Reviews of Vetiver by Guerlain

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    Kaern's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    The benchmark for all who followed. Smells slightly different 15 years on since I first purchased -- a bit less cosy and friendly, but it still has that honest smell of the root of this grass, albeit touched up with some tobacco. It's a close run thing between this and Lubin's for my favourite fresh woody vetiver, but who cares -- they are both wonderful.

    23 August, 2010

    alvinnjoinerIV's avatar

    Philippine Philippine

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    the habit rouge bottle smelled like cannabis, which i thought awesome. the frosted bottle smells like carolina herrera 212 for men. thumb up for the vintage version.

    19 August, 2010 (Last Edited: 02 February, 2011)

    PerfumeCollector's avatar

    United States United States

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    This fragrance used to be perfection in a bottle, the old formulation was, by far, my favorite perfume of all times, and to me, it will never be surpassed, by none, ever. The reformulated scent is just the shadow of the original, but still is one of the best out there, now is not my absolute favorite, but still hangs in the best 5 category. Other Vetiver perfumes have also been reformulated but they really screw the perfume, like Vetiver from Carven, used to be really good, but now it is a total disgrace to its name. So I am thankful that Guerlain, although could not mantain the quality of the original, at least recreated something that is still extremely good

    17 August, 2010

    Oviatt's avatar

    United States United States

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    I was a precocious lad; my first scent in the early seventies wasn't by Jovan or Shulton. It was Guerlain's Vetiver that I picked out myself. That was the original formulation and even though I loved it and used the whole bottle, I never replaced it (moving on to Dunhill's wonderful Blend 30). For some reason, it smelled great but never smelled like me. Maybe I just wasn't used to wearing fragrance (fine French ones, anyway). Since then, I have worn several other Guerlain scents, in fact consider Heritage to be a signature scent, but I have never returned to Vetiver, through its reformulations....

    Until now. I recently bought a bottle of the 1988 Eau de Toilette and I must say, it is wonderful.

    It has all of the freshness and depth that I remember plus an oddly smokey, oily, wet note that I did not recall smelling all of those years ago. Many posters here call it the perfect summer scent. I don't see it as the perfect summer scent the way Imperiale or Eau du Coq are, for example. It may just be a perfect scent for all seasons, full stop. This in the fall would be wonderful, with its nutmeg and tobacco. Now it smells very much like me and has (re)joined my collection for good.

    07 July, 2010

    sgmg10's avatar



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    I read and saw vey positive reviews so when guerlain shop at palazzo the lady said you cant spray it only smell the cap ok hmm smell fresh at first so i bought it then when home so excited spray it on wow what an awful smell pine neddles and lime and lavender i have a headache now the worst smell ever cant get the smell of me
    just wasted $ 100 on this might as well buy a royal pine tree little airfresher smells the same for only 2.49 a pack sorry guys for the bad review i will stick to tom ford tobacco vanille and tom ford by tom ford.

    03 July, 2010

    MOONB's avatar

    United States United States

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    Vetiver by Guerlain is the definition of a classic traditional vetiver for men. Lemon, vetiver, touches of tobacco and woods in the base. Not very complicated, not easy to dislike. Something about the chemical composition of this fragrance bothers my sinuses a bit, but not enough to prevent me from wearing it. I don't think any vetiver will ever blow me away, and this one certainly doesn't (I prefer the more contemporary-smelling Original Vetiver by Creed), but it's pleasant enough, and just the thing for a hot summer day. Beware of those who get a "bugspray" vibe from this, however - they may be on to something there.

    02 July, 2010 (Last Edited: 20th December, 2010)

    Esquire's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    Tried this stuff once but it's not for me, it reeks of british medical vapour inhalations. I think it's over rated.

    11th June, 2010

    actiasluna's avatar

    United States United States

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    Guerlain Vetiver is one of my all-time favorite scents. I have both the new and older formulations, and find myself reaching for both of them quite often. But the new formulation IS different. I feel that the reformulation has a little less balance than the vintage, a little bit more citrus forward in the top, and skewed so that the nutmeg note comes on stronger than the rest of the spice. Perhaps a tweak to meet the current trend toward FRESH and CITRUS... Still, the reformulation is a great hot weather scent as it is a little "fresher"... but the vintage formulation is the classic grassy, spicy, woody, slightly humusy/earthy vetiver.

