Florals aren’t everyone’s fragrant cup of tea – whether you deem flower-centric scents too powdery, too intense or just too old-fashioned, a truly ‘
understated’ floral can be about as elusive as the Loch Ness monster. But if you’re still after a femme fragrance that’s flowery yet fresh, gardenia could be a go. And don’t stress that all gardenia scents will smell the same either; these white flowers are almost like LBDs – they can work a zillion different ways depending on what they’re paired with. Yep, you could pick up one of these perfumes for yourself and the other nine for friends and family, and still, not one of you would smell the same as another. Here’s our guide to the most glorious gardenia scents.
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KKW Fragrance Crystal Gardenia Oud (approx. $83, kkwfragrance.com)
It would be remiss of us not to mention the very gardenia scent that served as a trigger for the recent resurgence – Kim sandwiches it between sparkling citrus and moody patchouli.
Estée Lauder Private Collection Tuberose Gardenia
With a little something sweet (gardenia), a little something sensual (vanilla bourbon) and a little something sour (neroli), this multifaceted mix is bound to keep your nose on its toes.
Aramis Eau de Toilette Natural Spray
A gutsier take on gardenia ideal for those who aren’t as partial to soft scents, this eau has a leather, moss and amber base that gives it boldness and bite.
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With raspberry and caramel, the notes of this scent read something like a recipe – gardenia’s presence just steers it clear of gourmand territory, but it’s still suited to a sweet tooth.
Yves Saint Laurent
Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Floral Shock
If you were to spritz on YSL’s original caffeine-spiked Black Opium and stroll through a gardenia-filled garden on the first day of spring, this is how it would smell.
Elizabeth Arden White Tea Vanilla Orchid
White tea, vanilla orchid and gardenia may sound like a calming concoction, but Arden teams the blend with bergamot, musk and lemon for an eau that’s unexpected and alluring.
Aerin Gardenia Rattan ($180, davidjones.com)
Summer in scent form, this demure delight pairs a blooming bouquet of peonies, tuberose and gardenia with the fresh aquatic eau of ocean water (yep).
Gucci Flora Emerald Gardenia ($150, davidjones.com)
Think gardenia is basic? Tell that to Gucci. Inspired more by the leaves of the gardenia plant than the flowers, it’s pure green goodness. Stock up ASAP though, it’s a limited edition run.
Katy Perry INDI VISIBLE
A modern and memorable interpretation of gardenia, Katy Perry puts her signature cheeky twist on the flower with pepper, coconut and plum.
Creed Fleurs de Gardenia ($369, myer.com.au)
Looking for a luxury take on the flower? Creed has you covered. It’s an opulent olfactory experience that begins with berry and blackcurrant and dries down to a lavender and lily of the valley hybrid.
Main image credit: @aamaziingsara
Have you tried any of these gardenia scents? What is your favourite floral fragrance?