Positive Reviews of Après L'ondée by Guerlain

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    Colin Maillard's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Not much to explain or emphasize about Après L'ondée, but here's my take on this beautiful piece of culture and history. The opening is already pure classic sumptuosity, here declined in a cozier, fresher and more sheer way. Green, botanical and vibrant, neoclassic and sinister, shady but radiant. The notes span from diverse floral nuances (the powderiness of iris, the animalic earthiness of carnation, the romantic juiciness of rose, the "pollen" yellowness of mimosa) to a resinous-almondy accord of tonka, amber and benzoin, to citrus hints, herbs and woods. A manual of gracefulness - describing the notes is not really enough to deliver the beauty of this perfume. Classic, but completely modern, even more than other classic scents, thanks to this cozy, intimate, melancholic but also bright sort of transparency and lightness. Like a sort of "prehistoric" attempt to accomplish a rendition of the concept of sea (as the name suggest), just in a more poetical and romantic way, playing with the colours, the brightness and daintiness of certain notes. Needless to say that every bit of Apres l'ondée exudes also class, sophisticacy, evanescent and graceful sensuality. The longevity is in fact not that long, although the drydown, despite being close to skin, is incredibly beautiful and graceful, perfectly fitting the general mood of closeness and melancholic intimacy. Timeless!

    9/10

    09 August, 2014

    Way Off Scenter's avatar

    United States United States

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    Genre: Floral Oriental

    The anise and violet opening of Après l'Ondée is a thing of simple beauty: faintly melancholy, wistful, yet paradoxically bright and transparent. The composition soon turns very powdery, and with that more conventional and "perfumey." This is the stage at which my wife says Aprés l'Ondée smells like her mother, though not in a bad way. The scent never gets too heavy, and a light, clean musk and vanilla show themselves in the delicate drydown.

    The whole olfactory experience vividly evokes another time and place: sophisticated, civilized, and ever so slightly ironic. Perhaps a certain age in Paris, or old Vienna just before its empire fell. I can see how it might not appeal to many modern women, but Après l'Ondée is a monument to classical perfumery.

    08 June, 2014

    rorygory's avatar

    United States United States

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    Certain scents are difficult to explain but easily inspire the adjectives "breathtaking" and "heartbreaking." Après L'Ondée is one of these scents. Gaia, the Non-Blonde describes smelling Après L'Ondée in parfum "like entering a dream. It can be familiar, like a memory you can't quite place but you know you've been there, maybe in your subconsciousness."

    Like any other art form, at its finest perfume can convey a distinct idea or emotion. The more complex the idea, the more moving the artwork. Après L'Ondée means "after the rain shower," and between the floral, herbal, earthy, and watery notes, it literally translates as a garden after the rain. Yet there is something more to this scent, that inspires consistently more romantic reviews. At its debut, La Liberté said it had "something of the melancholy of a poet's thoughts." (Monsieur Guerlain). Turin's review is also full of dark metaphors, describing the base accord as a "funeral", but for the fact that "Guerlain suffuses the whole thing with optimistic sunlight by using, as in so many of their classic fragrances, a touch of what a chef would call bouquet de Provence: thyme, rosemary, sage. This discreet hint of earthly pleasures is what makes Après L'Ondée smile through its tears."

    Après L'Ondée does smile through its tears, for the scent of the earth following the rain parallels a feeling of calm after the passing of grief. The sadness behind Après L'Ondée makes the beautiful notes all the more real, precious, and poignent. This scent brings you deep within your own reflections. It is undoubtably one of the greatest perfumes ever made.

    09 May, 2012

    Tonkabeany's avatar



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    An unaulterated masterpiece in the discontinued parfum form and currently available on EBAY! This never happens, if only I had the money for it.

    10th February, 2012

    Jelliestar's avatar



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    I don't have the perfume vocabulary to describe Apres L'ondee, nor can I think of where to start without sounding pretentious. I'll simply say that, to me, this smells like my mother's herb garden early on Easter morning: damp, chilly, clean and quiet, light and beautiful.

    I'm not a "perfumista." I don't have a wardrobe full of fragrances, and I truthfully don't care for most perfumes I encounter. Every Chanel I've ever smelled reminds me of unwashed skin; most modern fragrances are too sweet for me, or too strong, or too something that gives me a headache.

