From sensorial scents to nostalgic, gourmand accords, we unfurl the signature fragrance trends that are about to stand out all year long.
The correlation between fragrance and our senses continues, this time entering the self-care space with scents designed to soothe, uplift and delight. Through 2023, consumers became better acquainted with nostalgia-evoking notes, as fragrances helped to transport us to specific moments in time by creating memories and emotions intrinsically linked to our mood. This year, perfumers and candlemakers are homing in on the feel-good aspect that certain notes can trigger. Look out for zesty lemon, aromatic lavender and herbaceous vetiver, to name but a few.
Last year saw the acceleration of the multipurpose beauty trend, with skincare-meets-makeup product launches at the helm. This year, the macro trend will extend across fragrance, as the current economic climate sparks a shift into the mainstream with scented products that go the extra mile.
Popular brands - including those in the luxury realm - are reinventing well-loved fragrances into multifunctional formats that can be spritzed on both body <<and>> hair, providing a more accessible proposition to cost-savvy consumers. Onsite searches for ‘Mist’ rose by 72% last year (vs 2022), with ‘Hair and Body Mist’ the most popular term. Welcome the ‘Jack of all trades’ functional fragrances that tick off hydration, shine and that sought after signature scent-in one. We’re in.
The global fascination with food and drink will continue to transition into beauty, as we see more brands attempt to resonate with consumers through innovative and playful approaches to product formulas and packaging. Gourmand fragrances – those scented with edible notes – are being reinvented in 2024, with perfumers aiming to evoke feelings of nostalgia and comfort with every spritz.
Brands like Tom Ford and Sol de Janeiro have already tapped into the popularity of ingredients such as cherry and pistachio to create fragrant blends that mimic sweet desserts. The cultural obsession with tea will also see this trending ingredient further enter the luxury fragrance realm. Maison Margiela Replica Matcha Meditation Eau de Toilette leads the way with a hearty combination of green tea, matcha and white chocolate accords, creating a scent sensation that’s almost good enough to eat.
Keely Gough, Managing Director at LOOKFANTASTIC, says: “The crossover between the beauty and food & drink industries has been prevalent for some time, with food-inspired trends first reaching popularity across social media platforms like Tumblr. Largely driven as a result of the pandemic, we’ve since seen more consumers seek solace in brand experiences that lend themselves to sensorial and visual cues, as well as nostalgia.”
With more consumers finding new ways to shop fragrance online, the art of discovery through scent sampling has become ever prevalent in the last year. Perfumers are tapping into this trend through product launches in the form of Discovery Sets, allowing curious consumers to trial multiple fragrance minis housed inside a giftable kit. Helping to bridge the affordable luxury gap, brands like Maison Margiela and Molton Brown have created Discovery Sets that combine aspirational quality with affordable formats, targeting price-savvy shoppers and broadening their scent offering to newer audiences.
Typically comprised of the brand’s signatures and new releases, Discovery Sets offer an array of notes to guide the receiver to their chosen scent, whether they’re in the market for a new perfume to call their own or looking to gift someone a sensorial mood-boosting experience. They also provide an explorative opportunity that allows beauty lovers to switch their spritz according to chemical and environmental factors, such as their mood, the occasion or season.
One to Watch: Luxury Fragrance for Babies
As beauty obsessed millennials seek ways to introduce their little ones to the world of wellness and self-care, the Mother & Baby category is set to receive a designer upgrade this year. While many skin, body and wellness brands already cater to the mummy demographic through pregnancy and baby-safe formulations, 2024 will see luxury fashion houses enter the space with fragrances specially curated for babies’ skin. More akin to scented water than traditional perfume, these baby fragrances are known as ‘eau de senteurs’, which are free from alcohol or essential oils, and so less likely to cause irritation or discomfort to delicate skin.
Designers like BVLGARI have already turned Mother & Baby luxe, with its infant-friendly perfume ‘Petits et Mamans’. More recently, Dior showcased its scented water collection 'Bonne Étoile' for babies and children, followed by the re-launch of the Dior Baby luxury skincare range.
As baby showers are catching up with birthdays and engagements regarding popularity, could this be the perfect gift for new mums or the baby who has everything?