Having a signature fragrance is like signing off every encounter with a lasting memory of your scent that invokes an extension of both bespoke and normcore. A fragrance is worthy of cult-status if its love at first whiff by not just you but everyone that comes within your radius. It will be a olfactory masterpiece of wearable art that is so mesmerizing that you just need to know – what was that smell?
In a $AU29 billion industry, it’s become trendy to wear scents that are both unknown and unique to further bolster our innate need to fuel our individuality. We want a stranger to pursuit after us on the street to ask what we’re wearing rather than sporting something that you can purchase from almost any pharmacy and department store. Of course there will always be classic scents that you recognize (Chanel No.5) without a flicker of doubt in just a passing whiff and these scents have endured the test of time for a good reason.
We’re here to round up the lesser-known and commercialised scents that have earned themselves such a following that they’ve transcended into a cult-like devotion. They’re usually an acquired taste because of all the eclectic ingredients involved but once you fall in love with them, you tend not to look back.
Cult Fragrances Worthy of Being Signature Scents
Santal 33, Le Labo
This unisex fragrance has one of the most unique aromas you’ll come across with sandalwood, leather and cedarwood as the defining base notes. Pretty much every NYC It girl will probably have this scent in her arsenal and the best part is the boys love it too. The inspiration behind the scent was to embody the spirit of the American West as well as personal freedom. Fun fact, the number that comes after the name of the fragrance actually tells you how many components went into the bottle.
When I first smelt the fragrance on a friend I was seriously impressed but when I went to try it on a tester it smelt like…oil. I wasn’t going to give up on it there so I went ahead and tried it on my wrist and not surprisingly, the scent did not disappoint. It’s definitely one of those that will need to settle onto your skin before it starts working its magic.
Do Son, Diptyque
Do Son was named after a resort on the coast of Vietnam where Yves Coueslant spent his childhood in Haiphong. The notes in this one include tuberose, rose, daffodil, orange blossoms and white musk – all of which combined evoke a sense of peacefulness and relaxation. The parfum has an incredible holding power and will have you reminiscing seaside holidays with each spray.
Mojave Ghost, Byredo
Swedish fragrance brand, Byredo has a clear Scando aesthetic and probably has one of the most diverse ranges of scents in their collection. I’m fairly sure every fashion or beauty blogger will have at least one of their scents and in fact, I’ve collected four to date. It’s tough to pick just one but I’ve narrowed mine down to Mojave Ghost.
All the fragrances are clean but with a hint of seductiveness to it. Mojave Ghost is a perfect mix of musks, woody scents and violets.
English Oak & Hazelnut, Jo Malone
This scent definitely has more of a masculine vibe with the roasted oak notes replacing the pervasive cedar and sandalwood that you find in so many scents these days. One spray and you’ll feel like you’re in an enchanted forest in the middle of Autumn.
Carnal Flower, Frederic Malle
There must be something about tuberose – most of the scents that are worth their penny contain the opulent aroma of tuberose. Carnal Flower strikes a perfect symbiosis between opulence and elegance without the heaviness that some other scents present from using the same flower.
I wish I was able to virtually send you samples to appeal to your olfactory senses but I guess this should give you more motivation to head into your local beauty store to check them out right?
Of course having a signature scent is particularly personal and the way a particular fragrance settles on any particular persons skin will differ. So pop into a store and grab a sample to try and see how each of these settle in with the natural PH levels of your skin before you commit. Once you do find that scent(s) it can make a world of difference because smelling good will always give you an instant but subtle confidence boost.
What is your go-to signature scent? Have you got a cult-favourite?
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