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The 100 Greatest Fragrances of All Time

The 100 greatest fragrances, as voted on by beauty industry insiders.

Everything’s coming up roses for the fragrance category.

After years of decline, sales of scent are on the rise again, providing pandemic-weary consumers a much-needed shot of luxury and indulgence. In the U.S, the category registered double-digit growth against both 2020 and 2019, according to The NPD Group, with sales of perfumes, colognes and other juices up 61 percent.

What better time than to ask the people who know fragrance best — beauty industry insiders — to vote on the top 100 fragrances of all time.

In early January, we sent out more than 300 ballots to industry insiders, comprised of founders, marketers, retailers, influencers, editors, perfumers, analysts and C-suite types, then tabulated their responses. (The full list of those willing to be identified as electors is below, although, of course, what they voted on is for their eyes only.)

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The parameters were broad. Voters could single out their top 10 to 20 fragrances, and were asked to use the following parameters when making their choice: originality of concept; olfactive originality; retail performance; marketing innovation; quality of ingredients, and packaging and bottle design.

The resulting list of 100 scents (culled from more than 480 nominated) is a fascinating microcosm of the past, present and future of fragrance, with myriad firsts, from the first celebrity fragrance (Chanel No. 5, of course) to the first with psychoactive benefits, the THC-containing The Herbalist by Heretic.

Interestingly, on the women’s side, there is a closer correspondence between bestsellers and those voted on to the list: seven of the top 10 selling women’s fragrances in the U.S. made it. But only two of the top-selling men’s scents made the final 100.

Based on the votes received, we have ranked the top 20 fragrances. The remaining 80 are listed alphabetically. Here, the greatest 100 fragrances of all time, as voted on by the beauty industry.

 

The Top 20

 

1.

Chanel No. 5

Launched: 1921

Perfumer: Ernest Beaux

Olfactive Family: Floral aldehydic

“The gold standard,” one voter said. “The beginning of everything we think of in modern fragrance,” said another, of the bestselling scent of all time, which contains 1,000 jasmine flowers in every 30-ml. flacon. “It not only endures, it triumphs.”

Chanel No.5
Chanel No.5

 

2.

Le Labo Santal 33

Launched: 2011

Perfumer: Frank Voelkl

Olfactive Family: Woody aromatic

What started as a candle has become one of the most “cultish fragrances of all time,” said a voter. “The first big iconic niche fragrance,” said another. “It helped make niche relevant and was the fragrance for all Millennial opinion leaders for over 10 years.”

Le Labo Santal 33
Le Labo Santal 33 Courtesy Photo

 

3.

Thierry Mugler Angel

Launched: 1992

Perfumer: Olivier Cresp

Olfactive Family: Gourmand

“A key milestone in perfumery’s modern history,” wrote one voter, echoing the sentiments of many, of the scent that created the gourmand category. Its popularity is undiminished: in 2021, 27 units were sold every hour.

Thierry Mugler Angel
Thierry Mugler Angel Courtesy Photo

 

4.

Frédéric Malle Portrait of a Lady

Launched: 2010

Perfumer: Dominique Ropion

Olfactive Family: “Mysterious elegance”

Malle made two finalist attempts of the scents that would become Portrait of a Lady. He perfumed his wife with one of the two and asked her to go for a walk. When she returned 10 minutes later, she reported that she had been asked four times in the streets of Manhattan about the name and origin of her perfume.

Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady
Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady Courtesy Photo

 

5.

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle

Launched: 2001

Perfumer: Jacques Polge

Olfactive Family: Amber fresh

Chanel tasked Polge with creating a scent Coco Chanel herself would wear. Today, it’s the fourth-bestselling prestige fragrance in America, and helped “relaunch Chanel as a top fragrance player and set a new olfactive trend,” one voter said.

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle
Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Courtesy Photo

 

6.

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue

Launched: 2001

Perfumer: Olivier Cresp

Olfactive Family: Citrus woody

Voters credit this Sicilian-inspired scent that took Cresp two years to develop with starting a new olfactive trend, noting its “uniqueness” in the market. “Uses few but powerful molecules and very few naturals to create a natural sensation,” wrote one.

Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Courtesy Photo

 

7.

