Wednesday, April 24, 2024

25 Best Long-Lasting Fragrances That Won’t Overwhelm You

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1

Best Sweet Floral Fragrance

Parfums de Marly Parfums de Marly Cassili Eau de Parfum

Parfums de Marly Cassili Eau de Parfum

1

Best Sweet Floral Fragrance

Parfums de Marly Parfums de Marly Cassili Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Cassili wraps you in a soft, plush bed of sweet white flowers. The bouquet is deepened by tonka beans and sandalwood but lingers in the background to keep the composition flirty and feminine.

Key scent notes: Bulgarian rose, transparent white flowers, mimosa absolute, plumeria, sandalwood, tonka beans

Nordstrom rating: 4.2/5 stars

“My introduction to Parfums de Marly was through Cassili. As someone who detests juvenile-like floral scents, I was thoroughly happy that Cassili is a sexy, mature floral scent that settles into a powdery sweetness.” — Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

2

Best Smokey Fruity Fragrance

Dries Van Noten Orange Smoke Eau de Toilette

Orange Smoke Eau de Toilette

2

Best Smokey Fruity Fragrance

Dries Van Noten Orange Smoke Eau de Toilette

Credit: courtesy of brands

Whatever you thought a Mediterranean escape smelled like, allow Dries Van Noten’s Orange Smoke to change your mind. The smokiness of this fragrance is fleeting to make way for the tangy sweetness of orange blossom, neroli, and jasmine.

Key scent notes: Mandarin, neroli, orange blossom, jasmine, musks

Fragrantica rating: 4.2/5 stars

“Orange Smoke stopped me in my tracks the moment the last mist settled on my skin. I felt like I was immediately transported to the South of France or the Amalfi Coast, somewhere sunkissed with salty sea breeze brushing against my skin.” — Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

3

Best Summer Scent

Penhaligon’s Penhaligon’s Solaris Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

Penhaligon's Solaris Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

3

Best Summer Scent

Penhaligon’s Penhaligon’s Solaris Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

Credit: courtesy of brands

An ELLE.com Noteworthies winner, Solaris by Penhaligons smells like freshly squeezed citrus basking under the sun’s rays. On the skin, the florals take the spotlight as jasmine and ylang-ylang dance around awakening Neroli and lemon oil.

Key scent notes: Blackcurrant, neroli, lemon oil, ylang-ylang, jasmine, tiare flower, cedarwood, sandalwood, vanilla

Nordstrom rating: 5/5 stars

A Nordstrom reviewer said: “This scent evokes summers at the beach or lake. It’s beautiful without being flowery. Worth every penny. Highly recommend. Wish they had more products with this scent.

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4

Best Tropical Scent

Vilhelm Parfumerie Mango Skin Eau de Parfum

Mango Skin Eau de Parfum

4

Best Tropical Scent

Vilhelm Parfumerie Mango Skin Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Mango Skin is as juicy and vibrant as the freshly picked ripe fruit the fragrance is built around. Patchouli and pink sugar add a creamy kiss to the rather fruit composition, which marries mango, blackberries, and black pepper together for a spicy-sweet dry-down.

Key scent notes: Blackberries, mango, black pepper, jasmine, patchouli, vanilla, pink sugar

Saks Fifth Avenue rating: 3.7/5 stars

A Saks Fifth Avenue reviewer said: “Gorgeous, fruity, sparking in the opening. Dries to a warm sweet skin scent.”

5

Best Soft Oud

Christian Dior Oud Ispahan

Oud Ispahan

5

Best Soft Oud

Christian Dior Oud Ispahan

Credit: courtesy of brands

Ouds can typically lean super strong and masculine. Christian Dior’s iteration is still potent and exhilarating, and a little warm and bubbly but still sensual and mysterious.

Key scent notes: Labdanum, rose, patchouli, saffron; agarwood (oud), sandalwood

Dior rating: 4.4/5 stars

A Dior reviewer said: “I been using this from past 6 years. Always been a fan of Oud Isphan. Best one for me. Great smell. Last longer. Ladies love it.”

