Parfumerie Generale Felanilla

So for the past 10 days, my beloved kitteh Zelda has been staying in a pet hotel while I was in California. It’s the longest amount of time I’ve been away from her since I first brought her home, and I admit to being a little nervous about her. What if she’s bullying the other kittehs? What if she gives into peer pressure and joins a kitteh gang?

My anxiety was not exactly soothed by an email update from the pet hotel, which featured this picture of an absolutely terrified looking Zelda followed by the caption “SHE’S HAVING A BLAST!”

While I count down the hours until I can pick up Zelda, I thought it would be an appropriate time to review Parfumerie Generale Felanilla, a “feline vanilla” fragrance. Felanilla opens with what I identify as very dry wood. This is supposed to be the feline part, but I don’t recognize Zelda in there (possibly because she is an indoor cat and does not smell particularly animalic). After perhaps 20 minutes, Felanilla begins to smell startlingly close to the smoky vanilla base notes of high-grade Shalimar.

On the one hand, this makes Felanilla a rather derivative fragrance. On the other hand, Guerlain’s reformulations are notoriously unpredictable. Who knows how much longer Shalimar will continue to smell like itself? Felanilla is a great dark vanilla, and is particularly recommended to those who don’t like Shalimar’s bergamot top notes.

18 thoughts on “Parfumerie Generale Felanilla

  1. I love Felanilla, which is animalic but crucially not civety (my issue with Shalimar). It has more a “come hither silage note” that I am at a loss to describe more accurately. And I can only speculate on the role of banana wood in the composition. I see it as “L’Ombre Fauve for wimps”.

  2. I love the new look of the blog, and Felanilla! I find that it reminds me almost more of vintage Shalimar than the current formulation, and that’s nothing to scoff at! Though, like you, I find that it does not so much remind me of my cat Cho, who, when she smells at all, smells more like fried tacos. Weird, I know. 🙂

  3. Well, how on earth have I not smelled Felanilla!? Must remedy that. And now I have L’Ombre Fauve to add to the list as well. Thanks for the review, and welcome home!

  4. My cats tend to smell like whatever perfume I was wearing when I last held them and little else. That said I want to sniff this. I have never even heard of it until now.

    And poor Zelda. I’ll admit I was laughing when I read ‘SHE’S HAVING A BLAST!’ sent along with that picture where she clearly does not look like she’s having fun … much less a blast.

  5. I can’t believe they sent you that awful pic, not to mention the idiotic quote. Poor you! Hopefully you are reunited now, or soon will be.

    I didn’t get on with Felanilla but only because I got a salty vibe from it which is not something I can cope with. Not being a cat owner I wondered if cat fur is perhaps salty or if it’s just something only I am picking up on. Probably the latter.

    1. In their defense, I suspect that this was the best of many pictures that they tried to take. Zelda does not particularly like standing still to be photographed! We are reunited, and she seems very happy to be home 🙂

  6. I never really got my head around Felanilla. It struck me as rather an odd fragrance, but reading this review I am minded to revisit my sample and see if my perception of this perfume has changed.

  7. Poor Zelda! I hope she’s doing alright because otherwise I’ll feel awfully guilty for laughing at your post (esp. that part about the caption for her picture).

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