Mood-Enhancing Perfumes – A Best Of-List

I believe in the power of perfume to influence me and my mood.

Mood is the resource I use to determine what perfume to wear, if I let my subconscious decide and grab what it compels me to grab, I always end up happy with my choice.

Warning: Blog related testing of non-mood conforming fragrances can lead to major crankiness. ;)

So which perfumes complement or enhance which mood? Let’s see…


My happy fragrances are Bombay Bling by Neela Vermeire Creations, Bigarade Concentrée by Frédéric Malle and Orange Sanguine by Atelier Cologne. They leave me no choice but to smile, they infuse me with energy and provide a weightlessness, add an additional source of light that I might not otherwise be able to access.

In a sad or contemplative mood, my fragrance of choice is L’Heure Bleue, it takes the edge of and adds depth and warmth to the blues without letting me plunge headlong into depression.

To calm me in situations where I am angry or overwhelmed, I most often reach for gourmands. Their soothing and enveloping sweetness reminds me of childhood, of feeling secure and safe. Real macaroons or a bar of chocolate would do the same, and often enough I go for the double whammy of comfort food and fragrance, but perfume surely is the low-cal health version of a cookie. It wrestles successfully even with extremely pressured situations. My favorites in that category of anxiety blasters are Guerlain Gourmand CoquinIris GanacheParfumerie Génèrale Musc Maori and Armani Privé La Femme Bleue, a gorgeous iris with chocolate.

And are there perfumes that manage to be infuriating by themselves?

Oh yes, there are such perfumes too. Lately I encountered Chanel 1932, which proved not to be ideal for my blood-pressure. 😉

I can’t wait to hear about your preferred mood-enhancing perfumes!

Interested in more “Perfume as Medication” ideas? Check out this post that offers a list of my favorite scented “drugs”.

Please take a look at the lists of my fellow bloggers:


Eyeliner On a Cat

Fragrant Moments

The Candy Perfume Boy

Image source:

About Olfactoria

I'm on a journey through the world of fragrance - come with me!
This entry was posted in Armani Privé, Atelier Cologne, Chanel, Fragrance Reviews, Frederic Malle, Guerlain, Guerlain L'Art et la Matière, Neela Vermeire Creations, Parfumerie Generale and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

61 Responses to Mood-Enhancing Perfumes – A Best Of-List

  1. Pingback: The Scent Of Comfort |

  2. Vanessa says:

    This issue seems to be in the air at the moment – I remember a few posts lately on this subject – Undina, Ida Meister for Fragrantica, and I do also recall your earlier discussion on this theme. Hmm, maybe life is throwing us more lemons than usual at the moment and we need more “armour” / uplifting!

    Trouble is, I can’t recall now what I have said in answer to this question in the past, but as it is not at all springlike here yet, I am still comforting myself with soft powdery, sometimes spicy orientals like Poivre 23, Carner Rima XI, Guerlain Angelique Noire – anything with vanilla basically!

    • Olfactoria says:

      “Anything with vanilla basically” – very good strategy, V. I still feel happy that you are wearing Angelique Noire, I somehow feel responsible for bringing the two of you together. 😉

  3. Jordan River says:

    Perfume Prozac – Séville à l’Aube (onto second bottle), Jubilation XXX (happy just thinking about it) and Orange Sanguine (Atelier Cologne)

  4. Sandra says:

    Vanilla, chocolate, vanilla, chocolate! You get the drift. These notes make me forget my stress and worries. Thank goodness Guerlain is so wonderful. Otherwise I would have to fly to the States every couple of months for my allergy free chocolate stock piling.

  5. brie says:

    Those that send me into a complete state of bliss are SSS Jour Ensolielle, 1000 Flowers Reglisse Noire and Atelier Orange Sanguine. L’Heure Bleue puts me in deep melancholy for it reminds me of someone who broke my heart…I still love it but no longer wear it.
    Pure frankincense, patchouli or amber essential oils make me grounded and contemplative (perfect for my yoga practice).

