This Is What Your Fragrance Says Every Time You Walk Into A Room

How to redefine your perfume personality and ‘sniff out’ your signature scent—according to a French master perfumer.

We all know the significance of first impressions… but what about first scents?

The fragrance you wear can reveal a lot about your personality, from whether you’re bold and daring or kind and optimistic. So it’s important that your perfume reflects who you are beyond your pulse points.

To discover what your go-to scent says about you, look to the fragrance families. Fresh, woody, floral, and amber, these olfactory families bring together scents that share common characteristics—both on the nose and in terms of personality.

Below, we share everything you need to know about the fragrance families and how they can help you find your sensory trademark.

Floral Fragrance Family

Arguably the most popular scent, the floral family includes the captivating aroma of fresh flowers like jasmine, lily, frangipani and rose.  

“Rose is the most fascinating ingredient. Even though she is considered as the ‘queen of perfumery,’ it’s true that only the rose can offer such a multi-faceted experience with so many varieties,” says Amandine Clerc Marie, expert ‘nose’ and master perfumer for Burberry.

Spring perfume ideas
Amandine says people “are looking for something nostalgic, yet fresh and new; something that makes us feel warm and protected, but also rooted in nature.” (Credit: Getty)

“Perfumers have never ceased to explore roses and I doubt that will ever stop. Roses have all the qualities that can be expected in a perfume and are themselves one of the most complex perfumes,” she adds.

Floral fragrances are classically feminine, reflecting personality traits like kindness, cheerfulness, and sensitivity to the needs of others. Relatable? If so, keep hold of your floral-infused bottle and spritz liberally.

Amber Fragrance Family

Exotic. Unique. Luxurious. Amber fragrances consist of ingredients like vanilla, cinnamon, orange blossom and orchid. These indulgent, sensual notes are perfect for people with strong and powerful personalities.  

For Amandine, vanilla is the star ingredient of her latest fragrance Burberry Goddess Eau de Parfum, which celebrates inner confidence, strength and power.

“For Burberry Goddess, I had the desire to communicate the value of female empowerment, strength and confidence. Vanilla felt like an obvious selection to me as a starting point,” she says.   

Burberry Goddess
The master perfumer trialled over 350 different scent combinations before perfecting the Burberry Goddess fragrance, a trio of vanilla notes enriched with lavender. (Credit: Photo: Supplied)

“For this purpose, I used three distinct types of vanilla extraction. The first is a vanilla infusion, which provides the brightest woody-vanilla possible. Then I used … Vanilla Caviar for the first time in a fragrance: this innovative technology enables us to extract vanilla, obtaining a sweet, rich and animalic vanilla.

“Lastly, [I used] Vanilla Absolute, a concentrated oil mixture extracted from the vanilla, which is darker and richer, and gave the fragrance a mysterious, milky aspect,” the perfumer explains.   

Fresh Fragrance Family

Intended to be worn in spring and summer or places with a warmer climate (hello, Australia), fresh fragrances are a bouquet of zesty, bright, crisp, and fruity notes. Think ingredients like lemons, grapefruit, verbena, and bergamot.

“I particularly like to use bergamot as a top note for its inimitable freshness,” says Amandine, who featured bergamot and shiso leaves as the top note in Burberry Goddess, and Provence lavender as the heart of the perfume.

You might think that lavender should belong in the floral family, but perfumed herbs all sit in the ‘aromatic’ sub-group of fresh fragrances. And whether crafted from nostalgic herbs or zesty fruit, a fresh scent can help you feel relaxed and bring you joy.

But how does it shape perceptions? When you wear a fresh fragrance, it conveys a sense of optimism, vitality, and easy elegance to those around you. Sign us up!   

Wood Fragrance Family

Familiar ingredients like sandalwood, pine, cedarwood and patchouli make up the rich and warm wood family. When you sniff a wood base in a perfume, images of deep forests, cosy cabins and smoky bonfires can spring to mind.  

It’s no surprise that people who gravitate toward wood fragrances are down-to-earth. If your perfume du jour is wood based, you’re most likely a high achiever, sophisticated and sensual. 

Patchouli even takes top billing as one of Amandine’s favourite notes, “for its powerful character, and its abstract and sensual nuances.”  

Brought to you by Burberry. Burberry Goddess Eau de Parfum is available from Adore Beauty, David Jones, Sephora and MYER.

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