6

Best Date Night Scent

Brown Girl Jane Dare

Dare

6

Best Date Night Scent

Brown Girl Jane Dare

Credit: courtesy of brands

Don’t let the soft pink bottle fool you—Dare isn’t as innocent as it looks. This scent is sexy and sultry, thanks to dark cherry and Italian leather, that’s formulated to evoke intimate passion.

Key scent notes: Cherry, lychee, black pepper, pink peony, rose Damascena, musk, woods

Brown Girl Jane rating: 5/5 stars

A Brown Girl Jane reviewer said: “I’m not much for leaving reviews, but I absolutely loved this fragrance. It’s enticing and mysterious and has staying power on my skin.”

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7

Best Fresh Scent

Maison Francis Kurkdjian 724 Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

724 Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

7

Best Fresh Scent

Maison Francis Kurkdjian 724 Eau de Parfum at Nordstrom

Credit: courtesy of brands

You’re not alone if Maison Francis Kurkdijan’s 724 fragrance immediately leans aquatic. The opening whiff is fresh and crispy clean before the darker side rears its head with a blend of musks and sandalwood.

Key scent notes: Aldehydes, bergamot oil, white floral accord, jasmine, sandalwood accord, white musks

Nordstrom rating: 4.6/5 stars

A Nordstrom reviewer said: “I purchased this fragrance when it was first released. I wore it a couple of times and thought it was “nice”, but as the weather warms up and I wear it a little more consistently, I’ve realized how beautiful this fragrance truly is. The blend of the notes is masterful and makes it a new favorite of mine.”

8

Best Creamy Fragrance

Philosophy Philosophy Amazing Grace Eau de Parfum

Philosophy Amazing Grace Eau de Parfum

8

Best Creamy Fragrance

Philosophy Philosophy Amazing Grace Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Amazing Grace wraps you in a creamy blanket of soft florals. The fresh scent feels like a sweet caress of powdery musks that swells with emotive blooms like jasmine and freesia.

Key scent notes: bergamot, lemon, jasmine, freesia, neroli, orange blossom, musk blend

Ulta rating: 4.5/5 stars

“Amazing Grace is the softest, creamiest fragrance in my collection that I would buy 10 times over. Whenever I spray a scent that’s too strong or masculine, I cut it with Amazing Grace for added softness. It pairs well with others but smells even better on its own.” — Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

9

Best Citrus Wood Fragrance

TOM FORD Costa Azzurra Parfum

Costa Azzurra Parfum

9

Best Citrus Wood Fragrance

TOM FORD Costa Azzurra Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

A guaranteed conversation starter, Costa Azzurra is a harmonious medley of citrus and woods, dancing around the Mediterranean Sea.

Key scent notes: Cypress oil, lemon, oakwood extract, amber

Nordstrom rating: 4.5/5 stars

“Maison Francis Kurkdjian and sophisticated luxury go hand in hand. TikTok fell in love with him for the luxuriously scented (and expensive) Baccarat Rouge 540. 724 exemplifies that Kurkdjian truly has the Midas touch. If you see me out and about in NYC, there’s a high chance I’m wearing this fragrance. It’s fresh, energizing, and perfect for any urban dweller, particularly as it was inspired by city landscapes.” — Danielle James, Digital Beauty Director

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10

Best Gourmand Oud Fragrance

Arabian Oud Bella Eau de Parfum

Bella Eau de Parfum

10

Best Gourmand Oud Fragrance

Arabian Oud Bella Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Fruits and ouds make for the perfect marriage in this composition. Bella’s allure can be credited to the first impression of orange, raspberry, and pear. The gourmand edge kicks in and settles into a musk that’s not too overbearing.

Key scent notes: Orange, raspberry, pear, caramel, jasmine, musk, vanilla, sandalwood

Parfumo rating: 4/5 stars

“An oud is my fragrance cheat code because it can play well with others. However, Bella shines on its own. The sillage is strong enough to guarantee compliments and sticks onto your clothes even post-wash.”— Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

11

Best Nighttime Fragrance

Moodeaux PunkStar Eau de Parfum

PunkStar Eau de Parfum

11

Best Nighttime Fragrance

Moodeaux PunkStar Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Punkstar is an energizing fragrance that leaves you guessing. A few spritzes spark intrigue—What note is that pulling me in? The dark, sultry fragrance melds blackcurrant, raspberry, incense, wood and more to create a blend that starts off as a summer day and settles into a fall night.

