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Only a handful of brands can evoke strong and long-lasting impressions like Jo Malone has. From the moment I tried my first JML scent, it didn’t take long until I became a fan. Especially after I learned I could mix and layer scents.

I’m not a perfume snob by any means. My preferences usually fall on the floral-fruity side, and sometimes even on the sweeter side of the spectrum. So other than rotating scents, depending on the season and time of the day, I never imagined that “layering” was also an option. Mostly because I felt like the scents I was drawn to, were complete on their own.

When I learned that layering scents was a thing, and even encouraged by the brand, a whole new world of possibilities opened up for me. It makes sense since we mix and match other things like makeup, clothes, and even food.

A surprising side effect of layering is that you can create a blend that is unique to you. So, the chances of meeting someone wearing the same scent as you will be very slim.  

But to layer well, scents need to complement each other. There’s not an exact science to this, so you have to figure what works for you.

And since perfume preferences are very personal, the formula will vary from to person. The beauty of the JML line is that its unique scents are made for layering. Even if you’re not familiar with their line of perfumes there’s no need to worry. All of the JML scents complement each other.  

If you’re new to the brand, it’s worth taking a quick look at each scent to see which one might be for you.

You can start with the classics and then work your way up to the most exquisite ones. Have in mind the Jo Malone scents are divided into six families: citrus, fruity, light floral, floral, spicy, and woody. Here’s a list of the best — according to popularity — in each category:


1. Citrus 


Lime, Basil & Mandarin: The most popular scent of the citrus family and one of the most iconic JML perfumes. This is a fresh scent that invokes the aroma of a hot summer’s day with top notes of mandarin, basil, and a base of amber wood.  

Basil & Neroli: This is a classic created as a homage to the city where the brand was born: London. Top notes are basil and neroli with a white musk base.

Earl Grey & Cucumber: This is a unique and unexpected scent that is supposed to be reminiscent of the British afternoon tea. Top notes are apple, bergamot, jasmine, cucumber, angelica, and base of vanilla, beeswax, cedar, and musk.

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2. Fruity 


English Pear & Freesia: this scent evokes the warmth and radiance of Autumn with top notes of English pear, amber, and freesia and a base of patchouli.

Nectarine Blossom & Honey: Inspired by the scents of London’s Covent Garden, this is my favorite of the fruity family. This scent is very delicate with just a bit of sweetness. Ideal for summer, and everyday use. Top notes are cassis, acacia honey, nectarine with a peach base.

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 3. Floral 


Peony & Blush Suede: This scent is a luxurious blend of peonies in bloom with notes of red apple, jasmine, and a base note of suede. Very feminine and seductive.

Honeysuckle & Davana: is a scent that’s supposed to remind you of the English countryside. This scent is warm and can easily transition from day to night. The top notes are davana and honeysuckle with a mossy base.

Orange Blossom: this is a romantic scent and a little bit on the sweeter side. It’s also Kate Middleton‘s favorite. Top notes are tangerine blossom, orange blossom, lilac, and water lily with base notes of iris and vetiver.

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 4. Light Flora


Wild Bluebell: it’s one of the most iconic JML scents and also rumored to be Meghan Markle’s favorite. The scent is very clean and delicate, perfect for everyday wear. Top notes are of wild bluebell, persimmon enhanced with a base of white musk

Red Roses: This scent is truly a classic. Made of a blend of seven most exquisite roses in the world, top notes of lemon, violet, red rose accord, and a base of honeycomb.

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5. Spicy


English Oak & Hazelnut: This is the best scent of the spicy family and an award-winning one with top notes of green hazelnut, cedarwood, and roasted oak. The scent is zesty and refreshing with just a hint of spice from the black pepper.

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6. Woody


Wood Sage & Sea Salt: This is one of the most popular JML scents and also one of my personal favorites. This scent is very pleasant and refreshing with top notes of ambrette seeds, sea salt, and base notes of sage. It’s supposed to remind you of the mineral scent and woody notes of the coast of England. I think they did a great job achieving that in the best possible way.

Myrrh & Tonka: This is a very luxurious scent and also a personal favorite for night use. The top notes are lavender and myrrh and base notes are tonka bean, vanilla, and almond.

Pomegranate Noir: This is a rich and exquisite scent that you either love or hate. There’s nothing in between. Pomegranate Noir also happens to be one of the most popular scents of the JML line. Deep and mysterious, this scent is a blend of pomegranate, pink pepper, and Casablanca Lily with undertones of patchouli and woody guaiacwood. Because this scent is so overpowering it’s not suited for everyday use. Reserve for special events, nights out, and winter days.   


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How to combine scents


With so many scents, there’s potential for hundreds of great combinations. And there is no right or wrong here. I created this quick guide for layering to help you get started.

You can either go for a combination that adds freshness or you can turn up the volume with a warmer scent. Here are some combinations that have been tried and tested:

Nectarine Blossom and Wild Bluebell: Wild Bluebell adds refreshing notes to the sweetness of the nectarine and the combination is amazing. Great for everyday use.

Wood Sage & Sea Salt layered with Lime, Basil & Mandarin also works beautifully. Lime, Basil, and Mandarim adds the right amount of citrusy freshness to the woody notes of the former, and the combination is a decadent new scent.

Pomegranate Noir and English Pear & Freesia creates a fresh combination that is perfect for day-to-day wear

Red Roses and Earl Grey & Cucumber: At first you wouldn’t think these two would go together. But the earl grey and cucumber will add complexity to the red roses, which work well, proving that with JML you can’t go wrong with layering.  

Red Roses and Grapefruit create a fresh new scent that is elegant also perfect for daytime.

English Oak & Hazelnut and Wild Bluebell is also a great combination. The result is a refreshing scent with warming woody undertones  


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