Reviews of Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune by Guerlain

    Find out more about Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune by Guerlain in the Basenotes Fragrance Directory


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    Way Off Scenter's avatar

    United States United States

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    Genre: Citrus

    Grapefruit is tough to manage as anything beyond a transient,
    refreshing top note. The same tart acidity that makes grapefruit so
    pleasantly brisk can smell outright sour on longer exposure. Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune and Czech & Speake's Citrus Paradisi are the only two pleasing grapefruit-centered fragrances I know, and they succeed
    through utterly opposed strategies. Where Citrus Paradisi makes a
    virtue out of grapefruit's bitter/sour profile by setting it in an
    outrageously animalic arrangement of civet and woods, the Guerlain rounds out its tart citrus with a cheerful, sweet fruity floral accord. There is real danger in Guerlain's ploy: the composition could easily have been too sweet, in the clichéd manner of shampoo formulae or mass market fragrances for pre-teens. In the event, Guerlain got it exactly right. The balance of sweet and tart is
    perfect, and the result renders grapefruit exotic and tropical,
    banishing the stigma of diet fads and nursing home breakfasts.

    The volatile citrus can't of course hold up for all that long, but it
    projects well, with plenty of sillage, while it lasts. The drydown,
    which arrives after an hour two, is a skin scent of transparent rose,
    very soft patchouli, delicate, dry vanilla, and warm, clean musk. It
    may pass all too quickly, but it comes in a big bottle and it doesn't
    cost a fortune.

    08 June, 2014 (Last Edited: 12 June, 2014)

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    Didn't work for me at all

    The grapefruit in this turned to a sour ammonia note on my skin, followed by the patchouli in the drydown that just made me smell unwashed. It lasted for a solid 5 hours, but there wasn't a time during that period that it smelled as I'd hoped. This isn't the fault of the fragrance--a lot of citruses turn strange on me--but it's something to be aware of, as I've heard others mention the same issue.

    Pros: Long wearing, nice sillage
    Cons: Grapefruit turned sour on me"

    16 October, 2013

    Mrs Purple's avatar



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    Loved this when I first smelt it and I still do. On my second bottle and will be getting another when this one's finished.

    I find that spraying it on a scarf seems to prolong my ability to smell it throughout the day and I then get the different levels whenever I subsequently wear it.

    I'm a sucker for any grapefruit fragrance :)

    28 March, 2013

    odioustoilet's avatar

    Antarctica Antarctica

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    It's made a bit more masculine by it's non citrus notes like cassia.

    Good life on the skin.

    Worth trying a mini of this which are all over ebay.

    02 March, 2013

    magali's avatar

    Ireland Ireland

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    Liked it a lot then and still like it now almost 15 years later. Unlike Cristalle Eau Verte which is pretty linear, Pamplelune really is zesty! I agree that there is a slight sour note like sweat in it but I actually like it better that way. Probably the neroli. It's tangy, bitter and sharp like citrus peel. Not just for summer. Would probably work better than any vitamin C tablet to combat the winter blues.

    23 August, 2012

    iivanita's avatar

    Croatia Croatia

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    have nothing more to say but i find it addictive, since i have homage , ok its not that type of quality BUT......its perfect citrusy smell! longlasting, at first bitter , louder, later more sweet. great value for money

    29 March, 2012

    bokaba's avatar

    United States United States

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    Not horrible, but not up my alley so to speak. Among the Guerlain Allegorica series, Pamplelune is probably the best. The allegorica series is meant to tell an story through imagery--hence the name allegory. I suppose they each tell a brief and subtle story about some seasonal beauty or another spending spring on the wind-swept fields of Provence or something like that...The allegorica series, as one of Guerlains newer fragrances, lacks originality and traditional craft and uses inferior ingredients to boot. The grapefruit here is good, but the florals and blackcurrant are too much.

    17 November, 2011

    Sadie's avatar

    United States United States

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    I was really looking forward to receiving my bottle of this - only to learn that I can not wear it. I adore using grapefruit shower gels, very emotionally uplifting! I was hoping that the fragrance would have the same effect. Alas, after wearing it for around 5-10 minutes something happens that adds a nasty "off" note that completely ruins the scent event. The off note is so persistent that my only choice is to scrub it off.

    I chalk it up to my "Guerlain curse". There seems to be NO Guerlain scent that I can wear. Not Shalimar, not Samsara, and now neither of the Aqua Allegorias that I have tried. The only one that I'm still willing to try is Jicky - if I can find a vintage bottle in my price range.

