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Guerlain Eau de Cologne Imperiale

Item Description

Top Notes: Bergamot, Neroli, Verbena, Lemon, Orange
Middle Notes: Lavender
Base Notes: Cedarwood, Tonka Bean

Created in 1854, Guerlain Eau de Cologne Impériale is one of the oldest continuously produced EDC's on the market. Impériale has been my standard and favorite for over 20 years. Thanks to my wife, who gives it to me for my birthday, Christmas or Valentine’s, I always have a large supply on my dresser. The picture below shows my 250 ml flacon. Because this size has only a stopper, I decant it into the atomizer shown next to it (purchased on sale for $34 at Perfume Atomizer King http://www.perfumeatomizersking.com/default.htm )

View attachment 81729

The packaging is elegant: it comes in a gold box with a simple black label; the container is heavy glass embossed with the Guerlain coat of arms, sealed with an airtight stopper.

Imperiale is a straightforward uncomplicated fragrance, an attractive quality for me. I generally dislike complex fragrances. Like many EDC's, it is best known for its "top note", based on an opening of bergamot, Neroli, and lemon with undertones of orange, and verbena. In the middle is lavender; at the base, Tonka Bean and Cedarwood.

Although popular for many years, some complain that Impériale lacks longevity. Personally, I don’t understand this. Longevity is not expected from an EDC at least not in the opening, especially if it is citrus. Classic EDCs provide a “refreshing splash”; they develop quickly and finish quickly. If you want the experience to continue, you must reapply. I enjoy the Impériale opening as much as anyone and keep an small atomizer of it in my office to refresh the scent.

However, for me, the Impériale base notes of Cedarwood and Tonka Bean are the most enjoyable. Tonka is an ugly shriveled black pod with beans inside that have a beautiful scent reminiscent all at once of vanilla, almonds, cinnamon, and cloves. Delicate and subtle, I smell the Tonka and Cedar close to my skin for hours and the scent sometimes reminds me . . .

Years ago, my grandparents owned a 10 acre hobby farm. I spent several summers there helping them preserve the produce we harvested from their small orchard and garden, and the honey we stole from the bees in their six hives. Grandma had a wood burning stove in her country kitchen. When she cooked with it the farmhouse filled with the blended scents of fresh fruits and vegetables, spices, herbs, and burning wood. The Impériale base notes - Tonka and Cedarwood - sometimes remind me of those summers and of Grandma’s peach pie baking in that oven . . .

Because a light EDT “splash” is intended to be liberally reapplied, it should be inexpensive. Although this is not always true, it is of Impériale. High-end stores, like Nordstrom’s, sell the 250 ml (8.5 oz) flacon for $155; online discount stores, like Scentiments, sell the same size for $84 (see http://www.scentiments.com/Product/ProductInfo.aspx?id=39662). At the regular price ($155), the cost per ml is $.62; at the discount price ($84) it is $.34 per ml.

These prices compare very favorably with two other popular men’s citrus EDT’s:

Geo F Trumper’s GFT, which usually retails $61.15 for a 50 ml (1.69 oz) atomizer, is $1.22 per ml.
Pecksniff’s Fresh Citrus, which usually retails for $64.60 for a 100 ml (3.38 oz) atomizer, is $.65 per ml.

Below is a picture of my bottles of GFT, Fresh Citrus and Imperiale for comparison.

