Perfume News

Fieldnotes : Dear House of Guerlain - Shalimar Souffle

Dear House of Guerlain,

Warning. This is possibly the most obnoxious thing that you will ever hear me say about a perfume. If you read my perfume writing then you  know that I never criticize as I respect the enormous amount of talent and work that it takes to produce any perfume, even one that I don't like. If I don't like a scent, I just don't write about it.  

But I'm about to break that rule. Please know that I do this..compromise my very moral fiber with a heavy heart. But here goes. 

Sadly the new Shalimar, something that is being called Shalimer Souffle ( which translates I am told to "breath of Shalimar") is horrifying. I say this only out of absolute love and adoration for the House of Guerlain. There's is nothing about this that should ever hold the esteemed Shalimar name. The packaging is beautiful to be sure, but to call it a "Shalimar" of any sort is a disgraceful and utterly disrespectful nod to unnecessary commercialism. At best, it's a light little perfume that could be suited to a certain cloying type of ingenue, but its not worthy of being called Shalimar in any way. I am told that it only has two of the original Shalimar notes in it, so why call it Shalimar?

  I spent an hour at the counter in SFA yesterday listening in utter pain as one of the best SA's ever tried to convince me of its merits. She couldn't even do it with a straight face. It saddens me on so many levels to see good perfume salespeople have to try to market this in the name of meeting numbers. I would never recognize this as a Guerlain if someone just wafted it under my nose. I would rather wear Obsession. 

Guerlain... If you are listening, you're better than this. The house that produced the original Shalimar, the gorgeous Vol de Nuit, Mitsouko, L' heure bleue and so many more should not ever have gone here. I have too much respect for you to ever wear this. 

Your devoted fan,

Beth Schreibman Gehring