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  1. #1
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    Default Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    The fragrance released to celebrate Guerlain's 180th year anniversary, 180 Ans de Creation has been discussed here before, but it's increasingly hard to find that thread, so I thought I'd post a new one.

    I've been wearing this from a sample numerous times now (I received a sample as a birthday present last year, from a friend) and as a fan of Guerlain scents in general - this one took me several months to process.

    A creamy, orange (creamsicle?) top note is the first accord that grabs my nose - the tiniest bit waxy and then in a few minutes a bit more citrus prominence takes over and pulls me along a slide show of very familiar Guerlain accords. There are many fragrances out there, that in style exemplify the Guerlain style - to a point. When I smell some of them, it's like looking at someone from the back (walking in a crowd) and being certain that it's someone I know, only to have the person turn to face me and see that it is a stranger! Of course, wearing 180, I felt like this the entire time. It smells like so many different parts of Guerlain, that in actuality it does not smell like a new creation at all.

    Perhaps this was Guerlain's reason for releasing this as a non-commercial gift fragrance (in June 2008), for loyal customers and industry insiders. Perhaps someone who'd never smelled a Guerlain scent for many years and always thought of them as a line that someone else wore, would smell it and say, 'Oh, this is what Guerlain smells like? Nice..!' The scent is easy to like, not in the least bit challenging & very sweet - something that many scents in Sephora aspire to be. Yes, the accords are rich and satisfying - they don't smell synthetic (even if they are) and the general feeling is one of luxurious French perfumery (fine ingredients, exclusivity and rich, solid packaging) - still...it is not unique.

    I can't help but think: when would I wear this? That got me to thinking that maybe 180 was not created for daily use, but rather as a marketing tool for Guerlain. Sort of a scent halfway between something they'd pipe into the ventilation system at a Guerlain VIP party and something sitting in a lab somewhere that JP Guerlain (or T. Wasser or Delacourte) smelled once and said, 'Oh wait...! This one has potential...save this for us to use later!'

    I'd love to read more comments from those of you who've smelled/worn this one.
    Last edited by mikeperez23; 14th March 2010 at 05:20 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Hmm... This new thread made me think of 180 Ans de Création again. I don't remember exactly when I wore it last.

    I just sprayed a little on my hand. My SotD today is Tonka Impériale, which makes an interesting contrast and foil for 180 Ans.

    The officially released notes: Grapefruit, Bergamot, Pink Peppercorns, Jasmine, Orange Blossom, Tonka Beans, Musk, Vetiver, Amber-Toned Accord, Vanilla

    Yes, definitely bergamot in the top, with hints of grapefruit and pink peppercorns. Jasmine and orange blossom poking through just a bit after a couple of minutes of pure top notes. Tonka, amber, vanilla: there's the Guerlinade. Come to think of it, the vetiver seems to be a delayed entrance, and with the musk, it has a slightly powdery bent to it. Yes, this is subtle after all, and the powder and vetiver seem to be in a strange sort of stand-off. A powdery, woody floriental? That would be the closest genre description. Definitely sweet, too — probably too sweet for most American guys. Something catchy, slightly animalic, but not the musk, which is vegetal or a very good synthetic. Sillage is not outstanding, and as I recall, the longevity is only moderate, though I'll have to wait a bit to make a judgment on that score. Sweeter as it goes on, it has lost some of its subtlety; the vetiver has failed to stem the tide of ambery oriental waves crashing on the shore. Perhaps it slightly recovers its edgy vetiver facet toward the remote drydown.

    Nice, beautiful, rich; not revolutionary or groundbreaking. A recopilación (the Spanish might say), a "rolling-up into one," of all things Guerlain, smoothed out, evened out: like a slightly corrected timeline of events where there is really nothing to hide, but only a few random elements to adjust or reconcile in order to present some seamless ideal of unity that really isn't there. How could one really sum up Guerlain in only one perfume, and make that work together? Too many outliers, too many extreme cases, to make a convincing fit to the normal curve. Guerlain is extraordinary after all, nothing "normal" in its dimensions.

