Every day here at Allure, our editors receive the newest perfumes from the largest fragrance houses and the smallest indie brands all before they make it to market, so we can get an exclusive look — or, sniff — at what the upcoming season’s biggest launches will be. If you think walking by a department store’s fragrance counters is intimidating, you should get a look at our desks. Sometimes it’s hard to reach the keyboard through all the bottles, vials, and testers. Even if we're not rotating all of those fragrances through our scent wardrobes, sometimes a pretty perfume bottle just looks really nice on our desks. Through getting to smell everything out there, our scent memory is a literal filing cabinet of what notes were trending when, which scents are popular in which regions, and even an encyclopedic scent-knowledge of perfume dupes. We have a deep knowledge of the best scents to fit anyone’s taste, from the airiest florals to the most cloying gourmands. Here are the standouts that our editors have loved either for themselves or on others.
Images courtesy of brands
Tom Ford Oud Minérale
“Wait — let me guess… oud?” The three-letter word has become a fragrance world punchline because it's so recognizable. With Oud Minérale, Tom Ford takes the signature smoky note and makes it seem completely fresh. This version is cold and crisp.
$235 (Shop Now)
Marc Jacobs Daisy
Though the name of this scent makes it sound like it was made for the younger crowd, inside this quirky bottle is an artistic feat. The blend of wild strawberry, violet, gardenia, and jasmine somehow always feels light and airy — even after multiple spritzes. A decade on, perfumers are still scratching their heads.
$84 (Shop Now)
Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris
Like an indulgent French dessert, Mon Paris has just the right amount of sweet. Red berries and pear intermingle with lush, rich ingredients like white musk, patchouli, and — how fabulous does this sound? — crystal moss. The result: a luminous, sexy scent.
$124 (Shop Now)
D.S. & Durga El Cosmico
Far out in West Texas lies the El Cosmico campground — dreamy, star-strung, smoky, and dark. It sounds like that Gus Van Sant movie you never caught, but it’s also the D.S. and Durga scent you must, must try. It's floral, fresh, and feminine — perfect for spring.
$175 (Shop Now)
Grab a sweater — the birch, salt, and pine resin in Greylocke are so reminiscent of the chilly northeast, you can practically feel the twigs snapping underneath your feet when you spritz this on.
$88 (Shop Now)
Imaginary Authors Saint Julep
Once it hits 80 degrees, you’re going to want to douse yourself in this: a cool mix of bourbon, tangerine, sugar, and wild mint. As its name references, the scent is an olfactory version of a classic cocktail, the Mint Julep, and it’s just as intoxicating. It cuts straight through the humidity and brightens the mood.
$95 (Shop Now)
Take vetiver and turn it up to 11: Diptyque’s version feels especially lush when mixed with cedar, white musk, and Turkish rose.
$135 (Shop Now)
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb
Deploy the pink grenade and release one of the most over-the-top floral fragrances of our lifetimes. After the initial girly-girl explosion, expect a more sensual patchouli drydown. This one is a classic Allure favorite.
$85 (Shop Now)
Jo Malone London Myrrh and Tonka
Cozy without being cloying, this toasty almond and mellow tonka bean blend delivers just enough warm and fuzzy. Trust a British brand to respect the concept of restraint.
$125 (Shop Now)
Before she created her first two fragrances, Lovely and Covet, Sarah Jessica Parker famously cocktailed her own earthy, animalic fragrance blends using perfume oils in her own home, which she referred to as her “stash.” It's an homage to those early iterations, and smells more closely to the original scents she mixed, citing her inspirations as body odor and church. The blend of woods, pistachio, and vetiver (many even swear they get a trace of mint,) Stash definitely has its own point of view that sets itself apart from many other celebrity fragrances.
$50 (Shop Now)
Le Lebo Bergamote 22
Bergamot, petitgrain, and amber bathe you in this warm, luminous aura — consider this the magic hour of fragrances. It’s becoming on everyone.
$80 (Shop Now)__
Tom Ford Soleil Blanc
Even in your flip-flops, this summery white floral — with lush notes of pistachio and "coco de mer" — makes you feel totally chic. Put this on your summer bucket list.
$148 (Shop Now)
Fresh Brown Sugar Eau De Parfum
Like the wildly popular body scrub that inspired it, Fresh’s Brown Sugar fragrance is both uplifting and comforting. The recipe includes tangerine, açai berry, and Sicilian lemon, blended with caramel and sugared magnolia.
$50 (Shop Now)
Estée Lauder Modern Muse Le Rouge
Ready to graduate from the super-sweet stuff? Try this. With a velvet cream accord, ripe fruit, and bouquets of roses, it’s sophisticated but still hits the spot.