    All that being said, I have fallen in love with a few Guerlains. I love Herba Fresca. Oddly, I love L'Heure Bleue. I cannot stand Champs Elysees, and the modern Geurlains (Insolence, the other Aqua Allegorias, etc.) fall into the headache camp.

    But Apres L'ondee smells of spring and dew and young flower petals, and my mom and her garden. And home.

    And, oh my God, I love it.

    10th December, 2011

    sherapop's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fresh, clean, flowery and powdery. As ingenuous and natural as can be, APRES L'ONDEE has no hidden, inner, subterranean depths to penetrate, and thus differs rather radically from my concept of classic Guerlain--especially from compositions such as MITSOUKO and L'HEURE BLEUE. Yet this perfume is beautiful, too, in its own way. My distinct impression is that Prada was trying to capture something like this aesthetic in its Infusion series, especially INFUSION D'IRIS edt, the most recent launch, to which violet has been added. The INFUSION trio is also very clean, but it is far more woody and, in the case of INFUSION D'HOMME, soapy as well. There is no soap in APRES L'ONDEE at all. The cleanness of this scent is that of fresh rainwater-washed purple flowers, no more and no less.

    Although APRES L'ONDEE features key notes--violet, iris, heliotrope and anise--in common with a number of other more recent perfumes, here they are presented in an unsweetened state and without other components which tend to muddy the waters somewhat. There is not a single speck of dirt anywhere to be sniffed in APRES L'ONDEE. For that reason, some people may find this perfume simply too simple, more like a nineteenth-century violet soliflore than a masterpiece. However, those who seek out high-quality notes such as are featured in the sometimes simple perfumes of niche lines are bound to appreciate APRES L'ONDEE. In my case, the appeal is overdetermined: I love niche-quality notes, in general, and violet, iris, heliotrope and anise, in particular!

    My understanding is that this perfume has been discontinued, and I'm thinking that maybe that's not such a bad thing, since at least if I manage to acquire a bottle it will not (I presume) have been disastrously reformulated.

    13 September, 2011

    eov8b's avatar

    United States United States

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    (EDT) A wonderful wonderful fragance, sleek and posh, an amazing iris that opens with a sweet and quiet anis (or maybe almond).

    Bears some emblance to Lheure bleue, which to my nose, is stuffier and sweet/greasy to the point of being cloying.

    21st August, 2011

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    Anybody looking for a light, gentle and heavenly floral fragrance should definitely smell Apres L'Ondée. This "piece of art" from the past century can be considered as one of the greatest, if not the best, creations in its genre. A delicate, almost fragile, composition made of heliotrope, violette and iris that gently touches your skin as a slim and smooth female's hand and sings to your ears a sad but reassuring melody with a faint voice that's almost a whisper. The usual Guerlain's baritone chorus (vanilla / musk / amber) is there to add consistency and depth to this very ethereal melody, but it's drastically muted to leave space to the celestial solo voice.

    Apres L'Omdée is tremendously familiar, comfortable, reliable. Someone says it smells like clean skin, someone else associates it with his / her mother's smell, a beloved aunt, talcum powder, childhood, romance...As a matter of fact Apres L'Ondée is a smell that everybody knows, consciously or unwittingly. Mandatory!

    "Luxury is something pretty and discreet. Luxury must not be something brash".

    16 June, 2011 (Last Edited: 09 March, 2012)

    teardrop's avatar

    England England

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    There's very little l can add to the poetic descriptions of this fragrance in the other reviews here. l can only agree that it is heartbreakingly beautiful, just like a fleeting glimpse of a butterfly as the sunlight catches its' wings, & then it's gone... lt is everything that's been said here; sweet, innocent, powdery, comforting & yet melancholy. lt is the phantom of L'Heure Bleue's more solid, touchable presence. l love it, but it's lack of longevity saddens me. Something so rare should not have to be sprayed so liberally.

    08 February, 2011

    AlexnAtlanta's avatar

    United States United States

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    Haunting smell of early spring flowers after a a rain. Just as it was intended to smell like. Smells great on a male or female (I'm the fomrer). It's evanescence and fleeting beauty adds to the mystic appeal of this masterpiece. The melancholy that I associate (favorably with L'Heur Bleau) is just not there to my nose. Apres makes one smile. L'Heur B. one of my all time favoritates produces a very different reaction.

    06 February, 2011

    lady love's avatar

    Argentina Argentina

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    (Edt Review)

    This is l'heure violette!!