    I can see that this might not make a commercial success. Perhaps it is just too concerned to speak to a refined elite with impossibly high taste. It would overwhelm the unsuspecting — anybody but a runway model or a jaded, world-weary aristocrat. I can only wear it in the most forgiving circumstances, such as, when giving a party in my own home, I can afford to stand out most egregiously from the crowd, as the slightly weird host of the whole bash. I can't see myself in this at work, or even at my very tolerant, offbeat choir dates at church, where even I can be outdone by the other aesthetes.

    180 Ans... A hothouse flower, an exotic bloom, meant for none but the occasional connoisseur who could say something like, "Hmm... reminds me of that thingie that blooms only once a year in the middle of a tropical jungle. I smelt it once, in New Guinea headhunter country, back in '74. Remarkable." So beautiful as to be nearly impossible — at the very least, hard to believe.
    Last edited by JaimeB; 23rd February 2010 at 12:18 AM.
    Yr good bud,

    JaimeB

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Very well put Jaime - thanks.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I have been wearing 180 Ans lately, and I adore it!
    I think Tonka Imperiale is sweeter. I don't find it too citrusy either, except for the first few minutes.
    I have worn it to the office and received several compliments.
    I also find it easy to wear. Other Guerlains are more challenging to me. I am not too experience with the Art de la Metiere fragrances. Iris Ganache did not sit well on my skin; Bois Armenie is nice. The Elixirs are very sweet, although I like three out of the four. 180 is very elegant, and I prefer it to the AdlM and Elixirs.
    Compared to the classics, I think the base dominates here and I don't see as much development as L'Heure Bleue, Mitsouko, or Vol de Nuit.
    Evenstar

  5. #5

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I've yet to smell this one. I'll have to purchase a decant... I'm a full blown Guerlain addict.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by arwen_elf View Post
    I have been wearing 180 Ans lately, and I adore it!
    I think Tonka Imperiale is sweeter. I don't find it too citrusy either, except for the first few minutes.
    I have worn it to the office and received several compliments.
    I also find it easy to wear. Other Guerlains are more challenging to me. I am not too experience with the Art de la Metiere fragrances. Iris Ganache did not sit well on my skin; Bois Armenie is nice. The Elixirs are very sweet, although I like three out of the four. 180 is very elegant, and I prefer it to the AdlM and Elixirs.
    Compared to the classics, I think the base dominates here and I don't see as much development as L'Heure Bleue, Mitsouko, or Vol de Nuit.
    I think your overall assessment is right. The L'Art et la Matière series has some good things in it. I especially like Angélique Noire, Bois d'Arménie, and the new Tonka Impériale; Cuir Beluga and Cruel Gardénia are all right; and I agree that Iris Ganache is less good than the others, with something out of balance in that, to me. The Elixirs Charnels series, I think, is generally lower quality than L'Art et la Matière series, less complex and not so good materials; it smells like there are more synthetics in the Elixirs, to my nose. Although I have all four, I don't wear them much. Too gourmand for me, I guess.

