle of Angel that the lab independently purchased in Florida. So to confirm that there were no differences in the chemical analysis.

    She told me this lab specializes in cosmetic reverse engineering and they are also used as experts in lawsuits if required.

    She said that there was no trace of coumarin in the version in 1999 when it was deformulated, it only appeared on the current packaging.

    I asked why they are targeting Angel and they stated that Clarins entire ad campaign was bogus and they were going for enforcement of federal labelling legislation that Clarins was refusing to provide.

    She also told me, that a group in California took Calvin Kleins Eternity to the FDA and they are currently researching those allegations.

    The legal action against Clarins, where they had Clarins admitting under oath that they did not reformulate the perfume since they acquired it in the 90's. And that Clarins stated it's the same worldwide.

    She also stated that if they reformulated Angel, they were legally obligated to retest the new formulation, which they did not.

    I am confused as some people posting here are saying the formulation is different on where you live. Why would Clarins lie in the courts? As eventually it would come out and they can be sanctioned for perjury, which carries hefty fines levied by the courts.

    She claims that Clarins did not deny that the formula was not accurate.

    She also stated, that they do have an expert toxicologist who used to work in the cosmetic and fragrance industry, who is highly versed in industry's testing. I was able to obtain his name, Jack Thrasher, PhD., his resume is at

    I am a registered nurse and one has to realize that things posted to wikipedia are by the general population not experts and nothing on that site can be held as truly factual.

    Toxic encephalopathy I know is a recognized diagnosis that has both testing validations and medical acceptance worldwide.

    We are legally required to enter a diagonstic code when we see a patient, that is nationally accepted for both medical and insurance purposes.

    Gary's comment was not sound, as the medical research on Toxic Encephalopathy has volumious peer reviewed scientific studies that can be research freely on Pub Med.

    I took Marie-Helene's suggestion and traversed the website. Aside from the ranting on the blog of the president, the articles provided are highly versed in science by respected reserarchers and universally acknowledged publications.

    Granted, some are news articles from general media publications or environmental organizations. Which I took with a grain of salt.

    I have to acquire CEU's in order to keep my license and the resources (journal articles etc.) have been referenced in my classes.

    I am required to refrain from wearing fragrances in my employment setting, as there are some patients who are negatively impacted by fragrances.

    I feel that those of us who enjoy our fragrances need, to keep an open mind, as to whether or not the negative disclosures about fragrances have any validity that we might need to consider.

    Happy fragrances to all..........

  10. Dear Pammie,

    Thank you so much for your follow-up on this story. Another reason why Clarins might not be following suit is because the campaign is not hurting their sales. All this is tricky to judge from the standpoints of simple consumers.

  11. Hello Marie-Helene:

    Your response elicted me to talk to a friend who is an attorney.

    The reply was, the information that would be obtained via Discovery in a legal action, most likely would confirm the allegations made by the Plaintiff. Therefore, it would impact their image of being primarily natural and botanically based.

    They were not sure if all of the allegations regarding safety testing would be confirmed by Clarins. In addition, since legal pleadings are public knowledge the disclosure of these documents most likely would generate other potential lawsuits.

    Basically, and this is her direct quote "Clarins either has to suck it up or be prepared to defend their corporation in the media. If Clarins under Discovery said that they did not have any reformulations during the time of the litigation, and further thru their defense of the news articles shows differently, as you said, the courts will impose monetary sanctions. Thus creating a potential problem with their stockholders and customers".

    As a medical professional, I am half tempted to believe that there was no testing done, but, that is just my opinion.

    All we really can do is wait to see what Clarins will do.

  12. Hello Pammie,

    Thank you!


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