Eau de Cologne Imperiale Guerlain

Hey there Posse peeps. If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere then I reckon you are sweltering right now. While I’m down in the cool of winter, which I may have mentioned before is my happiest temperature range. We rarely get below 0C/32f, and I have no memory of it. The lowest temp recorded in Sydney City is 2C/36f in 1932. Outlying suburbs have been as low as -8C/17f. In Parramatta we average 6-17C/43-63f. So not a heavy winter at all. Still, it’s enough to reach for the Ugg boots and a beanie when walking the dog late at night. Anyway, I found a decant of Eau de Cologne Imperiale in my New Idea 2023 trawls and thought you all might want an affordable luxurious idea to keep you cool.

Eau de Cologne Imperiale by Guerlain 1860

Eau de Cologne Imperiale Guerlain

Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Citruses, Neroli, Bergamot, Lemon Verbena, Lemon, Orange
Base: Rosemary, Cedar, Tonka Bean

Eau de Cologne Imperiale comes in that strange, flattened bee bottle that was around for a few years. Very good for gripping because it had all those lumpy lacy protrusions. It wasn’t totally awful but looked like a very cheap company trying to appear posh (my opinion only, don’t come for me). It also seemed hugely dated in a world where everyone else is doing minimalist. Yeah, I have a few of them myself, mainly as curios. Lastly, I see the EdC series being something the traditional male would be happy wearing but cannot imagine this bottle being one they would gravitate to.

Originally released in 1860! Obviously this isn’t the exact same product, and I’m not even sure if it has been made continuously.

So how does Eau de Cologne Imperiale smell? So refreshing. It’s everything you’d expect from a vintage cologne with a modern production value. Tangy citrus, juicy, sweet, pithy and so easy to wear. I also smell some greenery backed by a very faint smokiness.

After the opening fireworks I can tell the smokiness I was experiencing was the rosemary. Through the heart it is a key player and changes the way the citruses feel. So interesting. I’m surprised that lavender isn’t one of the notes, also orange blossom. In the heart the tonka adds its nutty sweetness.

Dry down is very soapy. Like my long ago memory of opening a brand new bar of Cussons Imperial Leather. I just went to my soap drawer to check and my memory is pretty accurate, not exact but close.

Just so you know, I’m wearing from a My Perfume Samples decant.

Eau de Cologne Imperiale by Guerlain 1860 MPS

Unisex, longevity is quite good for an EdC. Eau de Cologne Imperiale is soft but noticeable up close after the first 30 minutes. Jin can still smell faint citrus, pithy vegetal musks and some wood at about 4 hours but I’m nose blind by then.

Surrender To Chance has samples

Does this sound like a perfect summer spritz to you?
Portia xx

  • Tom says:

    I used to have this waaaay back in the day in the bee bottle (which I thinki looked the same even then) and I enjoyed it, but it somehow sort of fel by the wayside- I didn’t really need to replace it. There are just ones treading the same ground that are a tenth of the price. Heresy I know, but there you are..

    • Portia says:

      HA! Happy for some perfume heresy Tom, you are right.
      Still I love the Guerlain, it’s a nice fit.

      Talking of $$$$$$, Have you tried any of the Vuitton summer line? O M G! So expensive.
      Portia x

  • Brigitte says:

    Sounds wonderful!!!

  • Musette says:

    Portia, mah petunia!
    This is one of my most favoritestest Guerlains! I keep the Bee Bottle on my dresser pretty much all year long (I really like the bottle design, though I don’t think I’d want an entire tray of them (unlike Chanel, with that sleek, heavy square – sooo elegant).
    Anyhoo – yeth! I love this one and wear it all the time.

    We’re in much cooler temperatures than normal for an August in Central IL – but I am NOT mad at it.

  • Kathleen says:

    I believe I have a mini of ECD Imperiale, I’ll look for it after work and give it a whirl in the hot summer temp. Thank you for your review and reminder of this cologne Portia. xo

  • March says:

    I liked this when I tried it, but I was in “weird perfume” mode and it wasn’t interesting enough for me. I wish I had a bottle now, I bet I’d love it in the heat!

    • Musette says:

      it’s a slightly more elegant version of 4711 which, I do believe, you keep in your fridge in the Swelterings. I used to – now it’s just Jean Nate. And yogurt. LOTS of yogurt.
      No leftovers.

    • Portia says:

      Hey March,
      How many amazing things did we miss when only weird was good enough?
      Portia x

  • Dina C. says:

    Sounds like a really nice unisex contender for hot summer days. Thanks Portia.

  • cinnamon says:

    Love that bottle. Our weather is actually ok — we’re north of the heat dome and seeing low 20s/70-ish. Which means I am wearing anything but my heaviest fragrances.

  • Maya says:

    Well I will definitely not come for you. Guerlain is not even remotely close to what it once was. I have absolutely no interest in them at all.
    I did have an 80’s box of Guerlain minis. It had 2 mini bee bottles in it. One was Eau de Cologne Imperiale and the other was something similar/related. They were both great. My daughter fell in love with the 2 scents and the bottles, so she got them. I got to keep the other lovelies. lol.

    • Portia says:

      Hi Maya,
      Yeah, I hear your complaint. They are also pricing themselves way out of my reach for all but the regular range.
      I wonder if we’d even have Guerlain if LVMH hadn’t bought and rejuvenated it? That’s the big question nowadays isn’t it?
      Portia xx

      • Musette says:

        that’s the hydra in the equation, I think. The purchasing of these old Houses (and the niche houses we love) hopefully assures their continuation… but at what cost? Lauder, LVMH, et al usually don’t buy these on a whim or just for nostalgia’s sake… they put out a hefty chunka for them and usually require some sort of ROI. That, along with regulatory changes, usually spells disaster for a lot of what made those Houses great in the first place.

        • Portia says:

          Yeah Musette, all of this makes me very sad.
          Question is, will it continue on its present enjoyment destructive course or will perfumery die out and then go back to small batch indie?