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Whenever you’re searching for a signature scent, one of the top qualities you look for in a perfume is uniqueness. Not necessarily the exotic kind, but preferably something that not many people have.

A choice of perfume is a very personal one. Some like fruity notes, some prefer light florals, and some others like woodsy, earthy scents. That’s why shopping for a fragrance can be a big task. We’re all looking for something different but at the same time reflective of our personality.

In the sea of fragrances out there, there is only a select group of truly remarkable scents. They’re the crowd-pleasers that almost belong on a league of their own. These iconic scents get compliments from just about anyone. That’s why they’re worth a try — even if it’s just once.

Maybe you’re not ready to try anything new just yet, but it’s a good idea to have this list in your back pocket for when you are. Your perfume preference is just like your sense of style. It will inevitably change and evolve. Who doesn’t remember wearing those unapologetically super sweet scents — think of Fantasy (or Curious) by Britney Spears — back in high school, or even in your early college days?

Thankfully, we all graduate from the super sweat scent collection we once had and move on to more sophisticated ones. I’m not saying sweetness in itself is bad. In my case, I still love sweet notes of fruit and classic florals like vanilla. I think it adds a nice touch of femininity to my perfumes, but not the overpowering kind.    

On that note, (no pun intended) let’s talk about the iconic fragrances I think everyone should try at least once in their life:


1. Yves Saint Laurent — Mon Paris

 The French Maison Yves Saint Laurent never disappoints. This fragrance is very elegant and perfect for someone who loves sweet notes. The scent is a combination of fruity and floral with an intoxicating effect. The top notes are strawberry, raspberry, and pear. When you put it on your skin, you’ll notice the fruity notes first, and once that settles down the fruitiness is replaced by the flowery sweetness. Perfect for daytime or date night.


2. Jo Malone London — Nectarine Blossom & Honey  


This is possibly the most beloved fragrance of the entire JML  line and one of my personal favorites. It has notes of fresh nectarine, peaches, cassis, and a touch of acacia honey for sweetness. The fruitiness of this scent is unlike anything you’ve ever tried before but it’s very pleasant. If you’re looking for a summer scent but you don’t want to overdose on the floral notes this is a perfect perfume for you.


3. Carolina Herrera — Good Girl


For good girls and bad girls. The first thing you’ll notice about Carolina Herrera’s Good Girl is the packaging. The high heel shaped bottle is supposed to represent the power of modern femininity and its dual nature as the fragrance itself. The scent is mostly floral with notes of almond, coffee, bergamot, lemon with sweet alluring qualities of jasmine. Elegant, powerful, and sweet, just like the modern woman.


4. Lancôme — La Vie est Belle

Make no mistake about it. La Vie est Belle is a sweet perfume. But a grown-up version of the ones you used to wear in high school and your early college days. I recommend it because the sweetness gives this scent a sexy feminine quality that men just love. The fragrance is floral-fruity with notes of black currant, pear, jasmine, and orange blossom. Perfect for a first date because is so memorable.  


5. Le Labo — Santal 33


If you want top-quality scents that not everyone has Le Labo is the brand you go for. Santal 33 is marked as a unisex fragrance and because of its versatility, it can be used in the Fall, Spring, and Winter. It has woody notes of cedar and sandalwood but also a touch of iris, violet, and amber.

When you first spray it on the skin, you’ll find the scent very strong and perhaps a bit overwhelming, but it’ll settle down into something very pleasant. This fragrance can be used both day and night.


6. Chanel N°5


Chanel Number 5 is possibly the most iconic perfume of all time, so I couldn’t leave it out of my list. Marilyn Monroe was a big fan, as she famously stated she wore nothing else to bed.

This is a mature floral scent that includes a blend of florals like rose, jasmine, lily of the valley, and iris layered over a warm, woodsy base of vetiver, sandalwood, vanilla, amber, and patchouli.

Surprisingly enough, this is a scent that can change from person to person depending on your body chemistry. It’s powerful and sophisticated at the same time. And because is so concentrated a little bit goes a long way. I feel like this scent can be used during the day as much as at night.  


7. Dolce & Gabbana —  Light Blue


This is a great summer scent, mostly floral-fruity, and perfect for those familiar with the classic Dolce & Gabbana parfum. This scent is a much lighter version of the original – hence light blue in the name. It has a nice combination of notes of Sicilian lemon, apple, cedar, bellflower, bamboo, jasmine, white rose, cedar, musk, and amber. The woody notes of amber lend its fruity notes an intriguing character. Light Blue is easy to wear, yet sophisticated. It’s neither too sweet nor too fruity with a very distinctive character.


The perfumes on this list are my absolute favorite of all time. These are a good mixture of fruity, sweet, floral, and woody scents that I think all women should have in their rotation. 

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