When thinking of France and its women, one thing comes to mind—timeless elegance. No one understands the power of a beautiful and signature perfume quite like the French, whose history of scents runs deep. Niche French perfume brands like Diptyque and L’Artisan Parfumeur sit alongside some of the world’s most popular Parisian perfume names like Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent.
These fragrances will have you feeling like a true Parisian in no time. Below, our top picks for the best French perfumes.
Chloé: Absolu de Parfum
A classic fragrance any woman can enjoy with floral and woody scents. Chloé’s famous scent also adds in rich rose accords, perfect to add a Parisian flair.
L’Artisan Parfumeur: La Chasse Aux Papillons Eau de Toilette
L’Artisan Parfumeur has become known for creating original fragrances like no other perfume house. The L’Artisan Parfumeur story begins with the original banana scent that was recently reimagined as Bana Banana—“expect the unexpected”.
Guerlain: Eau de Toilette Bloom of Rose
A tribute to modern-day femininity, Mon Guerlain creates strong and sensual scents, inspired by the likes of Angelina Jolie.
Christian Dior: JOY by Dior
JOY by Dior was released in August 2018 by the French fashion house and has quickly become a signature scent for French women, as well as women across the world. The fragrance is conceived as a scent of energy, liveliness and softness, of happiness and good mood. The face of the scent is actress Jennifer Lawrence.
Yves Saint Laurent: YSL Opium Eau de Parfum
If there’s one thing that Yves Saint Laurent perfumes are known for, it’s being seductive. The YSL Opium is the signature fragrance for women all over the world, with its scent being dark and moody with incense, amber, patchouli and myrrh.
Chanel: Coco Mademoiselle
A sexy, fresh Oriental fragrance that recalls the irrepressible spirit of the young Coco Chanel. The classic bottle signifies personal luxury and is a welcome addition to any dressing table.
The iconic Shalimar scent was associated with 1920s flappers and often dubbed the scent of the original ‘rebel’. As of 2017, Shalimar was Guerlain‘s second best selling fragrance, behind La Petite Robe Noire, with approximately 108 bottles being sold every hour. The fragrance contains notes of bergamot, lemon, iris, jasmine, rose, patchouli, vetiver, opopanax, tonka bean, frankincense, sandalwood, musk, civet, ambergris, leather, and vanilla.
Thierry Mugler: Alien Eau Sublime
This new solar revelation, built around an overdose of sunny flowers such as jasmine and Tiare flower, awakens the senses with luminous and rejuvenating freshness.
Cacharel: Amor Amor
This women’s fragrance is a floral fruity scent for young women who have an adventurous side. The scent notes pink grapefruit, mandarin, blood orange, lily of the valley and musk.
Estee Lauder: Rose de Grasse
Like an original piece of art, Este Lauder‘s Rose de Grasse is meticulously crafted with artisanal attention to detail. At its heart is a fusion of roses including the hundred-petaled Rose Centifolia, hand-picked in Grasse, the French capital of perfumery since the 16th century where the history of fragrance is art.
Chanel: Chanel No. 5
Chanel No. 5 was the first perfume launched by French couturier Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel and remains among the French fashion houses best sellers today. Chanel sought a new scent that would celebrate the liberated spirit of the 1920s. The highly complex blend of aldehydes and florals includes rose, ylang-ylang, jasmine, lily of the valley and iris layered over a warm, woody base of vetiver, sandalwood, vanilla, amber and patchouli.
Lancome Paris: Lancôme Trésor Midnight Rose
Lancôme tells a new love story with Trésor Midnight Rose, filled with lightness, magic and also sensuality. The caress of jasmine and peony meet fresh blackcurrant bud absolute and intense pink pepper.
Annick Goutal: Rose Pompon
A more sensual rose with still a Parisian twist of cheekiness. In a rose garden, it would be the one that looks the most sensual, the most velvety, the most attractive.
Nina Ricci: Nina
Nina by Nina Ricci is a sweet citrus scent for women. The charming scent is built on an exquisite blend of lime and Amalfi lemon, which melt into a seductive heart of apple, peony and pralines on a base of musk and Virginia cedar wood. This Nina Ricci perfume is a new fragrance, different from the Nina perfume of the same name created in 1987.
Lancome Paris: La vie est belle Eau de Parfum
Universal yet personal, Lancôme’s femininity is a choice embraced by women, not an imposed standard. This fragrance is infused with a floral bouquet of Iris, Jasmine, Orange Blossom and Patchouli scents.