Just a week or two ago, I mentioned my increasing fascination with Guerlain cosmetics. I know, I know. I’m weak. But I decided to give myself a little birthday present, because it’s been a rough month or two, and there’s nothing like a new lipstick, right? So… how about a Rouge G de Guerlain Exceptional Complete Lip Colour? Shockingly overpriced, senselessly wasteful. And absolutely perfect (in all ways but one).
The packaging for Rouge G is ridiculously extravagant. It’s a heavy silvertone metal case with rounded edges, designed by Lorenz Baümer, “the most audacious jeweller of the Place Vendôme” (according to Guerlain—I’m willing to take their word for it, because what do I know about any jewellers of the Place Vendôme?).
Guerlain calls this case “devilishly practical.” As ridiculously weighty and costly as it is, it does have a functional aspect. When you grasp the “G” button and pull, the lipstick slides out and the rest of the case springs open to reveal a mirrored compact.
Here we go:
If I’d been making this purchase on my own, I would have gravitated towards some sort of dusky mauve shade. But I was assisted by Habib, my new favorite sales associate at Saks Fifth Avenue, and Habib immediately picked out Georgia (#62) for me to try. Georgia is a rosy pink that looks a bit too bright in the tube, but like many Guerlain cosmetics, it really needs to be tried on the face.
On my mouth, Georgia is a warm medium-rose shade that somehow brightens up my entire face. It’s not a “natural” look, but it’s not too much for daytime wear, either. I’ve tried it at the office and for evening events, and it’s quite versatile.
Here’s a swatch of Georgia on my arm…
One coat gives full (but not heavy) coverage. The formula is a perfect balance of moisture and endurance, and the finish is a soft creme.
According to the Guerlain website, “The light, delicate scent of a vanilla ‘floriental’ leaves its incomparable mark on Rouge G de Guerlain. Top notes sparkle with a lemon, orange and bergamot accord. The rose and iris heart exudes sweetness. The vanilla and tonka bean dry-down gives Rouge G all of its intensity.” I mostly notice a violet-iris scent with some vanilla; it’s an old-fashioned cosmetics scent, the kind I like best.
All in all: a lovely little luxury. The one problem? The case isn’t refillable. I hope that Guerlain will eventually reconsider this detail.
Rouge G de Guerlain is available at the Guerlain counters in many high-end department stores. Selected shades are available in Sephora. I purchased my Rouge G at Saks Fifth Avenue’s flagship store in New York, where you can reach a very helpful sales associate named Habib by phone at 212-940-2660 or 212-940-4031.