When you work in beauty it's tough to decide on a signature scent. It's also your job to try new fragrances instead of settling on just one. So we (beauty editors) reason with ourselves and build a collection of go-to fragrances, or to what I like to call "scent stories." Having a scent story also saves me a little bit of heartache when a favorite scent gets discontinued or can only be found in boutique shops in Paris and the UK (here's to you, Lancôme Miracle So Magic!) Here are 13 favorites from my personal scent story that I rely on for every occasion. Perhaps a few of these will become staples in your wardrobe as you start to build your own scent story.
The Perfect Scent For...A First Date
Design house, Etro, has a slew of fragrances that I love, but this Jacquard eau de parfum is my favorite. A light and powdery floral scent with soft notes like iris and jasmine paired with deeper notes like vetiver and musk. This is a seductive fragrance that carries a bit of mystery and romance– sweet, but not overbearing, and sensually woody without being masculine. It's a scent that whispers confidence and says "I'm worth the chase."
Bobbi Brown's "Beach" eau de parfum is a nostalgic fragrance that combines the freshness of summer with the luxury of crisp sandy beaches and the carefree lifestyle that you only knew as a young girl. The depth of neroli and the warmth of jasmine and dianthus dune flower make for a luxurious scent that's made for rainy days or afternoons at the shore.
Celebrities like Gabriele Union count this among their favorite scents. Maison Francis Kurkdjian "Lumiere Noire" is a sensually rich fragrance with robust notes like patchouli, narcissus and spiced rose. It's a subtly sweet scent with a little bit of a bite, and it's the perfect compliment for cool nights when heavier fragrances can be appreciated without being overwhelming.
Lancôme Trésor is what I like to call my "aspirational fragrance." It's an elegant fragance that I wear on special occassions when I need my fragrance to give me an extra confidence boost. A true treasure of fragance, it's uncharacteristically feminine and undeniably sensual with warm notes of vanilla and amber, and softer notes like apricot and rose.
For weekends away, this is the ultimate scent. Citrusy and warm, Diptyque Paris Do Son eau de toilette is the bottled essence of the french countryside. Think: Tuberuse and musk, pink peppercorns and orange leaves; it's also the perfect compliment to your scent story as you transition to fall.
Rose is always a favorite note of mine in fragrance—combine three roses in one (Morroccan, Bulgarian and Rose de Mai absolute) and I'm sold! Dolce & Gabbana "Velvet Rose" is a romantic fragrance with a host of luxurious notes that add to its' feminine appeal. Egypitan geraminum, Sicilian hespiridic, and Morroccan rose absolute are just a few fragrance jewels that make up this dewy after-rain scent. A little on the pricey side, but well worth the splurge.
Le Labo Rose 31 is a fragrance of mystery. The rosy base adds to its' feminine appeal, but warm and woody notes like amber, cedar and cumin add a masculine touch and create a perfect marriage of dainty and virile. A barely-there fragrance that is unassuming and lingers long after you've gone.
If Aphrodite were around today she'd wear "Stella." Stella McCartney's debut self-titled frangrance is a rich fragrance with floral notes like peony and rose with a hint of citrusy mandarin, but it is the amber that really ups the ante on the sexy. This is an unappologetically feminine fragrance that's sweet for you, and hot for him.
Photo by Stella McCartney
The Perfect Scent For...A Major Business Meeting
If men have power suits, then women should have a power fragrance; Elizabeth and James Nirvana Black is mine. Warm and woody with the faint sweetness of lavender, this fragrance is condfident and daring and the ulitimate scent for the woman who walks in and owns the room.
You summer escape may be just a spray away. Tom Ford Portofino Neroli captures the essence of Italy with this vibrant fragrance for the women who is care free and the physical embodiement of Black girl magic. A crisp scent with floral and citrus notes like neroli, lavender, and sicilian lemon, this fragrance is freedom in a bottle and perfect for sun-drenched days at the beach or barefoot summer evenings by the river.
Quintessential New York designer, Donna Karan, of DKNY released the captivating "Be Delicious" fragrance back in 2004. A delicate fragrance that smells of fresh rain, crisp apples, magnolia, tuberose and white amber, it's the perfect fragrance to carry you into the cooler months. Spray this on as the leaves begin to fall and bask in the deliciousness of this alluring scent.