    23 September, 2011

    Oh_Hedgehog's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    The vivid, uncluttered delight of Pamplelune makes me think of a big orange Gerbera. Mathilde Laurent has paired a tart and mildly sulfurous grapefruit note with a jammy, mellow blackcurrant, and their holding hands with wide-eyed contentedness is an effect which lingers on even into the sweet and musky patchouli drydown. To be spritzed with abandon.

    26 August, 2011

    Aredore's avatar

    United States United States

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    I truly love this grapefruit. Where most citruses have a candied feel to them, AAPamplelune accurately renders the very specific smell of the fresh white rind, with just enough musky sweet undertone to keep it interesting.

    26 June, 2011

    missjojo's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    A truly divine grapefruit fragrance. It is not at all cloying, it's fresh and summery and sharp and tangy and yet very classy. My favourite citrus of all, onto my 4th 100ml bottle!

    08 June, 2011

    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Grapefruit is very hard to pull off in perfumery -- it can turn rank quite quickly if not careful. This is the best rendition I know and is simply wonderful -- very long lasting on me, which also surprised me.

    06 June, 2011

    PigeonMurderer's avatar

    Finland Finland

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    One the best citrus fragrances I have ever tried. It's natual, refreshingly aromatic grapefruit that can also be found at a very reasonable price.

    AA Pamplelune smells alot like a hugely favoured Finnish drink called Original Long Drink, which is a fermented alcohol drink made of grapefruits and gin.

    23 March, 2011

    alfarom's avatar

    Italy Italy

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    I purchased Pumplelune in a big department store where they were selling a lot of superknown perfumes for $10 and $20 because their original boxes had been damaged in a warehouse accident. Tones of "unboxed" scents throwed in big baskets for you to choose. A funny picture of dozens of people fighting to get their own bottle of the latest Gucci or Dolce & Gabbana release for $10. While I was looking at all this as if were civil war or maybe a supermarket assault after a cataclism, I saw 2 unattended bottles on a side. I got closer to them and realized they were Guerlain's Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune and Herba Fresca. I rapidly grabbed them both and rushed to the counter. I wasn't expecting too much and actually I wasn't so curiosus about them, but for $20 I gave them a chance.

    Pamplelune is nice. Very realistic in the opening with a big dose of tart freshly squeezed Grapefruit joined by bitter green leaves. It turns rapidly sweeter and a bit warmer with clean musk, vanilla and "shy" patchouli. Unpretentious and honest. I won't consider it as an office fragrance but I'll surely enjoy it in the summer after a day of work and a stone-cold shower.

    17 March, 2011 (Last Edited: 04 April, 2011)

    kayley123's avatar

    United States United States

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    I like this pretty well--it is VERY sour on me though--truly a grapefruit smell and not sweetened grapefruit, either! I admire how realistic it smells, but the tartness and sourness is a bit overpowering. It smells like I just peeled a grapefruit with my fingers. Have to be a little careful because it is easy to overdose on it. Still, I enjoy it if I only spritz lightly.

    05 February, 2011

    Cse's avatar

    Germany Germany

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    Wonderful, fresh but elegant, Citrus and warm, great for summer!

    13 August, 2010

    Mimi Gardenia's avatar

    United States United States

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    Absolute delight. Grapefruit, slightly tart married perfectly with vanilla . Moderately sweet ,very little patchouli. Well ,Guerlain know how to do citrus + vanilla ! Very sniffable but not very tenacious.

    20th June, 2010

    Wendie's avatar

    United States United States

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    At first spritz, how pleasantly refreshing to find a true grapefruit, sans anything overly sweet. Just a crisp refreshing jolt of sunshine and cleanliness. Like crisp linens dancing on the line. Grapefruit as in many true natural fragrances is very difficult to reproduce well enough to fool the nose.
    Rose, vetiver, and lavender I find are rather hard to be true to as well. This gift by Guerlain is just that, a gift. To comment on the sourness, yes, I must admit it is there, but then again, this is a frag. that is shooting to be as true a replication of something organic as possible, and well, as for that, we are also organic. Though the reason fragrances came about was to mask this problem. Not sure how this issue can be avoided, without loosing the truth of the Pamplelune. I know how you fell though, yes, it is disconcerting when you are trying to smell as fresh,crisp and clean as a late summer breeze, when the winds of change blow by and you begin wonder if this was the best choice of fragrance for that sleeveless gown at cousin Ceilia's wedding...???

    T I do say I have had to finally agree with the unfortunate sour, almost shockingly unpleasant undertones of how shall we say, " Eau de Bathe, s'il voussoirs plait! ".

    07 June, 2010

    Jean Patou Fan's avatar



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    Though I was expecting Pampelune to be a rather ordinary citrus fragrance, I was very surprised by how much I like. The expected grapefruit and lemon notes are there, but they are joined by sweet pineapple sorbet and vanilla notes, which temper and compliment the sharp citrus perfectly.

