4 Beauty Editors Told Me Their Fave Fragrances, so I Tested Them on Strangers
It's no secret that I love my fellow fashion editors, but the colleagues who I would actually trust with my life just so happen to be beauty editors. For every skincare woe or hair emergency I have, my questions go directly to them, and they deliver with some of the best product recommendations I've ever gotten. Whenever we transition to a new season, I love to find a new fragrance to define the era. I know the beauty team at Who What Wear has tried pretty much every fragrance that exists under the sun, so this time around, I asked for their advice. The simple question "What's your favorite perfume?" led to so much advice and so many product recommendations that I couldn't decide on just one.
One of my greatest loves in life is meeting new people, so as an icebreaker, I decided to ask people their thoughts on the new fragrances I was trying. The audience for my new perfume ended up being a range of complete strangers on elevator rides and new industry friends I was having coffee with. And are we surprised that I received positive reviews on every fragrance that I tried? I'm not. Below, see which of the scents I tried got the most love.
Erin Jahns, Senior Beauty Editor
"I take the art of smelling good extremely seriously, and I have an entire vanity littered with perfumes as proof. It's truly so hard to choose a favorite child, but I have a next-level obsession with Bitter Peach from Tom Ford. It's juicy, rich, and the most intoxicating fruity floral courtesy of notes like pêche de vigne, blood orange, and patchouli. It will put a spell on you and anyone lucky enough to be in your presence."
My take: This is the first fragrance I was lucky enough to test-drive, and it was love at first whiff. I wore it out to a bar and had the confidence to ask for the first quote for my story. The request was greeted with much delight, and I was told that "it's unexpected—I like how it's sweet without being too sweet." I have to agree with them.
Shawna Hudson, Associate Beauty Editor
"This is easily one of my all-time favorite fragrances. It's sweet but also has a spice to it that makes it unlike anything else I've ever smelled. I love spritzing it on for literally any occasion—it's a scent that works for both day and nighttime IMO. Maybe it's the notes of lemon, pepper, and juniper berries or the sweet, musky base of amber and vanilla, but either way, it smells so deliciously warm. It's also just perfectly named because there's an air of magic and mystery that sits at the heart of it that you just can't explain. I can't stop smelling myself whenever I wear it, and I don't feel the slightest bit weird about it."
My take: Gypsy Water ended up being the perfume so good that I didn't even have to ask people for quotes on it. Less crowded than a bar, I was at an outdoor gathering when someone greeted me with, "What are you wearing! It smells expensive and exquisite." The quote is very true. Gypsy Water has that mysterious vibe that goes right along with its name—exactly what I'm going for on summer nights.
Katie Berohn, Associate Beauty Editor
"Oh, this is so tough for me! My knee-jerk reaction is to tell you Tom Ford Black Orchid (my forever favorite), but I think I'm going to go with Maison Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis. I honestly can't get enough of this scent. It smells like fresh laundry hanging on the coast of the Mediterranean—impossibly fresh, bright, and clean. It's a true gender-neutral fragrance that smells good on absolutely everyone. (Who wouldn't want to smell like Calabrian bergamot and Sicilian lemon?) I think the thing I like best about this one is that it's so hard to define, but you know the instant you smell it that it's a winner."
My take: This quickly became one of my favorite fragrances I tried. Like a light breeze, it gave off the effortless vibe I'm always going for with my fashion choices. I got into a conversation with a neighbor in my elevator and was able to convince her to let me know what she thought of my perfume. She responded, "It's so good!!" I couldn't get much more than that out of her, but the enthusiasm said it all for me.
Caitie Schlisserman, Beauty Director, Branded Content
"This and Celui are constantly competing for my attention, but I just can't get enough of this scent. It feels like a big, warm hug whenever I put it on. It's comforting, familiar, and cozy but also feels mysterious with notes of cardamom, bourbon, musk, cedarwood, and sandalwood. If I could bathe in a tub of it, I 100% would."
My take: I agree so strongly with the way that Caitie described this perfume. It truly smells like a warm hug. Usually, when summer comes along, I swap out my woody fragrances for something lighter, but this year, that won't be the case. This one still feels fresh and light while still having an edge. I ended up getting a very educated review on this one from a Pilates instructor who told me, "I love the hints of vanilla with a woody scent in the middle that's still lingering. It feels so niche."
Shop more editor-adored fragrances:
"I could wear Glossier's signature scent, You, every single day. Once it sinks into the skin, it smells slightly different on everyone, but I've found that it's warm, deep, and very inviting without being overpowering. With bright pink pepper and woodsy ambrette seeds, it's a balanced and versatile scent that lends itself well to wearing every day and for any occasion, day or night." — Anna LaPlaca, Editor
"Le Labo's Rose 31 is far from your typical rose fragrance. It has a smoky quality to it that's really lovely and makes it great for day or night wear." — Allyson Payer, Senior Editor
"This was Alessandro Michele's first fragrance as creative director of Gucci, and he certainly outdid himself. Bloom is a completely accurate name, as the scents transport you to a garden." —Yusra Siddiqui, Assistant Market Editor
"I got Diptyque's Eau Rose perfume as a gift a little over a year ago, and I've been wearing it every single day since. I love how subtle it is and also that it doesn't feel super seasonal despite being a floral scent. I wear it year-round, even in the fall and winter when everyone's switching to muskier scents. (Though, when I do swap scents in the fall, it's always to Maison Margiela's Jazz Club.)" — Eliza Huber, Editor
And my perfume wish list continues on:
This is one of the first fragrances I ever fell in love with. It may be time for a refill.
The smells of France and Morocco come together in this perfume that brings the vacay to your front door.
I heard this one was Rihanna's favorite, so I'm intrigued.
As it's another forever classic, who hasn't given Daisy by Marc Jacobs a try?
After seeing that all of my co-workers adore rose-based fragrances, I'm going to have to find one of my own to join the grouping.
I had the honor of testing out this fragrance for the first time, and now, I see what all of the hype is about.
I can just imagine this sitting pretty on my shelving.
This perfume is the scent of innocence, and I'm here for it.
I've heard our beauty editors buzzing about this scent, so I need to find out what the hype is about.
As soon as summer arrives, I'm always reaching for fruity fragrances.
Someone told me this is the best Jo Malone perfume.
So light and fresh I need to take this guy home with me.
The perfect morning starts with a fragrance as citrusy as this one.
I can just tell by the name that this is my kind of perfume.
A drought and a hurricane come together in this perfume that combines the oil secretion of plants after a dry period and the heavy rains that follow.