The Magnetism of Skin – Jean Paul Gaultier GAULTIER² Perfume Review

The Magnetism of Skin

The Magnetism of Skin

When I think of Jean Paul Gaultier I think of effeminate, yet muscly sailors, cone-bras, corsets and spanking. His fashions, fragrances and even he himself embodies all that is naughty about the french. There is a reason why he has been dubbed the ‘L’Enfant Terrible’ of Parisian fashion

What I don’t imagine when I think of Jean Paul Gaultier is softness, subtlety and warmth, but that’s exactly what I find in GAULTIER². Each of JPG’s fragrances are so bold and popular that it’s a hard job to escape them out there in the real world, but not GAULTIER² – the stealth Gaultier and black sheep of the family. Classique and Le Mâle may get all the attention, but GAULTIER² is the quietly clever one, severely underrated yes, even misunderstood, but it cannot be denied that it is a stroke of genius.

“Him and Her. Her and Him. Mixing the genres is Jean Paul Gaultier’s favourite game. With GAULTIER², he breaks through traditional fragrance barriers with his unisex fragrance. A true olfactory statement.” [1]

GAULTIER² was created by Francis Kurkdjian (we’re all in agreement that the man’s a genius, right?) in 2005 and is a scent for both the boys and the girls. It is described as “the essence of two skins in love. A warm, sensual fragrance that blends the masculine and feminine in a trio of musk, amber and vanilla” [2] and is housed in a bottle of two halves, one for him and one for her, held together by a magnetic force.

I find it interesting that JPG, the king of excess, would go for three simple notes in this fragrance and I’m sure that if we were to look at the formula we would discover that there are more ingredients, but I can’t help be attracted to the idea of three aromas blended together to find the perfect equilibrium. There’s something really quite romantic about that simplicity and the harmony it brings.



The Notes

Amber, Musk and Vanilla

How Does it Smell?

It is pretty safe to say that GAULTIER² is a weird scent. It starts out with an opening that sort of smells like metallic grape soda but at the same time also smells like caramel soaked biscotti. Underneath all of that is the off-beat odour of sweaty skin, almost if someone has sprayed on something strong and sweet to cover the fact that they perhaps aren’t at their freshest…

The biscuity come sweaty grape soda vibe never really disappears but before long the vanilla wades in and takes charge. What I really adore about GAULTIER² is that it smells very French, there’s just something about the amber-tinged, powdery vanilla that makes me think of the boudoir and the kitchen. It is the warm, tussled and slept in bedsheets mixed with the remnants of a french breakfast in bed (that may sound like a euphemism but I promise you that it isn’t) It speaks of excess and enjoyment, but it does so quietly.

GAULTIER² is a very unusual scent in the respect that it really doesn’t play to any form of gender convention or trend. It is simply a scent and a feeling that can be adopted by anybody who falls for it. It is also very much a skin scent, in the sense that it wears very close to the body, almost like a second skin and it invites you to roll around in the hay with your loved one, smelling delicious.


Stuck to You…

The Bottle

Available in both single and duo bottles GAULTIER²’s flacon is designed for both sexes – one for him and one for her:

“A bottle that follows the grand traditions of perfumery, but in an unconventional way. Things are not always what they seem to be: one bottle can be magnetically attached to another for an irresistible encounter.” [3]

And the best part? You can stick your GAULTIER² to your fridge should you wish to. Not that I would do that. Nope….


GAULTIER² is available in 40ml, 120ml and 2 x 40ml Eau de Parfum with prices starting at £40.50. Matching body products used to be available but I believe that they have been discontinued.


Image 1 Image 2 [1] & Notes via Jean Paul Gaultier. [2] & [3] via Escentual.


41 thoughts on “The Magnetism of Skin – Jean Paul Gaultier GAULTIER² Perfume Review

  1. I love this fragrance! I had a bottle not long ago but the sprayer was faulty so I returned it to the store ! I got Gucci pour homme 2 instead , I still would like to have it one day , it really reminds me of grape hubba bubba ! Juicy and mouth watering , im surprised u found I wore close to the skin as I found the projection on par to le male, strong !!! Perhaps I had the parfum! Thanks for reviewing this , I really want it now .

  2. Oh wow this brings back memories – (& reminds me that I’ve totally been neglecting my bottle). G² was my very first Gaultier frag obsession. The moment it arrived I dropped LeMale like a hot rock. (LOL) – I fell for it hard when it first came out. In fact, so much so that I made my own scented ‘super-riche’ candles using an entire bottle of the stuff, for scenting my pad. (But then it is ‘amber + vanilla’ – so hardly surprising for me, huh !?) 😉
    However, I strangely don’t get the “grapey thing” at all. Also, to me, it seems very loud and diffusive to be “skin-scent-y”. I think it projects for miles. Or else I just find it easy to pick up on it from right across a room for whatever reason. Maybe I’m just hyperosmic to the musks in it or something (??) …
    Altho’, on second thoughts, I suppose it does quieten down considerably towards the bottom half, so I suppose … . – But yeah I totally agree, G² is indeed delicious & underrated jus !