Dior Eau Sauvage

Launched: 1966

Perfumer: Edmond Roudnitska

Olfactive Family: Aromatic citrus

“The first time hedione was used, which was eventually to be used in almost every fragrance,” wrote a voter, of the newly synthesized molecule called methyl dihydrojasmonate that was a scientific breakthrough in perfumery.

Dior Eau Sauvage
Dior Eau Sauvage Courtesy Photo

 

8.

Tom Ford Black Orchid

Launched: 2006

Perfumer: Pierre Negrin and David Apel, Givaudan

Olfactive Family: Amber floral

“The best perfume to be shared by both genders,” wrote a voter. “It wasn’t the first — CK One was — but it is the best.”

Tom Ford Black Orchid
Tom Ford Black Orchid Courtesy Photo

 

9.

Giorgio Armani Acqua di Giò

Launched:  1996

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas, Annick Menardo, Annie Buzantian, Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud

Olfactive Family: Citrus

The bestselling men’s fragrance since its launch has sold more than 25 million units since launch and “personifies the long-lasting, clean, fresh, watery feeling,” a voter said. “Amazing first two TV campaigns,” noted another.

Acqua di Gio
Acqua di Gio Courtesy Photo

 

10.

Calvin Klein CK One

Launched: 1994

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas, Harry Fremont

Olfactive Family: Citrus aromatic

“Genderless before its time,” said a respondent, “and responsible for a transition from heavier ’80s scents into the sheerer, easier scents of the 90s.” CK One was also the first fragrance to be sold in Tower Records, a disruptive distribution strategy consistent with the changing attitudes around consumer accessibility.

Calvin Klein CK One
Calvin Klein CK One Courtesy Photo

 

11.

Guerlain Shalimar

Launched: 1925

Perfumer: Jacques Guerlain

Olfactive Family: Amber

The first amber fragrance (once called “Orientals”), Shalimar was called a “timeless perfume, nearly perfect in construction,” by a voter. “Represents sensuality in the olfaction and concept,” another said.

Guerlain Shalimar
Guerlain Shalimar Courtesy Photo

 

12.

Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey

Launched: 1992

Perfumer: Jacques Cavallier

Olfactive Family: Aquatic

“The grandparent of the watery category and the first to use transparency as a concept,” said a voter of L’Eau, whose bottle was inspired by an evening in Paris when Miyake saw the moon shining above the Eiffel Tower.

Issey Miyake L'Eau d'Issey
Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey Courtesy Photo

 

13.

YSL Opium

Launched: 1977

Perfumer: Jean Amic, Jean-Louis Sieuzac and Raymond Chaillan

Olfactive Family: Amber

Scandal only served to fuel desire: Testers were stolen, posters were ripped down and stores sold out in a matter of hours on the launch date.

YSL Opium
YSL Opium Courtesy Photo

 

14.

Dior J’Adore

Launched: 1999

Perfumer: Calice Becker

Olfactive Family: Floral bouquet

“Still a benchmark in the floral category,” and the “first global blockbuster,” J’Adore is still a top five women’s seller in the U.S. today, per NPD.

Dior J'Adore
Dior J’Adore Courtesy Photo

 

15.

Estée Lauder Youth Dew

Launched: 1953

Perfumer: Josephine Catapano

Olfactive Family: Amber/spicy

In the early ’50s, Estée Lauder wondered why women relied on men to buy them perfume. She created Youth Dew as a bath oil first to make women comfortable with the idea of purchasing it for themselves.

Youth Dew
Youth Dew Courtesy Photo

 

16.

Clinique Aromatics Elixir

Launched: 1971

Perfumer: Bernard Chant

Olfactive Family: Chypre floral

In development for more than two years and 700 ingredients to develop. The first scent to be positioned as an “elixir,” said to have special effects on the body and mind.

Clinique Aromatics Elixir
Clinique Aromatics Elixir Courtesy Photo

 

 

17.

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Bacarrat Rouge

Launched: 2015

Perfumer: Francis Kurkdjian

Olfactive Family: Amber floral

First created in 2015 and sold in only 250 limited edition crystal bottles to celebrate Baccarat’s 250th anniversary, today it’s a top 10 seller in the U.S. and a social media sensation, to boot.

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540
Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 Courtesy Photo

 

18.

