French style is just so effortless and chic. They're almost always dressed impeccably and sophisticated but look like they barely even tried. When I try to pull that off, I tend to look like either A) I tried too hard, or B) I'm a total poser. I like to think of my style as a mysterious aura, so I have to work my way up to that.
It turns out a lot of us are trying to mimic French-girl style. We've written about how to copy what they wear. We've detailed their makeup and skincare routines. We've looked at how they style and cut their hair. And we've discussed how they decorate their homes. But what about—and this is totally meant in a non-creepy way—how they smell? What are their favorite fragrances and perfumes that they turn to over and over again?
If you don't know the brand already, let me introduce you to Guerlain. It's a legendary and beloved French beauty brand that's been around for centuries—it was founded in 1828 to be exact. Guerlain is well-known for its iconic fragrances that are still popular and total classics, even many decades later. According to its website, it has made over 1100 olfactory creations since it's been in business. And the innovations keep on growing and growing.
The fragrances are classic, unique, and intoxicating. Familiar notes include rose, iris, vanilla, tonka bean, bergamot, and jasmine. These are fragrances that you'll keep on your vanity for a long time—they're not fads at all. And obviously, a lot of French girls are loyal to the brand.
So if you're looking for your next signature scent, why not try a quintessentially French fragrance. Below are some of the best-reviewed and most popular Guerlain perfumes to inspire you.
Created in 1925, Shalimar was inspired by the love story of Emperor Shah Jahan and Princess Mumtaz Mahal. The emperor built the Gardens of Shalimar for her and dedicated the Taj Mahal to her. So, yeah, this perfume has a lot of history. And it's still a classic with notes of bergamot, lemon, jasmine, rose, iris, incense, opopanax, tonka bean, and vanilla.
If you gravitate towards fresher scents, you'll like this one that is crisp fruity. It's just perfect for summer. It has citrus notes of mandarin and bergamot, plus the more grounded scents of basil and cedarwood.
This perfume is inspired by "a walk through tall grass," and it's both fruity and floral at the same time. It has top notes of violet and watermelon; middle notes of jasmine, wildflower accord, and orange blossom; and base notes of white musk and iris.
Juicy pear is blended with the osmanthus flower (which has an apricot scent) and bergamot in this fragrance. It's another light and fresh scent you'll want to wear when it's warm out (or if you want to pretend it's warm out).
Guerlain's Mitsouko has had plenty of staying power—it's been around since 1919. The fragrance has notes of bergamot, jasine, rose, peach, ylang-ylang, lilac, vetiver, amber, cinnamon, and oakmoss.
With key notes of coconut water, watermelon, and sandalwood, this fragrance will make you feel like you're on a tropical island.
Guerlain's L'Heure Bleue is one of its original fragrances, as it was formulated in 1912. The intoxicating fragrance is all at once floral, warm, and spicy. It has top notes of anise and bergamot; middle notes of tuberose, neroli, carnation, and rose; and base notes of iris, violet, vanilla, and tonka bean.
This woody and floral fragrance was inspired by "the treasures of the East." It's definitely a scent that's sophisticated and mysterious, with notes of neroli, jasmine, peach, rose, cinnamon, sandalwood, leather, amber, oud, and amber muscs.
Fresh florals make up this scent that was inspired by Angelina Jolie, and her "strong, free, and sensual femininity." It has key notes of mandarin, rose, and white musk.
This iconic fragrance is one of Guerlain's oldest and was launched in 1889. When you look at its notes, you'll understand why it's been a classic for over a hundred years. It has top notes of rosemary, bergamot, lemon, and mandarin orange; middle notes of tonka bean, orris root, lavender, basil, and jasmine; and base notes of leather, spices, vanilla, sandalwood, amber, and Brazilian rosewood.
La Petite Robe Noire means "little black dress," so you know it's going to be a scent that's always chic and timeless. Fresh floral and fruit notes of roses, jasmine, orange blossom, cherry, apple, and blackcurrant are paired with white amber, silky musk, and patchouli.
You'll be transported to Italy with this fragrance—it's inspired by the citrus groves of Sicily. It has scents of blood orange, bergamot, and woody notes.
More Beauty Products from Guerlain
This is truly a three-in-one product because it has the power of a serum, oil, and toner. It's formulated with black bee honey that's rich in amino acids and will leave the skin glowy. Your skin will look and feel plumper and smoother.
It's easy to get a natural glow without baking in the sun and exposing yourself to some harmful UV rays thanks to this bronzer. The formula contains Moroccan argan oil to leave the skin hydrated, too.
There are three polymers in this mascara formula. The first coats the lashes with protective oils, the second softens the lashes, and the third forms a thin film to give your lashes some hold.
This lipstick has got saturated color and comes in three different finishes (satin, matte, and sheer shine). All the lipsticks contain hyaluronic acid, while the matte versions have black seed oil, and the sheer shine ones have diamond powder for a fuller effect.
This pencil's creamy formula makes it easy to line eyes. It's long-lasting and water-resistant, too.
Totally unique, this illuminating powder is made of delicate, light-diffusing pearls. And you don't need a special tool to apply the product—just a powder brush.
The cool thing about this primer is that it's a gel formula, so it will feel so refreshing and hydrating on your skin. It's infused with 24-karat gold flakes to smooth the skin's texture.
Guerlain's foundation provides light to medium coverage, and it has technology to smooth the skin and provide long-lasting comfort. The wear time is 24 hours.
Use this serum at night to reduce any tiredness and puffiness, so you'll wake up to a fresher, rejuvenated face.
Super light, this cleansing foam is gentle, yet effective. It becomes a cream when it comes into contact with water, so you can easily massage into the skin. It contains nigella flower oil, which helps with anti-inflammation.
This lotion toner is enriched with microencapsulated royal jelly, which protects against stressors and pollution. The formula will also strengthen and balance the skin.