Pierre-Francois started from opening a perfume store on 42, rue de Rivoli in Paris. Beginning of Guerlain’s long history of success was marked by Pierre-Francois aquiring the title of Her Majesty’s Official Perfumer (France). This breakthrough followed creation of the famous Eau de Cologne Impériale which was created in the honor of Empress Eugenie and, obviously, impressed her very much.
For years the Guerlain family owned Guerlain Perfume House and most of Guerlain's perfumes were created by the Guerlain family members. However in 1994 Guerlain was acquired by LVMH group.In 2002 Jean-Paul Guerlain retired as a master perfumer but there was no heir from inside the family to take over. Various perfumers have worked for the house since then. In May 2008 Thierry Wasser was named the in-house perfumer.
Famous perfumes by Guerlain include (abridged description from wikipedia):
Jicky (1889): The legend says it was named after a girl who broke Aimé Guerlain's heart when he was a student in England. It is also widely admitted to be the first "modern" perfume as “Jicky was among the first perfumes to incorporate synthetic odorants (vanillin and coumarin) in its composition”,
Mitsouko (1919): Named by Jacques Guerlain after the heroine of the novel "La Bataille" by Claude Farrère. Mitsouko is said to herald the ending of World War I.
Shalimar (1925): Still considered a flagship perfume by Guerlain. Shalimar was named after the garden in Lahore, built by Shah Jahan in memory of his wife, Shalimar is one of the first perfumes to successfully incorporate large amounts of vanillin in its composition.
Après L'Ondée (1906): The name translates as "After the Heavy (Summer) Shower", Après L'Ondée’s composition includes iris, violet, rose, hawthorne and hesperedic notes.
L'Heure Bleue (1912): Meaning "The Blue Hour", L'Heure Bleue although similar to Après L'Ondée in its pastry and almonds core, L'Heure Bleue is much less bright and more melancholic.
Guerlain is known not only for its exquisite perfumes but for a luxury range of skin care products and makeup as well. Guerlain values tradition and quality above all. That is why ingredients used to create skin care products as well as perfumes are carefully selected to be among the best in the world. Guerlain’s skin care lines combine the benefits of natural herbal extracts (like desert rose, lily) as well as ingredients developed with the help of scientific and high-tech (such as pro-endorphins complex or nutridiol etc.).
Guerlains skin care products comprise following lines:
Super Aqua: a range of moisturizing products based on desert rose extract
Happylogy: a skincare range based on “pro-endorphins complex” and intended to prevent and treat first signs of aging in mid 20s – mid 30s
Success Future: promises firming and anti-wrinkle effect
Substantific: aimed at helping skin to retain better density and nutrition and fight against changes caused by hormonal fluctuations, for very mature skin
Orchide Imperiale: contains orchide imperiale molecular extract. Orchid is believed to be an exceptional anti-aging and anti-oxidant ingredient.
In addition to the above listed lines Guerlain offers complementary products intended for a specific problem or a specific effect. One of the examples is a unique skin care product called Midnight Star Treatment. It comes in small capsules that promise to revitalize your skin and make it glow in a matter of seconds.
Makeup range from Guerlain includes a big selection of products from foundations to nail polish. Some well known, beloved by women and very popular products include:
Meteorites Powder: Loose powder that comes in the form of small beautiful pearls of various colours (pink, white, mauve, green). As Guerlain explains: “Each colour has a specific use. The pink gives a healthy complexion, the green plays down redness, the mauve attracts light, the white brightens the complexion, the gold and mother-of-pear bring radiance and highlights.”
Terracota line: This line includes various bronzing products for the face and body as well as eye shadows and lipsticks to go with the colour. Guerlain offers in this range everything you can imagine to look beautifully suntanned and glamorously bronze at any season.
Kiss Kiss lipstick: Luxury lipstick with a wide selection of shades. Does not dry out your lips.
Guerlain's official website
Guerlain Wikipedia article about Guerlain
Beauty Shopping: Guerlain Boutique in Paris
Feel like shopping? You can buy Guerlain products online