Frédéric Malle Carnal Flower

Launched: 2005

Perfumer: Dominique Ropion

Olfactive Family: Vegetal addiction

At the time of its creation, Malle brought a bouquet of tuberoses everyday to Dominique Ropion to help him identify the flower, the main ingredient of the perfume. He often joked that he was offering more flowers to Ropion than to his wife.

Frederic Malle Carnal Flower
Frederic Malle Carnal Flower Courtesy Photo

 

19.

Narciso Rodriguez for Her

Launched: 2003

Perfumer: Christine Nagel and Francis Kurkdjian

Olfactive Family: Floral musk

“The best-looking bottle since Chanel No. 5” with a scent that helped update the “once old-fashioned chypre category,” For Her was inspired by the Egyptian Musk Oil Rodriguez wore in high school.

Narciso Rodriguez For Her
Narciso Rodriguez For Her Courtesy Photo

 

20.

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

Launched: 2005

Perfumer: Olivier Polge, Carlos Benaim and Domitille Berthier

Olfactive Family: Floral

One Flowerbomb was sold every minute in the U.S. in 2021.

Viktor + Rolf Flowerbomb
Viktor + Rolf Flowerbomb Courtesy Photo

 

 

 

The Greatest Fragrances, Alphabetically

 

 

Acqua di Parma Colonia

Launched: 1916

Perfumer: Carlo Magnani

Olfactive Family: Citrus

Developed by house founder Magnani as his own personal perfume, Colonia’s bottle was introduced in 1930 and has remained unchanged since its introduction.

 

Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien

Launched: 1981

Perfumer: Annick Goutal

Olfactive Family: Citrus

The debut fragrance for Annick Goutal’s namesake company was inspired by her memories of reading Memoirs of Hadrian in Italy.

 

Aramis

Launched: 1964

Perfumer: Bernard Chant

Olfactive Family: Chypre leather

Fact: Created by Estée Lauder, Aramis was the first U.S. prestige men’s scent.

 

Bath and Body Works Cherry Blossom

Launched: 2005

Perfumer: Harry Fremont

Olfactive Family: Floral Woody

Although not tracked by prestige indexes, this marked Bath and Body Works’ thrust to “trade up” in the fragrance world and is said to be the bestselling scent in America for the last 20 years.

 

Bulgari Eau Parfumée Au Thé Vert

Launched: 1992

Perfumer: Jean-Claude Ellena

Olfactive Family: Citrus aromatic floral

Never intended for public sale, Bulgari wanted a fragrance to offer its jewelry clients when entering its stores as a gesture of hospitality. After it grew in popularity, Bulgari decided to offer it for sale.

 

Kilian Paris Good Girl Gone Bad

Launched: 2011

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas

Olfactive Family: Fruity floral

The fragrance is a metaphor for the story of Eve, a good girl gone bad when she ate the forbidden fruit.

 

Kilian Paris Love Don’t Be Shy

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Calice Becker

Olfactive Family: Gourmand floral

The brand’s number-one fragrance in North America.

 

Byredo Gypsy Water

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Jerome Epinette

Olfactive Family: Woody

Star hairstylist Jen Atkin tapped this to create her first collaboration for her hair care line, Ouai. The resulting products sold out in 24 hours.

 

Byredo Mojave Ghost

Launched: 2014

Perfumer: Jerome Epinette

Olfactive Family: Woody

The top-selling luxury scent in the U.S. for 2021.

 

Cacharel Anais Anais

Launched: 1978

Perfumer: Paul Leger, Raymond Chaillan, Robert Gonnon and Roger Pellegrino

Olfactive Family: Floral green

“The first fragrance for every young girl in Europe for 40 years,” was an oft-repeated refrain from The Greatest’s voters.

 

Calvin Klein Eternity

Launched: 1988

Perfumer: Sophia Grojsman

Olfactive Family: Floral spicy

Supermodel Christy Turlington was the face of Eternity at launch — and remains so. Last year, one bottle was sold every 22 seconds.

 

Calvin Klein Obsession

Launched: 1985

Perfumer: Jean Guichard, Givaudan

Olfactive Family: Amber spicy

Kate Moss was just 18 years old when she was photographed by her then-boyfriend, Mario Sorrenti, for the iconic Obsession campaign.

 

Carolina Herrera Good Girl

Launched: 2016

Perfumer: Louise Turner

Olfactive Family: Floral

According to research from LookFantastic, which analyzed Google searches across the globe, Good Girl is the most popular across the entire globe since its 2016.

