These Natural, Ethically Sourced Perfumes Smell So Good We'll Never Recover

I wouldn't be honest with you if I said that before becoming a beauty editor, I always checked perfume bottles and boxes for ingredients that could potentially be harmful. In fact, it wasn't until I spent countless hours studying my growing fragrance collection comparing and contrasting their formulas that a few red flags began to rise. Without even meaning to, I began automatically reaching for the perfumes with the simplest compositions, leaving those with more unrecognizable ingredients in the back of my beauty cabinet.

"Organic" and "natural" are terms that get thrown around a lot. They're mentioned in terms of food as well as skincare, makeup, and, yes, even fragrances. A 2010 report from the Environmental Working Group discovered that a number of popular perfume manufacturers have repeatedly failed to disclose that many scents are actually a complex of natural essences and synthetic chemicals (often referred to as petrochemicals) rather than the plain, natural ingredients our ancestors used on the regular.

Mobina Peiman Best Natural Fragrances

(Image credit: @mobinapeiman)

The reason for the secrecy lies in the 1973 manufacturing act requiring cosmetic companies to list ingredients on products. However the act doest not apply to fragrances. So which ones can we trust? Well, the good news as that there are plenty of fragrance brands that pride themselves on their production of natural, ethically sourced perfumes. While it's unsettling to think that some of our favorite scents might contain not-so-great chemicals, rest assured that there are high-performing brands to choose from that are transparent about what's in their bottles, making it easier to select clean scents you can rely on.

Put simply, ethical sourcing is the process of ensuring that products are made with materials obtained through responsible and sustainable methods as a reflection of sustainable sourcing and supply management. A product is also considered ethical when all workers involved in the production of said product are treated fairly and operate in a safe environment. If you've found a product that's both all-natural and ethically sourced, you've hit the jackpot!

Below, I've compiled an edit of seven natural fragrance brands carrying unique fragrances that are as aesthetically chic as they are natural and ethically sourced.

Clean Reserve

Heretic Parfum

Ellis Brooklyn

Maison Louis Marie

Emmanuelle Koffi Best Natural Fragrances

(Image credit: @emmanuellek_)


Liis Fragrances


Maya Thomas
Assistant Beauty Editor
Maya Thomas is Who What Wear's assistant beauty editor based just outside of Seattle, Washington. Her strong love for all things beauty and fashion stems from a strong childhood interest in the fine arts. During a gap year spent in Paris studying the history of French fashion, she shifted her focus to English literature and journalism as a student at Loyola Marymount University with the goal of one day pursuing a career in fashion. After graduating in May 2021, Maya began freelancing for as a contributing commerce writer while also building a following on her lifestyle blog, When she's not writing, Maya spends her free time catching up on reading, perusing art galleries, and enjoying a night out at the ballet every now and then.