Favorite Perfumes, Least Favorite Category


On Friday, Bois de Jasmin asked us, “What lies outside of your perfume comfort zone? Which fragrances are still challenging for you?” I loved the question and wanted to take it one step further: what are your favorite perfumes from your least favorite perfume category?

Me, I loooooathe fruity perfumes. They never smell enough like real fruits for me. (Remember that while oranges, lemons, and limes are all technically fruits, they get classified as “citrus” for the purpose of perfumery.) The only fruity perfumes I really enjoy are Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay and the peachy Yves Saint Laurent Yvresse. I also liked the candied strawberry note in pre-reformulation Miss Dior Cherie.

31 thoughts on “Favorite Perfumes, Least Favorite Category

  1. I’m really not much on gourmand fragrances, but I do love some Lolita Lempicka and the By Kilian Love you gave me is really gorgeous, as well — not gorgeous enough for me to buy a full bottle, though, because I looked, and nope don’t like it that much. Generally, I don’t want to smell like a tray of sweets, but there’s just something about both of those that I find really appealing. My least favourite category is actually ‘fresh’ or whatever category stuff like Clinique Happy and other ghastly astringent fragrances that smell like a highschool locker room reeking from too much AXE. I have yet to find anything that falls into that fragrance category that I genuinely like. I’m not talking citrus or anything like that, but downright Eau de Lysol Douche. Which, okay, I figure you’d appreciate this tidbit with me. Lysol was originally a feminine hygiene product to keep your ladyparts all fresh and clean. Because mid-century America was batshit.

  2. Not counting stuff that doesn’t count (aquatic and sport crap), probably my least favorite categories are fougeres (which can feel too manly with a capital M) and colognes, which are nice but not complex and long-lasting enough to feel satisfying most of the time. My favorite fougere is Le Troisiemme Homme. Not sure about favorite cologne yet. I haven’t sampled enough of them to nail one down! One I own and like very much is Eau Dynamisante, but I like it better on my homme because his chest hair holds the scent longer!

    1. oh man, I love Troisiemme Homme. I bought it for my husband. I hadn’t really thought about the fact that it was a fougere… which is not my favorite category either.

        1. Funny story about LTH: I bought it for my husband and found it so sexy and butch. I love it on him. Then I read The Guide and Tania says it’s a men’s perfume only women would wear (or something). I was like…. WHAAAAA?!?!?!

      1. It is worth your while to check them out. IMHO, even the reformulations (which get a lot of flak) are way better than most of what’s on the market today.

  3. Like klytaemnestra, my least favorite category is “fresh”, and I won’t even go there. Chypres I admire but can’t wear, finding most of them too strident on my skin. However, I do like and wear Mitsouko and Rochas Femme, which are classified as chypres. And like you, I don’t like most fruits in my perfumes. The exceptions are peach, apricot, and plum, which appear in Mitsouko and Femme, as well as Champs-Elysees, Champagne (Yvresse), and Poison.

    1. Femme is such a nice perfume, and for such a reasonable price these days! I never even thought of it as a chypre, it seems too gentle for that.

  4. Aquatic would be one, also opulent fruity spicy animalic chypre monsters – those scents featuring what Abigail once termed “icky stewed things”.

    1. As for what I actually like in those categories, I am struggling on the aquatics, and as regards fruity chypres, Patou Sublime and Plum got past my radar, but they are not particularly scary, mind. Badgeley Mischka is okay too! And Mauboussin.

  5. I’m with you. the only sweet fruit frag I love is Bombay Bling. I love its development from crazy fruit salad to deep dry woodsy almost masculine. Also the Hermes Jardin series I can do too.
    Fairy floss tends to turn my tummy too.
    Portia xx

    1. Bombay Bling is a beautifully done fruity frag! It is my father’s favorite. He says it’s “more of an experience than a perfume.”

  6. Me, I loathe balsamy orientals like Opium and Cinnabar and Youth Dew and Obsession and even Coco. Add OJ Tolu and Tabu to that list as well. Looaaathe them. Will never wear them, nevah nevah nevah. BUT. I sometimes put a toe onto that ice – there is a little thread of this stuff down in the very bottom of Alahine. Which I adore.

    And while I do not exactly loathe fougeres – I like them, on other people – wearing them myself feels like trying to wear The CEO’s tighty-whiteys. NOT HAPPENIN’. NOT. Can’t do it.

  7. I agree with Portia! I’m not the biggest fruity fragrance lover but Bombay Bling turned me into a mango lover. I also tend to not like aquatic or ozonic scents, but can appreciate l’Eau d’Issey.

  8. I’ve discovered that ‘fruity’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘bad’ for me either, since I like many of the floral fruity and chypre fruity categories the most, and enjoying peachy/apricot things like No.5, Yvresse, Daim Blond, Calyx, Love in Paris, Ça sent Beau… poutpourri wildberries like Poison, Quel Amour!…and plums like Jungle l’Élephant, Ormonde Jayne’s Frangipani etc.

    but what I really loathe is the aromatic category fragrance, from which I love Pour un Homme by Caron and Porcellana by SMN.

  9. What an excellent question!!

    I am no fan of sweet, caramel or even vanilla (Guerlainade and secondary note purposes set to one side).

    However, both Kenzo Jungle l’Elephant and Dior Mitzah (which travels promptly in this direction on my skin on account of the honey I suppose) are unquestionably beautiful.

    As for fruit (I would also exclude cassis here – especially when mixed with leaf – and tomato), I find these tough as they are so often candied rather than fresh fruit, but … Cacharel’s Eden – in all it’s somewhat surreal melon, pineapple and peach glory does it. As of course does the over-ripe petrol peach in Mitsouko, which in fact I’ve reviewed today!

    Thanks ever so for this brain teaser.

    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

  10. I don’t, on the whole like ambers (I’m weird, I know) but there are a few I like: YSL Cinema, Atelier Cologne Ambre Nue, Tauer Orange Star, and Nez a Nez Ambre a Sade (although the last two are arguably not really amber, I think).

    I actually love fruity perfumes, but fruit + oakmoss gives me trouble: I’m looking at you, Diorama, Mitsouko, etc. The notable exception to me is Cartier So Pretty. And By Kilian’s Liaisons Dangereuse, although I don’t really pick up any oakmoss in that one so I kind of call shenanigans on it being a “fruity chypre.”

    1. Wow, Undina, you must be my Evil Scent Twin. Tuberose is my favorite! Maybe you’d like a light tuberose like Juicy Couture. Try the parfum.

      I’m not a fan of light, airy scents as a whole, but I love Honore des Pres Sexy Angelic.

      1. I can stand a tiny amount of tuberose well blended with other white flowers. But tuberose itself (including a real flower) is just a headache waiting to start 😦

  11. Actually, agree with Undina here, tuberose is not my thing and I don’t have any. BUT the one tuberose I can stand is Caron’s Tubereuse, which is kind of dry, green, and woody-for a tuberose scent. As for real tuberoses, they come close to making me sick, although they’re pretty in bouquets.

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