    Is all about wet and delicate ethereal violets, with that nostalgic feeling which Guerlian re-used for l'heure bleue, but Apres l'Ondee is not as heavy, and doesn't last much. It's funny but the most beautiful things in life doesn't last long either, so I dont feel sorry or disappointed by Apres l'Ondee. Another Outstanding masterpiece from Guerlain.

    26 January, 2011

    adele h's avatar



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    The most modern smelling of the old Guerlains; the vegetal violet opening has aspects of The Unicorn Spell and Iris Silver Mist in it with a slightly minty undertone. Fresh and so aptly named..very soft and close to the skin. The dry down is somewhat powdery and old-fashioned but also incredibly soft- really nicely done!

    26 January, 2011

    castlehamilton's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Utter perfection! Après L'ondée in its current guise perfectly sums up the period from which it owes its genesis: in light, pastel hues of heady violet, iris and heliotrope fading in impressionistic mediative haze into a powdery rhapsody of lilac hue, white florals and the ever present sweetness of violet, no fragrance more completely sums up the Fin de siècle elegance of the pre-Great War Age.

    It is aristocratically restrained, delicately elegant and unashamedly romantic. But, as with that brief age of elegance, it is utterly fleeting and no sooner has one been submerged in its gentle embrace than its delicate charms have passed. Après L'ondée is truly the butterfly of fragrances: born in a distilled moment of pure perfection with a flash of lilac-hued light and colour, it is gone all too soon.

    It is indeed a great shame that Guerlain were forced to discontinue the EdP version of this truly delightful fragrance though despite its fleeting nature it will always remain a true personal favourite.

    14 January, 2011

    Oh_Hedgehog's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Après L'Ondée settles on the skin like a translucent lilac gauze, imponderably delicate, instantly revived by a warm exhalation that recapitulates the entire fragrance from searing anisic opening, through luminous violets and dewy iris, and resolved again in its almond-sweet heliotropin base. Contrary to popular dismay, the persistence of the eau de toilette formulation is exquisite, with all the determination of a ghost. Despite its spectral presence Après L'Ondée has, like many of the old Guerlains, a savoury, nourishing quality that is very much of this world. Pale but not bloodless, it is like an untethered L'Heure Bleue, released from the burden of those weighty, enigmatic, oriental notes… L'Heure Bleue in a past life, maybe, or having passed through life.

    19 September, 2010

    scentsitivity's avatar

    United States United States

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    I have worn the EDT several times.

    I think this is the most interesting of the pre-1910 Guerlain’s that has survived (although my favorite in that category is Eau du Coq). Like its name suggests, it conveys the feeling of a damp garden after a rain. Whenever I have been in a damp garden after a rain, I feel introspective. And Apres L’ondée captures both the scent and that introspective feeling quite well. For me it is a metallic-tinged floral top that becomes more powdery with the drydown. Heliotropes, violets and white florals. I think this could be worn by either sex.

    20th June, 2010

    David Ruskin's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    It is powdery, it is violet and mimosa and hawthorn; and what is wrong with that? I have no problems with powdery, I love the smell of old make-up bags and empty powder compacts. It has the faded beauty of Venice in the rain. A soft and gentle rain falling on old and still beautiful palazzi. May its memory last forever

    30th April, 2010

    's avatar



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    Apres l'Ondée is one of my all-time favourites.
    My bottle of Apres l'Ondée is about 6 years old- and it is an Eau de toilette spray.
    (Parfum extrait is no longer available)
    To me, this scent is a porte-bonheur, evoking the music of Claude Debussy and impressionist paintings...(1906!).

    The aldehyde C.14 had not yet been invinted in 1906 (it came 2 years later),
    but in 1877 the German chemists Tiemann and Herzfeld had managed the synthesis of the "aldéhyde anisique" using a substance called anethol - and this is what was used to give Apres l'ondée its muted charme. I can't tell if the formula has changed over the years - and if so - how - but the fine balance of the notes, the magic of this composition always makes my heart sing! I am no chemist - let alone a perfumer - and I always feel that unless you don't know 100% what's in a perfume (and would they ever tell us???), there's always much speculation going on about the actual components which I am in no position of taking apart.
    What I can say is that Apres l'ondée is very well rounded - it does not fall into pieces, top-notes are not much different from the scent's heart - it is all a lovely, consistent cloud of sheer beauty. Apres l'ondée is a quiet scent, I feel comfortable wearing it... no fabulous sillage, no monster-longevity... I can reapply the EdT during the day without disturbing others...and enjoy the fragrance again.

