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Thread: Guerlains

  1. #1

    Red face Guerlains

    Bonjour les amis,

    I am going to treat myself to a new fragrance for my birthday (like you need an occasion) and want something from an old and trusted perfume house. I already dig into the Chanel's and since I do not know anything about the exclusives, nor have remote access to them, I do not want to take a chance in ordering something.

    I want a Guerlain. I have tried Shalimar (YUM) but want to know what the others smell like. I am not sure if my local shop has Jicky but the reviews look great.

    Can anyone compare the following fragrances to more modern ones. I know they are incomparible but I am looking for something reminiscent so I know what I am dealing with.

    Shalimar (for kicks) - i have never smelt anything with this opening nor dry-down
    L'Heure Bleu
    Jicky
    Samsara
    Vol de Nuit
    Mitsouko

    Merci,

    C xx

  2. #2
    Cartoonish Royalty Le Grand Duc's Avatar
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    Default

    I cannot compare them to any others,
    but, I'd like to give you my thoughts on
    them:

    L'Heure Bleue smells like nothing else.
    It's extremely powdery. To me, it smells
    somewhat like marzipan. Love it.
    L'HB is my fave mainstream Guerlain.

    Jicky smells a bit like Tom Ford's Moss
    Breches, but, I guess it's as tough for
    you to find and sample as Chanel's exclusifs?

    Samsara is very un-Guerlain'ish. It
    has no soul. Could might as well have been
    some poor Escada or Gucci frag.

    Vol de Nuit I don't like, I have a sample
    somewhere, can't really remember how it
    smells. It didn't do anything for me.

    Mitsouko is a strange one. It seems to
    be the Guerlain perfume with the most
    fans. I don't like it that much, though.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Vol de Nuit woody floral the edt is powdery. No equal
    Mitsouko the queen of chypres nothing compares
    Samsara which I dislike loads of sandalwood with jasmine
    Jicky the first modern perfume nothing compares
    L'Heure Bleu loads of heliotrope(almond) and anise. Nothing compares.

    Get to the perfume court and get samples of them all.
    DONNA

  4. #4

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Follow donna's advice and sample them all before you buy. With regard to L'Heure Bleue... even the EdT from a tester in your next door store should give you an idea. Nothing compares - true! But I found Bois de Copaiba, Parfumerie Generale main accord extremely similar to L'Heure Bleue, but when a non-descriptive, ordinary wood accord joins towards the base, the Bois de Copaiba hugely disappoints.
    Vol de Nuit in its modern EdT incarnation smells somewhat artificial, set-up... it pretends a structure and background that is only there in the extrait, unfortunately.
    Mitsouko in EdP and extrait is really fantastic, the extrait being heavier on the peach and the EdP I think on the vetiver.
    Jicky I would go for the EdP only with pronounced civet. I found the extrait rather disappointing, smelling nice, but nothing special. All Jicky concentrations can disappoint with regard to longevity, although the EdP performed best on my skin. The extrait I remember not even being a two hours affair.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Guerlains

    + 1 to Donna and Larimar's advice.
    1. Test and sample
    2. EDT ,EDP and parfum extrait differ quite a bit though the 'essence' of the scent is more or less the same.

    I cannot really add to Donna and Larimar's descriptions but I agree with them both !

    NB: In re. to Shalimar- you may want to sample the new Shalimar Parfum Initial as well.
    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/370...o-Profumo-Onda
    For sale. Carnal Flower and Vero Profumo Onda.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Always hard to make comparison, especially with classics whose style may have gone out of fashion. However, some of these Guerlains could be found at local stores, so you could be able to smell them. Because the style is so unusual for mainstream perfumes, I would discourage blind buys.

    Samsara is probably the most "modern", so to speak. An oriental, like shalimar, buit quite different from it. while shalimar is gourmand with a lot of vanilla, samsara has lots of jasmine and (synthetic) sandalwood. Bombastic, in the 80s-90s style. Not my favorite,but certainly good if you like big orientals.