 

Cartier Declaration

Launched: 1998

Perfumer: Jean-Claude Ellena

Olfactive Family: Spicy woody

The streamlined bottle’s design was inspired by the crown of a Cartier watch.

 

Chanel Bleu

Launched: 2010

Perfumer: Jacques Polge

Olfactive Family: Aromatic woody

The top-selling men’s scent on sites include Macy’s and Sephora was also the second bestselling fragrance in the U.S. in 2021, according to data from NPD.

 

Chanel Chance

Launched: 2002

Perfumer: Jacques Polge

Olfactive Family: Floral

Inspired by Coco Chanel’s belief in the power of talismans and good luck charms, the cap — in the shape of a dice — reflects the lucky theme.

 

Chanel Cristalle

Launched: 1974

Perfumer: Henri Robert

Olfactive Family: Citrus floral

The scent was inspired by the chandeliers in Chanel’s famous Rue Cambon apartment in the Ritz Paris.

 

Chanel No 19

Launched: 1971

Perfumer: Henri Robert

Olfactive Family: Green floral

Created for Coco Chanel herself in 1971, this was her personal favorite and initially reserved only for herself and a few select friends.

 

Chloe

Launched: 2008

Perfumer: Michel Almairac

Olfactive Family: Powdery floral

Fact: More than 20 million bottles sold since launch, with more than 4.6 million meters of ribbon used for the bow on the neck.

 

Clinique Calyx (FKA Prescriptives)

Launched: 1986

Perfumer: Sophia Grojsman

Olfactive Family: Floral fruity

There was purposely no advertising at launch, and even retailers were asked not to advertise it or spray it so that the scent didn’t become too mainstream.

 

Clinique Happy

Launched: 1997

Perfumer: Rodrigo Flores Roux and Jean Claude Delville

Olfactive Family: Floral fruity

Clinique used mood mapping to develop Happy (which took 111 tests to create), asking panelists to smell fragrances and match them with emotions.

 

Comme des Garcons 2

Launched: 1999

Perfumer: Mark Buxton

Olfactive Family: Chypre, mossy woods

Inspired by Japanese sumi (calligraphy) ink, CDG2 plays on the contrast between dark and light, reflection and opacity.

 

Creed Aventus

Launched: 2010

Perfumer: Olivier Creed

Olfactive Family: Dry woods/fresh/fruity

Fact: The bestselling scent globally in Creed’s history, Aventus was created by sixth generation master perfumer Olivier Creed.

 

Davidoff Cool Water

Launched:1988

Perfumer: Pierre Bourdon

Olfactive Family: Fresh marine

Bourdon modified the traditional fougère accord to create a fresh alternative that had immediate appeal.

 

Demeter Dirt

Launched: 1996

Perfumer: Christopher Brosius

Olfactive Family: N/A

Dirt was inspired by Brosius’ Pennsylvania farm. Another location would have resulted in a different scent, he said, as dirt can smell radically different from place to place.

 

Dior Diorissimo

Launched: 1956

Perfumer: Edmond Roudnitska

Olfactive Family: Floral

One of Dior’s oldest scents, the name Diorissimo is still associated with modern house creations, particularly a top-handled tote of the same name.

 

Dior Fahrenheit

Launched: 1988

Perfumer: Jean-Louis Sieuzac

Olfactive Family: Leather wood

Maurice Roger, then the chairman of Parfums Dior, was inspired by James Rosenquist’s picture, Fahrenheit, 1982, which he saw on exhibit in New York.

 

Dior Miss Dior

Launched: 1947

Perfumer: Paul Vacher

Olfactive Family: Chypre floral

The scent was first sprayed on Feb. 12, 1947, but didn’t go on sale until Christmas. A card was sent out to clients and journalists announcing its launch on Dec. 17.

 

Diptyque Philosykos

Launched: 1996

Perfumer: Olivia Giacobetti

Olfactive Family: Woody

The Maison’s founders bought a box with a dried fig leaf atop small numbered packets as a gift after a summer in Greece. Years later, the scents of fig remained just as dense as ever and became the inspiration for the fragrance.

 

Donna Karan Cashmere Mist

Launched: 1994

Perfumer: Nicholas Calderone

Olfactive Family: Floral amber

The scent was born out of the success of Cashmere Mist scented body collection. It was awarded the Fragrance Foundation Hall of Fame Award in 2019.

