Guerlain promotes practically all of its fragrances as being part of a line, easily recognizable by a shared bottle design. Only Terracotta Le Parfum looked oddly alone with its little circular bottle like a hybrid of Guerlain’s old watch-shaped cologne bottle and Chanel’s Chance. Now it’s being joined by Météorites Le Parfum, inspired by Guerlain’s multi-coloured face powder pearls.

The idea of creating fragrances to complement Guerlain's makeup series began in 1999 with Mathilde Laurent's spicy, solar floral Terracotta Voile d'Été, followed by the powdery Météorites in 2000. Both of these scents were discontinued long ago, and their replacements bear no resemblance to them but their names. We should also be aware that in French, the word "parfum" has two different meanings, namely "fragrance" and the more technical "extrait", "extract", or "pure perfume". In this context, the name simply means "Météorites, the fragrance".

Face powder doesn’t smell particularly unique, so why would you want a Guerlain fragrance that smells like it? Maybe because scientists say powdery scents universally evoke a sense of comfort stemming from childhood memories of being cuddled (baby powder, mother’s makeup). A "makeup fragrance" may also be a way to reach LVMH’s Asian customers, who are very much into makeup but have little interest in perfume. Almost all of Guerlain’s ads in Asia are related to makeup and skincare. Indeed, Météorites Le Parfum launched first in Japan, and its cute pastel pink design could certainly be something from an Asian beauty ad. On closer inspection, the bottle’s label is made with a handsome satin print suggestive of both the Météorites pearls and the fish-scale pattern of the iconic bee bottle’s shoulders, and the rounded, baby pink wooden lid lends an ecologically-aware image to Guerlain.

While the first Météorites EdT did smell like face powder, i.e., like violet dust, Météorites Le Parfum is updated to Guerlain 3.0, as the brand likes to call itself these days (without telling us what Guerlain 2.0 was), featuring the delicious meringue style typical of Wasser and Jelk: crunchy, fruity-green apple, powdery violet bonbons, airy jasmine, banana-sweet ylang-ylang, a touch of wood, and tons of downy white musk. Like face powder though, Météorites Le Parfum is not an olfactive powerbomb, so if you want to keep the child in you, you need to apply again and again.
(April 2018)

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