For a long time now—194 years, to be exact—French luxury beauty house Guerlain has been taking inspiration from nature. While the maison has a couple of skincare and cosmetics firsts under its belt (it was a pioneer of scientifically based skincare, kohl eyeliner and mascara as well as the earliest to manufacture lipsticks commercially), it is in the world of scents that it found its niche.
Staying true to founder Pierre-François Pascal Guerlain’s roots as a perfumer and chemist, the House has remained an innovator in modern perfumery—counting among its more than 1,000 olfactory delights the groundbreaking concoctions Jicky and Shalimar. Created in 1889 by master perfumer Aimé Guerlain, son of Pierre-François, Jicky is widely looked upon as the first modern scent featuring synthetic molecules alongside natural extracts—a distinct perfumery style that would come to define the brand’s compositions. Shalimar, meanwhile, was dreamed up in 1921 by Aimé’s nephew, third-gen master perfumer Jacques Guerlain, and has the distinction of being the world’s first oriental scent.
This year, Guerlain breaks new ground yet again with a sustainable overhaul of its emblematic Aqua Allegoria range. Conceived by master perfumer Jean-Paul Guerlain (Jacques’s grandson) as a homage to nature, the range of fresh, breezy scents—a bold deviation from the maison’s classic opulent scent profile when it first launched in 1999—is a fitting choice with which to demonstrate Guerlain’s deepening commitment to ecological sustainability.
The green revamp sees all fragrances in the Aqua Allegoria family now formulated with up to 95 percent natural-origin ingredients and, reflective of the brand’s green sourcing approach, made exclusively with alcohol derived from beetroot farmed using environmentally friendly methods in Chartres, France. In line with its ethos of sustainable innovation, Guerlain—which joined the Union for Ethical Biotrade (UEBT) in 2021, a non-profit organisation that promotes the ethical sourcing of ingredients from biodiversity while ensuring fair trade—aims to attain UEBT certification for the entire supply chain for its 40 key raw materials by 2026.
The iconic Bee Bottle, too, got an eco-friendly facelift. Now made with 15 percent recycled glass and refillable—a brand first—it comes with a screw pump that makes top-up easy as pie; the drip-proof refill bottle is, of course, recyclable. The honeycomb-like motif on the flacon has also been made more durable. According to Guerlain, this redesign minimises carbon emissions by 60 percent, and reduces glass use and plastic use by 24 percent and 44 percent respectively.
Marking the maison’s renewed pledge to preserve the environment is the launch of Nerolia Vetiver (from $231 for 125ml), a lively scent concocted by Guerlain perfumers Thierry Wasser and Delphine Jelk. Inspired by the island of Ischia in Naples, it centres around the Calabrian neroli, whose fresh sweetness is enhanced by citrusy bergamot and the alluring notes of vetiver, basil and fig—bringing to mind the energetic landscape of Mediterranean culture, colours and sights.
Experience the Aqua Allegoria range at the Guerlain boutique at #B2-32 ION Orchard, or its counters at Level 1 TANGS @ Tang Plaza; Level 1 Takashimaya Department Store; and Level 2 Metro Paragon. Receive a premium gift with the purchase of any Aqua Allegoria fragrance; while stocks last. To book an exclusive fragrance discovery experience, call 6509 3922.
Brought to you by Guerlain