Shalimar Extrait 
Guerlain (1925)

Average Rating:  3 User Reviews

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Shalimar Extrait by Guerlain

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About Shalimar Extrait by Guerlain

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Meaning 'Temple of Love' in Sanskrit, Shalimar is an oriental fragrance with notes of bergamot and vanilla.  Jacques Guerlain was inspired to create Shalimar by the story of Indian Emperor, Shah Jahan, who created a beautiful garden (called Shalimar) to please his queen.

Fragrance notes.

  1. Top Notes

  2. Heart Notes

  3. Base Notes

Reviews of Shalimar Extrait by Guerlain

There are 3 reviews of Shalimar Extrait by Guerlain.

The opening with its mix of bergamot, lemon and mandarin may sound like a fresh sunny-citrus affair, but it is given a twist by the addition of herbal and well as spicier components. In the herbal side there is a nice rosemary with added whiffs if marjoram, whilst a darker patchouli and some opoponax provide a spicy element to the initial stage. The whole results in a unique citrus-herbal-spicy combination that has depth as well as some light elegance - and it all is balanced most beautifully.

The drydown adds a floral bouquet consisting of a rose - restrained and somewhat uneventful - with a jasmine - delightful - and an iris, which is taking in the leading role, and whose characteristic smell and discreet powderiness extends way into the later stages of the development. A mild and soft vetiver is evident in the background.

The base extends the spicy theme of the opoponax with added sweetness courtesy of a vanilla/tonka note, but soon a more - restrainedly animalic - metamorphosis takes place, adding touches of coumarin, a musky civet with a mildly salty ambergris to it - the latter is as good as anything Creed has produced in this category. Overall though this is a refinedly animalic turn, however contradictory this may sound; here Guerlain has managed this olfactory squaring of the circle. All this is accompanied by a faint sandalwood underneath. During the last hours transient moment of frankincense are noticeable, and whilst ad additional impression of Tolu balsam does not exactly hurry onto this olfactory stage, towards the and it makes an appearance that adds further colour and some slightly medicinal touches to the base notes.

I get moderate sillage, good projection and a superb longevity of twelve hours on my skin.

There many flankers and permutations of Shalimar that Guerlain has launched over the last century, but this scent for special spring and warmer autumn evening is the best and truly the real deal. The delicately composed complexity is very impressive, the quality of the ingredients is astounding, and blending sublime. At times some notes are a bit lacking in vividness and am there are moments where the texture is not throughly convincing, but overall this is a brilliant creation. The performance is particularly impressive given the age of my sample. Like with a fine wine, age has not taken away from its shine. 4.25/5.

My favorite! This is the most perfect Shalimar to my nose. It doesn't have the “itchy” opening the others have and I dislike. It goes powerful but soft towards a powdery animalistic vanilla which is gorgeous. Performances are awesome, of course.

I had the chance to test Shalimar EDP (current version), Shalimar parfum de toilette, Shalimar Souffle de Parfum and buy a 70s vintage version Shalimar, extrait de parfum from the 60s, the first version of Ode à la Vanille, sur la Route de Madagascar and sur la Route du Mexique.

The current Shalimar EDP was a bit disappointing. A lot of bergamot with some cardamom and then a powdery rose (almost itchy). Then it settles down finally but doesn't give a good sillage. What's funny is that it smells different if you smell it one cm away from another spot.

Shalimar from the 70s is so much better. Both softer and spicier, with an amber, cashmere feel. You get the bergamot and the rose, but nothing is too strong.

Parfum de toilette (mine is from 93) is even softer but powerful with more powdery vanilla. Less “itchy” bergamot and rose.

Souffle de parfum shouldn't be compared. This is not Shalimar, don't expect Shalimar. There are some common notes, especially if you wear vintage Shalimar on the other wrist. But it's very good on its own! A wonderful floral with some spices and a gourmand dry-down. I'm happy I randomly got a sample of this and I hope I'll get a full bottle. Sillage could be better, though.

The original Ode à la Vanille opens in a very bitter way. It's balsamic. Then it goes towards a powdery bergamot. The acid vanilla comes later. It's a bit sweeter than the vintage Shalimar but quite similar in the dry down. It also has more fruit.

Sur la Route de Madagascar shares a lot of notes as well, but it's more floral than fruity. It's more animalistic. Dirtier in a very sexy way. It has more vanilla than the others as well.

Sur la Route du Mexique opens with more pepper. It's something between rhum and gin, with spices. It might have a more itchy, synthetic feel for me.

Note that the three bottles are exactly the same. You've got to keep the boxes to differentiate them.

The opening of all those Shalimar, except for souffle de parfum, is the biggest difference. The more they dry, the most similar they get.

I bought a small vintage bottle of Shalimar parfum from eBay from the year 1983 and boy does it smell divine. It deserves all the accolades. I used to own a 2010 version of the parfum too and that was rich and indulgent but this is even more heady!

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