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That’s exactly the question I asked myself last week when I found myself loitering around Bloomingdale’s. Trying to walk through the cosmetic department at this time of the year is much like playing drunken bumper cars. You can’t move without crashing into a ginormous perfume display.
My patience ran out, and escape seemed the only option, so I hurried to the exit. But then I passed the Lancôme counter, caught a whiff of Tresor, and had to stop.
Do you remember that one? Isabella Rossellini was the original spokesmodel. She was so chic. So stylish. So French. Simply the most beautiful woman I’d ever seen. And everyone I knew wanted to be just like her. So, of course, we all had to wear her fragrance.
Fast forward to last week, and 3 lonely Tresor gift sets were collecting dust bunnies on the bottom shelf of a display shoved against the wall.
I picked one up and headed to the register. But then my Grandmother’s 60-year unhealthy fixation with Youth Dew came to mind.
Nostalgic fragrances from our youth bring back happy memories of a less complicated time of our lives. However, they can also date us. (See mention of Grandma above.)
Does wearing an old fragrance matter? Maybe. Maybe not.
But new fragrances are like hip phrases. We can add them to our vocabulary or not, but if we’re aware of them, we at least know what the heck the Gen Z-ers in our life are talking about. And who knows? Maybe if we keep an open mind, we’ll discover something new and absolutely fall in love.
So, I put the Tresor gift set down and walked away.
But with a thousand new fragrances launched every year, where do we even begin?
With a trip to the experts, of course.
The fragrance pros at Sephora, Nordstrom, and Saks were happy to help us uncover the most popular scents of the season. And I’m so excited because they found us options that are truly fresh and unique.
I actually did fall in love and buy this one. If you’re a fan of light, feminine florals minus that nose-burning, too-sweet element, you’ll want to give this one a sniff.
Tom Ford – Tobacco Vanille
If you’re thinking, mmm… weird combination. You’re absolutely right. And the first hit is very unusual in a strangely yummy way. But then it dries down to this rich, almost powdery scent that is divine.
And here’s a nerdy fragrance fun fact for you, vanilla is the most popular scent for women in the US. Who would’ve guessed?
If you want to try before committing, the purse spray is a great way to go. It’s $65 and you can check it out here.
Jo Malone London – Earl Grey & Cucumber
If you’ve ever visited the Jo Malone counter and been a smidge over-whelmed by all the choices, I hear ‘ya. As one of their most popular, Earle Grey & Cucumber is a good place to start.
And if you’re looking for an awesome gift, they have a couple sampler kits. The one above and a budget friendly $20 option you can check out here.
A couple months ago, a girlfriend gave me their hand soap as a hostess gift, and I was hooked. However, when I went to the Le Labo counter a few days later, it all just seemed like so much work. Vials and droppers and girls in wax-coated aprons. I left thinking, yeah, I don’t really want to go through all that.
However, they have a cool story, and once you get the gist, it’s pretty easy.
Two things to know – they name their fragrances after the main ingredient, Rose 31, Iris 39, Jasmin 17, or whatever. That tidbit will save you time and help you narrow down the ones you’re interested (or not interested) in trying.
You’re likely wondering about the number. Well, that’s the amount of total ingredients the fragrance contains. Cool, right.
According to Chantelle at Nordstrom, Santal 33 and Another 13 are their two most popular.
Another is the only one not named after the main ingredient. It came from a collaboration La Labo did with AnOther magazine to create a signature fragrance.
They starter set above is great if you want to try before committing or are looking for a fun gift for the hard to shop for beauty junkie on your list.
Forget classifications like floral, spice, and citrus. Their fragrances are named after special everyday situations and the memories they invoke. Like Lazy Sunday Morning, Beach Walk, and Springtime In The Park.
According to the fragrance guru at Sephora, By The Fireplace is one of their top sellers. And after sniffing it, I can see why. It legit smells like a mellow, cozy, crackling fire.
If you’re a fan of citrus notes but are frequently disappointed by the lack of longevity, you’re going to adore Atelier.
The couple who founded the company has a neat story you can check out here. In a nutshell, they’ve created a clever chemistry formula that guarantees their colognes last like pure perfume.
Oolong Infini is one of their top sellers, but they have a nifty $22 sampler pack available here.
I’ve bought their candles for years ’cause they’re awesome. But for some odd reason never considered trying their fragrance.
Do Son is a top seller and named after the resort in Vietnam, where the creator vacationed as a child.
If you retro is your jam, you’ll be excited to hear they offer a solid perfume in a gorgeous refillable case. Here’s the link if you’d like to take a look.
And check out this Scrabble-inspired travel spray for the jet-setter on your list. So cute, right!
And last, a Not Perfume. As in…
Juliette Has A Gun, Not A Perfume
The not a perfume part is what originally caught my attention. Quickly followed by their Not A Candle, Not A Gift Set, well… you get the idea.
It’s not just a super clever marketing scheme. It really isn’t a perfume. So, what the heck is it? Molecules that react to your individual chemistry minus all the allergens. (Yeah, they lost me at molecules.)
I was skeptical too. Then I sprayed a bit on a blotter card and didn’t smell anything. It wasn’t until I broke down and sprayed a bit on my wrist that anything happened. And then it kept changing throughout the day. Like the not perfume version of mood lipstick.
And yes, there is a sampler kit if you want to try all their scents.
That’s A Wrap, Sunshine.
The most popular fragrances of the season. Fun for you or the savvy beauty girl on your holiday shopping list.
Did I miss your favorite new fragrance? Pop a note in the comments below and let us know.
‘Til next week.
Hugs & Happy shopping.