Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune : Fragrance Review


As far as the French language goes “Pamplelune” is a portmanteau that combines the French word for grapefruit (pamplemousse) with the French word for moon (lune). In the perfumista’s lexicon, however, Pamplelune denotes the 1999 fragrance by Mathilde Laurent for Guerlain for its original Aqua Allegoria line.  As a grapefruit scent, it is both revered and feared; whether one can wear this take on sulfuric citrus depends on whether one associates grapefruit with fruit or with funk.

Although the Aqua Allegoria line is meant to showcase lighter, less complex fragrances, Pamplelune is anything but simple.  After the explosive opening it follows through with tart/sour bergamot and twiggy petitgrain notes before morphing into a cheerful black currant-accented floral that is tethered to a sweet and vanillic patchouli base.

Pamplelune surges forward with a sensational grapefruit note that seems almost spontaneous; it is exactly like cutting into the yellow globe and smelling/tasting all of it at once:  peel, fruit, stinging white pith.  The naturalness of the note is shocking, especially in light of the synthetic citruses that shine happily from the shelves of Sephora with their lemons and oranges calibrated to appeal to everyone and offend no one.  One smell of Pamplelune shifts reality back to where it should be, in nature.

At first I wasn’t able to wear it at all.  I recall standing in line at a store and sensing shockwaves of grapefruit around me; did anyone else notice?  It was all I could smell, hours after I first applied it.  Not polite breakfast grapefruit but something more darkly dynamic and potent.  This was guerilla grapefruit juiced onto hot patchouli and I was not ready for its freewheeling spin from citrus cologne to hippie hedonism, with the dangerous and famous sulfur fumes fueling the ride.

It is now one of my favorite scents, eminently wearable, worthy of five stars, the perfect antidote to almost everything: a bored nose, too much winter, a dull day, an enervated palate, a spring-less step.  From the first spritz to the last (I apply it regularly), it is chilled, dark perfection.  The grapefruit impasto is at first opaque and unyielding, an artsy twist on the normally effervescent citrus.  Hot skin activates Pamplelune’s basenotes, which are sweet and mellow against the grapefruit’s sweet-sour bite.  The vanilla/patchouli of the base softens the citrus over time, until what remains is vanilla-sweet patchouli as mellow as the opening citrus was striking.

Pamplelune smells marvelous on me throughout, and at times I almost smell incense in the base, along with musk.  The softening of the fragrance doesn’t trivialize it in the least; sweet patchouli isn’t a cop-out.  This base reminds me how much I enjoy the vanilla/patchouli combination and how I proudly defend and admit to wearing patchouli when someone asks me if I am.  It turns out the people who ask are people who have bracketed youthful parts of their lives by the wearing of patchouli and they want to know the name of the scent.

It’s as important a modern scent as anything else released in the last two decades, and one that must sell since it has held firm against frequent discontinuations in the rest of the Aqua Allegoria line.  I like that I can walk into the Sephora store inside the local J. C. Penney and buy a bottle when mine runs out; that makes it a perfume of the people in my opinion.  Wonderful juice, perhaps not for everyone, but absolutely transporting.  Pamplelune is grapefruit in a parallel universe that you should visit at least once.

Photography by 0streussel via flickr, some rights reserved.



  • rosarita: Suzanna, I am enjoying your writing so much! The mouthwatering descriptions make me want to try everything.

    I’ve never smelled this but I will be driving past my nearest mall today (an hour’s drive, which is why my perfume life is lived online) and may have to check it out. Thanks for a compelling review. July 24, 2012 at 7:58am Reply

    • Suzanna: Rosarita, I hope you can find a bottle of Pamplelune to spritz!

      I am on my second phase of Pamplelune now and hope you will enjoy the scent as much as I do. July 24, 2012 at 8:43am Reply

  • Ines: It always makes me happy reading someone else loves Pamplelune. 🙂 It was love for me from the start (I am a huge grapefruit fan in any form).
    I will need to buy a bottle soon though, my second decant is running low. 🙂 July 24, 2012 at 7:58am Reply

    • Suzanna: Aha! Another Pamplelune lover! I, too, adore a grapefruit note. The use in Pamplelune is so disarming–it seems straightforward at first, only to be later dodged into the patchouli.

