His and Hers: Guerlain Shalimar and Montale Boisé Vanillé

When I mentioned to Daisy, who facilitated my recent bottle of Boisé Vanillé, that I thought BV smelled like a darker, drier, masculinized-riff on Shalimar, she replied:

Boisé Vanillé and SHALIBARF??????? lalalalalallalalalaalalala I can’t hear you….

It’s no secret that Daisy dislikes Shalimar (and is always good for a laugh). This is interesting to me because I smell so much kinship between these two fragrances—I can’t imagine liking one and not the other. Boisé Vanillé has cedar and pepper to Shalimar’s rose and jasmine, but a quick peek at the rest of the notes will confirm what my nose is telling me:

Shalimar Notes: bergamot, lemon, rose, jasmine, patchouli, opoponax, vetiver, civet, musk, vanilla, iris and tonka bean.

Boisé Vanillé Notes: lemon, geranium, bergamot, lavender, cedar leaves from Canada, Jamaican pepper, iris, patchouli, vanilla, tonka bean.

Shared notes: Lemon, Iris, Patchouli, Vanilla, Tonka Bean

Boisé Vanillé has an arid quality, and the lavender, cedar, and pepper read “masculine,” while next to it, Shalimar smells distinctly grounded in it’s langurous opulence. Together, they smell divine: the yin to the other’s yang. The sillage that is wafting through our house right now is heart-breakingly beautiful.

I asked my husband to wear Shalimar extrait on one wrist, and Boisé Vanillé on the other (I did the same) so we could talk about them. He instantly informed me, “Shalimar wins!” He’s a Guerlain fan.

One thing he and I do agree on is the beauty of contrast: he smells better in (and prefers) distinctly feminine perfumes, and I tend to smell better in (and prefer) those that skew masculine.

Shalimar and Boisé Vanillé make, therefore, and ideal his and hers pairing.

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7 thoughts on “His and Hers: Guerlain Shalimar and Montale Boisé Vanillé

  1. That is so interesting that the feminines wear better on your husband and the masculines on you.
    You know I love Shalimar, but a drier less sweet version sound enticing too, for those no sugar – days I have. Or for my husband, his interest is starting to develop, thanks to Puredistance M. But psst, we don´t want to jinx it. 🙂

    1. I’m writing myself a note to send you some BV in your next package—I think Mr. O will like this one; I mean, there’s no smoked sausage (LOL), but there is a dry-arid note that, because of the pepper I think, is a touch smokey. And it’s a fabulous scent!

      I think I told you that Mr. H likes to wear no.5 and Eau Premiere? It’s really bizarre the effect it has—he has such a powerful, brooding personality (he could teach Heathcliff a lesson or two) and then to smell something so pretty and feminine like EP (or even Shalimar) on him makes me totally weak at the knees!

      Then again, I’ve always liked masculines; long before perfumania set in, I was a Ralph Lauren girl…

  2. A Guerlain fan! He is a man of style and taste! 🙂
    I do think that feminine scents smell wonderful on men (roses, for example) and masculine ones are so striking on women (leathery chypres, say).

    1. LOL, I’ll tell him you said so! The first time he wore L’Heure Bleue was the day I finally “got” it—I smelled it the way it was meant to be smelled, and am now a fan.

      Leathery chypre… yum! Memoir Woman is on it’s way to me, and I’m hoping that it will fill that category in my cabinet 🙂

  3. I remember you telling me over at OT a short time ago that you owned Montale Boise Vanille — and I should have come over then to see if you’d reviewed it. But thanks to Tarleisio’s review today, I’m here now. “A darker, drier, masculined-riff on Shalimar” — that’s a perfect description!! I’m so thrilled to hear you love and own this. It’s so deserving of some love!

    1. The Boise Vanille fan-club doesn’t have many members, but we all have very good taste!
      Seriously though, it’s a gorgeous fragrance, and I was glad Tsrleisio reviewed it. As you say, it’s so deserving of some love! 🙂

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