View attachment 81730

It may seem unfair to compare a 250 ml discounted product with 50 ml and 100 ml products purchased at regular retail. Unfortunately, as far as I know, neither GFT nor Fresh Citrus are available in the larger size and it is almost impossible to find them at a discount (except maybe occasionally on EBay). The manufacturers force you to buy at the higher rate. Having said that, Guerlain also markets a 100 ml (3.45 oz) atomizer size of Imperiale comparable to the GFT and Pecksniff's bottles shown. Regularly selling at high end stores for $84, Scentiments sells it for $49.99 or $.50 per ml. http://www.scentiments.com/Product/SkuInfo.aspx?id=93103

We all know many manufacturers of men's grooming products offer "lines" of particular scents: shave cream / soap, aftershave lotion / balm, and EDT. Although Guerlain does offer lines of some of their frangrances, it does not do this with Impériale. Therefore, I match it with compatible SCs and ***. Today, I used the following combination for my shave (shown in the picture below) with very nice results:

Razor: Rooney
Blade: Croma
Brush: EJ Pure Badger
SC: Pecksniff’s Fresh Citrus
AS: Thayer’s Lemon Witch Hazel
AS: EJ Sea Buckthorn After Shave Balm
EDT: Guerlain Impériale

View attachment 81731

As can be seen from my ratings, I have a very high opinion of Guerlain Impériale. I did rate its "complexity" as relatively low (which it is compared to other fragrances) but as I said before this is actually a big plus for me. I rated "quality of atomizer" as a 10 because, even though the flacon pictured here comes with a stopper, I have purchased the small atomizer size many times and it is excellent. Altogether, I would recommend Guerlain Imperiale to anyone.

Latest reviews

This one is really better off for those who like lemon, because there's plenty of it. One spritz, and it's lemon, lemon, lemon, lemon, lemon . . .

I don't like lemon dominating in fragrance. As a top note or some complimentary feature, okay, but not front and center. Maybe once upon a time I would've found it refreshing and crisp, but having been raised in the day of Lemon Pledge and then spending 5 years as a janitor using industrial-strength Zep products, my tolerance for lemon is limited. Very limited.

Oddly, I don't mind lime so much, or pine (although with pine it can depend). Neither of those are in issue here, though. All I could detect was lemon, a bit of a spicy, herbal quality beneath that, and then nothing. Very fresh, yes, but very singular and boring. And short-lived . . . like fifteen minutes and it's virtually gone.

This is just me, but I'd rather go with a good vetiver on a scathing hot summer day than anything with that much citrus. The box could be better - that brownish color just vanishes on store shelves. I was staring right at it for five minutes and didn't even see it until the cashier took it down and handed it to me. The atomizer is fine.

Like I said, if you like lemon, this is for you. If not, then look elsewhere in the House of Guerlain (I hear they do a mean vanilla . . . )



...
Price
2.00 star(s)
Scent
2.00 star(s)
Quality
3.00 star(s)
Packaging
1.00 star(s)
Complexity
1.00 star(s)
Staying Power
1.00 star(s)
Quality of Atomizer
4.00 star(s)
Top Notes: Bergamot, Neroli, Verbena, Lemon, Orange
Middle Notes: Lavender
Base Notes: Cedarwood, Tonka Bean

Created in 1854, Guerlain Eau de Cologne Impériale is one of the oldest continuously produced EDC's on the market. Impériale has been my standard and favorite for over 20 years. Thanks to my wife, who gives it to me for my birthday, Christmas or Valentine’s, I always have a large supply on my dresser. The picture below shows my 250 ml flacon. Because this size has only a stopper, I decant it into the atomizer shown next to it (purchased on sale for $34 at Perfume Atomizer King http://www.perfumeatomizersking.com/default.htm )

View attachment 81729

The packaging is elegant: it comes in a gold box with a simple black label; the container is heavy glass embossed with the Guerlain coat of arms, sealed with an airtight stopper.

Imperiale is a straightforward uncomplicated fragrance, an attractive quality for me. I generally dislike complex fragrances. Like many EDC's, it is best known for its "top note", based on an opening of bergamot, Neroli, and lemon with undertones of orange, and verbena. In the middle is lavender; at the base, Tonka Bean and Cedarwood.

Although popular for many years, some complain that Impériale lacks longevity. Personally, I don’t understand this. Longevity is not expected from an EDC at least not in the opening, especially if it is citrus. Classic EDCs provide a “refreshing splash”; they develop quickly and finish quickly. If you want the experience to continue, you must reapply. I enjoy the Impériale opening as much as anyone and keep an small atomizer of it in my office to refresh the scent.