      What other grapefruit frags do you like, Ines? July 24, 2012 at 8:46am Reply

      • Ines: Ha! You caught me. 🙂
        I know I smelled grapefruit in some other perfumes (and some rather recently) but for the life of me, I can’t remember which.
        I believe I smelled some in Vero Kern’s Mito recently but nobody else got it, so it might just be my imagination.
        I just checked Fragrantica for perfumes with grapefruit note and from the list, although that’s not how I think of it, the one I really love is Charmes et Feuilles by TDC. July 25, 2012 at 3:41am Reply

        • Suzanna: I love it in Bond No. 9 Scent of Peace. This is a far lighter and sprightlier use of the note than is Pamplelune.

          I don’t know the TDC scent–this line is not possible to find here, but I will make a note of your rec. July 25, 2012 at 8:02am Reply

  • carole macleod: Wonderful review! I love this fragrance. I had the bath gel too, which was a wonderful addition to the line. The patchouli grounds it, and somehow makes me feel like i am standing knee deep in rich soft earth, eating grapefruit. It is amazing how many fragrances are designed to smell good with one’s nose to the nozzle, have appeal, and no offense. I detect no funk. July 24, 2012 at 8:33am Reply

    • Suzanna: And Carole is a third Pamplelune lover!

      Thanks for your excellent description. I remember that shower gel and I rue the day it disappeared. I feel lucky that the juice has been around for as long as it has. July 24, 2012 at 8:48am Reply

  • Lucas: Pamplelune is a great perfum! I love it that it smells like a real pink grapefruit. Zesty, bittersweet. You can smell zest and the pink pulp. Great refreshing stuff, ideal for summer. July 24, 2012 at 9:15am Reply

    • Suzanna: Lucas, Pamplelune shines in summer like no other. It really comes alive, doesn’t it? July 24, 2012 at 9:54am Reply

      • Lucas: Yes it does! It’s a really good choice, one of the best from AA line I think.
        Since you’re a reviewer here too I’d like to invite you to my own perfume blog 🙂 It’s just the beginning of my online writing career but it’s very nice July 24, 2012 at 1:41pm Reply

        • Suzanna: Lucas, I’d love to read your thoughts about perfume on your own blog. Good luck with that project. July 24, 2012 at 5:37pm Reply

  • Awfulknitter: Oh, I’ve been looking for a new summer perfume – I’ll have to give this a try. (I’ve just used the last of Un jardin après la mousson, which I loved but which never quite lasted long enough.)

    You talking about grapefruit (plus the long-overdue summer weather) made me want a nice refreshing Belgian gueuze, which is a beer that often has a pronounced aroma of grapefruit pith. (It is rather sour, but very good with a simple lunch of bread and cheese.) July 24, 2012 at 9:25am Reply

    • Suzanna: Awfulknitter, I know that beer well. I wish I could have one in this terrible heat, but I doubt I’d find one within 300 miles. I agree that is has that aroma of the grapefruit pith! Delightful beverage! July 24, 2012 at 9:56am Reply

  • Anne Sheffield: Ohhhh i feel like a lesser person now as I cannot wear this scent. To me it smells of sticky over ripe grapefruit. I really wanted to love it, but it just stay so vivid on me. But by reading your wonderful review I do feel maybe My noise is too “un educated” to appreciate this….. July 24, 2012 at 11:10am Reply

    • Victoria: Anne, that’s not it at all! Your comment made me smile, because that’s almost exactly what I once told a friend who adores Pamplelune. I felt that I was missing something in not being able to appreciate it properly. But then last year I got a taste for all of these sweet citruses and Pamplelune has been among them. I also began to wear more patchouli fragrances, so maybe that’s another reason I changed my mind about Pamplelune. Suzanna is sending me a decant, so let’s see how I fare with a long term commitment. 🙂 July 24, 2012 at 11:47am Reply

    • Suzanna: Anne, your nose is most certainly not uneducated. Education has nothing to do with a subjective appreciation of one perfume over another. Believe me, there are plenty of perfume notes about which others rave and pontificate and which I simply cannot tolerate (oud, for one). We like what we like and those differences make the fragrant world go round! July 24, 2012 at 5:39pm Reply

  • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: Lovely review! I bought this online after being convinced by Birgit at Olfactoria – got lucky when they sent me a new 125ml tester for the price of a 75ml bottle!