    Apres l'Ondée is a perfume which speaks of tranquility, of quiet landscapes, of tenderness, too. It has a meditative touch, it's the epitomy of a finely balanced perfume where every note is 100% necessary, nothing superflous... nothing to be added or to be taken away. Harmony in a bottle. An absolute masterpiece.

    This perfume emerged when Debussy and Ravel composed their impressionist music and creates its own beautiful and romantic orbit. Its softness is a symbol of its cultivated origin, it has an enveloping wave of privacy and it is of such perfection that it brings tears to my eyes. It is a scent gloriuosly different from today's mainstream - and - to me- one of the best Guerlains ever.

    09 March, 2010 (Last Edited: 11th January, 2011)

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    A powdery mimosa and ylang, which has no great sillage. This suits Apres L'Ondee as it is a discreet, gentle and beautiful feminine fragrance.

    04 March, 2010

    Nostalgie's avatar

    United States United States

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    There is something uncanny about this breathtaking masterpiece. Uncanny (Unheimlich) in the Freudian sense: familiar but foreign; paradoxical; seductively troubling.

    What I find most disarming about Après l’Ondée, is its balance of sweetness and solemnity. The name signals a degree of separation between the fragrance and the rain. But for me the distance feels spatial rather than temporal, like watching the rain from the warmth of a sumptuous room. Subtle lemon and more prominent heliotrope keep it joyful. A gentle dose of violet and and the predominant cool, iris root add a sense of longing and nostalgia. Vetiver and benzoin balance bitter and sweet. The overall composition is rich but lilting, grounded but uplifting, distant but welcoming. Like a pastel painting displayed on a stone gray wall.

    I mourn the parfum version which is no longer produced, but I am confident its ghost haunts the exquisite EDT.

    High quality, long-lasting, and remarkably different from the Guerlains built on a vanilla base.
    25 Feb.2010

    25 February, 2010 (Last Edited: 20th September, 2011)

    BayKAT's avatar

    United States United States

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    I know this has been in production since 1906, which is probably the reason for all the 'classic' and 'timeless' comments. But for fun, run through hte latest commercial offerings featuring iris and violet, and then come back to this one. It's the equivalent of saying that Clint Eastwood is a good actor, although his performances are a bit of an 'old fashion classic'.

    Clint is still making people's day. So is Apres l'ondee.

    Iris and violet are my top two favorite notes and I've tried many, many scents with this combo. This is the only one I bought. Love it.

    17 February, 2010

    mrclmind's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a very light, beautiful and transparent fragrance. It opens with a gentle anise among bright citrus and soft florals which opens up to heart notes of heliotrope and violet melding seamlessly into a base of orris, gentle tonka, and light musk. This is not a skin scent per se, but the projection is minimal. The longevity is typical of an EDT (moderate). Apres l'Ondee is one of the most beautiful and redolent perfumes in history: the sweet, soft fragrance of a garden in the morning after a night's rainfall.

    09 February, 2010

    sean-dt's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    I love Apres l'Ondee. There's something almost innocent about it. It's a light airy floral, but being a Guerlain there's also a hint of something darker going on. I generally don't get fanciful descrptions of perfumes, but I actually understand the summer and rain thing here. It really does feel like the quiet dampness after a thunderstom in summertime. Wonderful...

    26 January, 2010

    cedriceccentric's avatar

    Belgium Belgium

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    A lady-friend of mine smelled it on me and bought herself a bottle. She loved it. Unfortunatelly after getting a few "smells old" comments from family and coworkers she stopped wearing it. Frankly, when you are 40 and single you really don't want to hear any associations with the word OLD, so I understand her reaction entirely. Not a first date scent either I guess. LOL

    It's rather old fashioned. Most people won't get the "vintage" thing. Wear it for yourself and forget the "mortals" around you.

