13 December, 2015

Guerlain Shalimar Eau de Toilette Review

Back in the 1920s, there was a saying: "There are three things a lady never does -- smoke, dance the Tango, and wear Shalimar."


Unlike today's perfumes -- which are created to be appealing to as many people as possible (which explains why they tend to smell similar to one another, and "pretty in a predictable, boring way"), Guerlain's Shalimar is full of personality.
Shalimar was created in a time when perfumes were more polarizing; people could either love or hate them, and their creators wouldn't have minded much, simply because those perfumers understood that their creations were works of art, not your generic one-size-fits-all offerings of today.

Launched in 1921, Shalimar is now 95 years old, and is still one of the bestsellers. How do you know when a perfume is iconic? When it is instantly recognized. For me, those would be the top three: Guerlain's Shalimar; Chanel's No. 5; Jean Patou's Joy.
While Shalimar does not smell contemporary, it does smell timeless in that you could wear this in 1925, 1955, 1975, 2015 or beyond, and it still would still fit in effortlessly.
What makes Shalimar so unique is the type of vanilla used in it. I have smelled countless vanilla-based perfumes from around the world, and none measured up to it. Whereas the vanilla note in other perfumes tend to smell like a dessert, the one in Shalimar is raw, gritty, and full of texture and complexity. It's exotic and boozy, not sweet; the vanilla has an almost spicy-woodsy quality to it. Rounding out the vanilla is the notably refreshing bergamot. On my skin, Guerlain's Shalimar eau de toilette smells of bergamot, orange blossoms, and vanilla with a hint of smokey incense.
If Chanel No. 5 were a sophisticated, pearl-wearing, tennis-playing girl, then Shalimar is the more tart-y, rebellious sister who dances the Charleston (or perhaps the Tango) and drinks champagne at the speakeasy.

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9 comments:

  1. The packaging looks so pretty! I haven't tried any of this brands fragrances before

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves

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    1. It really is a beautiful bottle. Even more gorgeous in person. Hope you'll try it! :o)

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  2. Shalimar is a classic and the packaging is beautiful! I can't quite remember the scent, but I will def try it out next time I visit the beauty counter.

    Keisha xo
    The Chrysalis Gal

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    1. Yay! I must warn you -- store testers don't usually smell like the fresh-out-of-the-box products, mostly because they've sat under hot lights for so long. For example, I love my personal bottle of Shalimar, but the testers for it that I've smelled were atrocious. Lol.

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  3. 95 years old wow! It must be a truly timeless scent, definitely one that's been added to my 'to try' list :) x
    www.beautiful-solutions.co.uk

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    1. Definitely a must-try! Shalimar might smell a bit shocking to the modern nose, just because we don't come across perfumes like this anymore, but it is always fun to explore fragrances of the past. :o)

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  4. Wow to think that this perfume is 95 years old really is incredible! I've never heard of it before but happy you've introduced me to it as I would love to try it next time I'm in the department store. Anything with vanilla I will instantly love, it's so sweet yet warm :)

    Jenny | Krystel Couture - Wishing you an amazing Christmas and all the best for 2016!! ♥

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    2. Yep! Just keep in mind that it is a classic, so it doesn't smell like anything made within the last 10 years. :o)

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