Key notes: Apple, blackcurrant, raspberry, incense, saffron

Moodeaux rating: 5/5 stats

“PunkStar has easily become my favorite new fragrance because it’s so mysterious and warm. The incense pulls more on my skin initially, but tonka bean and patchouli make for the perfect dry-down pairing.” —Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

12

Best Amber Oud

Al Haramain Amber Oud Gold Edition

Amber Oud Gold Edition

12

Best Amber Oud

Al Haramain Amber Oud Gold Edition

Now 25% Off

Credit: courtesy of brands

In the pool for the best oud fragrances out there, Amber Oud stands out from the crowd. The deep, woodsy oud has a strong projection that lingers on your skin and clothes for hours. Vanilla offers a tinge of sweetness but this scent is dark and musky through and through.

Amazon rating: 4.6/5 stars

“I wore this fragrance for a night out and received so many compliments that a friend ordered Amber Oud right at the dinner table. By the time I got home, I could still smell the scent all over my clothes, even the next day. Talk about a strong sillage!”— Nerisha Penrose, ELLE.com Beauty Commerce Editor

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13

Best Fresh Floral

Boy Smells, CDP LES

LES

13

Best Fresh Floral

Boy Smells, CDP LES

Credit: courtesy of brands

Pink pepper can be overwhelming in some fragrances, but in LES, it swirls with jasmine, bergamot, cedarwood, and amber for a vibrant mix that smells like a run through a floral garden.

Key scent notes: bergamot, pink peppercorn, jasmine,

peony, vanilla

Boy Smells rating: 4.18/5 stars

A Boy Smells reviewer said: “I’ve gotten countless compliments on this smell. Two people have had me write it down for them so they can buy it for their wives. I’ve ever met someone who doesn’t like it. Don’t buy if you don’t want people asking what you’re wearing left and right.”

14

Best Earthy Fragrance

Relevant Your Skin Seen 13 Stems: Scent Meets Soul

13 Stems: Scent Meets Soul

14

Best Earthy Fragrance

Relevant Your Skin Seen 13 Stems: Scent Meets Soul

Credit: courtesy of brands

The green packaging gives away what the first spritz reveals: 13 Stems is a bright, earthy scent that smells like dew drops peppered on fresh grass on a spring morning.

Key scent notes: Cucumber, woods, violet leaf

Thirteen Lune rating: 4.5/5 stars

“I now quite frequently get asked, ‘what are you wearing?’ Certain scents fade after a night out, but 13 stems is long-lasting. I love it so much; I now have the travel size too! My go-to scent for the summer.” — Leah Romero, Senior Digital Designer

15

Best Daytime Fragrance

Versace Dylan Purple Eau de Parfum

Dylan Purple Eau de Parfum

15

Best Daytime Fragrance

Versace Dylan Purple Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Dylan Purple leans fruity and fresh, with a delicate feminine scent that serves as the perfect laying base for similar notes. The bottle feels as elegant and royal as the fragrance housed in the bottle.

Key scent notes: Bitter orange, freesia, cedarwood

Sephora rating: 3.8/5 stars

“The moment this arrived at my door, it has been in close contact with my skin. I also use this to scent layer, it makes a great base scent in the summer.” —Danielle James, ELLE.com Beauty Director

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16

Best Sensual Fragrance

Harlem Candle Company Josephine Eau de Parfum

Josephine Eau de Parfum

16

Best Sensual Fragrance

Harlem Candle Company Josephine Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Just as tantalizing as the iconic singer it’s named after, Josephine by Harlem Candle Company is not for the faint of heart. The floral blend strays away from softness and leans all the dark and warm, courtesy of bergamot, incense, vanilla and more.

