Girl next door, Guerlain Les Secrets de Sophie

You know I’m still young and every time that I’m planning to approach one of those elderly, classic perfume houses, I feel a little bit insecure… The same rule applies for the house of Guerlain. I keep asking myself if I’m not too young for some of the compositions, if I decide to try a perfume – will I understand it? Or maybe I will have to put the perfume aside for many years and give it another go when I’m older? Whatever will happen I will once in a while take a risk and try a classic perfume blend which is often few times older than I am. So… I’m going Guerlain today and this one is not as old, should be easier.

Les Secrets de Sophie, a perfume I’m investigating today, begins in a very delicate way. After spraying a cloud of perfume on my skin the first accord I noticed was a violet leaf. At first it was dewy and really watery, aquatic but 5 minutes later the aroma started getting stronger and it became kind of crispy and a little bit green. After 15 minutes a light citrus vibe appeared but it didn’t have the citric qualities. Right from the opening point the perfume feels incredibly playful and girly.

After another 15 minutes, 30 minutes after application Les Secrets de Sophie turns into a wonderful bouquet of white flowers. There’s a lot of orange blossom in the blend. It smells lovely. It doesn’t have the soapy or clean aroma as many orange blossom and neroli containing perfumes have. In Guerlain it seems like a pure essence of the flower was captured. It feels ethereal and also kind of refreshing – like a quick rain in the middle of a warm day. This stage lasts 30 minutes.

At the hour 1 mark the composition of “Sophie’s Secrets” evolves and gains more oriental character. When vanilla appears the perfume instantly develops a warmer aura. Vanilla isn’t overly sweet in this perfume it also doesn’t feel dark like vanilla pods. It’s somehow kept at the level of fresh and violet leaf appears here again introducing a ozonic quality of the air after the storm. Tonka bean in this Guerlain fragrance adds a tiny bit of spiciness and sweetness. It also brings a subtle balmy feeling to the scent, making the composition more intimate.

Pyramid of the notes suggests a presence of incense but the fact is – I didn’t recognize it. What I detected was a juicy quality of a bitter orange that disappeared in a blink of an eye, making place for jasmine. There’s something sweet to this note but most of all I can smell the characteristic aroma of this white flower. It’s soft and feminine, created without the indolic or animalic feeling. Moreover at some point I start to smell neroli which adds a neat, clean and a little bit soapy feeling.

Later on, after a few hours during which Les Secrets de Sophie was undergoing some minimal changes and mixing of the notes the perfume becomes creamy. It has a very pleasant, slightly milky and slightly sugary character. A tropical ylang-ylang fits really well in the blend of this perfume, effusing a charming aura that kind of makes me think of exclusive patisserie that invites you with piece-of-art-looking cupcakes, meringues and more. Finally there’s a sassy shot of bergamot adding some happiness to the whole composition. It makes the fragrance even more outgoing and having positive attitude towards everything. When you smell this perfume you just want to go out, smile and have fun.

There’s one question that might pop up in your mind – who is Sophie? Well, to me Sophie from this Guerlain perfume is like a girl next door. She wears jeans shorts and casual t-shirts with colorful prints on them. She can also wink at you as you meet her at the front yard. And just like every girl she loves fashion, that’s why Les Secrets de Sophie has three outfits: Les Secrets Nuits de Sophie is white, Les Secrets Poudres de Sophie is pink and Les Secrets Noirs de Sophie is black. The colors apply to the bottle label, bow ribbon hanging at the flacon neck and to a bulb atomizer.

Les Secrets de Sophie was created by Jean-Paul Guerlain in 2009. A limited number of flacons (designed by Sophie Levy) was produced and a 60ml of eau de parfum costs a small fortune, not to mention that it’s very hard to get. As far as the perfume was nice I think that it’s not worth spending so much money. The longevity is average 6-8 hours and the sillage is rather small all the time.