 

Escentric Molecules Molecule 01

Launched: 2006

Perfumer: Geza Schoen

Olfactive Family: N/A

Launched at Harvey Nichols, where it sold out immediately and garnered a waiting list, Molecule 01 is still the retailer’s top-selling fragrance.

 

Estée Lauder Beautiful

Launched: 1985

Perfumer: Bernard Chant, Max Gavarry and Sophia Grosjman

Olfactive Family: Lush floral

At launch, Estée Lauder had a bride walk down Fifth Avenue in New York City, one of the first stunt-marketing activations.

 

Estée Lauder Pleasures

Launched: 1995

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas, Annie Buzantian

Olfactive Family: Sheer floral

Responsible for introducing the sheer floral category, Pleasures was inducted into the Fragrance Foundation Hall of Fame in 2021. And who could forget the puppies.

 

Estée Lauder Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Harry Fremont

Olfactive Family: Lush floral

Aerin Lauder created this as an homage to her grandmother’s 1973 launch of Private Collection and their shared love of those “magnificent white flowers.”

 

Estée Lauder White Linen

Launched: 1978

Perfumer: Sophia Grosjman

Olfactive Family: Lush floral

The name White Linen came about because Estée Lauder envisioned the woman who would wear it as “fresh, crisp and clean.”

 

Ex Nihilo Fleur Narcotique

Launched: 2013

Perfumer: Quentin Bisch

Olfactive Family: Floral fruity

Bisch was only 28 when he created this scent, which has since become a house icon and global cult classic.

 

Fracas by Robert Piguet

Launched: 1948

Perfumer: Germaine Cellier

Olfactive Family: Floral

“So powerfully white flower,” said a voter, this has a “creaminess and dark intensity that is unexpected,” another said.

 

Frédéric Malle Musc Ravageur

Launched: 2000

Perfumer: Maurice Roucel

Olfactive Family: “Magnetic warmth”

Malle calls this “sex in a bottle,” noting it is the one “that provokes our clients to return the most.”

 

Giorgio Beverly Hills

Launched: 1981

Perfumer: Francis Camail and Harry Cutler

Olfactive Family: White floral

The fragrance that defined a decade — “quintessential ‘80s opulence,” a voter said.

 

Glossier You

Launched: 2017

Perfumer: Dora Baghriche, Frank Voelkl

Olfactive Family: Floral woody musk

This scent, “which smells like you only better,” said a voter, sold one bottle every five minutes in 2021.

 

Gucci Bloom

Launched: 2017

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas

Olfactive Family: White floral

Gucci’s first female scent developed under designer Alessandro Michele’s creative vision.

 

Guerlain Habit Rouge

Launched: 1965

Perfumer: Jean-Paul Guerlain

Olfactive Family: Amber woody

Created to draw men to the perfume counter, this takes the basic outline of Shalimar and adds leather and green orange blossom for a less sweet version of the original.

 

Guerlain L’Heure Bleu

Launched: 1912

Perfumer: Jacques Guerlain

Olfactive Family: N/A

Designed by Raymond Guerlain, the “inverted heart” bottle features a stopper, in the form of a hollowed heart, a true technical feat at the time.

 

Guerlain Samsara

Launched: 1989

Perfumer: Jean-Paul Guerlain

Olfactive Family: Amber woody

Inspired by Guerlain’s passion for the dressage of horses.

 

Guerlian Vetiver

Launched: 1959

Perfumer: Jean-Paul Guerlain

Olfactive Family: N/A

The first fragrance by Jean-Paul Guerlain, grandson of house founder, Jacques, who would create more than 30 scents launched by the house during his lifetime.

 

Guy Laroche Drakkar Noir

Launched:1982

Perfumer: Pierre Wargnye

Olfactive Family: Fougère

Wargnye used dihydromyrcenol for the first time in a fine fragrance. Previously, the molecule was primarily used for household and cleaning products.

 

Halston

Launched: 1975

Perfumer: Bernard Chant

Olfactive Family: Floral chypre

While the Elsa Peretti-designed flacon is considered an icon of perfumery today, Max Factor execs loathed it on sight, calling it “the blob.” Also revolutionary: Its lack of branding, featuring instead only a ribbon with Halston’s name.