    I have to say, I couldn’t stand this at first either, precisely because of its “realness”. I come from Africa, and this was pure grapefruit, in all its splendour. Gradually, I kept sniffing my arm, until I decided I had to have it.

    Beautiful review, as always! July 24, 2012 at 11:56am Reply

    • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: I meant that this was pure grapefruit, like the grapefruit naturally tastes in Africa (I find that in the US and europe, the mangoes and grapefruit have a slightly “diluted” taste). July 24, 2012 at 11:57am Reply

      • Suzanna: Zubi, thanks for commenting! I am fascinated by your impression of mango and grapefruit in the US and in Europe. I wonder why this is–different varieties, different levels of sweetness or sourness perhaps.

        Pamplelune is grapefruit fully juiced. July 24, 2012 at 5:42pm Reply

        • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: I suspect a more sinister reason, namely, chemicals.

          Because there is no need to factor in export time, fruits grow very naturally in Kenya (much like “organic farming” in the West, if not even more basic).

          Also, in the West, you may have noticed how all the veggies and fruits just look perfect? The ones in Kenya may have quite a few gross-looking specimens, but it’s a sign that they have grown as naturally as possible.

          If you were to grow your own fruit and veggies and just let them grow naturally, there’d be a lot of them that didn’t turn out right – commercial farmers cant afford that so they need a solution. In Kenya, however, people don’t care about what the fruit/veggie looks like, it’s going to get cut up and eaten anyway! 😛 (Sorry for the long comment) July 25, 2012 at 4:36am Reply

          • Victoria: I once read an article about mangoes that said that the commercial growers started breeding the varieties to have more fiber, because it helped with shipping fruit long distances. I could only shake my head. Imagine taking a perfectly luscious mango (I bet that’s what you get in Kenya!) and turn it into a fibery ball that goes for a mango here. At least, these days you can get Indian mangoes in the US (and in Europe too), but nothing compares to the naturally ripened mango closer to its origin. July 25, 2012 at 4:42am Reply

            • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: Yes! That explains a lot!

              When I was in FL a few years back, I was so excited to try some mangoes (I am mango obsessed – know any good mango scents?) – and imagine my disappointment when I got tasteless stringy stuff!!

              Also, so off-topic, but I asked some other bloggers on Twitter but got no response 🙁 Do you know any GOOD creme brulee scents (including the burned sugar)? July 25, 2012 at 4:47am Reply

              • Victoria: I’ve been enjoying mango in Parfums de Nicolai Eau a la Folie. It’s mixed with citrus and moss and very elegant, but still fun and lighthearted.

                As for creme brulee, what about Aquolina Pink Sugar? Or Eau Gourmande Creme Brulee by Laura Mercier? Eau Gourmande smells so realistically of caramelized sugar, it makes me hungry every time. My cousin wears the body cream, which is just as scented as the perfume.
                Also Comptoir Sud Pacifique has a whole collection of vanilla fragrances that you might enjoy. Britney Spears In Control Curious is another cotton candy/creme brulee scent. But if you want something only reminiscent of the dessert, try Guerlain Shalimar Light. It has a lot of citrus, so it feels fresh on top, but the drydown is all about vanilla.

                Let’s see if Suzanna has other recs! July 25, 2012 at 4:55am Reply

                • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: I shall look for samples of these – esp Eau Gourmande (please tell me it’s EdP!).