Key scent notes: Tonka beans, amber, jasmine, amyris

Harlem Candle Company rating: 5/5 stars

“Harlem Candle Company has forayed into fragrance and Josephine (yes, named after the Josephine Baker) is a sexy scent that will last you through drinks, dinner, and dessert—no need to reapply. The patchouli and sandalwood give this perfume a mysteriously sweet yet musky scent.”—Danielle James, ELLE.com Beauty Director

17

Best Woodsy Floral Fragrance

BVLGARI Allegra Ma’magnifica Eau de Parfum

Allegra Ma'magnifica Eau de Parfum

17

Best Woodsy Floral Fragrance

BVLGARI Allegra Ma’magnifica Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Bvlgari Allegra Ma’magnifica takes woodsy notes and lays them alongside vibrant, invigorating florals to ignite warmth. It has a sharp, musky edge that makes its way to the forefront for a moment, then eases into the background for the florals—rose, patchouli—to settle.

Key scent notes: Bergamot, rose, patchouli, vanilla, sandalwood

Bloomingdale’s rating: 4/5 stars

“There’s a difference between strong and long-lasting, and I like that this perfume is soft, while still lingering on the skin all day. I don’t want a perfume that screams, I want one that is quietly confident, that only me and someone I’ve chosen to let into my personal space (or squeezed next to me on the subway) can smell. Although the packaging makes it look like a fancy bon-bon, this scent isn’t sweet at all but woody and floral, and has me smelling like the kind of person who goes on woodsy hikes regularly, all day long.”—Kathleen Hou, ELLE Beauty Director

18

Best Floral Vanilla

Valentino Donna Born in Roma Eau de Parfum

Donna Born in Roma Eau de Parfum

18

Best Floral Vanilla

Valentino Donna Born in Roma Eau de Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Vanilla can overpower a scent arrangement. However, Donna Born In Roma uses vanilla bourbon to add depth to the jasmine-heavy fragrance, which blends jasmine grandiflorum absolute, jasmine sambac absolute, and jasmine tea.

Key scent notes: Blackcurrant, bergamot, jasmine grandiflorum, bourbon vanilla

Nordstrom rating: 4.8/5 stars

A Nordstrom reviewer said: “This is a true luxe perfume. The bottle is very chic and stylish to keep on your vanity. The scent is spring-ish and slightly sweet. It’s a very versatile perfume that you can use throughout the day.”

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19

Best Citrus Fragrance

Krigler Villa Bordighera 20

Villa Bordighera 20

19

Best Citrus Fragrance

Krigler Villa Bordighera 20

Credit: courtesy of brands

Everything that makes an Italian vacation memorable is pretty much bottled up in this fragrance. This perfume evokes images of sticky limoncello and salty sea air, built around lemon and bergamot with a smidge of soft rose.

Key scent notes: Bergamot, rose grapefruit, lemon, jasmine

Fragrantica rating: 5/5 stars

“There’s nothing I want more than to lounge in a villa on the coast of Italy, devouring a limoncello gelato melting under the beaming sun. Every time I wear Villa Bordighera, I’m transported to that happy place. Lemon and fresh florals—what more could I ask for in a scent?”—NP

20

Best Winter Scent

Ajmal Aurum Winter Eau De Parfum

Aurum Winter Eau De Parfum

20

Best Winter Scent

Ajmal Aurum Winter Eau De Parfum

Credit: courtesy of brands

Although perfect for the colder months due to its warmth and depth, Aurum Winter can be worn year-round. It melds fruit, floral, and earthy notes, but the ouds and musks take center stage. There’s a tinge of powder for a subtle softness, but this fragrance has a strong throw that captivates anyone who passes by.

Key scent notes: Citrus, amber, musk, moss

Amazon rating: 4.3/5 stars

An Amazon reviewer said: “I’m a big lover of Ajmal collection!!! This is my 3rd perfume, and I’m in love with it! If you prefer a bit hard and sweet smells, this is really for you!

Highly recommend!”

Headshot of Nerisha Penrose

Nerisha Penrose

Beauty Commerce Editor

Nerisha is the beauty commerce editor at ELLE.com, covering all things beauty (and fashion and music). She has a penchant for sneakers and nude lip glosses, and spends way too much time re-watching 90s sitcoms.

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