All Grown Up: Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Couture review

     Guerlain customers are often a disgruntled bunch, if the online fragrance forums frequenters are any example. While they adore the brand’s legacy and idolize its historic perfumes, any form of newness is inevitably followed by a certain frustration, stemming from the knowledge that for every new release, another beloved creation must be sacrificed. It’s a tale as old as time.

     To keep up with its insistent release schedule, which often sees a dozen or more new bottles per calendar year, Guerlain must inevitably discontinue those products that aren’t performing. For instance, to make room for the upcoming Black Perfecto flanker in the ever-growing La Petite Robe Noire range, we sadly had to bid farewell to lovely Couture.

     La Petite Robe Noire Couture was barely three years old before it was replaced, a flanker from 2014 by Thierry Wasser meant to evoke glamorous red carpet dresses. The original Petite Robe (or should I say, the second original, as the first original was renamed Mademoiselle Guerlain) had become somewhat of a commercial success, and Couture was intended certainly to coattail said success, while bringing something new to the table. I think that perhaps it was created for the women who liked Petite Robe, but found it too youthful to be appropriate.

     Couture maintained the deep, sweet patchouli base (or “hemline”) and rose heart (“waistline”), but in the top notes replaced the addictive cherry note with a juicy red raspberry. The outcome is truly extraordinary, and changes things completely. Without the overwhelming sweetness the perfume takes a turn from playful and young to sexy and sensual, with only a smidgen of naughty sweetness and tons of delectable warmth. In some respects Couture is the grown up version of La Petite Robe Noire, as though she has blossomed into a curvy, sumptuous lady. She twirls her black chiffon dress and it flows on her in hypnotizing waves, and she dances lightly on light pink heels while her hair swings to the beats of the music. A happy wedding comes to mind when smelling Couture.

     La Petite Robe Noire Couture is, as aforementioned, unfortunately discontinued, but, as usual, comes to the rescue. You can find this stunning revelation on Petite Robe there, in this beautiful pink flacon, for just $58.21* Canadian, and I can assure you that is less than if you had bought it for retail when it was available. If you are a Guerlain fan, or simply always loved the range but found it too sweet, I implore you to order yourself a bottle before it is too late. I am so happy to have it in my collection, and will be venturing into more Petite Robe flankers before they, too, are pulled. Thank you to the team for organizing this review!

*Prices true at time of writing.

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