    Pampelune is perfect for warm weather, and the only Aqua Allegoria I would buy.

    29 March, 2010

    NillaGoon's avatar

    United States United States

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    Gorgeous juicy, sharp, holographic, flawless grapefruit to start with, but it only lasts 20 minutes or so. The aftermath is powdery-vanillic and smells like extract of grandmother. The grapefruit note disappears completely. As much as I love the grapefruit blast, the drydown is just a bit too feminine and too non-grapefruity for me.

    25 October, 2009

    msleslie's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    This is very pretty and light. The grapefruit is refreshing, and the faint floral element is delicate. I don't get anything sour or body-odorish at any point, as reported by others, thank goodness. This is my favorite Aqua Allegoria.

    13 October, 2009

    JessicaGrace's avatar

    United States United States

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    I desperately want to give this a thumbs up, because the opening is so delicious. Lovely, bright, mouth-watering grapefruit -- and I love grapefruit in any manifestation. It stays grapefruit. More grapefruit. Still grapefruit. And then it's gone. I get a faint, faint whiff of the sourness some people read as B.O. but by then it's pretty much completely vanished. All this is under an hour. I really don't have the patience to re-apply every 40 minutes, so won't be purchasing. In the meantime, I'll enjoy the all-too fleeting pleasure that my sample can give me.

    13 July, 2009

    Aznavour's avatar

    United States United States

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    Fun grapefruit fragrance with a vanilla drydown that's fun without being overly-flirty. Good for daytime wear; very refreshing. Doesn't last terribly long, but that's fine.

    04 December, 2008

    rach2jlc's avatar

    United States United States

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    Only Guerlain could take a "safe" citrus like grapefruit and make it both fascinating and a little dangerous. This one starts off VERY sharp and softens a bit on the drydown. BUT, as it keeps going, the patchouli comes through and it becomes citrus with some definite funk thrown in for good measure. It never quite gets into the "dirty" territory of something like Malle Bigarade Concentree (another Citrus stinker I love!), but it definitely falls into the same family of citrus scents that "you don't take home to mother."

    A wonderful addition in summer, but a unique one with depth in winter, too. I love it and find that along with Winter Delice it is my favorite of the Aqua Allegoria line.

    28 November, 2008

    SirSlarty's avatar

    United States United States

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    Florals and grapefruit? Wow, this is uplifting. I wear this all the time in the summer if I didn't like ck One Summer so much.

    13 November, 2008

    ubuandibeme's avatar

    United States United States

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    This is a fairly unique take on citrus! I adore the grapefruit/floral blend here because the grapefruit remains the star, even as the rest of this bright, fruity composition reveals itself! As it wears on my skin, I'm reminded of Ralph Lauren's Pure Turquoise - I believe it's due to the patchouli mixed with brighter topnotes...mmm it's good. Funny too, how the grapefruit notes are described as 'acidulous', because there is a definite acidic tone, which adds to the realistic impression of the grapefruit. For a lighter fragrance, the lasting power of AAPamplelune is very good, and somewhat unexpected. I'm not sure if I'd buy the full sized bottle, but I do have a mini that suits my citrus needs just fine.

    03 November, 2008

    tessera's avatar

    United States United States

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    Smells like sharp breakfast grapefruit on me and cat pee on my sister. Nothing here that works on either of us.

    12 October, 2008

    misseuropa's avatar

    United States United States

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    All of the elements of this are nice... the grapefruit is citrusy, (though not as sharp as I like), and the vanilla and patchouli are both present, pleasant, and accounted for. I love grapefruit/citrus, vanilla, and patchouli, separately and in MOST combinations, but do not enjoy the combination of grapefrut and patchouli together on my skin. The the long middle portion of Pamplelune smells like a lighter version of Angel's vanilla/patchouli sweetness, but without the overwhelming qualities that makes people love it or hate it, so it might be a nice lighter alternative to it.

    06 September, 2008

    lizzie_j's avatar

    United States United States

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    Where is the LOVE? This used to be my favorite Aqua Allegoria, and my favorite grapefruit. Now it got this sharp, bitterness that I suddently dislike, and that persists for hours. Same fragrance, different brain? Is this what to expect from menopause? Good grief. I can't give it a negative because I used to love it so. Neutral it is.

    26 August, 2008

    Fiorello's avatar

    United States United States

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    Pamplelune is deceptively simple, persistent and wonderfully naughty. I was all over its grapefruit and slight floral accord until the vanilla evinced itself about three hours into the drydown. Vanilla is a deal killer for me. Too bad, I really, really loved the opening and heart notes.

    13 July, 2008

    Showing 1 to 30 of 52.