Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien

That Annick Goutal is spooky, y’all. How did she know about my long-cherished dream to smell like lemon-scented dishwashing detergent? Eau d’Hadrien gets a lot of love from the online perfume community, but quite frankly, after smelling it, I think that all of the hype must be some massive inside joke. I am honestly just perplexed. Am I missing some subtlety, some nuance? To my nose, Eau d’Hadrien smells much closer to a lemon-scented cleaning product than actual lemons. To add insult to injury, the lasting power of this fragrance is INSANE. And not a good, fun kind of insane, like Helena Bonham Carter.

HBC, you are a delight. Please never change.

My lovely, intelligent readers, I beseech you: please do not spend $95 for 1.7 ounces of dilute Cascade that is literally undetectable after five minutes.

Disclaimer: An SA at Nordstrom gave me a sample of Eau d’Hadrien.

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16 thoughts on “Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien

  1. I hadn’t seen that particular butterfly bottle – looks handpainted. Gawgeous.

    But I don’t get the EdH love either. To be honest about it, I don’t get citrus love at all, Do Not Understand It At All. I think it’s dullllll. Yes, perfectly nice – and I love the smell of, say, a fresh cut lime – but so much stuff is lemon-scented that it just seems so cliche.

    1. I know, the bottle is stunning! And if someone really was able to capture the smell of a fresh-cut lime, I would be all over that. I guess citruses are very modern… and by modern I mean sterile and occasionally boring.
      What you said reminded me of an article that I once read about perfumery. They interviewed a perfumer who said that citrus perfumes do very poorly in France for the same reason that powdery perfumes often do poorly in the US- in France, apparently most baby products are lemon scented! That’s why so much of the French stuff is powdery, they don’t have those “baby powder” associations.

  2. Good to know. I had been toying with the idea of buying Eau d’Hadrien ages ago because I liked the name and it seemed to get a good deal of praise from the online perfume community. Nothing with the name ‘Hadrien’ in it needs to smell like Cascade. How disappointing.

    1. K, I would DEFINITELY try it before buying it. It is so very expensive, and I would think that one could find a good citrus for much cheaper. I am disappointed, and very confused! Haven’t really clicked with any of the Annick Goutal line yet.

      1. I believe if I truly wanted something citrus-y I’ve have to go with Carthusia Mediterraneo or one of the SMNs. Old World Italian perfumes seem to capture citrus the best from my experience, of course I do so love my Italian colognes to perhaps I am biased.

        I’ve yet to try any of the Annick Goutal perfumes, myself. I’ve almost bought a bottle here and there, but there’s just something about them that holds me back.

    2. The Italians make the best citruses??? I had no idea! I had the fortune of visiting Sicily last spring, and everyone was drenched in jasmine. Yes, come to think of it, perhaps I would not trust the French to come up with a great citrus, lol.

      I saw an Annick Goutal set at Filene’s Basement a while back, but I chose to get Arpege instead. I think it was probably the right choice.

  3. Interesting info on the French baby products… would never have guessed that.

    Seems I only like citrus if it’s a frame for other notes. I love the orange notes in Mariella Burani; I adore the happy limes in PdN Vanille Tonka, I love the citrus aromatics in Alahine.

    There are a number of Goutals that I like very much, but they often seem to be a step up from the very-simple Jo Malone line. (I admit that I haven’t tried any of the for-men scents like Duel or Sables.) The only one I really, really love is Petite Cherie, but even I wouldn’t call it a great perfume.

    1. Yes, citrus is probably best when it does not overstay its welcome. I have never actually smelled a lime note in a fragrance, I don’t think (except for the uber-butch Chanel Chance Eau Fraiche), so I would LOVE to try Vanille Tonka.

      Jo Malone does strike me as a sort of Americanized Annick Goutal. But I can think of at least 3 Malones that I like quite a bit, and 0 Goutals šŸ˜¦ Sables is supposed to be interesting, I think it has an immortelle note, right? And Petite Cherie is the one with the pears. Hey, if you love it, it’s great perfume! šŸ™‚

  4. I came across this randomly online just now and just wanted to say that it is a HILARIOUS review. Also, I agree that citrus-scented perfumes can be tricky. It’s so easy for them to smell like cleaner!! That’s a fun little fact there about the French. Does their baby power smell different, even? CRAZY. Haha.

    1. Thank you so much Cathryn! For all I know, the French are too sophisticated for baby powder, lol. It sounds like Eau d’Hadrien has actually been reformulated recently, so maybe I smelled it after its demise…

  5. Totally agree with you, Ari.

    No offense, but to me It doesn’t worth the price.
    I think EdH it’s an overpriced lemony cologne that smells just like 4711 but with the exception that in this case you get what you’re paying for.
    (about 4711 now I’m sure that you get the picture! :))

    I’m quite with klytaemnestra that in terms of quality, Italy produces some of the world’s best citrus (at least for what I can find & explore here in perfumes). I guess it’s connected with a favorite ingredient of perfumers, the italian bergamot, with its lovely dry, light, fresh, floral citrus scent, originally and extensively cultivated in southern Italy and also commercially grown in some of mediterranean countries (as well as other citrussy herbs, like verbena and so on). My favorite citruses probably are from SMN, Bvlgari, Etro, Carthusia… so I agree.

    1. GeM, apparently Eau d’Hadrien went through a pretty rough reformulation a few years ago. I suspect that it was a nicer fragrance when it first became popular, and people still keep buying it without knowing that it is not the same fragrance it used to be.

  6. So…..That was It? Mistery solved!
    The fact is that I used to find ‘a little beauty’ in the (former) version, during my first experiences with perfumes in late 90’s I remember asking for some vials of l’EdH in the shops, enjoying such a respectable pleasant woodsy/citrus scent, certainly refined. Now years later I’ve changed my impressions about it, and always I was wondering if it was a new exigency of mine, probably due to my taste acquisition.

    How funny I didn’t know/suspect that it’s been reformulated. šŸ™‚

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