Monday, April 30, 2018

Vintage Powder Glamour - Guerlain Meteorites: fragrance review

Although most powders are scented with rose and iris to give a feminine impression that would tie with the intended audience (women who groom themselves with gusto), some brands do manage to render editions beyond the lovely into the cult. One such brand has been Guerlain. For their Météorites range of powders they rendered a compact or loose powder product into the innovative notion of small caked beads that one dips a fluffy brush on and then smooths on the face and decolletage. The product has been a hit for its velvety, subtly illuminating effect that never looks dried out, but, crucially, also for its unique and beguiling scent.


The idea translated well in a separate fragrance for perfuming one's self with the lovely scent of those powdery beads the Météorites. And thus Météorites eau de toilette by Guerlain was born in 2000.

The predictable rose scent that lives in lipsticks and powders is here eschewed for violet, which is the predominant note of the fragrance. The intermingling with dry orris effects gives a starchy quality to vintage Météorites, it's the way I imagine rice powders completely devoid of talc from another era should have smelled. It gives me a totally groomed feel, not only the sense of cleanliness and dryness, but thanks to its retro violet vibe it's rather coy too, almost genuinely shy. This is a quality which I find fascinating, exactly because shyness doesn't come across as exhibiting its nature, and because in feminine iconography it's so often caricatured into a manipulating coyness.

Furthermore, the vintage fragrance is expounding on one of the signature notes in the Guerlain canon: heliotrope. The almondy, fluffy, powdery sweet smell of heliotropin (also used in mimosa scents) immediately recalls the hint of the patisseries that many Guerlain perfumes possess. L'Heure Bleue and Après L'Ondée are both characterized by it, and though they both lean towards melancholia in their wistful tension, the rapport with Météorites is another story. In the latter the warmth of heliotrope and the coyness of the violet note are allied into giving a newly found serenity. The drydown is soft and clean with notes of musky warmth. It's powder but more contemporary than L'Heure Bleue's powder. One of the few vintages that can be effortlessly worn as if it weren't. As silky nevertheless as being powdered with those large, goose down puffs we only see on film these days...

The vintage Météorites is retro like Parma violets, but not difficult to wear at all. It's subtle, yet lasts well. It's rather simple, but it's not simplistic. I genuinely like it very much.

The company has just launched a new limited edition fragrance (alongside their spring 2018 makeup collection) called Guerlain Météorites Le Parfum reissue 2018 with a different formula that leans more fruity floral. Read the comparison of the vintage Meteorites perfume with the new HERE.


  1. Ah I thought this was a review of the new one! Will you be reviewing that separately? Lovely review as always 😊👏

    1. Hi Gail! Yes I plan to! It's always best IMHO to revisit the new before embarking on the new. So the differences stand out.
      Thanks for the compliment :)

    2. Very wise! Look forward to it 😁

  2. Gail I'm in the happy position to let you know I posted the review of the modern one, with the comparison with the old attached. :) Enjoy!


Type your comment in the box, choose the Profile option you prefer from the drop down menu, below text box (Anonymous is fine too!) and hit Publish.
And you're set!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin