The best vanilla perfumes for women smell sweet but not overpowering. These scents use either pure vanilla or vanilla mixed with sensual accords such as floral notes and woodsy notes for longevity.
Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensee is the best vanilla perfume that mostly smells dominating. For a complex vanilla scent, you can consider Oud Jaune Intense By Fragrance Du Bois which comes with a rich vanilla scent with plenty of supportive notes of oriental inspiration.
Choosing a vanilla-scented perfume is not easy. This warming aromatic note is getting more expensive and chemical synthetics to make it almost impossible to fairly represent at a good price.
Still, the best perfumes with vanilla undertones are now at their best. Some of them are seen easily in stores like Sephora while others are a bit harder to find.
The purpose of this article is to select the most representative and best vanilla perfumes for women that are available today. Some of these ladies’ vanilla perfumes are solely focused on the vanilla note. Others see vanilla as an important note but they don’t necessarily put it in the first place on their list of accords.
The Best Vanilla Perfumes for Women
Both bare vanilla perfumes and fragrances with vanilla for women are ideal for everyday use. Vanilla is considered a friendly inviting note which is suitable for all skin types and women of all ages.
1. Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensee
There’s plenty of originality in this vanilla perfume for women. Vanille Insensee is one of the most intriguing perfumes with vanilla notes you can imagine. Highly popular in physical stores, this isn’t a release to overlook as a vanilla lover.
The perfume starts with earthy vanilla with a deeper richer influence. It then turns to a creamer smoother vanilla closer to what you can imagine in a pure vanilla perfume for women.
However, it’s this juxtaposition of closed-vanilla to open-vanilla aromatics that make it so attractive and unique.
Lime, citron, and coriander are their top notes.
Vetiver, oakmoss, and jasmine are its mid accords.
Vanilla, oak, and amber are its base accords.
The woody resinous nature of the base accords is influencing the vanilla. They make it resinous and earthy dark vanilla perfume. At the time, it almost smells musky.
This earthiness and changing nature of the vanilla scent is what allows you to wear this perfume in any season, not just during the winter like with most sweet vanilla perfumes while being a floral vanilla perfume for others.
- Not a boring vanilla scent
- Raw earthy resinous vanilla impact at first
- Highly wearable to any occasion or work in the dropdown
- Not for vanilla purists
2. Dior Hypnotic Poison
Dior Hypnotic Poison is often mentioned among spicy vanilla perfumes for its oriental profile. Sweet and creamy, it’s many things to many women. For some, it’s a rose and vanilla perfume. Its intense coconut opening can also see it as a coconut vanilla perfume.
This warm vanilla perfume starts with coconut, plum, and apricot for a sweet introduction.
Brazilian rosewood, jasmine, caraway, tuberose, rose, and lily of the valley are the midnotes vanilla rose perfume fans love.
Vanilla, almond, musk, and sandalwood are the base notes of this long-lasting vanilla perfume.
While not a pure vanilla almond perfume, the combination is successful in its base accords. These notes go well with musk as proven in other vanilla musk perfumes.
Is it a hypnotic perfume for women? Yes, it is. Woods, vanilla, and almonds are very prominent here. The creaminess of this perfume is what made it popular for so many years.
This Annick Menardo perfume with a coconut smell and intense vanilla is heavy but an excellent choice for cool days, evenings, and nights out.
- Strong and mysterious vanilla with hints of almonds and woods
- A very sexy vanilla bean perfume
- It lasts for at least 6 hours
- You won’t be the only one wearing it
3. Montale Sweet Vanilla
Montale Sweet Vanilla perfume for ladies is one of the strongest you can ever smell. It only comes with vanilla and apricot notes but it has an excellent layering potential as well as being used on its own. The combination with apricot makes it the closes thing to a honey vanilla perfume combination.
But the apricot note here is not the sweetest and it has some type of citrus whiff to it. This is why some women note Montale’s fragrance for women smells like a lemon-vanilla perfume at a time.
As one of the best smelling vanilla perfumes, it can be quite versatile and since it lasts so long, it will be a perfume you use for years. Most women only apply 1 spray of this perfume to the skin as it’s just very strong, even by Montale standards,
The longevity of this perfume with vanilla notes is about 6 hours and maybe a bit more if you go for 2-3 sprays.
Most women are recommended to consider it for layering given its simplicity.
Almost any floral perfume could work with it.
But some of the best combinations of perfume would be with a spicy oriental perfume, a salty oceanic perfume, or with fruity perfumes such as those that smell like plum, bergamot, or blackcurrant.
- Simple but very intense DNA
- Very sweet vanilla
- Perfect for layering
- It might be too strong for some women
4. Mon Guerlain Guerlain
Mon Guerlain vanilla lavender perfume was launched in 2017. It encompasses the lavender note successfully and it has become one of the most successful cheap vanilla perfumes for ladies.
Lavender and bergamot are listed among its opening notes.
Iris, jasmine, and rose are its prominent mid notes.
Vanilla, coumarin, sandalwood, benzoin, licorice, and patchouli are its base notes.
Some forums call this the perfect perfume for a wife as a gift. But its scent is what seems a bit more mature, like sweet vanilla but one that isn’t overly problematic and discouraging.
The lavender note in the opening seems out of place for me as it needed to be a bit more natural. But it fades away in a few minutes luckily. You only get a jasmine vanilla perfume in the drydown with hints of iris and some sandalwood with coumarin to spice it up.