$90 (Shop Now)
Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Vitae
Sparkling, lemony, and with a long-lasting drydown, we’d drink this stuff if we could. The perfumer, Kurkdjian, is known for his featherlight touch.
$195 (Shop Now)
Kai Perfume Oil
This perfume hit it big because it has guts: It took the ladylike white floral — the gardenia, specifically — and turned it into a hothouse flower. This scent is definitely a sexy one.
$48 (Shop Now)
Giorgio Armani Sí
Sí is a blockbuster scent that plays more like an indie. A take on the familiar chypre concept — a favorite perfume family known for its mossy, distinctive scent — it introduces brighter, juicy notes like the tangy blackcurrant. Result: a delicious crowd pleaser.
$72 (Shop Now)
Byredo Bal D’Afrique
Picture it: Paris in the late ‘20s. It was a city infatuated with African culture, and this fragrance captures the excess, energy, and convergence of influences. What does it smell like? Lean in: neroli, African marigold, and Moroccan cedarwood.
$165 (Shop Now)
Frederic Malle Dans Mon Lit Eau de Lit
Are you one of those people who love the clean start of laundry day? This is just the thing. Blended with musk, this linen spray is meant to simulate the experience of sleeping on a bed of rose petals. (They even used cutting-edge technology to replicate the scent of rose water’s natural scent.)
$125 (Shop Now)
Elizabeth & James Nirvana Rose
A rose of the Olsen variety: Everything about this reads mysterious, earthy, expensive. Even if you’re “not a rose person,” one sniff and our money says you’ll reconsider.
$85 (Shop Now)
Commodity Goods Orris
Sure, it’s gauche to talk about money, but seriously, do you know just how expensive orris root is? This sparkling and warm floral scent spotlights the note in this divinely complex yet comforting scent.
$135 (Shop Now)
Penhaligon's Bewitching Yasmine
It would be a crime to save this creamy, spicy fragrance for some hypothetical Big Night Out. We wear ours to the bodega, feeling fancy as hell and ready for adventure. Jasmine, incense, and oud make a sharply exciting entrance that in time simmers down for a sweetly musky finish.
$250 (Shop Now)
Chanel No. 19
This woody, green floral has a clarity and sharpness to it that feels feminine, but not frou-frou. No surprise: It’s the last fragrance launched — and worn — by Gabrielle Chanel.
$102 (Shop Now)
Maison Margiela Replica Beach Walk
Desperate for a mental escape? Maison Margiela bottled all the best bits of a day at the shore — coconut, musk, crystal-clear sea spray — and put it all on tap. Spritz as needed.
$126 (Shop Now)
Calvin Klein Eternity for Men
Further proof that fragrance knows no gender: Eternity for Men’s soft mix of jasmine, basil, and lavender is so addictive, nobody can possibly refuse it.
$82 (Shop Now)
Ralph Lauren Collection Lime
Lots of lime scents can smell like cleaning products or energy drinks. We’re not even sure Mr. Lauren has come into contact with those two things. His reference? The French Riviera, of course.
$190 (Shop Now)
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue for Women
Citrus, bluebells, a whisper-light hint of rose: Misted on your neck, Light Blue leaves behind a scent that’s just pretty, not perfume-y. No wonder it’s a classic.
$78 (Shop Now)
So the Sauvage visual — the one in the desert, where he saw a buffalo, hawk, and a coyote — didn’t exactly tell you much about the fragrance, but it definitely conveyed the mood. This spicy, woody scent is packed with intrigue. It smells like a cold night in the desert, where your feet are buried in the sand that’s still warmed by the late afternoon sun, but a night breeze sends a chill through your torso. Grab a jacket.
$77 (Shop Now)
Chanel No. 5 L’Eau Spray
For beauty enthusiasts, owning a bottle of Chanel No. 5 feels almost obligatory. But, let’s be real — what if it’s not your bag? Enter No. 5 L’Eau. This version has the spirit of the original (cue fancy lady vibes), but it’s so much breezier.
$105 (Shop Now)
Miu Miu Eau De Parfum
What starts out as a pretty, lily of the valley scent slowly evolves into something a bit moodier, woodsier. It's off-kilter girlishness — classic Miu Miu.
$71 (Shop Now)
Ex Nihilo Cuir Celeste Eau de Parfum
This luxe leather scent is the equivalent of "boss bitch" vibes. It's warm with musky amber at the heart, over a deep but subtle patchouli. But a taut snap of violet and black pepper at the open make it equal parts business and pleasure.
$225 (Shop Now)
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