However, for me, the Impériale base notes of Cedarwood and Tonka Bean are the most enjoyable. Tonka is an ugly shriveled black pod with beans inside that have a beautiful scent reminiscent all at once of vanilla, almonds, cinnamon, and cloves. Delicate and subtle, I smell the Tonka and Cedar close to my skin for hours and the scent sometimes reminds me . . .

Years ago, my grandparents owned a 10 acre hobby farm. I spent several summers there helping them preserve the produce we harvested from their small orchard and garden, and the honey we stole from the bees in their six hives. Grandma had a wood burning stove in her country kitchen. When she cooked with it the farmhouse filled with the blended scents of fresh fruits and vegetables, spices, herbs, and burning wood. The Impériale base notes - Tonka and Cedarwood - sometimes remind me of those summers and of Grandma’s peach pie baking in that oven . . .

Because a light EDT “splash” is intended to be liberally reapplied, it should be inexpensive. Although this is not always true, it is of Impériale. High-end stores, like Nordstrom’s, sell the 250 ml (8.5 oz) flacon for $155; online discount stores, like Scentiments, sell the same size for $84 (see http://www.scentiments.com/Product/ProductInfo.aspx?id=39662). At the regular price ($155), the cost per ml is $.62; at the discount price ($84) it is $.34 per ml.

These prices compare very favorably with two other popular men’s citrus EDT’s:

Geo F Trumper’s GFT, which usually retails $61.15 for a 50 ml (1.69 oz) atomizer, is $1.22 per ml.
Pecksniff’s Fresh Citrus, which usually retails for $64.60 for a 100 ml (3.38 oz) atomizer, is $.65 per ml.

Below is a picture of my bottles of GFT, Fresh Citrus and Imperiale for comparison.

View attachment 81730

It may seem unfair to compare a 250 ml discounted product with 50 ml and 100 ml products purchased at regular retail. Unfortunately, as far as I know, neither GFT nor Fresh Citrus are available in the larger size and it is almost impossible to find them at a discount (except maybe occasionally on EBay). The manufacturers force you to buy at the higher rate. Having said that, Guerlain also markets a 100 ml (3.45 oz) atomizer size of Imperiale comparable to the GFT and Pecksniff's bottles shown. Regularly selling at high end stores for $84, Scentiments sells it for $49.99 or $.50 per ml. http://www.scentiments.com/Product/SkuInfo.aspx?id=93103

We all know many manufacturers of men's grooming products offer "lines" of particular scents: shave cream / soap, aftershave lotion / balm, and EDT. Although Guerlain does offer lines of some of their frangrances, it does not do this with Impériale. Therefore, I match it with compatible SCs and ***. Today, I used the following combination for my shave (shown in the picture below) with very nice results:

Razor: Rooney
Blade: Croma
Brush: EJ Pure Badger
SC: Pecksniff’s Fresh Citrus
AS: Thayer’s Lemon Witch Hazel
AS: EJ Sea Buckthorn After Shave Balm
EDT: Guerlain Impériale

View attachment 81731

As can be seen from my ratings, I have a very high opinion of Guerlain Impériale. I did rate its "complexity" as relatively low (which it is compared to other fragrances) but as I said before this is actually a big plus for me. I rated "quality of atomizer" as a 10 because, even though the flacon pictured here comes with a stopper, I have purchased the small atomizer size many times and it is excellent. Altogether, I would recommend Guerlain Imperiale to anyone.
Price
5.00 star(s)
Scent
5.00 star(s)
Quality
5.00 star(s)
Packaging
5.00 star(s)
Complexity
3.00 star(s)
Staying Power
4.00 star(s)
Quality of Atomizer
5.00 star(s)

Item information

Added by
DavidH
Views
196
Reviews
2
Last update

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