“His or hers” isn’t just an antiquated way of looking at bathroom access or kid’s toys. It’s a close-minded method for choosing a fragrance, too. In fact, most scents weren’t gender-specific until the middle of the 20th century. The truth is anyone who wants to smell great can wear rose—as long as it represents them. Here, the best scents that know no gender.
by Dan Michel
Prada 'Cargo de Nuit'
This revered fragrance house just released a new line of scents that can be mixed and matched for different olfactive experiences. This one balances its slightly powdery top notes with deeper hints of ambrette and cedar—perfect for a night out.
Not all fragrances come in spray bottles. Just a dab of this long-lasting perfume oil on each side of your neck will give a fresh, herbal scent that’s not stale or smoky. Perfect for packing in your travel kit.
Cologne isn’t just for men. The name only indicates the potency of the liquid inside: Cologne has the lowest fragrance concentration, so it's perfect for delicate noses. This one starts with a burst of sea air that slowly grounds itself in an earthy hit of sage, and creates a very fresh blend of masculine and feminine.
The most intriguing scents are usually those that change greatly over time. This fragrance starts with fresh sandalwood and juniper berries, and ends with a cool blue pepper finish. It’s a scent you aren’t likely to smell on anyone else.
This newest release from niche fragrance house Le Labo starts with bergamot, fig, and bay leaves. Its cedar mid notes mix with grassy vetiver and earthy musk as the fragrance settles. Wrapped in a special extraction of cool, smoky black tea leaves in the dry-down, it's a recipe for serenity.
New to the US market, Ex Nihilo hails from Paris, where its young designers created a scent that reminds them of home. Its citrus top notes slowly give way to an androgynous pairing of rose and lily of the valley, before revealing a warm, woody finish.