Shalimar by Jacques Guerlain 1925: Mini Movies

Heya Perfume Posse! Portia back again from Australian Perfume Junkies. It’s no secret that my first and foremost perfume love is Shalimar. I have a lovely collection of many strengths, from many years, in quite a few of the bottles, flacons and cages that it came in. When I was lucky enough to fall in love with an Indian man he took me to his home state Rajasthan and showed me many of its wonders, so many of them in these videos, I learned the story of Shah Jahan and his great love Mumtaz Mahal and how he nearly bankrupted his kingdom in his grief for the loss of the woman he loved. We traveled to some of the most beautiful and awe inspiring castles and India holds an incredibly special place in my heart.

Shalimat Guerlain Taj Mahal WikipediaPhoto Stolen Wikipedia

Even though this was my Mother and her friends fragrance, and that is a huge part of my love for it, Shalimar will forever remind me of the magic of India, its people, history, stories, architecture, art and music. In 2010 my BFF Kath and I traveled quite a bit of the route that Varun and I had and I returned to the Taj Mahal, as we came through the gates to the full view of it I was so moved that tears poured from my eyes in unashamed and soundless gratitude and I had to sit down to pull myself back together, and I was not the only one, many people did exactly the same as I completely overcome by the magnificence that love built.

Shalimar by Jacques Guerlain 1925

Shalimar Guerlain FragranticaPhoto Stolen Fragrantica

Fragrantica gives these notes
Top: Lemon, bergamot, mandarin, citrus, cedar
Heart: Jasmine, May rose, vetiver, patchouli, iris
Base: Tonka, incense, iris, vanilla, civet, musk, opopanax, sandalwood, leather

Shalimar smells like nothing else on earth thouggh many fragrances have tried. I can’t explain its beauty to you any more than I can try to tell you how I think. You must go to your nearest store, the modern incarnation is still beautiful, transportative and wonderful, though different. Or grab a sample/decant and live the magic yourself.

Shalimar Guerlain Jaipur Palace WikiCommonsPhoto Stolen WikiCommons

FragranceX has a fabulous selection
Beauty Encounter also have a great range
Surrender To Chance have a selection starting at $3/ml

If you’ve enjoyed today’s post do come o9ver and say howdy at Australian Perfume Junkies. We always love to see new people and contin ue the conversation over there.

Loads of love,
Portia xx

Shalimar, the first oriental perfume in the world

La légende de Shalimar : le making of

La Légende de Shalimar : le film – GUERLAIN

44 Comments
Portia October 27, 2013

That is interesting Eldarwen22, I have never put it into a time category before but now that you mention it, Shalimar is a good fit with mid-seasons, still I wear it all year. What strengths do you have? Portia xx

eldarwen22 October 26, 2013

I do like Shalimar and own a full bottle and have yet to but out my little vintage decant. Shalimar always seems to get lost in the shuffle for me. Probably because it is more of a transition perfume, Summer to fall or winter to spring.

Solanace October 25, 2013

Shalimar is my precious, too. I only wish that, for this particular film, they would have picked an Indian model, or at least one a bit more Indian looking, like the (gorgeous) guy.

katrin October 25, 2013

Hi! I enjoyed your post about Shalimar and India, would love to go there some day. As for the perfume, It took me forever to realize that I love Shalimar. I find it the most wearable of Guerlain classics, although at first I was drawn to pretty much every other perfume by Guerlain but the Shalimar! I have a vintage EdT, and I like wearing it just for myself. The current version I find a bit too strong though.

Alex October 25, 2013

Sorry for your friend Minette. I have never heard of a perfume that has different effects years after. I might try some of the perfumes I didn't like in the past

minette October 25, 2013

just remembered... my first introduction to shalimar parfum was in the late '80s, on a friend who died last year. it smelled incredible on her, just stunningly beautiful. the first time i tried it, it didn't work on me. but thankfully, years later it did, and still does.

minette October 25, 2013

a sweet tribute to a worthy scent, portia. love this one, too. and it earned me the strangest/best compliment ever - a man told me he wanted to just attach himself to me so he could keep smelling me because i smelled so good. i had layered shalmiar edt with the parfum, and it was a fairly humid and warm day. i thought maybe it was too much, but apparently not for him. there really is nothing like it. that first blast when you smell it again after a while is just fabulous.

Ann October 25, 2013

Howdy, Portia! I want to love Shalimar, really I do, and on paper, it sounds so perfect for me. But despite my many attempts over the years, it's plain to see that she does not like me, no way, no how! Although I have had a little better luck with the Ode Vanille one and the LE Route du Mexique one, but just a little. A great post and wonderful photos, nevertheless!

Lavanya October 24, 2013

Portia!!! You read my mind. I keep going through phases(especially during fall and winter) when I want to wear nothing else.. I fell in love with Shalimar through the current parfum so I agree with you that that's a great place to start. Subsequently I got a decant of vintage PDT ( I actually enjoy the current parfum better - more oomph..;-)). Then last weekend I found a partial bottle of vintage parfum at a vintage store and can I just say swoon! Though as you rightly describe on your blog, each version is like the same production with the scenes rearranged.. The vintage parfum has a lower voice but to me is surprisingly more wearable, round and full and the vanilla is more pronounced and beautiful. It is impossible to compare the versions though because each version smells slightly different at different times so a reliable comparison is not possible..:) Loved reading your emotional connection with Taj Mahal and with Shalimar. I'm going to India after 3 years this December. I would run all the way there right now if I could. :D

zazie October 24, 2013

Shalimar is my precious one too! It holds such a special place in my heart, for no other reason that it fills me with happiness, and confidence. Shalimar is smiling and caressing, warm and inviting, and fun to hang around with! It's as close as I'll ever come to a signature scent. ;) BTW, your post is so evocative and beautiful. I love it that you don't try to describe what the fragrance smells like but urge the readers to go sniff, right now! So right. I would add: try it on skin please!!!!!!!!!!! I've never been to India, but I can relate to that feeling you describe of being overwhelmed by the beauty of a place/piece of art so much that one has stop and pull him/herself back together. Without going into the details, I am one embarassing companion for an artistic rendez-vous!!!! Anyway, I'd love to visit India one day... thank you for the vicarious escapade! ;)

Ncmyers October 24, 2013

This is the one that started it all for me. From my grandmother's vanity in her beautiful calm luxurious house a far cry from my own chaotic childhood... This scent was a respite and a door to dreaming for a life beyond. Just the promise was enough.

jilliecat October 24, 2013

Dear Portia - It was the other way round with my mum and me. I was a teenager and spending that grant on perfume again (!) and discovered Shalimar. I used to swan around swathed in this, marvelling at how different it was from anything else, and feeling very grown-up. My mum used to steal spritzes of it. Years later, whenever asked what her favourite perfume was, she would reply "Shalimar". Not long before she died, she was given a huge bottle by her boyfriend but never opened it. I now have that bottle, but can not bring myself to wear it - not just because of my memories of her, but also because I am frightened it just won't smell the same as that very first bottle which made her and me fall in love with it! But perhaps you might have tempted me to do so .......