    A side note about the GV scented all-over shampoo: I wish I knew where I could find an endless source of the old formulation's all-over shampoo, as it is the best product I've ever used on my hair and skin... it smells amazing and my hair is so shiny when I use it... I purchased the reformulation version which is quite different, both in smell and in how well it works... the new formulation is harsh and dries my skin and hair, whereas the old formulation was, well, perfect.

    06 June, 2010

    Purveyor of fine scents's avatar



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    Smells like most retirement homes. Maybe I'll like it in 20 years.

    02 June, 2010

    Turko's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    Barber shop fragrance that is very common on most men's after shave. Refined scent on men over 40 years of age but this might not appeal to today's generation since the smell is quite dated.

    24 May, 2010

    shamu1's avatar

    United States United States

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    About ten years ago I had a small bottle of Guerlain’s Vetiver. I loved it and used up the bottle, but I didn’t replenish it. For years since then I’ve been spraying my hand with this from testers I’ve picked up in stores, always assuming Guerlain would never discontinue this and that I could always get another bottle at any time. I finally decided a few days ago to buy another bottle, this time the giant 4.2 oz. bottle.

    I can’t believe I’ve been without this amazing fragrance for so long.

    Forget about the fact that Guerlain reformulated this. It doesn’t matter. We’re talking about the best vetiver fragrance in the world here. So what if doesn’t smell dark, smoky, earthy, or contain any other gimmicks that niche firms like to throw in their fragrances? Guerlain’s Vetiver is great for the same reason Azzaro Pour Homme is so great: it is a perfectly balanced fragrance.

    As in any true vetiver fragrance, Guerlain’s vetiver note is the star of the show, but it is blended with citrus, wood, spice, pepper and tobacco notes in such a way that they add color and complexity to the fragrance while simultaneously acting as a buttress to the main vetiver note. These supporting notes blend with the main vetiver note seamlessly while never overpowering the vetiver; rather they enhance the vetiver’s best qualities. Only truly great perfumes acheive this kind of perfect balance. Guerlain’s Vetiver demonstrates what true perfume artistry is all about, making most other perfumes smell like they were thrown together by amateur hacks.

    Guerlain Vetiver is truly a masterpiece and is the pinnacle of masculine elegance. It is a scent that will separate you as a man among boys. Wear this proudly and often, and show the rest of the world how real perfumers work their magic.

    My rating: 10/10

    24 April, 2010 (Last Edited: 29 April, 2010)

    Zgb's avatar

    Croatia Croatia

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    What a beautiful classic creation. Masculine and fresh, elegant and kind. Love it! BUT, there's this huge BUT, I simply can't see myself wearing it. I just can't pull it off and that's that.

    17 April, 2010 (Last Edited: 28 December, 2013)

    smh78's avatar

    United States United States

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    This gorgeous cologne has to be the holy grail of men's woody fragrances. I cannot get enough of it. It smells like cedar, but a cedar in heaven, surrounded by ferns and fragrant oriental spices. I really don't think it could be improved. Perfect balance, seemingly simple, yet so evocative and handsome. I imagine green forest, fresh and moist, with moss growing on craggy rocks. It is twilight, it has just finished raining, and all the leaves of the woodland plants have been bruised ever so slightly, and they all give off an incredible scent.

    When I lived in Montana, I used to go with my friends to this natural hot spring out in a cedar forest. We would have to hike in a mile or so, often through wet snow, to get to a miraculous place, where hot water bubbled out of the side of a mountain and cascaded into a green/blue river. You could sit in this river an remain warm in a little pool of water from the hot spring. It was truly heaven, and it smelled humid and musky and herbaceous and cedary just like Vetiver.

    Guerlain is right on the money, as usual here. This does not strike me as formal or old fashioned, although it does have a certain classical structure. It is too good to be described as even a woody scent, since it is also a dirt fragrance and a spice fragrance. If Merlin wore cologne, this is what he would wear. It is mysterious, dark, and intensely natural. Amazing!

    08 April, 2010

    Olfactor's avatar

    United States United States

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    In a word: PERFECT!

    Arguably one of the best men's frags ever.