    • Nice review T! Love the “boudoir and kitchen” reference 😉 Like Jules, I recall this being quite loud & dense but it’s been yeaaars since I’ve let this settle down on my skin, so the drydown might be softer indeed. I am on a rather intense sweet & gourmand trip this fall/winter so I should revisit this soon. Too bad it’s not widely available anymore.

    • See, this is weird, I really don’t think it is a loud scent at all. It really wears very close to the skin on me and as you say it could be down the musks.

      Perhaps I’m walking around in a massive cloud of the stuff and knocking people dead with my wafts, totally unaware…

      • LOL 😀 … Maybe all those massive florals you’re so fond of have left you with a slightly skewered perspective of volume. (Heh,heh) 😉

        But no, I’m thinking it’s only particularly aggressive in it’s first hour or so, and then it does calm down, if I remember correctly.

  3. Interesting. So is the fragrance and bottle the same for Him and Her? Is it more like the dreaded word – “unisex”?

    Probably not for me because of the sweaty grape but I like an original concept and the magnetic bottles are a cute idea.

    • If you like amber & vanilla Tara I’d still give this a try – as for example I didn’t get any of the “sweaty-grape” thing at all, so it’s possible u might not either. …

      And the magnetic bottles are indeed cool – I had hours of fun (ok, minutes) experimenting where I could attach my bottle. (Luckily I had a metallic medicine-cabinet which is where mine hung about. – But failing that, it enjoys playing wacky fridge-magnet.) 😀

      • Thanks Jules, fingers crossed I won’t get the sweaty grape either.

        Sounds like you can get hours of fun out of those bottles!

  4. I love this fragrance. It is one of my favourites for the fact that although people comment that it smells nice, they can never name it. I think it is very sexy, but in a way that’s subtle enough for me to wear to work. The shower gel was so beautiful. One of the few perfume shower gels I would buy. But alas, it was discontinued.

  5. I didn’t even know this existed (!!!). It sounds nice. I like Gaultier fragrances on the whole. I have been lemming Fragile after reading your review of it.

  6. Pingback: Coming next year…a brief taster of three fragrances heading your way in Spring 2013 | scent bound

  7. Since I bought Chergui my entire standards for a perfume have changed. Its not enough that I like the smell – or that it is fascinating, it has to actually sink right into me and make me go aah. And now I’ve found a second that does this – Gaultier 2! I smelled it about 3 years ago and loved it but the price was a bit steep – and then I read lots of reviews that all said ‘too sweet’ and ‘too simple’ and I somehow never went back. But there was a 20% off at a discount pharmacy today and since I didn’t see anything to love, I tried this again. And, it came home with me.
    Though only three notes are provided I’m also pretty sure there are many more: for one thing ‘amber’ itself can refer to a mix of any number of resins & vanilla and labdanum/ tonka…
    I have heard mention of a petrol or gasoline note and I think thats in the background too. I would be interested in what others are able to identify!

      • I’m glad it has got some critical support because it makes me feel more secure about my own preferences! Too simple and too sweet seems to have been the main avenues of attack. (if I am remembering right.) By the way, do you know if this scent is discontinued?

      • You should always be secure in your preferences! Like what you like and apologise to nobody!

        I don’t think this one has been discontinued, although it seems to be available in fewer sizes than it used to be.

      • By the way, I think its the ‘grape-soda accord’ that gives it its effervescence and stops it from having that heavy sinking quality of some orientals (Santal Majuscule, for instance). It also makes it feel like fun, rather than an exercise in gravitas. Then again, I’v always loved the smell of grape soda!

      • Sorry to badger on about this but I recently received a sample of Goutal’s Myrrh Ardente and for some reason it resonated very much with this – although the Goutal (which I applied from a dabber) is far more restrained, and less sweet. Still there is a similar ‘flavour’. I’m guessing the culprit is myrrh and that Gaultier did not mention the note because, back in 2005 it was not likely to appeal to a mainstream audience. (The 2007 Goutal collection is marketed as an oriental to a slightly more niche market) And then, fast forward to 2011 and we have Prada’s Amber Intense with some notes, including Somalian Myrrh) pretty much engraved on the bottle!

      • Badger away!

        As for the notes, I’m sure there are lots of ingredients in its composition that aren’t mentioned in the notes. Notes lists are after all, part of the whole marketing drama.

  8. Pingback: Coming next year…a brief taster of three fragrances heading your way in Spring 2013 – ScentBound

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