Endless summer, Guerlain Terracotta Le Parfum

In 1984 the cosmetic division of Guerlain launched their first pressed powder under a name of Terracotta. The product was so good that in short amount of time it was crowned with the title of one of the most iconic beauty products ever created. The year of 2014 marks the 30th anniversary of Terracotta line of bronzers, blushes and other products in the range. To commemorate this Guerlain’s in-house perfumer Thierry Wasser decided to transform the scent of these cosmetics into a charming summer fragrance. The result is truly brilliant.

Guerlain Terracotta Le Parfum opens with a huge and shimmering cloud of tiare flowers. In no time their aroma fills the whole room. This scent embraces you with intensive yet tender scent of milkiness which gains more floral tones in the next 20-30 minutes. The feeling is really tropical, like you were teleported somewhere to the luxurious spa beach resort. After half an hour I start to detect jasmine and there’s a bunch of it. It’s a little bit indolic but generally speaking it introduces the big white floral bouquet to the composition. At this point Terracotta Le Parfum starts to become sweeter.

The luscious accord of ylang-ylang appears in the blend after around 45 minutes and it brings the soft and creamy sensation which is very luxurious and intoxicating if you asked me. The creamy vibe that is introduced to Terracotta Le Parfum with this note, it is also a tad green, making me think of palm leaves and their shiny surface covered with wax. Coconut accord enters at 1,5 hours mark and it instantly boosts the feeling of sweetness in this fragrance. It becomes really yummy.

After a while of smelling coconut aroma floating lazily above the surface of my skin, I had an impression that the scent turned a little bit colder which made me think of some coconut ice-cream melting in the intensive sun, or about a coconut yoghurt. Vanillic tones give even more characteristic sweetness that is tender and full-bodied. Terracotta Le Parfum starts to be more and more gourmandy, leaving the exotic elements somewhere behind. A hint of orange blossom adds another floral twist with a company of some refreshing molecules. This accord feels chilly which nicely contrasts with the rest of the perfume.

Terracotta’s drydown appears after around 2,5 hours and it continues the idea presented in earlier stages of this scent. There’s a whole lot of musk, don’t know if it’s the white musk or not, anyway it feels very clean, a bit soapy, creamy and fluffy. Think whipped cream, cotton candy etc. The final twist is the addition of bergamot which brings a juicy splash, although it’s not sugar-free! This note feels more sweet, like it had some brown sugar, rather than being sour and acidic, tart.

For the next 1,5 to 2 hours Terracotta Le Parfum from Guerlain remains rather linear and any changes, if they occur, are hard to notice. The perfume smells like a creamy and milky concoction of tiare, white flowers, milky coconut and creamy sweetness of vanilla. It is a happy perfume, it feels like the summer could last forever if you decided to wear it daily. It smells like a high quality sunscreen cream or dry oil, and because the scent gives a feeling of shimmering, This oil has some tiny particles of gold, for the luminous skin effect. Simple and pretty.

Terracotta Le Parfum is available in 100ml bottles, shaped kind of like a pressed powder compact, it’s round and flat. In the middle of the front there’s a round plate with the perfume name and the sun with Guerlain logo in the center. That sun is a symbol of Terracotta bronze line. The scent is announced as limited edition and it’s concentration is eau de toilette. It highly reminds me of Parfums de Nicolai Musc Monoi, also recently launched. Sillage of Terracotta Le Parfum is moderate, it lasts for around 5 hours – perfect for a stroll around the sunny boulevard.

[note] pictures: 1st – press, 2nd – beautylab.nl, 3rd – shoplemonde.de

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18 thoughts on “Endless summer, Guerlain Terracotta Le Parfum

  1. jillie says:

    I’ve been looking forward to your review on this! It’s interesting to see that they have echoed the old “clock face” bottles that their fragrances used to come in. Confusingly they did a Terracotta perfume a few years ago, which was sub-titled Voile d’Ete, and that came in a similar shape bottle. I understand that the two juices are not at all related, although I am now wondering if they do in fact share some notes – the Voile was a soft white floral and had a vanilla background but veers away from Le Parfum in that it has a layer of spicy carnation. I must try to get to smell this new one.

    • lucasai says:

      Glad I could help providing you this review. The sample arrived just in time for the Guerlain week. Those clock face bottles are nice, I like them. I didn’t try Terracotta Voile d’Ete, however I do have a small portion of it. The bottle od that one looks more vintagey. Le Parfum is pretty and summery.

      • jillie says:

        I wouldn’t want it to be endless summer if it was always as hot as it is at the moment!

        You’ve got me thinking about other Guerlains that might share the DNA of Le Parfum ….. some of the notes remind me of an Aqua Allegoria called Vanille Ylang. and I am sure that other AAs, Lys Soleia, Nymphea and Mimosa Tiare might be siblings! I suppose it is not surprising if a perfume house repeats formulae with the odd tweak here and there. But this is just me having thoughts ……

        • lucasai says:

          Haha, that’s a good one!

          I have to say that I didn’t try any of Aqua Allegorias that you mention but if you say that they have something similar then you must be right. It is quite common to slightly change the already existing and liked formula and launch it as a new perfume or as flanker

  2. hajusuuri says:

    For as much as perfumistas love (LOVE!) this, it was not for me. My nose amplified the indolic jasmine to the point that my brain got stuck on the mothball association. Money saved for me and one bottle for someone else. If I am not mistaken, the pricing for this was if bought at a Guerlain counter was quite reasonable for 100 mLs … I think it was < $100 or if not less, not that much more than that! Great review!

    • lucasai says:

      I’m surprised that jasmine turned out so indolic on you from this composition which seemed to have a “friendly” and easy-going jasmine.
      Terracotta Le Parfums was very reasonably priced – maybe that’s why it disappeared from the stores so fast?

  3. Undina says:

    You meant to say “Terracotta Le Parfum is NOT available…”, right? ; -) I keep reading great reviews for this perfume but since it’s completely gone from everywhere, I don’t think I’ll get to try it.

  4. Floragal says:

    Appreciate this review, Lucas. I tried this when it first came out, thought it smelled just delicious and figured I’d pick up a bottle in a month or so. Wrong! It’s gone! I do hope they make some more.
    This line: It highly reminds me of Parfums de Nicolai Musc Mon… has got me curious to try this new PdN.
    Oh that a perfume could make it feel like summer forever!

    • lucasai says:

      Thanks Floragal and I’m really sorry you missed a chance to buy a perfume you really liked. If only one knew it would sell out so fast. Do try Musc Monoi, maybe it will be close enough for you to buy it as a replacement

  5. I should have snapped up a bottle when I tested it a few months ago. I didn’t even think that it would sell out so quickly! To me, it smells like summer somewhere exotic and beachy: warm, rich, and kind of uncomplicated. All good things in a summer fragrance, no? So glad to read your review even if it makes me sad for not buying it when I saw it!

  6. […] reading: Bois de Jasmin and Chemist In A Bottle Guerlain quickly sold out and I have read that Terracotta le Parfum will become regular range […]

  7. janice says:

    holy mother of God this is the best parfum i have ever tried in my life…it is sheer heaven with all of my favorite notes ever! I hope this is permanent!!

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