    06 April, 2010

    Nihilist's avatar



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    i believe my grandfather wore this, and im twenty seven. i believe the tobacco note is the giveaway here. in short, this isnt going to stoke the fires of practically anyone whos fire still burns.

    the scent itself is great, and lasts on me. its pleasant and absolutly masculine, so if youre in a situation composed mostly of men, this is reachable. no qualms about it being very enjoyable and worth it spray for spray.

    but this isnt one you wear to hook up or on a date. with that caveat, thumbs up.

    04 April, 2010

    credence's avatar



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    I was amazed with the opening notes of this fragrance but 15 minutes later this soapy accord comes into play and lasts for hours. If you like the smell of traditional white soap accompanied by citrus notes , here you go: Guerlain Vetiver.

    27 March, 2010

    ricardohmedina's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    Vetiver by Guerlain is a wonderful scent. The inicial citrus and sharp openning gives space for a woody, grassy and spiced base. Refreshing and warm at the same time, Vetiver is one of the best fragrances I have in my wardrobe. Great longevity and silage.

    25 March, 2010 (Last Edited: 09 April, 2010)

    Bigsly's avatar

    United States United States

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    I'm not sure if I have the reformulation or not. I didn't get any major tobacco presence, but there is a note that seems too strong or out of place. Perhaps, as another reviewer suggested, it is nutmeg. Anyway, I found this to be very similar to Vetiver de Puig, except that this one is a bit simpler and doesn't have the aldehydic "brightness" of VdP, which I don't like. While I don't find anything special about this one, I wouldn't mind it as a "change of pace" fragrance. It's a pleasant blend with just enough dynamism to make it at least worth having a decant of, if not a full bottle. Longevity seems good, though sillage seems mediocre.

    17 March, 2010

    StylinLA's avatar

    United States United States

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    Well, maybe it will grow on me. Such a classic but it's ever so weak on me.
    I have applied it multiple times on the same day and like most Guerlains on me, I forget what frag I'm wearing an hour after I put it on.

    If subtle is what you shoot for, give this one a go. It's very well crafted and couldn't be a safer scent. Perfect scent for a job interview since the rule of thumb is to wear none.

    14 March, 2010

    holyzoo's avatar

    United States United States

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    Yes, it's green and invigorating, but I just can't get over the old school vibe of it. Creed's Original Vetiver is younger at heart to me, but doesn't last as long. Then recently I discovered Tom Ford's Grey Vetiver which is now the preferred vetiver and has an incredible longevity as well. Grey Vetiver is more citrusy for sure, but ultimately has a range from young upwardly mobile guy in his early 20s, to a mature well dressed gentleman who knows how to enjoy life and not get too uptight. Guerlain's just feels like it's stuck in the past.

    05 March, 2010

    cheekyhamsta's avatar

    United Kingdom United Kingdom

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    I had the older EDT incarnation of this – deep golden liquid in a simple elegant bottle with a gold lid and a square green label. Although it has undoubted appeal, reminding me much of a fragrantly smoky/earthy Middle Eastern perfume with a strong note of nutmeg, I also think it’s overrated by many on this website. It smells a bit old fashioned to me but also I concede quite sophisticated – and might match a country squire or even Sherlock Holmes in a tweed attire. Not bad but certainly not an essential buy IMO. Upper echelons of neutral at best from me.

    01st March, 2010 (Last Edited: 27 October, 2012)

    Pleski's avatar

    Australia Australia

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    As I live in a country with few orchards and even less cedar trees, I find this fragrance exotic. The distict leafy citrus and slightly bitter herb notes evoke images of well ordered French fields segmented by slightly untame hedges and herb patches, something like you'd see in Impressionist landscape paintings.

    I'd be a little uncomfortable wearing this as it evokes well-dressed European casualness which I don't aspire to, and still the smell intrigues me.

    12 February, 2010

    Tony T's avatar

    United States United States

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    i like it but not in love with it. i only own 2 vetiver's, this and azzaro's and find this more vibrant and radiant. full of grassy and earthy tones that please the senses, as everyday wear, but maybe not to the opposite sex. in the realms of eau sauvage by dior. very old scholl and gentlemen like. for the over 30 crowd for sure!!

    10th February, 2010 (Last Edited: 15 April, 2010)

    AMRA's avatar

    Brazil Brazil

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    The finest parfum of the world for my husband: leaves me wanting to bite and fill him with kisses and kisses. I love it.