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24 thoughts on “Girl next door, Guerlain Les Secrets de Sophie

  1. jilliecat says:

    I consider myself a bit of a Guerlain fan, but I hadn’t heard of this so thank you for writing such a detailed description. I hate to imagine how much it costs and – to be honest – I couldn’t help thinking that it sounds quite similar to the composition of some of Guerlain’s much cheaper Aqua Allegoria line. Some of these are very good although they are usually quite simple and don’t last very long, and are seen as an entry point for the younger customer. Quite like this, I imagine.

    • lucasai says:

      I couldn’t find this perfume even at the Guerlain website, so I’m not surprised you haven’t heard of this.
      Somebody at Fragrantica mentioned a price tag like 420$!
      I have never explored Aqua Allegoria line much (but my Mum has Mandarine Basilic)

      • jilliecat says:

        What! $420! Well…. that is pretty shocking. My husband likes Mandarine Basilic, so your mum is in good company. I imagine Les Secrets de Sophie to smell a little like AA Ylang & Vanille, or Flora Nymphea, but of course I could be utterly wrong! The bottle is attractive, but as all good perfumistas know, you should never attach an atomiser bulb as you risk spoilage and evaporation (particularly dreadful if you have paid $420 for it!).

        • lucasai says:

          A shocker, right?
          You could be right or you could be wrong, you never know.
          In case of Les Secrets de Sophie I think there’s no other option but only a bulb atomiser. It’s not like exclusives which come with a bulb sprayer and regular sprayer to put on the bottle.

  2. A Guerlain I hadn’t heard of. Nice review Lucas.

  3. shellyw says:

    I did not know bulb atomizers caused evaporation! I do not have and but they look so pretty in antique pictures.

  4. Holly says:

    Oh, you had me going there! This one sounds like it would be right up my alley. I was about to add it to my sample wish list of infinity until you mentioned the price. No way. Only on my deathbed if it would send me to heaven immediately after one spritz. And even then, someone else would have to pay for it. 🙂

    Thanks for another lovely review. Do you have any suggestions for something similar? I’d love to hear what you have to say, as always.

    • lucasai says:

      The pricetag is beyond crazy and I don’t think there are any more bottles of this perfume available since it was pretty limited production.
      I doubt it would grant you an entry to Heaven.

      Maybe try the Aqua Allegorias Jilliecat mentioned above?

      • Holly says:

        Thanks. I looked up the two jilliecat mentioned. They both sound a bit warmer than Les Secrets, and there are several mentions of a honey note which I don’t like, particularly in the Flora Nymphea. I’m happily looking forward to spring, so thanks again for bringing a glimpse of it ahead in your review.

  5. Mary K says:

    I am among those that did not know about these perfumes, and they sound light and really nice (but the price tag is outrageous, of course, due to their being in limited production when they were made and now no longer in production). I appreciate your reviewing them, as otherwise I would not have known about them,

    • lucasai says:

      No problem Mary! I got a tiny tiny sample from a friend, don’t know where did she get it.
      It case you were wondering, these three colorful “dressess” represent the same scent (or at least I think so!) even though the names are a little bit different.

  6. Undina says:

    I think I read something about this perfume but since much more Guerlains do not work for me than do, I wasn’t even curious to look for that limited edition bottle. If I ever want to spend that sum on Guerlain, I’m going for their Muguet – I like the green color better 😉 (the last year’s edition was in a similar bottle but with green coloring, if I’m not mistaken).

  7. hajusuuri says:

    Well, those bottles are gorgeous and the Les Secrets de Sophie sound really wonderful. The cost does give me pause and no, I don’t see myself paying $29 for 1mL although… although…although, we have to stop and think about this: Aftelier’s Cuir de Gardenia is approximately $6 for .25 mL which makes 1 mL $24 (but if you buy the 2mL, it’s $55). If TPC is the only decant service that has it, I may have to swallow my lumps and order from them the next time they have a sale.

    • lucasai says:

      The bottles are nice, I agree.
      The price is steep but now that you mention the calculations for Aftelier Cuir de Gardenia they sound like if the very similar price tag.

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