The Black Narcissus





Just look at it.

In the mail the other day came a most extravagant package. Embarrassed to open it, yet seething with pleasure at the contents – which I shall not reveal in all their entirety right now –  the most thrilling creature inside this wrapped up, beautifully thought out,  and entirely uncalled for box, was surely Shalimar Hair Gel.

Yes, Shalimar Hair Gel. You did in fact read that correctly. And look at the bottle! Like some nubile Egyptian amphor by way of Alphonse Mucha, the blue, exquisite container surely makes the Shalimar lover quake in his slippers:  begin to doubt the beauty of the perfume and eau de toilette bottles themselves…………………………surely this blue, hypnotic, elegantly tall creation should have, instead, been the bottle? (this is never leaving my permanent collection).

The Oxford Dictionary defines the word ‘luxury’ as being


“The state of great comfort, and extravagant living”

View original post 495 more words


Filed under Flowers


  1. Commandeered by my mother, this bottle now has pride of place in our bathroom back in Solihull.


  2. It’s gorgeous! I read the original post and was so tickled by the Amazon countdown! I don’t use hair gel, but what a brilliant concept, a Shalimar hair gel. I have and love the recent Shalimar hair mist. I should use it more, it really is pretty.

    • YEs. This really was one I should have kept to myself in order for it not to sell out immediately. I think Rafael was a bit miffed I had given away his secret. I had to share the pictures though, as they are totally tantalising for the true perfume lover.

      • Really, such a beautiful bottle! Guerlain should bring back some of these periodically, I bet they’d sell like hotcakes. You know how much I adore my Vol de Nuit shimmer powder — a blue-green version of the classic propeller flacon.

      • AAAGH I SAW SOME OF THAT ONCE IN A SECOND HAND STORE AND DIDN’T BUY IT. DID I NEED IT?!!! WHAT DOES IT SMELL LIKE? I can imagine it layered over the actual perfume for a deliriously powdery effect.

        It must have been one of my ‘I shall resist: economise’ days, which let’s face it, if I didn’t have, I would be bankrupt

      • It does smell like a slightly powdery, lighter version of Vol de Nuit. And the shimmer is very pretty — tinted like fair skin, so pretty subtle on Caucasians like me.

      • I would look ludicrous in a face shimmer – I prefer it without kaleidoscopic qualities I think – like talc!

  3. Robin

    Okay, solid dopamine RUSH. Just that damn BOTTLE alone. I’m squirming.

    • Insane. I suddenly remembered this old post and gasped when I saw the pictures I had take of it. HAIR GEL

      • Robin

        HAIR GEL.

        I like what you’d written in the original post. Your Obsession obsession and all the products, the indulgence of it all. Glorious. In an ideal world there would be pristine, boxed vintage bottles of everything we love at our nearest thrift store for five bucks a pop, along with all the accoutrements, even ones created specially for the Ideal World. Can you imagine layering No 19 like that, or . . . (And I agree with you and Brielle about the No 19 soap, the original non-green ones. Buttery with orris.) . . . I would love to have a quart of No 19 Bain de Lait Moussant.

        Can you imagine a whole Narcisse Noir line with body and hair products? Or. Or. Or. My mind is racing.

      • Narcisse would curdle on me but I would take a bath on a Sunday. I have truly loved vintage No 19 soaps in the past – quite austere and leathery and the perfect base for the parfum – what lovely thoughts. The Obsession For Men Liquid Body Talc followed by the actual talc…….it’s no wonder I didn’t die asphyxiate like the lady in Goldfinger

  4. Oh, that bottle is swoon-worthy!
    I’m a big Shalimar fan. I wonder Guerlain doesn’t come out with products like this anymore? Seems like a sure seller.

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