    Some men can really pull it off.
    Better on dandies than on "old"spinsters! : )


    30th December, 2009

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Luca Turin has said this perfume is 'exquisite' and also Apres L'Ondee has been described as an impressionist painting. It's like an olfactory watercolour ,fresh ,vivid but it leaves much to the imagination. Sweet violets and anise - these may seem to be the old fashioned elements to it but I prefer to say classic and timeless. Familiar ,comforting and yet rare.
    The scent is not powdery on my skin in any way, just lightly sweet, enchanting and haunting . The parfum has been discontinued which is heartbreaking but EDT seems to last for a couple of hours before I need to spritz again.
    I get nice wafts for some time even though the EDT is not as tenacious as we all would like it to be. Things of beauty are often fleeting ,elusive and perhaps this is part of the scent's charm and beauty . Frankly I don't mind spritzing again- I will take every opportunity to do so !
    Related to L'Heure Bleue , it is softer and very enigmatic. I thought I could use this forever but I can't, it makes me sad at times and it's too beautiful ...if that makes any sense.

    22 November, 2009

    bokaba's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is one of the nicest early Guerlain exhibiting a light citric opening, a floral heart, and Guerlainade base of vanilla and musk. This is a perfect assemblage of a rainy spring day or whatever the name means.

    21st November, 2009

    promqueen's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is my summer scent (the EDT) which is getting harder and harder to find. Top note of violet on me, drying down to a blend of violet and iris. Lasts about 6-8 hours, and there is nothing "calamine" about this scent. Beautiful! Refined...

    After reading some of these reviews, I am convinced it is all up to individual chemistry.

    14 November, 2009 (Last Edited: 13 May, 2012)

    Sugandaraja's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Iris and violet, with a light element of earthy spice. I'll trust the universal consensus that this is anise, but it smells a little more complex than that to my nose, as well as having a slight tinge of something animalic. For a violet perfume, this is very warm and earthy, only becoming more so as it develops, and the warm, vanillic base emerges. There is a touch of wet, floral drama in the top notes, but the melancholy evades me here, and I find Apres L'Ondee to be a comfort-blanket type of soft violet.

    This review is for the now-discontinued parfum, which, despite being a parfum, has mild sillage and short longevity on my skin. It's probably my favorite Guerlain though, despite its ephemeral nature.

    22 October, 2009

    Esanena's avatar



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    Herbal, floral like eating mints and picking flowers in the woods.

    14 September, 2009

    Kirsten's avatar

    United States United States

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    I ordered a sample of the Apres L'Ondee parfum from The Perfumed Court - it was part of their Guerlain sample collection. I'd had a rather rough day at work and thought I'd try one of my new samples as a pick me up. After a drop on my wrist, the perfume immediately began living up to its name, "After the Rain." It lifted my heart and spirit, and really felt like its name, the sun breaking through storm clouds. Here in Colorado, the air is really dry. Anytime we get rain, you can smell it in the air and it intensifies the smell of the flowers in your garden. AL'O captures that freshness without being one of those single note perfumes that go by the name of "dirt" or "grass." The scent manages to be light and yet complex - a truly difficult balance which Guerlain carried out beautifully. The dry down for the parfum strength was nothing short of amazing. It's the warm of sun in the air after it rains, slightly earthy (I think that's the iris coming through). There was a hint of powder, but nothing remotely in the "old lady, mom's make up drawer" smell. I love the way this melded with my skin. The sillage, even in the parfum, was minimal - though that could have been because I was stingy with my sample. In short, this is purely lovely.

    I wrote Guerlain and asked a couple of questions; when I get any answers I'll post them. Specifically, I wanted to know if they really didn't export Apres L'Ondee to the States because of low demand here (hoping that the more emails they get asking the question, maybe that'd help change their mind...) I also asked if there were any plans to bring it back in either an EDP or parfum, even as a limited edition.

    I've read your reviews that say the EDT doesn't last very long, so I'm curious to see how that'd work on me. I'm thinking that if I use a non-scented moisterizer it may help the scent hold longer.

    Has anyone tried Dans Tes Bras? Maurice Roucel concocted it and gives credit to Apres L'Ondee for part of its inspiration. Just wondering, since AL'O is so hard to find, and even then in just the EDT, if this would be anything close to it.

    19 August, 2009

    jennster's avatar

    United States United States

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    Words cannot describe how much I love this scent. Being a newbie to more refined (read:niche and higher end) I will not attempt to describe the subtle nuances and notes. What I can tell you is it is a little sweet and powdery without being overwhelming. It is gentle and refined. It is soothing with a flawless transition between the top mid and base notes. Many fragrances give me a headache and make me nauseous so I was so relieved that this wonderful scent did not. I'm in love and will get a FB as soon as is humanly possible.

    19 April, 2009

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