I love vanilla, and was excited to try this after reading all the fuss about what a classic it is. But honestly... ugh! How does anyone smell vanilla in this? To me it smells exactly like baby powder... but ten times as potent. As a reviewer below noted, it does "settle down" after some time, but it's still way too strong (and I used only one spritz), and smells very little like how I expected it to. More old and powdery than gourmand and sexy.
There's a reason this perfume has been very popular for nearly a century. It's completely timeless, and really damn good. Sophisticated, sexy, glamorous, Shalimar is all of that. I'm a vanilla fiend, and the vanilla in this is delicious, but what completes it is the leather, incense and powdery notes. I don't find it to be so strong, I mean it certainly is stronger than a light floral perfume but it is nowhere near the bombs like Dior Poison. If you like perfumes like Dior Addict or Jean Paul Gaultier, this is kind of in that family- dark, sexy, elegant, vanilla based perfumes.
After reading all the endearing positive reviews of Shalimar (here and at other websites), I just had to smell it for myself. I went to Macy's just to try it. It's very strong. Overpowering for sure! A bottle would last you a lifetime! It was rather annoying after I sprayed a tiny bit on. It settled down about 4 hours later and wasn't too bad. But who wants to wait that long to get an acceptable scent? Not I. I do not smell much vanilla in this fragrance. I'm not sure what it smells like. It's a confusing scent. And it does seem old-fashioned. I won't be wearing this. It's OK at best and highly overrated in my opinion. I'm underwhelmed.
While I do not have a bottle currently I will repurchase soon. I forgot about this classic until I came across someone wearing it the other day. It was as I remember quite intoxicating in a beautiful way. Soft but not subtle hints of vanilla just lovely
Of all the classic fragrances that hail from the Roaring '20s, Guerlain Shalimar and Chanel Bois des Iles are probably the only ones I reach for and would repurchase if I ever ran out, even though I don't wear them daily.
It actually took me a long time to "get" Shalimar, because the cool astringency of the bergamot, the powderiness of the incense, the animalic leather, and the smoky amber-vanilla tones felt like an olfactory clash to me for many years. But I've since learnt to apreciate its originality and complexity.
This to me is the scent equivalent of a "dark smoky eye". It's sultry, sexy, and just a little dirty. I personally like wearing this off-context on casual days, with comfy clothes and red lips.
How can any serious perfume collector not own a bottle?
Shalimar is so womanly and elegant. It is a meticulously groomed white Persian cat lounging on a maroon satin pillow. Luxurious, mysterious, beautiful and soft, quiet and endlessly alluring in that subtle come hither way.
The only perfume by which men make positive comments about my perfume. And some of them even know it's Shalimar!
An original that not too many women wear - and I'm thankful for that.
I have heard of Shalimar for years but never smelt it or bought a bottle until recently.
It is beautiful and long lasting. Smells to me of Baby powder with a touch of Musk which I like. Definitely one of my favourites.
Ok, so I had to come back and edit my original review. After putting this on, and letting it settle on my skin, it was pure heaven! It started off as a not so great first impression...but over time, turned into a vanilla powerdy heaven! Shalimar, I'm sorry I didn't give you time to mature on my skin before I wrote the previous review on you. But you changed my mind. What a wonderful scent! I could still smell it on me the next morning!
I don't know why I thought I wanted to try this but I'm sorry I did. It smelled good in the store on the test strip. So I bought it and sprayed it on the way home. It was fine for maybe 10 seconds but quickly changed into a very powdery scent. Hours later it's still powdery. Definitely not my thing, YMMV.
Shalimar is one of the most significant fragrances of my lifetime, and I've been through several bottles, including refills of the refillable bottle I used to have. I still have it, in all formulations, and this is one where I think every formulation has been wonderful, even the cologne.
I first sniffed Shalimar in my sophomore year at college -- the girl across the hall said it was her favorite -- but I didn't like it then. I thought it was too "high", light, and sweet -- too dainty & candyish, sort of. I liked them more full-bodied and thought Shalimar stayed too much in the high register (although I'm a big vanilla lover, I've never been much for lemon & citrus).
Fast forward to my first year out of college, my first job -- and one of my coworkers made Shalimar Eau de Cologne (disc bottle) her signature and wore it to work every day. Well, I fell in love with the stuff on her -- she smelled like Heaven! She bought those big disc-shaped cologne bottles and poured them into a spray bottle. Our office was perfumed with Shalimar on a daily basis.
I desperately wanted to wear Shalimar too -- and I bought a bottle -- but I only wore it away from work, when I knew I wouldn't see her -- because it was HER scent. I dared not wear it to work also, or anywhere around her during our "off" hours. It would have been extremely rude of me and would have probably broken her heart.
Even though she wore cologne formulation, it really was quite strong, and sometimes first thing in the morning, it was too (embarrasingly) strong -- yet in a good way -- because no denying it was a wonderful, awesome, fantastic perfume. I think all of us on staff loved the scent; nobody ever complained.
As a matter of fact, one of the bosses' wives came through one day, swooshed past me, and left a gorgeous poof of Shalimar in her wake. It made me wonder if her husband had raved about the coworker's Shalimar to her at home and caused her to go out & buy a bottle -- or if he had actually loved it so much on our coworker that he had bought his wife a bottle.
I do not understand criticisms of this perfume -- that little twist of incense is just a little twist, to offset the sweetness of the lemon & vanilla, and I think it's very subtle and what makes the scent so gorgeous. I love it completely and will always have it in my collection.
A boyfriend once said to me, "Don't ever change perfumes" while I was wearing Shalimar. Later it became my wedding fragrance. What a stunning Masterpiece of a perfume Shalimar has been through the decades -- and continues to be. It has truly stood the test of time as few other perfumes have.