    I'm glad you can comfortably wear 180 Ans, but then, I would expect that a woman could carry that one off better than a man. It's not that it's impossible for a blasé dude to flaunt it, but it's just so haute couture — do you know what I mean? Anyway, as art, it's above both L'Art et la Matière and Les Elixirs Charnels, in my opinion.
    Last edited by JaimeB; 23rd February 2010 at 06:22 AM.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    JaimeB, I agree with you on the best of L'Art et la Matière. Bois d'Armenie was the first one I actually found myself thinking about a lot. That's usually a sign to me that it may be time to purchase (which I subsequently did after several months). I really have warmed up to Cuir Beluga. I was iffy on it at first. I'm glad I was able to get a nice sized sample of it to give it a fair share. It may actually warrant a purchase in the future. Angelique Noir was very suprising upon first sniff. I wasn't expecting the top notes to be so bell-like and high pitched. After the initial shock wore off, I really enjoyed not only the rest of the development, but also the top notes which before caused me to almost gasp. Now I just have to smell Tonka Imperiale and the title of this thread and I can plan on working extra hours for many months to come in order to purchase them all.
    Last edited by mrclmind; 23rd February 2010 at 07:00 AM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I have a large decant 20mls of 180 Ans. The first time I sprayed I thought, oh classic Guerlain floral the mix that is L'Heure Bleu, Apres L'Ondee going on. The the pink peppercorn kicked and it morphed into a modern fragrance powdery warm and musky. For me its a bridge an experience to move from classic Guerlains into the modern trends.
    DONNA

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by JaimeB View Post
    ...I'm glad you can comfortably wear 180 Ans, but then, I would expect that a woman could carry that one off better than a man. It's not that it's impossible for a blasé dude to flaunt it, but it's just so haute couture — do you know what I mean? Anyway, as art, it's above both L'Art et la Matière and Les Elixirs Charnels, in my opinion..
    Ditto what Jaime said. That constantly evolving buffet of Guerlain accords makes my head spin when I wear it - and the experience yesterday (when I posted this thread) was dizzying.

    Nonetheless, I'm sure this smells very sexy on a woman.

    And if you're saying, arwen, that Tonka Imperiale is even sweeter than this, that frightens me. Either Guerlain's are getting sweeter or my tastes are becoming drier. Or both.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Maybe I am a blasé dude, but I like it and gladly wear it anywhere.

    It's like a mixture of L'Heure Bleue and Shalimar. Kind of.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeperez23 View Post
    And if you're saying, arwen, that Tonka Imperiale is even sweeter than this, that frightens me. Either Guerlain's are getting sweeter or my tastes are becoming drier. Or both.
    Yes, I think Tonka Imperiale is sweeter than 180 Ans. However, the rosemary balances it very nicely. Actually my coment to Asha a few days ago was that although Tonka Imperiale is lovely, many men will not like the sweetness. If it is any consolation, it is not as sweet as some of the Charnels.
    Evenstar

  12. #12

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I wore the Tonka Imperiale yesterday--it was more unisex in the top to mid nodes, and powdery in the drydown. It is really like an old-fashioned shave cream smell (Old Spice), so I think that it can easily be worn by a man in the sense that tonka was traditionally worn by men. However, I think that with modern tastes, it will not be appreciated by average guys. It is far more fluffy and sweet than even Habit Rouge.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Thanks ladies. The words 'powder' always scare me but then again there are a handful of Guerlain's that are powdery that I love.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I find 180 special because of the striking citrus top - Guerlain has never before used a top that to me smells like preserved oranges. I think it's the mix of grapefruit and ambery notes. It smells like Shalimar on Cointreau to me . For the Tonka, I'm still a bit reserved. Yes, it's both more sweet and powdery than 180, which I like, powder is very much the Guerlain signature, but I find it just a tad dull like the rest of the Art+Matiere line...

  15. #15

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. G View Post
    I find 180 special because of the striking citrus top - Guerlain has never before used a top that to me smells like preserved oranges. I think it's the mix of grapefruit and ambery notes. It smells like Shalimar on Cointreau to me ....
    Shalimar on Cointreau? This has got me very interested, yum!