It’s a vanilla-scented perfume for teens, but it works wonderfully on mature women.
- Very strong silage
- It lasts for 5 hours
- One of the most delicate pink vanilla perfumes
- The terrible first impression in the opening
5. Diptyque Eau Duelle
This aromatic vanilla perfume is a premium 2010 release from the house of Diptyque. Often seen as the comforting woodsy vanilla scent that can be worn through the year, it has plenty of fans among women.
Rather resinous in the opening, it’s not simple nor linear. Vanilla is hidden among its notes for the first hour. It then starts to lose most of the notes apart from the moderate juniper to make way to full classic vanilla that recommends this perfume for most occasions, but especially formal events.
Bourbon vanilla, elemi resin, juniper, and pepper are some of its strongest notes.
Cardamom, olibanum, black tea, ambergris, bergamot, saffron, and musk are its moderate accords.
- An excellent toned down vanilla note
- Fantastic outdoor performance
- One of the few light woodsy vanilla scents
- Light silage
6. Maison Francis Kurdijan Gentle Fluidity
This Francis Kurkdjian vanilla perfume for women is made for compliments. Light and airy, it even looks like a summertime cocktail. Its vanilla recommends it for spring, fall, and winter wear at the office or on any going out occasion.
It resembles creamy vanilla blueberry pastry with a tart-like profile. But this instantly gives it an uplifting effect that makes so many women and men (see our best vanilla fragrances for men recommendations) interested in it and which also gets compliments from men.
This fragrance comes with vanilla, juniper berries, nutmeg, and coriander in the opening.
Amber, musk, and woods are its base notes.
- A crowd-pleasing vanilla scent
- Not boring since it gets many warming effect notes
- High-quality ingredients
- Not a unique scent
7. Jo Malone Vanilla & Anise
Jo Malone London did a fantastic job with this perfume. It added opposing note profiles to make one of the most interesting vanilla interpretations on the market.
As its name suggests, anise and vanilla and the main notes of the perfume.
You can easily distinguish them by masculine and feminine traits. While anise is the masculine note of the due, it’s still interpreted towards the feminine side a bit more which makes this a perfume for the ladies rather than a unisex vanilla perfume as it’s often marketed.
The masterful effect of these Jo Malone perfumes with vanilla undertones was to turn a strong vanilla note into a partially sweet perfume with plenty of saltiness and spices in turn. You’d have to look long and hard to find something at least as interesting.
Star anise, intense fennel, neroli, and bergamot are its opening notes.
Intense frangipani, orchid, clove, tuberose, and jasmine are its mid accords.
Vanilla, tonka bean, vetiver, and amber are the base notes of the vanilla extract perfume.
Longevity isn’t that good, however. Jo Malone Vanilla & Anise perfume mostly lasts about 4 hours.
- A moderately sweet vanilla
- Superb interpretation of spices
- Truly unique
- Very hard to find
8. Goldfield & Banks Dessert Rosewood
This dark vanilla perfume almost looks like an amber vanilla perfume but it’s very different from what you might expect.
Rosewood, benzoin, patchouli, vanilla, mandarin, and cardamom are all of its notes.
As a powerful benzoin perfume, it’s centered around Brazilian rosewood which makes it a bit sticky and woodsy. Vanilla is present both in the orange peel opening and in the woodsy drydown. Judging by its opening alone, it can also be classified as an orange-vanilla perfume easily.
Highly unique, this perfume is also great for the fall and winter seasons. You won’t need any other perfume with a vanilla scent for years since Goldfield & Banks Dessert Rosewood lasts around 10 hours per application.
- Dominated by an aromatic rosewood note
- One of the most interesting supporting vanilla note perfumes
- Thick and durable blend
- Moderate silage
Quick vanilla takeaway points that apply to perfume
- Vanilla is a fruit-bearing orchid which means it smells equally fruity and floral
- It takes up to 6 months to harvest the pure vanilla scent turned into a perfume
- While common, vanilla is one of the most expensive perfume notes
- Most types of vanilla are hand-pollinated which means it rarely grows on its own
Where does vanilla come from?
80% of the vanilla sold today comes from Madagascar. It grows in the Saca Region of the East African island. Its scarcity is what makes vanilla so expensive. It’s estimated a kilogram of pure vanilla costs at least $400.
How does vanilla smell like?
Vanilla smells like a ripe tropical fruit that is sweet and comforting. It has a baking-specific scent that recommends it for flavoring. Its smell is often compared to floral, sugary, overripe fruit.
Which are the best vanilla note combinations?
Vanilla is a hand-pollinated orchid that is warming. As a result, it combines with other sweet notes such as fruity apricot, citrusy notes such as bergamot, or spicy note such as sandalwood.
Is vanilla a feminine scent?
The vanilla note can be interpreted both as feminine and as masculine depending on its aromatic blend. On its own, vanilla leans towards the feminine with a bright gourmand tropical scent.
When to wear a vanilla perfume as a lady?
While vanilla comes from Madagascar, most vanilla perfumes show their best performance during the fall and winter seasons.
Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensee is the most original and best vanilla perfume for women. It can be one of those great scents you wear when you already own a ‘classic’ vanilla scent. Otherwise, all other vanilla fragrances for women on this list can be seen as safe blind buys as they have proven their worth in sales, reviews, and scent quality. Which one will you choose?