    07 February, 2010

    michailG's avatar



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    Olfactory, extraordinary, classic vetiver. It is the standard for vetiver fragrances to come. It lasts for hours and it is some time after application that it gives me the greatest pleasure. One think I find tough to measure is the strength of it. I like it on me but sometimes I am afraid it is overpowering for others around. So be careful not to apply too much.

    02 February, 2010

    Late-Hit's avatar

    United States United States

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    Hmmm. Not what I expected at all. The lemony opening is both strong and enduring. But what really startled me was the first thing that I thought of... Emeraude! Kind of weird, but even though the drydown of Vetiver is clearly more tobacco spicy and less powdery than Emeraude, there is a resemblence in there somewhere. Yes, and they're both green, too!

    Of course, 1961 was a long time ago. But back then Emeraude was huge , and so it makes me wonder if somewhere lost in space and time there once was a fragrance under development called 'Emeraude pour Homme' that ended up being named 'Vetiver' ' instead. But I like it (and Emeraude) and will gladly give Vetiver two thumbs up.

    12 January, 2010

    bbBD's avatar

    United States United States

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    With so many excellent reviews preceding mine what can I really add? As you've figured out, Guerlain Vetiver is a blend of citrus, tobacco, and vetiver. Not the strongest vetiver for those of you who like pungency or earthiness, but excellent for anywhere-anytime use.

    I will add the following tidbit: if you can find vintage Guerlain Vetiver EDC grab it! It's quite different from today's formula with a distinct, bracing vetiver note and only dashes of citrus and tobacco in the background. Don't let the 'edc' concentration scare you off - it's stronger then today's EdT.

    04 January, 2010

    Ayala's avatar

    Canada Canada

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    This is a vetiver that is seemingly simple and gives vetiver a clean, elegant and citrusy interpretation. But when noticing the unfolding of the different elements it reveals interesting layers of simple yet surprising combinations.

    Citrus in the initial inhale turns into a peppery heart of nutmeg absolute, revealing the magic of this precious spice, which is the most supreme in this type of distillation, just as the freshly grated nuts. Pepper absolute is also present but to a lesser extend – it’s the luxury of nutmeg that is the star of the show.

    A mysterious floral presence is secretly woven into the heart as well. It took me a while to place the jasminoidal floralcy and the almost candy-like fruitiness of orange blossom. It is only there to bond between the otherwise dry and somewhat eccentric notes, and you’ll notice it only if you lend an alert ear to it’s quite song.

    The supporting base notes are of almost equal earthiness to that of vetiver – the infamous preciousness of aged patchouli, alluring as an adventure into closet full of clean woolen shawls. Cured tobacco leaves accentuate the dryness of vetiver, while tonka bean adds sweetness as well as a pipe tobacco suggestion. The base accord and dry down has a suave, elegant presence of palse suede leather and the smoothness of burnished woods along with that sweet and tart earthiness of vetiver that usually shows up only later into its dry down, once all the sharpness has dissipated.

    These notes do not come one after the other in a procession; rather, they are dynamic and interactive, like a group of sea mammals surfacing out of the water for a breath in alternating moments, and at the end of only the vetiver sticks around and continues to play with the patchouli, tonka and tobacco which stays behind to keep it company.

    Despite of its relative simplicity and innocent, almost non-ambitious treatment of vetiver. Vetiver by Guerlain is now a classic. It’s simplicity is both timeless and charming. If you love vetiver, you must try Guerlain’s interpretation. I haven’t tried all the vetiver fragrances there are in the entire world yet, but this won my heart instantly.

    07 December, 2009

    cerulean's avatar

    United States United States

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    It's all true. This is a wonderful classic scent and it's a horrible gagging thing. Though they say the scent was not changed in the 2000 re-design, it was. If you can find it in the pre-re-design version, you'll likely love it. Post-2000 version, you *will* be running to the sink trying to wash it off before you hurl. I'm getting kind of grey myself, but even for me the new version evokes a powdery visit to granny's underwear drawer. Hideous.

    01st December, 2009

    tanto's avatar

    United States United States

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    Vetiver is an old classic that never goes out of style. It always smells fresh and clean on any guy. I like it because it blends well with my body chemistry being I'm a swarthy, hairy guy, and can sweat very easily. It keeps me smelling fresh all day long and I never get a headache from Vetiver. My wife uses it sometimes too because she just loves the freshness it has to it.

    29 November, 2009 (Last Edited: 16 March, 2010)

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