 

Heretic The Herbalist

Launched: 2021

Perfumer: Douglas Little

Olfactive Family: Fougère sauvage

The first fine fragrance to contain cannabis-derived THC, this combines the aromatherapeutic benefits of herbs, woods and flowers with the psychoactive effects of cannabis and is sold only in dispensaries.

 

Hermès Terre d’Hermès

Launched: 2006

Perfumer: Jean-Claude Ellena

Olfactive Family: Spicy Dry

“Warm and woodsy. I love it on my husband, I mean really love,” said one respondent. “But I love it on me, too.”

 

Houbigant Quelques Fleurs

Launched: 1912

Perfumer: Robert Bienaimé

Olfactive Family: Floral

It takes more than 15,000 to create one ounce of Quelques Fleurs, which bills itself as the first floral fragrance ever created.

 

Hugo Boss Bottled

Launched: 1998

Perfumer: Annick Menardo

Olfactive Family: Woody fruity

With notes of apple and cinnamon, this was inspired by apple strudel. It remains Boss’ bestselling scent.

 

Jean Paul Gaultier Classique

Launched: 1993

Perfumer: Jacques Cavallier

Olfactive Family: Amber floral

From the bottle to the scent itself, an instant icon since launch.

 

Jean Paul Gaultier Le Male

Launched: 1995

Perfumer: Francis Kurkdjian

Olfactive Family: Amber fougère

Created to be an alternative to traditional colognes, five bottles are sold every minute worldwide.

 

Jo Malone London English Pear and Freesia

Launched: 2010

Perfumer: Christine Nagel

Olfactive Family: Fruity

The scent was inspired by the image conjured up of an English autumn in the poem, “To Autumn,” by poet John Keats.

 

Jo Malone London Sage Wood and Sea Salt

Launched: 2014

Perfumer: Christine Nagel

Olfactive Family: Woody

This bestseller was inspired by the blustery environment of British beaches.

 

Jo Malone Peony and Blush Suede

Launched: 2013

Perfumer: Christine Nagel

Olfactive Family: Floral

Suede was used as a textural note to offset the richness of the peony.

 

Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy

Launched: 2008

Perfumer: Honorine Blanc

Olfactive Family: Floral gourmand woody

Viva La Juicy was the first scent to introduce the concept of “fluffy” texture, with its carmelized gardenia accord.

 

Kenzo Flower by Kenzo

Launched: 2000

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas

Olfactive Family: Powdery floral

Two decades on, Kenzo Flower is still going strong, with four bottles sold every minute worldwide.

 

Lancôme La Vie Est Belle

Launched: 2012

Perfumer: Anne Flipo and Dominique Ropion

Olfactive Family: Floral and sweet

Development took three years and 5,521 ingredient trials; today, one bottle is sold every 10 seconds globally.

 

Lancôme Trésor

Launched: 1990

Perfumer: Sophia Grojsman

Olfactive Family: Warm spicy

Since its original launch creation in 1952, Trésor’s bottle has had four variations; it draws inspiration from luxury glass-making and high-end jewelry.

 

Le Labo Another 13

Launched: 2010

Perfumer: Nathalie Lorson

Olfactive Family: Musk

Retailer Sarah Andelman of Colette spearheaded a collaboration between Le Labo and Jefferson Hack of AnOther Magazine. The 13 refers to the number of ingredients used to create the scent. It is Le Labo’s only fragrance without the main ingredient in its name.

 

Marc Jacobs Daisy

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Alberto Morillas

Olfactive Family: Fruity floral green

The Great Gatsby’s Daisy Buchanan was the inspiration behind the name for Jacobs, who loved her combination of fragility, beauty and elegance.

 

Nina Ricci L’Air du Temps

Launched: 1948

Perfumer: Francis Fabron

Olfactive Family: Floral

The scent symbolized the hope for peace after WWII, as reflected by the original flacon design of a sun with a dove perched on the stopper by Christian Bérard.

 

Paco Rabanne 1 Million

Launched: 2008

Perfumer: Christophe Raynaud, Olivier Pescheux and Michel Girard

Olfactive Family: N/A

Called by some “the sexiest scent on earth,” 1 Million went through more than 2,000 iterations before the perfumers landed on the final scent.