  16. #16

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I have a sample of 180 from a BN friend (wink), and I gave it a full wearing today. I actually did not like the opening top note very much--the orange is more of a mandarine note, and it has a sort of "baby aspirin" edge. I enjoyed it much more after this note faded, maybe about 20 minutes in. There is a lingering tartness throughout, which is perhaps a synthetic grapefruit. It is well placed, however, because the acidity keeps the fragrance from getting too sweet. There is a warm and pleasant incense note in the drydown which combines beautifully with mellow dark florals and the citrus fruit. In a way, it reminds me of the jammy, fruity but floral Dangerous Liaisons, but a bit deeper and more complex. Despite the incense note, I'd classify this one as more to the feminine side.
    Last edited by Asha; 25th February 2010 at 04:10 AM.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    xxxxx
    Last edited by mrclmind; 25th February 2010 at 06:20 PM.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I've been wearing my sample - thank you Tott - on and off for a few days. I can't make heads or tails out of it, but I'll try to say something intelligent about it. I see it as a gourmand, but one that mixes savory and sweet, like those salted caramel ice creams that are all the rage. The cherry/almond tonka accord is the main thing here; I smell some herbs de provence, orange blossom, all the classic Guerlain elements. But it doesn't feel like a finished fragrance - as there's no discernible structure to it. I'm thinking this was a dry run for Tonka Impériale.
    Last edited by Kevin Guyer; 14th March 2010 at 04:35 AM.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Quote Originally Posted by Ruggles View Post
    ...I see it as a gourmand, but one that mixes savory and sweet, like those salted caramel ice creams that are all the rage. The cherry/almond tonka accord is the main thing here; I smell some herbs de provence, orange blossom, all the classic Guerlain elements. But it doesn't feel like a finished fragrance - as there's no discernible structure to it...
    I agree with you buddy, on all of those comments.

    I love that foody, creamsicle top note - it makes my mouth water when I spray it on. Almost like a gourmand Shalimar. If that part stuck around longer, or resurfaced later on in the development, I think I'd be more drawn to this.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Thank you, Mike, for the detailed "insider" sniff of this scent. How marvelous! No wonder there is the concept of "exclusives" in fragrance!
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I spend a weekend with one of my friends that love fragrances like me, and he had 180 Ans, and I asked him to let me wear this precious nectar. I was happy that i could spray it generously on me. God, Guerlain is evil to create such a beautiful scent and not launching it! To me, this one is Guerlain's soul at it`s perfection, the Guerlinade made with the original notes, but with an execution that seems modern, but complex, sensual. I feel some similarties with Tonka Imperiale and with L'Instant Pour Homme, but 180 ans seems balanced, with the right amount of flowers, spices, musky notes, creamy notes, and on my skin i had the impression that the fragrance gradually bloomed like a complex pastry flower, made of the finest flowers and the yummiest gourmand accords. It doesn`t seem sickening on skin, the gourmand accent smell like a gourmand fragrance, not a gourmand food. I just know that I need to buy one of this preciousity, and I do feel bad that few people will have access to such a perfect fragrance.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    I`d wear 180 ans daily, I didn`t found it so sweet and the scent didn`t left me with an aristocratic aura, or left me an impression of a fragrance that you would only wear on special events. I`d wear it to go anywhere, since it`s so good that it`s a shame to wait for just a few times to wear it.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Glad you got to try it rickbr. It is a tiny bit too sweet for me to wear daily here in Miami, but if I lived in cooler climates I'd find it more functional.

    Just like Quand Vient la Pluie. I love it, but from my decant I rarely wear it. Not because it's not beautiful (it is) but because it's sweetness wears a bit cloying on me, in warm weather.

    Perhaps I will go stick with the 'cheap version' of 180 Ans de Guerlain a.k.a. Cologne du 68.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Mike, does Miami have a humid hot weather? I tried it on a hot weather, but it wasn`t a dense and humid one, and on me i detected that at first it was strong, but then it developed to a mid-voice gourmand scent.

    Cologne du 68 doesn`t go so well on me. I have one, and on hot days the fresh part doesn`t combine with the gourmand one and it ended like a mess on my skin. On my sister it`s gorgeous, but on me not

  25. #25

    Default Re: Thoughts on the fragrance 180 Ans de Guerlain

    Luckily I found a bottle of this precious frag at mexican ebay affiliate, mercado livre, and got it
    Let`s see if my impression of the fragrance will remain the same...

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