Post by Val the Cookie Queen
Shalom APJ Shalimar Lovers!
I never had the slightest intention of writing about Shalimar. I suddenly fell in love with the extrait last year and bought myself a bottle. Of course everyone said “ But the vintage is so much better, blah, blah, blah ….” Fingers in my ears. It might well be. I don´t care. Indeed I have a few drops of a vintage version which Portia kindly sent to me. Of course I LOVE it. I was talking to Vero the other day about rare and vintage perfumes and the business they have become. I AM interested. Duh. But have no intentions of hunting old stuff down. Not prepared to pay the prices nor take the risk. I do own a couple of exquisite vintage fragrances but they came to me as gifts.
Amazon, eBay, Walgreens, Low Price Shoppers. No Shalimar Shame!
As I placed an order on Amazon a few weeks ago, an advertisement came up for Shalimar Eau de Cologne. Of course the NSA know all the perfumistas and stalk us by offering us Amazon perfume deals. This one was interesting though. I frantically Googled the EdC and came up with next to nothing. Except that it is only available through low price, super deal, bog standard drug stores and the big two, Amazon and eBay.
Thirty five euros including postage? Ordered. Nice bottle if nothing else. Shalimar was created as a tribute to the love story between Emperor Shah Jahan and his wife Mumtaz Mahal. After thirteen kids and dying in childbirth with the fourteenth, she left her husband devastated (but with enough offspring to take care of him I guess). He built the Taj Mahal in her memory but seriously, I guess we all know the story. Shalimar is named after the Gardens of Shalimar, Mumtaz´s favourite garden.
Shalimar EdC by Guerlain 1925
Shalimar EdC by Jaques Guerlain
Fragrantica gives these featured accords:
Top: Bergamot, lemon, mandarin orange, cedar
Heart: Iris, patchouli, jasmine, vetiver, rose
Base: Leather, sandalwood, opoponax, civet, musk, vanilla, incense, Peru balsam, benzoin
Shalimar Eau de Cologne is absolutely fantastic. Gobsmacked to be honest. It knocks spots of the current EdP and EdT. It opens with a divinely cooling bergamot lemon zing, and I just want to drown in it. Delicious but not sweet. Iris and rose are there. Slightly smoky, leathery and a veil of such exquisite vanilla. Unlike the current EdP there is no patchouli in the base and it is all the better for it. Spraying it in abundance leaves you shimmering with Shalimar for hours. It has a lot in common with the current Shalimar Extrait, albeit a cologne with a the raunchy drydown. Absolutely fabulous.
Dislike Shalimar? Don´t bother. Nearly like it but not quite? Try the EdC. Own the vintage version already? Tell me about it. This is hands down my favourite Shalimar and my take to the pool staple this year. Who would have thought of it?
Love Shalimar? Buy it.
(Ed: Photos donated by Val. Thanks. XXOX)