With the vaccine rolling out, many of us are seeing our friends, family, and coworkers for the first time in a year and a half. Determined to burn their sweatpants and emerge with a whole new look, many are looking to replace their wardrobes, get new haircuts, or try out bold new makeup. One thing that shouldn’t be forgotten: scent. To me, a new scent can feel transformational, a subtle way to announce a new identity to the world. Here are a few that our editors love.
Dark Is Night by Henry Rose
On a cool summer night, senior editor Amy Farley loves Dark Is Night, a scent from one of our favorite perfume houses, Michelle Pfeiffer’s clean fragrance line Henry Rose. “When it first comes out of the bottle, it’s a decadent, woody vanilla blend,” Farley says, adding that it lightens into a sweet and breezy scent after a few minutes. Henry Rose’s latest scent, Windows Down is also perfect for a summer’s day, with notes of grapefruit, bergamot, and earl grey tea that dry down to a subtle, fruity scent.
Clémentine California Pure Perfume by Atelier Cologne
For a light, citrusy summer scent to wear in the heat, Fast Company art director Chelsea Schiff loves French perfume company Atelier Cologne’s Clémentine California Pure Perfume. “Every so often you wake up to an overcast day and it just makes you feel—for lack of a better word—blah. Those are the times I reach for this scent,” she says, adding that the clementine scent reminds her of Vespa rides along the Italian coast.
Mojave Ghost by Byredo
Those easily overwhelmed by strong fragrance may like Stockholm luxury brand Byredo’s subtle Mojave Ghost. The sophisticated woody and floral scent smells clean, like you just stepped out of a very fancy shower. Plus, the chic, minimalist (and pricey) bottle looks great on a vanity.
L’Eau Eau de Toilette by Jimmy Choo
When social media producer (and my Hit the Ground Running podcast cohost) Christina Royster wants to feel luxurious, she turns to Jimmy Choo’s signature floral scent. “I wear it on date nights or days when I need a boost of confidence. I only need a few sprays onto pulse points for this scent to make an impact,” she says.
Lost Cherry by Tom Ford
Recommender writer Rachel Raczka loves the sweet, sultry, and overpowering effect of Tom Ford’s Lost Cherry, a warm and spicy perfume that smells like cherry, almond, and vanilla. A bonus? The perfume’s staying power. “A light spritz of this at the nape of my neck and in my belly button lasts all day,” she says.
Functional Fragrance by the Nue Co
The Nue Co’s Functional Fragrance is designed to do more than just make you smell good—the brand claims that the blend of clean, woody, and spicy scents can help destress the mind. Developed with perfumer Frank Voelkl, one of the noses behind Le Labo’s iconic Santal 33, the subtle scent incorporates notes of iris, palo santo, and green cardamom.
Sailing Day from Replica by Maison Margiela
Staff editor Lara Sorokanich became obsessed with finding a new signature scent this summer, and turned to a sample set for help. Maison Margiela’s $35 Discovery Set contains 10 samples of the company’s intriguing and unusual perfumes that smell like everything from springtime in the park to barber shops to old libraries. “To my surprise, the unisex Sailing Day is my absolute favorite: To me, it smells like a cool ocean breeze on a hot summer day, fresh and bright and full of promise. Which is to say, it feels exactly like summer 2021,” she says.
Fast Company’s Recommender section is dedicated to surfacing innovative products, services, and brands that are changing how we live and work. Every item that we write about is independently selected by our editors and, wherever possible, tested and reviewed. Fast Company may receive revenue from some links in our stories; however, all selections are based on our editorial judgment.