John Galliano Eau de Parfum for Women (2008)

Just be sure to grab the right version.

Original EDP (90 ml format)

The original, early version of John Galliano (EDP, 90 ml bottle) is a fantastic, complex, incredibly well-crafted green-powdery floral scent exuding all the composition talent of Christine Nagel (which I recognized here even before knowing she was actually the nose behind this scent). Since the very first sniff, the original Galliano EDP is a harmony played around powder and balsamic notes, with a fresh, tart aromatic hint of citrus and bergamot, then green notes, soapy rose-white flowers permeated with a gorgeous sort of crystalline brightness all over, a hint of vanilla, amber, cumin, a sweet-woody note on the base, white musks, discreet chalky aldehydes. What surprises me the most here is the peculiar texture, which is really thin, transparent, somehow “grey-ish”, incredibly clean yet complex and “vertical”, with a stunning richness and deepness of notes; it is decidedly all on the “fresh-spicy-floral” side, so all rather silky, fresh and dusty (no creaminess, no “juicy” wet flowers)... at the same time, all incredibly sharp, crisp, luminous and invigorating. Apart from other Nagel’s masterworks, I also thought of L’eau de Givenchy and that kind of “fresh” green-floral scents. Violet and iris compose the powdery accord, and while the reformulated version contains more (synthetic) iris, here I actually get more violet. The drydown is impeccable, always slightly grey-ish (I guess because of aldehydes too) but at the same time crisp, balsamic, talc, halfway foggy and celestial, with a musky-powdery breeze melting with herbal-green notes. It constantly changes,yet remaining perfectly consistent. The persistence is long and close to skin. Far more discreet and refined than the subsequent version, and also more elegant, much better composed and with higher quality materials – if you want my advice, seek for this early version only (pretty easy to spot, they made it only in 90ml format, while the subsequent one was marketed in 40/60 ml bottles). Incredibly pleasant. Mandatory for all floral scents lovers (and for niche enthusiasts which snub designer scents... well, I still have to find niche floral scents which are able to stand close to this good!).


Reformulated EDP (40/60 ml format)

Now, the subsequent reformulated version - which I’ve been told was produced elsewhere, this leading to a new formula & new materials that affected the quality (boy, they did...). The opening, for instance: far bolder, more pungent, more sour than in the original version, and also at the same time more fruity and sweet. Basically: more tacky, or better say more “flashy”. By this I mean all smells richer, but an artificial, saturated, harsh and “on-steroid” kind of rich. All notes smell like if they’ve been inflated with some weird kind of gas. No trace of the discreet, complex, naturally-evolving refinement of the 90 ml EDP with its balsamic and crystalline sharpness; here's all more loud, more spicy, with a bolder and more pungent synthetic feel all over. I get quite a lot less vanilla, less flowers (and surely, far less “silky” than there). The structure is roughly the same, just all here is heavier, tackier, more synthetic and camphoraceous. Plus (but that’s not a defect), I also get a whiff of carnation here – something I didn’t get in the early version. On the drydown it’s all even more dry, artificial and synthetic, more heavy and above all terribly linear, pretty much identical to itself for hours - while the evolution of the first EDP is mutating, complex, “evolving” in its true meaning, reaching a peak of foggy-talc powdery refinement which you won’t really experience with this more recent version (that on the contrary, after three hours is still the exact same synthetic floral polaroid). Now I don’t want to overestimate the differences, the reformulated version is still decently nice... as much decent as just incomparable to the original EDP to pretty much any extent.


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