                  Thank you 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 6:16am Reply

                  • Victoria: It’s the EDT, but trust me, it’s so strong, I doubt you would need anything richer! I can smell my cousin even after she’s gone. 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 7:06am Reply

              • Victoria: And imagine what epiphany I had when sampled a mango in India for the first time! Everyone was laughing, because the expression on my face was a mixture of surprise and delight. I had no idea that fruit could be so custard-like. 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 4:57am Reply

              • Ines: Hmm, how about Un Bois Vanille as creme brulee?
                And a very good mango scent is Bombay Bling by Neela Vermeier.

                Sorry, I had to butt in with my suggestions. 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 5:05am Reply

                • Victoria: Don’t apologise please! That’s what the comment space is for. 🙂 And your recs are great. I also remembered Annick Goutal Vanille Exquise, another delicious caramelized vanilla. July 25, 2012 at 5:17am Reply

                • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: You have excellent tatse! 😉 Un Bois Vanille is one of my all-time favourites. 😀

                  I have the Vermeire scents, must revisit. Right now I covered myself in Olympic Orchids Golden Cattleya to cheer myself up, so will have to try tomorrow. July 25, 2012 at 6:14am Reply

                  • Suzanna: Zubi, Golden Cattleya is a very sweet orchid, isn’t it? I have a sample from Olympic Orchids. I also have the soap!

                    I live in Florida and have been very disappointed in the fruit. What you and Victoria are calling fibery, I call woody. Mango and orange both suffer from woodiness and juicelessness, so I have switched to eating Juan Canary melons.

                    Although not a mango scent per se, for this type of impression I reach for Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier Fraiche Passiflore. It has the idea of a very ripe mango over a musky base.

                    For creme brulee, I think there were some great ideas above. I personally wear Un Bois Vanille quite often. July 25, 2012 at 8:10am Reply

                • Zubi d’Nova / Melissa de Blok: I’m not sure what your “tatse” are like, but I meant that you have excellent taste! 😛 July 25, 2012 at 6:15am Reply

                  • Ines: 🙂 As you can see, I misspelled Neela’s last name, so no worries.
                    And thank you (Un Bois Vanille is among my all time favourites as well). 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 6:22am Reply

  • eminere: After reading this I think I’ll have to revisit it again! July 24, 2012 at 11:58am Reply

    • Suzanna: eminere, you must try and let me know what you think? July 24, 2012 at 5:43pm Reply

  • Rina: You had me at “guerilla grapefruit juiced onto hot patchouli !” I will be TOO near a Sephora tonight, will have to see if it’s there. Thanks again, S. My perfume shelf will need to make room. July 24, 2012 at 12:09pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Rina, LOL! Clear the decks!

      I think most of the Sephoras have this one, Mandarin Basilic, and Herba Fresca. Enjoy! July 24, 2012 at 5:44pm Reply

      • Rina: Hi Suzanna! Well, I did try it, and thanks to Sephora’s most generous sample program, got a take-away to go with me. I like it a lot, but found it lasted even less on me than Hermes! So dissapointed. I mean, I guess I could douse myself but it’s a fine line between scented and offensive, no? At it’s price point, I wouldn’t feel bad about using copious amounts, but I have other scents that I like just as much that last MUCH longer. Ah well. Better to have loved and lost, I guess 🙂 July 25, 2012 at 1:26pm Reply

        • Suzanna: Ah, too bad about that lasting power, Rina! I find it lasts ages on me, but I live where there is very humid air at all times and this has made me very sensitive to smells of all kinds and not just perfume. So I might sense it far longer than someone else.

          Thanks for letting me know your experience! July 25, 2012 at 5:22pm Reply

  • Naheed: Hello Suzanna! I smelled the fragrance virtually while reading your review. I would love to try it as it sounds interesting the way it covers its journey from the sparkle to basenotes.

    Thank you for this beautiful review!! July 24, 2012 at 12:19pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Thank you, Naheed, I’m so glad you enjoyed the review. Pamplelune is indeed a very interesting and unexpected treatment of this tart note. I hope you will enjoy the adventure. July 24, 2012 at 5:45pm Reply

  • silverdust: Le sigh. I love the scent of grapefruit, but a recent order of (oil of) O Pomelo-Pamplemousse turned metallic on my skin instantly.