    L'Heure bleue, to the contrary, is in a style way out of current fashion. As others have said, powdery, with marzipan, light anise, light flowers. Wonderful, but because of its uniqueness, not a blind buy.

    Jicky is a sort of vanilla fougere, but with lots of civet in the base. Some people find it dirtyish for this reason.I like it.

    Mitsouko is dark and bitter, think of a dark forest or a cave, but with a wonderful milky peach to smoothen it out. Gives an impression of classical elegance. No vulgar clothing with this one.

    Vol de nuit is a serene oriental. Again, different from Shalimar, but in the opposite direction relative to Samsara, quieter, somewhat woody, richer, a touch of spices, a touch of vanilla.

    My current faves of the house are Vol de nuit and Chamade. Chamade is a green floral (not unlike many others up top, like envy, etc), but then with the smoothest sandalwoody drydown. If you can part from $320, you can go for the parfum (the bottle of Vol de nuit is also particularly beautiful), but the edts/edps are wonderful too.

    cacio

  7. #7
    teardrop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Guerlains

    l agree that nothing really compares to the classic Guerlains, except there are shades of L'Heure Bleue in lnsolence; lnsolence is kind of like L'Heure Bleue's young, trendy niece. You may or may not think that's a good thing.

    l feel l must stand up in defense of Samsara; one of my very favourite perfumes, it's a warm, sultry yet comforting blend of delicious jasmine & glowing, creamy sandalwood. "Un-Guerlainish" or not, l love it!

    But really it's best to sample; some of these, particularly Mitsouko, have a reputation for being an acquired taste. l recommend The Perfumed Court for samples of hard-to-find fragrances.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Will try to describe how I see these scents too

    Jicky: Reminds me of Shalimar in the top notes. Try to imagine Shalimar wihout the vanilla. Lots of citrus ( lemon on my skin) in the topnotes and also quite a bit of lavender. I have the edt, so the civet is there but not very pronounced.

    L'heure bleue: lots of iris in the topnotes. Rather dry in the beginning on me,but dries down to a rather sweet scent. Agree on the others impressions. My ex once said that it reminded him of those waxy candles with that sweet scent.

    Mitsouko: Forrest, decaying leaves, earthy...but paired with bergamot and a very natural Peach note. ( this is my favourite)

    Samsara: Didn't like this the first time i tried it. Quite sweet ( peach I think) and spicy in a vanilla/ cinnamon way. It eventually grew on me. Now it's one of my most worn scents! The edt is more jasmine dominated in my opinion, the edp more sandalwood. The drydown sometimes smells a little like coconut and cinnamon to me. It somehow reminds me a little of Chanel # 5 sometimes. Don't know why I get this association. I agree it's quite loud,but my skin tends to mellow scents down.

    Nahema: A rather fruity rose scent. Reminds me a littlebit of Samsara in the drydown.

    Vol de nuit: To me it reminds me a bit about Shalimar, but drier and with oakmoss and quite a bit of iris. Reminds me a bit about Tabac Blonde.

    I'm not very good at explain scents, I think but hope this helps. I agree that you defenitely should get samples from The perfumed court or at your department store.
    Last edited by ineespenes; 8th July 2011 at 05:18 PM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Suggestion to order all samples that interest you first, prior to treating yourself to a full bottle. The Guerlains that I prefer tend to be the more recent ones: Mitsouko Fleur de Lotus, Philtre de amour, Secrets de Sophie, even the new Shalimar Initial (please try a sample of this one if you like regular Shalimar!). The historical Guerlains are so unique and distinctive, I wouldn't base a purchase on reviews or anyone else's recommendation.

  10. #10
    Basenotes Plus
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    Default Re: Guerlains

    Quote Originally Posted by seattlelight View Post
    Suggestion to order all samples that interest you first, prior to treating yourself to a full bottle. The Guerlains that I prefer tend to be the more recent ones: Mitsouko Fleur de Lotus, Philtre de amour, Secrets de Sophie, even the new Shalimar Initial (please try a sample of this one if you like regular Shalimar!). The historical Guerlains are so unique and distinctive, I wouldn't base a purchase on reviews or anyone else's recommendation.
    Pretty much what seattlelight says....

    knit sings- "there ain't nothing like a Guerlain" to tune of "there ain't nothing like a dame". Guerlains for me, can influence mood, more than any other House.

