Whenever I think of fruity perfumes, my mind immediately goes to my 13-year-old self's "beauty stash." I was 13 in 2002, so you bet my makeup inventory consisted of glitter eye shadow, glitter powder, the shiniest lip gloss (like MAC's Lipglass or a good ol' Lancôme Juicy Tube), drugstore mascara (still can't go wrong with Maybelline's Great Lash), and of course the sweetest fragrance I could find.
I had a large collection of perfumes and body sprays that smelled like mango, watermelon, strawberry, apple, orange—you name it. I put them in rotation based on my mood or where I was going. Watermelon was to be worn at school dances and parties. Mango and citrus, for pool parties. Apples and strawberries? Good for everyday wear, honestly. I guess the trend back then was to smell good enough to eat?
I'm not here to knock the very sweet fragrances of the early aughts. One whiff of a fruity perfume can send anyone down a nostalgic trip. And listen, those things really did smell good. But in the years since, as I've gone from my teens to 20s to now my 30s, I've noticed a trend toward more complex scents that can still be sweet but not exactly saccharine. When choosing fragrances for myself, I gravitate more toward fresh floral scents than anything remotely fruity. If fruity was cool when I was a teen, how can it possibly still be cool in my 30s? And how would I even pull it off?
But recently, I've given fruity perfumes a second thought, mostly because they are so different from those early aughts fragrances. Some of them blend fruits with more grounding scents. Others are so light, which is perfect for warmer months. And there are some that are playful iterations of past fragrances. In short, you're not going to be smelling like a fruit salad. I'm sold on them now.
Ready to get back on the fruity-perfume train? Take a look at some noteworthy scents below.
1. Tom Ford Bitter Peach Eau de Parfum
It might come with a hefty price tag, but Tom Ford's Bitter Peach perfume smells so good you'll want to drench yourself in it. Filled with tantalizing notes like peach, blood orange, and patchouli, this fragrance is basically a late-summer day in a bottle.
2. Miu Miu Twist Eau de Parfum
A newer fragrance from Miu Miu, Twist is a fruity-floral perfume with apple blossom, bergamot, pink amber, and tonka bean.
3. Burberry Her Intense
Her is an iconic fragrance that's a favorite for nearly every Londoner. Lemon and fresh ginger are sparkly topnotes that smell so refreshing.
4. Vilhelm Mango Skin
The sweet smell of ripe mangoes is balanced with wild orris, black lotus and jasmine–a real grown up fruity fragrance.
5. Viktor & Rolf BonBon
Enclosed in a bow-shaped vessel, this perfume is deliciously sweet. Scents include mandarin, orange blossom, peach, caramel, and cedarwood.
6. Jo Malone London Blackberry & Bay Cologne
You can't go wrong with a classic Jo Malone fragrance. This one evokes freshly picked blackberries with bay leaves and cedarwood.
7. Aerin Mediterranean Honeysuckle
With fresh grapefruit, Italian bergamot, and honeysuckle, this fragrance might transport you to summer on an Italian beach. And isn't that just perfect when you're far from the ocean but experiencing wanderlust?
8. Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris Eau de Parfum
Inspired by the passion and romance of Paris, this perfume has notes of red berries, white datura flower, and white musk. It's a super-romantic scent.
9. Hermès Eau de Pamplemousse Rose
Refreshing grapefruit (or pamplemousse, if you want to pretend you're French) makes this fragrance picture-perfect for warmer months. The addition of rose gives a floral layer to the scent.
10. Estée Lauder Modern Muse Eau de Parfum
This ultra-sophisticated scent has notes of mandarin with jasmine, amber, and patchouli. The combo makes for a bold fragrance.
11. Tom Ford Mandarino di Amalfi Acqua Eau de Toilette
Here's another fragrance to transport you to the Mediterranean—Amalfi, specifically. Scents include citrus fruits like mandarin and lemon, with basil, spearmint, shiso leaf accord, and jasmine.
12. Versace Bright Crystal Eau de Toilette
Yuzu and pomegranate are mixed with peony, lotus flower, magnolia, vegetal amber, acajou, and musk for a scent that's fruity and floral but grounded.
13. Maison Margiela Replica Under the Lemon Trees Eau de Toilette Travel Spray
Take this one on the go with you. It has notes of citrus, kalamansi accord, coriander, and musk.
14. Byredo Sundazed Eau de Parfum
Byredo's Sundazed starts with citrus scents like mandarin and lemon and is layered with neroli, jasmine sambac, and musk. And for a sweet infusion, cotton candy is also added to the base.
15. Jimmy Choo Eau de Parfum
This bold and sensual fragrance is for someone who wants to stand out. It has fruity notes of pear and sweet Italian orange with tiger orchid, Indonesian patchouli, and caramel.
16. Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy Pink Couture Eau de Parfum
This fragrance is as close as you're going to get to those fruity perfumes of yesteryear, in the best way possible. It has fruit notes of watermelon and strawberry plus cassis leaves, pink water lily, jasmine, frangipani, vanilla, sandalwood, praline, and driftwood.
17. The Body Shop Pink Grapefruit
This fragrance might be summer in a bottle. If you prefer a citrus scent but love a fruity twist, this strikes the perfect balance.
18. Boy Smells Marble Fruit
Like all Boy Smells fragrances, this perfume is complex, interesting, and not at all what you would expect (in the best way). It's inviting and warm with jasmine, freesia, musk, sandalwood, cedar, pear, and nectarine.
This article was originally published at an earlier date and has been updated.
Sarah is lifestyle writer and editor with over 10 years of experience covering health and wellness, interior design, food, beauty, and tech. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she attended New York University and lived in New York for 12 years before returning to L.A. in 2019.
In addition to her work on THE/THIRTY and Who What Wear, she held editor roles at Apartment Therapy, Real Simple, House Beautiful, Elle Decor, and The Bump (sister site of The Knot).
She has a passion for health and wellness, but she especially loves writing about mental health. Her self-care routine consists of five things: a good workout, “me” time on the regular, an intriguing book/podcast/playlist to unwind after a long day, naps, and decorating her home.
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