    Not one to be deterred, I WILL try to sample this at my local Sephora, but I’m guessing it won’t be there because it’s a tiny store. July 24, 2012 at 12:23pm Reply

    • Suzanna: silverdust, the Sephora where I found it was in a Penney’s in Northern Florida, so perhaps you will luck out.

      I have never tried O Pomelo and now want to. July 24, 2012 at 5:46pm Reply

  • Austenfan: I love this one. Don’t own a bottle but always try and get a sniff if I see it.
    Another fragrance with a lovely grapefruity opening is Yuzu Fou by Parfum d’Empire. It is a tamer fragrance though. If my memory serves me right. July 24, 2012 at 12:39pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Austenfan, thanks for mentioning the Yuzu Fou. I’ve heard of it but have not tried it!

      BTW, I take spritzes of various fragrances I do not own as I happen upon them. July 24, 2012 at 5:48pm Reply

  • solanace: Lovely review, but pamplelune smells like BO on me. July 24, 2012 at 12:47pm Reply

    • Suzanna: solanace, I guess the infamous sulfur got to you. It can go either way, so it’s a bit of a thrill ride. July 24, 2012 at 5:49pm Reply

  • Alityke: I love Pamplelune but cannot really justify both it and O de Lancôme in my wardrobe. In the past I have usually opted for the O de Lancôme as my husband finds it the least offensive of the two, but reading your piece has made me crave it July 24, 2012 at 1:46pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Alityke, there are always decants. That’s usually my answer to dilemmas such as you describe! July 24, 2012 at 5:50pm Reply

  • Cams: This is one of the most flawless reviews I have every read on a pretty polarizing fragrance! I literally smelt it in the description. As a matter of fact, one of my friends described this as feline urine in a text to me and ended the text with “Meow”! This is one of my favourite fragrances of all time. It smells beautiful on me and I get how startled you feel when you first try it. I just got myself a back-up bottle after reading this captivating review. Well done. July 24, 2012 at 2:59pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Cams, thanks for the lovely compliment. I’ve been wearing Pamplelune for years, so I was familiar enough with it to write a decent review!

      Startled is a good choice of verb for how you feel when that first zing of grapefruit expresses from the atomizer: Is this really a perfume? Ah, yes it is–one of the more unusually wearable ones. It’s almost an art scent to me, a Pop Art scent.

      For anyone interested in buying a bottle, I’ve noticed there are still some of the larger size bottles out there–not in the malls but on line. July 24, 2012 at 5:53pm Reply

  • gio: I was really hesitant to try this fragrance, but after reading this wonderful review, I have to give it a sniff! It sounds intriguing. July 24, 2012 at 4:01pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Give it a try, glo, and let me know what you think! Should be on everyone’s must-try list; it’s a classic! July 24, 2012 at 5:54pm Reply

  • Yulya: I am not a Guerlain person and definitely not an Aqua Allegoria persion, but this review inspired me and I am going to try it! Who knows… July 24, 2012 at 5:17pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Yulya, I will confess that I only truly have enjoyed three of the AA scents: this one, Ylang & Vanille, and Lavande Velours.

      But you do never know! July 24, 2012 at 5:55pm Reply

  • Lynn Morgan: Sorry- grapefruit will always and forever remind me of a horrible summer I spent on the Scarsdale diet in a failed and futile attempt to look good for some jerk back at Amherst. Not a scent a associate with perfume, or happiness or even a decent breakfast any longer. It strikes me as singularly asexual, but I understand other people enjoy it, although I can’t think why. July 24, 2012 at 5:31pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Lynn, sorry that the grapefruit brings up such unpleasant memories for you; I am sure we all have scents we associate with something unhappy or with a time in our lives that wasn’t the best. July 24, 2012 at 5:57pm Reply

      • Lynn Morgan: Thanks. I am a huge fan of Guerlain’s classic L’heure Bleu, though. I a a sucker for soft. powdery nostalgic scents, and that one has a lovely iris note that I adore.It makes me think of Colette novels and afternoon tea. Much nicer associations! July 24, 2012 at 6:53pm Reply

        • Suzanna: Lynn, I adore L’Heure Bleu, too. I like all forms of it, and I even wear it in the summer.

