These 16 Perfumes Smell Like Vacation, so I'm Wearing Them at Home

Lee Litumbe Best Citrus Fragrances

(Image credit: @spiritedpursuit)

This is the time of year when citrus perfumes get to take center stage. The best kind of citrus fragrances are versatile and varied, ranging from pure lemony spritzes to complex blends that draw in spicy, sweet, or earthy elements to play with. Any way you slice it, there's just something about this playful scent family that instantly reminds me of vacation!

I'm not alone in my affinity for the mood-lifting scent: "A lot of people gravitate toward citrus scents due to their ability to stimulate the release of endorphins, aka feel-good chemicals in the body," cosmetic chemist, perfumer, and certified nose Vince Spinnato, CEO of Turnkey Beauty, tells Who What Wear. "Citrus is often used in aromatherapy for its mood-boosting benefits." It has an energizing effect that simultaneously smells fresh and clean, instantly transporting you to a warmer, sunnier climate.

Until I book a flight or take a long drive to my destinations of choice, I'll be spending my days embarking on citrus scent adventures that transport me to the farthest reaches of the Earth. So come away with me on a pretend world tour! Ahead, check out the 16 best citrus perfumes to play out the most epic imaginary vacation from the comfort of your own home.

Best Citrus Perfumes for an Imaginary Vacation

  • Escape to Monaco: Chanel N°5 L'Eau
  • Escape to Miami: Versace Yellow Diamond
  • Escape to Capri: Skylar Capri Summer Eau de Parfum
  • Escape to Tokyo: Diptyque Oyédo Eau de Toilette
  • Escape to Malibu: Maison Margiela Replica Beach Walk Eau de Toilette
  • Escape to Windsor: Nest New York Citrine
  • Escape to Ubud: DedCool Fragrance 05 Spring
  • Escape to Sardinia: Tom Ford Costa Azzurra
  • Escape to Positano: D.S. & Durga Italian Citrus
  • Escape to Morocco: Boy Smells Flor de La Virgen
  • Escape to Maui: Byredo Sundazed
  • Escape to Melbourne: St. Rose Grand Larceny
  • Escape to Sedona: Le Labo Bergamote 22
  • Escape to Paris: Maison Louis Marie No.09 Vallée de Farney
  • Escape to Mexico City: Korres Morning Mimosa Eau de Toilette
  • Escape to Joshua Tree: Malin+Goetz Cannabis Perfume Oil

Imani Randolph Best Citrus Fragrances

(Image credit: @champagnemani)

Chanel N°5 L'Eau

Versace Yellow Diamond

Skylar Capri Summer

Diptyque Oyédo

Maison Margiela Replica Beach Walk

Megan Adelaide Best Citrus Fragrances

(Image credit: @meganadelaide)

Nest New York Citrine

DedCool Fragrance 05 Spring

Tom Ford Costa Azzurra

D.S. & Durga Italian Citrus

Boy Smells Flor de La Virgen

Byredo Sundazed

Kellie B Best Citrus Fragrances

(Image credit: @itsmekellieb)

St. Rose Grand Larceny

Le Labo Bergamote 22

Maison Louis Marie No.09 Vallée de Farney

Korres Morning Mimosa Eau de Toilette

Malin+Goetz Cannabis Perfume Oil

What Should You Look for in a Citrus Perfume?

Citruses are commonly found in top notes, as they don't typically last as long as other heady scents. "Citruses are inherently volatile in their chemical makeup, meaning that they dissipate relatively quickly," says Spinnato.

To ensure your citrus perfume has longevity, he recommends opting for a more concentrated roll-on oil or layering them with other complementary scents. He considers woods, florals, vanillas, and musks "safe notes" that work well in most layering situations. Of course, you could also layer two citrus fragrances on top of one another.

Who Do Citrus Perfumes Suit Best?

Citrus notes are commonly used in men's and women's fragrances, though Spinnato has found that women, generally, gravitate more toward fruity notes such as lemon, lime, grapefruit, orange, and tangerine. As we mentioned up top, citrus plays nice with plenty of other scents, so it can add a touch of freshness to any fragrance, easily elevating more earthy, woody blends. In short, citrus is the ultimate fragrance crowd pleaser.

This article was originally published at an earlier date and has since been updated.

Associate Beauty Editor

Courtney Higgs is a Cancer sun, Libra rising beauty enthusiast with about six years of experience in the editorial space. She was previously Who What Wear's associate beauty editor after spending many years working on the West Coast edit team at InStyle Magazine. She graduated from California State University, Northridge, with a BA in communication studies and pivoted to editorial after spending her college years working in the legal field. Her beauty philosophy is simple: She believes there are no wrong answers and that discovering our favorite beauty products and rituals is a journey, not a sprint. When she's not geeking out over products, she can be found adventuring around L.A. with her fiancé; watching reality TV with their French bulldog, Bernie Mac; or relating way too hard to astrology memes.