    Also add to your test list:
    Vetiver Pour Elle,
    Apres L'Ondee- if you like violets,
    Cologne du 68
    Un air de samsara- not as heavy, has a wonderful mint note
    Shalimar Eau Legere
    All the colognes

    Oh heck- just test them ALL!

    where are you at??? maybe you could request some samples from the Boutique in Las Vegas?
    A Scent Rescuer
    Every great perfume deserves a good home

  11. #11

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Rochas Femme is somewhat similar to Mitsouko EDP. Mitsouko is much better definitely try the EDP.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Pas de probleme, Mademoiselle. No problem!

    I agree that you should try the different versions, as the EDT, the EDP and the parfums will differ.

    All Guerlains are a must-try, as not all are to everyone's tastes.

    Shalimar: a classic from Guerlain, an original oriental.. The EDP is smoky with a warm vanilla in the end.
    L'Heure Bleue: orange blossoms and florals with powder
    Jicky: lavender and vanilla with civet. The EDT has less civet than the EDP, and has more citrus.
    Samsara: IMO, not a real Guerlain
    Vol de Nuit: as mentioned a woody fragrance
    Mitsouko: a classic chypre with peach. This is not for everyone.

    I agree that Apres l'Ondee is worth a try. Fresh florals in an EDT with herbs.
    "No sweet perfume ever tortured me more than this." Desert Rose by Sting and Cheb Mami, Album 1999.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Rochas Femme pre 1989 before they reformulated was similar to Mitsouko both being chypres. But Femme has leather and Mistouko has none. Modern Femme with the cumin is nothing like Mitsouko.
    DONNA

  14. #14

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Quote Originally Posted by mademoiselle-c View Post
    Bonjour les amis,

    Can anyone compare the following fragrances to more modern ones. I know they are incomparible but I am looking for something reminiscent so I know what I am dealing with.
    Well, I have disagree, I tried Rochas Femme for the first time last week, in fact the sample stunk up my car. It smelled like a fruity chypre, and I didn't percieve any cumin or birch tar. I didn't like it very much but I thought it resembled Mitsouko more than any other fruity chypre I'd tried. So I think it serves as an answer to the original question, at least.

    I guess it is agreed that Femme has cumin...but I didn't pick it out. At least, it didn't smell literally like my cumin jar. Mitsouko has a tiny bit of spice as well, by the way.
    Last edited by HazelMae; 10th July 2011 at 02:30 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Let me join everyone -- do yourself a favor and order a sampler set from TPC or Posh Peasant, try to do 1.5ml or 2ml spray bottles -- they would generally give you better understanding of what the scent is about (pure extraits excluded). To the 6 from your original post, I would also add Apres L'Ondee and Chamade.

    Newer -- and more modern Guerlains -- have a great fan base as well.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Quote Originally Posted by HazelMae View Post
    Well, I have disagree, I tried Rochas Femme for the first time last week, in fact the sample stunk up my car. It smelled like a fruity chypre, and I didn't percieve any cumin or birch tar. I didn't like it very much but I thought it resembled Mitsouko more than any other fruity chypre I'd tried. So I think it serves as an answer to the original question, at least.

    I guess it is agreed that Femme has cumin...but I didn't pick it out. At least, it didn't smell literally like my cumin jar. Mitsouko has a tiny bit of spice as well, by the way.
    Vintage Femme is all stewed sugary prunes and leather totally gorgeous. The version around now is just blah compared to the glory of what it was. Mitsouko never has had leather. Malle Le Parfum Therese is more like what vintage Femme used to be.
    DONNA

  17. #17

    Default Re: Guerlains

    Agree that the original poster should just take the plunge and sample. Even if you know the genre, Mitsouko is so different from more modern chypres. Shalimar is very different from most modern orientals. I can't even think of anything popular to compare LHB to, even though there is no shortage of floral orientals on the perfume counters...

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