          There are lots of soft, powdery, and nostalgic scents to try! July 24, 2012 at 6:57pm Reply

  • HB: This one just recently caught my attention – now it’s higher on my to-test list. Sounds compelling and not at all humdrum. July 24, 2012 at 5:35pm Reply

    • Suzanna: HB, humdrum it is not! Move it on up that list! July 24, 2012 at 5:58pm Reply

  • Ariadne: I have purchased and worn the Guerlain AA lavender and anise interpretations and LOVED them. I think this line is so realistic and wonderful. So well crafted for the price. Sometimes you just want to wear a singular perfume note but the perfumes in this line are wonderful for layering too! July 24, 2012 at 5:47pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Ariadne, I agree that they have made many fine perfumes that lot of us enjoy. Lavande Velours is the only way I can really enjoy violets, too.

      The other day I was thinking about how this line used to be 125 ml for $45.00. I still have four bottles in that size, purchased ages ago. July 24, 2012 at 6:00pm Reply

  • OperaFan: Suzanna – I’m like the ones above who indicated a need to go back and give it a serious chance. I have a mini bottle that’s been languishing for several years now because I never dared try more than a tiny dab (after reading extreme reviews from both perspectives). Like Anne S. above, I feel like a lesser person after reading your wonderful review.

    Will definitely take out some time to get to know this one better. Fingers crossed!

    a:) July 24, 2012 at 9:02pm Reply

    • Suzanna: OperaFan, this is one frag that just clicks–and when it does, there’s no turning back. And it did take me a long time to appreciate it. Until I wore it in extreme heat (as counterintuitive as this sounds), I never really noticed the wonderful base or how the grapefruit seemed organically attached to it.

      Flora Nerolia took me ages to appreciate also. July 24, 2012 at 9:30pm Reply

  • annemariec: I’ve heard so many good things about this fragrance, and now here is your truly stunning review. I must give it a try (which means purchasing a asmple, unfortunately, as my local Guerlain counter does not carry it).

    I am very attached to AA Flora Nymphea but was taken aback when I first tried it. Like you, I expected something simple, but found FN dense, more green and much less airy than I had expected. I was nonplussed and hardly wore it for a few weeks. Now it is a staple. Love! July 24, 2012 at 9:23pm Reply

    • Suzanna: annemariec, isn’t it amazing how a line that we take to be a simpler rendition than something like Shalimar ends up being far more complex than we could imagine.

      The beauty of Pamplelune is that it showcases three big elements in such a dynamic rendition. July 24, 2012 at 9:32pm Reply

  • HemlockSillage: This is why I read perfume blogs!

    You’ve painted this amazing word picture of a scent, and given it such a description, that I want to smell it to see what you’ve experienced. I love the way you started with the name, and educated me on its significance. You link the scent to concrete things I know, like the rind, juice and pith of the grapefruit, and build on that with other notes to give an idea of how the fragrance develops. Great writing! Well done. Now, I must go find an AA Pampelune tester. Thank you. July 24, 2012 at 11:50pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Thanks so much for your kind words, HemlockSillage, and for taking the time to comment.

      You make an important point about linking to the concrete and I will keep that in mind for future reviews. It’s all too easy to get lost in the lyrical, so reminder of your experience in reading a review is very helpful!

      I hope you enjoy Pamplelune. July 25, 2012 at 10:46am Reply

  • Edward: Hi Suzanna,

    After reading your review of Pamplelune, I immediately got hold of my own bottle which has been “ignored” in the shelf. I must say I agree with the 5 star rating you gave and found a revived feeling of pride and joy in my own bottle of Pamplelune! Thanks for the spot on review. July 25, 2012 at 1:46pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Edward, thanks for stopping in and leaving a comment! Nice to see you!