 

Paloma Picasso

Launched: 1984

Perfumer: Francis Bocris

Olfactive Family: Chypre floral woody

The daughter of Picasso starred in the debut ads, her jet black hair and red lips echoing the color scheme of the scent. For her, black symbolized power and red was her favorite hue.

 

Penhaligon Halfeti

Launched: 2015

Perfumer: Christian Provenzano

Olfactive Family: N/A

Named after a small Turkish village, where rare black roses — the result of unique ecological conditions — bloom on the banks of the Euphrates river.

 

Philosophy Amazing Grace

Launched: 1996

Perfumer: Tanya Petrakov

Olfactive Family: Floral musk

A sales powerhouse: The number-one women’s fragrance ancillaries brand in the U.S. in unit sales, according to NPD, with one sold every 30 seconds in 2020.

 

Ralph Lauren Polo

Launched: 1978

Perfumer: Carlos Benaim

Olfactive Family: N/A

The first men’s fragrance without any floral notes, this launched simultaneously with a sister scent, Lauren for women, an industry first at the time.

 

Rochas Femme Rochas

Launched: 1944

Perfumer: Edmond Roudnitska

Olfactive Family: Chypre fruity

“A classic, clean and fresh scent that is almost impossible to find anymore, making all the more lust worthy,” said a voter, echoing a common refrain.

 

Serge Lutens Feminité du Bois

Launched: 1992

Perfumer: Serge Lutens

Olfactive Family: Spicy wood

The fragrance was originally created by Lutens for Shiseido and is now sold under Luten’s namesake brand.

 

Thierry Mugler Alien

Launched: 2005

Perfumer: Dominique Ropion and Laurent Bruyere

Olfactive Family: Amber floral

Mugler and fragrance exec Vera Strubi wanted a name that started with A and had five letters, like Angel to “bring luck.” It worked: Today, 23 units are still sold every hour worldwide.

 

Tom Ford F*cking Fabulous

Launched: 2017

Perfumer: Shyamala Maisondieu

Olfactive Family: Amber leather

As one respondent wrote, “Name says it all.”

 

Tom Ford Neroli Portofino

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Rodrigo Flores-Roux

Olfactive Family: Citrus floral

A reinvention of the classic European style eau de cologne, this helped modernize the citrus category with its floral notes and contrasting amber undertones.

 

Tom Ford Ombre Leather

Launched: 2018

Perfumer: Sonia Constant

Olfactive Family: Floral leather

The leather note wrapped in wood, spices and flowers led to instant success for this launch.

 

Tom Ford Oud Wood

Launched: 2007

Perfumer:  Richard Herpin

Olfactive Family: Woody

Ford led the way in creating an oud-based fragrance equally as appealing to Western and Eastern consumers.

 

Tom Ford Soleil Blanc

Launched: 2016

Perfumer: Nathalie Cetto

Olfactive Family: Amber floral

Coco de mer, cardamom and ylang ylang combine for a unique scent that “conjures up like luxe summer holidays,” one voter said.

 

Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Olivier Gillotin

Olfactive Family: Amber spicy

One of the original Tom Ford Private Blend fragrances, this helped spark the niche juggernaut.

 

Tom Ford Tuscan Leather

Launched: 2007

Perfumer: Harry Frémont and Jacques Cavallier-Belletrud

Olfactive Family: Leather

“The first fragrance to bridge Western and Middle Eastern style,” said a voter of this bestseller. “Launched a thousand inspirations from this unique note.”

 

YSL Black Opium

Launched: 2014

Perfumer: Nathalie Lorson, Marie Salamagne, Olivier Cresp and Honorine Blanc

Olfactive Family: Gourmand

The bestseller that was the first to use a coffee note “took the classic Opium skeleton and reimagined it into a new classic with its famous top note,” a voter said.

 

Yves Saint Laurent Paris

Launched: 1983

Perfumer: Sophia Grojsman

Olfactive Family: Floral

YSL debuted the scent at the fall 1983 fashion show. He designed a dress named “Paris,” a black velvet sheath dress with a pink satin knot and closed the show with model Mounia holding the scent.

For more from WWD.com, see:

Angus Cloud Stars in Ralph Lauren Fragrances Digital Campaign

Coty’s Sue Nabi Talks Future of Fragrance

Joseph Abboud Brand to Offer Fragrances, Grooming Products