Guerlain Champs-Elysees

Poor old Champs-Elysees. Everyone’s a hater! Luca Turin called you “the second-worst perfume that Guerlain has ever made”. I can’t say that I see what the big deal is, frankly. Champs-Elysees is a very pretty mimosa scent with a cheekily artificial plastic note. It has a similar vibe to Frederic Malle Lipstick Rose (but they don’t smell anything alike, before you Lipstick Rose fans get too excited). Champs-Elysees is a perfectly nice perfume, and is honestly not even close to Guerlain’s second-worst perfume (have we really repressed our memories of Insolence that quickly?). I can’t imagine giving this below a three-star rating, much less the one star that it received in Perfumes: The Guide. Honestly, I’m sure that Dr. Turin is a very accomplished scientist, but I feel far less sure about his perfume judgement. Actually, I’ll reserve judgment on the accomplished scientist part, too. Wiki informs me that his vibration theory of olfaction results have been non-repeatable.

Well, Dr. Turin is welcome to his Tommy Girl and Beyond Paradise. More Champs-Elysees for me! Haters gon’ hate!

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25 thoughts on “Guerlain Champs-Elysees

    1. Thank you, Portia! I was an EXTREMELY shy kid, then I took a public speaking class in 11th grade and learned that I like to make people laugh. It’s been all downhill from there! 😀

  1. I don’t put much stock in Perfumes: The Guide. Perfume is such a personal thing, that being told something is terrible because the person writing about it doesn’t necessarily like it just doesn’t do it for me. I appreciate objective constructive reviews and some perfumes are admittedly awful — Pink Sugar — but they kind of lost me after their snarktastic Q&A. There’s the right kind of snark and then the kind that just becomes mean.

    I love your blog because it’s the right kind of snark.

    1. They didn’t even review Pink Sugar!!! How can you not review Pink Sugar? It’s everywhere!!

      I’m so happy to hear that you consider my blog the right kind of snark. I think that I was a lot snarkier when I started this blog, and I’ve actually gone back and deleted some of the pieces that I was no longer proud of. Snark about the perfume, don’t snark about people. My least favorite part about The Guide was how they criticized Mona di Orio’s (striking) looks. What the hell does that have to do with perfume??

      1. I started out as a complete snob when it came to perfume. I’ve mellowed in recent years because I realized that I didn’t have to necessarily exclusively like niche fragrances. Also, I realized that most of the people I interacted w/ online who read perfume blogs were generally really lovely people.

        See, that’s just the ‘Mean Girl’ approach to things and, despite loving me some Regina, that’s not cool. When people start criticizing things that have no relevance I lose all respect for their opinions. It’s like people mentioning Adele’s weight like it has any effect at all on her talent. Just don’t do it. It’s petty.

        1. There is a fine line between snark and mean spiritedness. Unfortunately, I feel T&S have occasionally crossed that line. It’s not too hard to cross that line, so I always ask myself, “Am I being funny and smart? Or just plain mean?”

          I realized perfume is personal when T&S gave my all time favorite (now discontinued) perfume just 3 stars.

  2. I purchased a partial bottle of Champs-Elysees during the “Smell Good, Do Good” fundraising drive, and I am enjoying it very much. It is quite far from terrible! It is fun, effervescent, perfect for spring and summer. Actually, it is very much like YSL’s Champagne (aka Yvresse), although I find the YSL to be a richer fragrance. C-E has the same sort of fruity sparkle, like the tickle you get when you hold your nose over a glass of champagne. And I do love the mimosa..

    1. I totally agree that it has something in common with Yvresse, Patty! I prefer Yvresse, but can’t imagine wearing it in the summer, so I feel fairly confident in saying that Champs-Elysees could be a good hot-weather alternative.

      Mimosa is such a beautiful note! Can’t understand why it’s not in more perfumes.

  3. I read that in their book and disagreed. They’re husband and wife, and have similar perfume tastes, based on what I read and opinion. I own a big bottle of Champs Elysees, and I wouldn’t mind wearing it around Luca Turin and Tania Sanchez. haha 🙂

    1. Definitely agree that they seem to have fairly similar tastes. I think that the Guide could have been much less one-sided if the second author had drastically different preferences.

  4. I missed CE in my initial sniffing frenzy at my local drugstore, and once I discovered the blogs, went straight to the indie and niche end. Mimosa, you say? I think I’ll reserve a forearm to try this when I pop over to Shopper’s today.

  5. I like Champs Elysees quite a bit myself. I’m not sure I love it, but you can find it cheap at the discounters, so I’ve been toying with getting a bottle.

  6. I totally agree with Patty! And if Yvresse is for Fall/Winter, CE is for Spring/Summer. It was the first Guerlain I ever smelled and like it enough to buy a full bottle many moons ago. Reading “The Guide” when I got to its review I thought, “those people are CRAZY”. But I’m going to stop myself now…well, I’ll finish with this…all of our noises are valid. I’d never make someone feel like they have sucky taste-buds for not taking Sweet Tarts….

  7. Overall I find I often agree with the Guide, but it’s more fun when I don’t. Something like Champs-Elysees – or Mahora, another Guerlain they derided as a hot mess – that makes me happy even when it’s “bad”? I just enjoy it more! (My perversitude. Next up: Clowns who make balloon sculptures… of power tools.)

  8. I’m quite content with any snark you might have about Luca Turin’s opinions and ratings of perfume — I too have found myself disagreeing vehemently in many cases and scratching my head in many others, but I would dispute Wikipedia’s assessment of Turin’s “experiments” as non-repeatable. You might want to know that his theory is being pursued as an aspect of quantum biology by, among others, Dr Jennifer Brookes a research scientist at Harvard University in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology. The topic of quantum biology was covered on CBC Radio’s Quirks & Quarks recently: http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/media/2011-2012/qq-2012-04-07_04.mp3 — and the specific interview with Dr Brookes is at about 11 minutes in.

    And actually Turin’s 1996 theory has been gaining some credibility among quantum researchers since 2007. It seems that Turin’s original sin was to cross disciplines. And that it does come down to “scientific haters gonna hate.”

    Meanwhile I look forward to sniffing Champs-Elysees.

    1. Ari – I’ve never tried C-E but am also curious as to what the worst Guerlain perfume ever made is. I tried Tommy Girl unsniffed (only $15 at Wal-Mart when the Guide came out) based on Luca’s 5 star rating and tea as an ingredient. What a scrubber on me!
      Also curious as to what Tatiana’s 3 star rated discontinued perfume was!

  9. I really need to try it out. Never had.
    (Undina’s funny “where do I give back my perfumista card” comes to mind here)
    So I duck, grab my card (stick it in my bosom) and run and hide 🙂

  10. I had (and previously told) my own story with this perfume but now I’m on the stage “I don’t want to buy EdT because I like parfum slightly better but I don’t want to buy parfum because it’s too expensive”. I’ll get it eventually.

  11. I have a couple of minis of this which I keep meaning to revisit ever since Undina’s post revived my interest, but haven’t yet managed it. Soon, soon. I agree that it is a slightly plasticky mimosa scent and the analogy with Lipstick Rose is very apt. Plasticky scents tend to remind me of the nemesis that is Amarige, but I know I quite liked CE, so I really must get to it…

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