      My first bottle of Pamplelune went from ignored to swapped after the incident described in my post. Years later, I sprayed it in Sephora and it was like a whole new scent to me. After sampling extensively and confirming it was in fact like a whole new scent, I grabbed up one of the original big bottles.

      Glad you are finding a renewed interest in this beauty! July 25, 2012 at 5:20pm Reply

  • JulienFromDijon: Did you try the vintage of this one?
    I got one on ebay germany.
    The patchouly quality sets an example here : nothing camphoraceous. It makes Pamplelune feels like a purple veil of silk, transparent and weightless. One sewed with yellow stars. Not something you’d expect from patchouly. However we all heard about the one with floral tones!

    Regarding the vintage :
    The hesperidic notes are more sheer. (But “ambre gris” said she only smelled her toilette cleaner ^_^! True, the citrus note smells citrusy (synthetic) and limescale)
    There is something rosy that lasts in the realistic grapefruit pulp.

    I’m not a hesperidic kind of perfumelover, but I detect the best ones when they know to play these notes as the luminous radiance of a summerday. Pamplelune surely play masterfully with this radiance, then the rosy and blackcurrant tone are lovely, and the invisible patchouly is weightless.

    I don’t support the urge for vintage blindless, somehow the actual one won’t feel as refined, rounded, and flawless. This is hard to put it with words, because its “weightless” property is what makes unique (it feels like one shimmering piece of fabric, yes complicated, with both natural and synthetic, the complexity hidden in one abstraction, rich yet not at all intoxicating) July 26, 2012 at 10:57pm Reply

    • Suzanna: JulienfromDijon, thanks for stopping in and commenting!

      The bottle I have is vintage. It is definitely rounder and has less of a floral presence. The patch is sweet (from vanilla) and earthy on me. July 28, 2012 at 10:54am Reply

  • Elin: I tried this perfume a few days ago and at first it was a fantastic fresh grapefruit scent. Then after a little while it started to smell awful, a harsh note/notes of some similarity to some Eau de colognes/ aftershaves I have detested on men. The following hours I just wanted to wash it off, it lingered for some time. I don’t know the names of the colognes that has had a similar effect and I wonder very much what it is that I am reacting to. I am still new to reading about perfumes and would like to know what it is that I can’t stand. Do you have any idea what it could be? August 3, 2012 at 6:38pm Reply

    • Suzanna: Elin, it’s probably the grapefruit and patch combo. This is what makes this fragrance such a polarizing one. Sorry it didn’t work for you! August 3, 2012 at 10:29pm Reply

  • Daisy: I finally got around to trying this on a muggy horrible day earlier this week and it was perfect. The bright citrus opening made me feel fresh, and once the humidity passed, the fragrance had developed into a yummy, yummy dry-down. What a crazy transition from beginning to end! But really well-done. Thanks for the recommendation! I don’t think I would have reached for it without your post! September 21, 2012 at 2:03pm Reply

  • Kaitlin: I bought a bottle of this just from your review alone and I love it. There’s something so exciting when I first spray it – I feel like I’m buckling up for a ride on a grapefruit roller-coaster.

    I just started exploring fragrances and this is my first bottle since starting actively learning. I feel a sly grin on my face whenever I see my bottle. So much explosion in one bottle!

    Thanks for the recommendation and bringing this exciting fragrance into my life. January 23, 2017 at 4:51pm Reply

    • katherine x: Kaitlin – me too! I purchased as a blind buy after reading V’s review. And Kaitlin your post is a lot of fun to read. Makes me grin too. January 23, 2017 at 9:23pm Reply

  • Julie Demelo: Dear Victoria,
    Nice review and photo. Thank you! So glad to see this is five stars worthy. Do you still wear it?
    I sampled this at Nordstrom’s fragrance department and loved it…It was over a year ago. I am finally purchasing a full bottle today. I really enjoyed it and also adore the bottle. I’ve been wearing O De Lancome and love refreshing citrus scents during summertime! 🙂 August 1, 2018 at 7:52am Reply

    • Victoria: I don’t. Today’s version is flatter, I find. August 3, 2018 at 3:10am Reply

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