  6. andreawilko says:

    Bombay Bling is for sure my happy perfume and never fails to make me smile as the first time I wore it I went to see the film the best exotic marigold hotel so I have strong memory association with it as I loved the film.
    I go for gourmands if I am feeling down or tired, that is when iris ganache or anima dulcis comes into play. Chanel no5 parfum if its cold and I want to feel cozy.
    If I want it to feel more summery than it actually is then I turn to Rubj as my son described it as my holiday perfume.
    Other than that it is hit and miss what I grab in the morning.

  7. Cookie Queen says:

    Oh gosh ……. so many I have not tried I don´t know where to start. 😦

  8. ringthing says:

    I love these lists! Encens et Lavande is calm in a bottle for me and Gris Clair is my introspective choice; Rosine’s Un Zest de Rose is happy and uplifting; DSH Inner Sanctum sparks a deep enjoyment of winter and Chanel 19 grounds me, as I’ve worn it since my teens. I agree, mood must dictate my perfume choice for the day to feel *right*.

  9. Tara says:

    Great post and I love all those emoticons!

    I also let my mood dictate my sotd. At the moment Seville a l’aube and OJ’s Champaca are really giving me an uplift as the spring is a long time coming. For stress it’s CdG Kyoto and for inner confidence it’s Vol de Nuit. If I’m tired Poivre Piquant works well because it’s quiet and unchallenging but comforting.

    What I really need though is a comfy vanilla to wrap up in. Are SDV or Mona’s Vanille too sophisticated for that I wonder?

  10. Annina says:

    Another vote for Jour Ensoleille! It’s really a happy perfume for me. L’Heure Bleue is comforting to me, not melancholic. It’s cozy and hazy, I so often wear it to bed.

    My “armor” perfume is Vraie Blonde. It makes me feel sexy and powerful. I could also say Futur helps me feel confident too.

    When I feel very casual and easy-breezy, or when I’m running off for errands, to the gym, or doing stuff around the house I wear some sort of skin scent. For me those are Philosophy Eternal Grace, Demeter Clean Skin or Pure Soap, Memorie Liquid Nude, or Kuumba Made Oriental Musk.

    PS- Still can’t wear Shalimar, B. I take it out as nd sniff it, but it’s just not working for me right now.

    • brie says:

      yah! another JE lover! I did not know that Memoire Liquide has a Nude version. My daughter owns the Soleil Liquide and the citrus/ neroli/vanilla smells so lovely on her and is very uplifting! Kuumba Made has outstanding oils at resonable prices- you should try their other musks as well!

    • Olfactoria says:

      Lovely perfumes, Annina.

      P.S.: no Shalimar for me either for now. 😦

  11. masha7 says:

    Any good perfume centered on lemon, orange, or petitgrain are very cheering and energizing for me. I make a room spray called “Lemon Tree” that really perks the family up on sluggish mornings. Orange Sanguine is wonderful! Then frankincense for its calming effects (I put a few drops of eo in steaming water, light a stick of Tennendo Omani frankincense incense, or just spray myself with the eo in perfumer’s alcohol), and jasmine perfumes for a mood lift. Apparently, some of the synth jasmines have the same anti-depressive molecule as the natural, so any jasmine soliflore should do the job. I prefer the j. grandi absolute, though, just straight up.

  12. B, this is a great list. It’s nice to Atelier Cologne mentioned. It’s such an awesome brand in my opinion. I love the gourmands, lo-cal mention…clever 😉

  13. Civava says:

    It is known that orange oil, neroli, orange blossom etc. are mood lifters. I should have this in abundance at my job ;-). And I very much like the idea of calming yourself with gourmand scents. It is not so tasteful on the tongue, but it ceartanly doesn’t give you any calories you must burn later. That can only lead into a bigger depression ;-).

  14. Hiya Birgit,
    Trouble by Boucheron will always bring me out of a funk, as will Shalimar vintage parfum and Gucci Envy Man. Blonde by Versace and Sun by Jil Sander have lately been wear it when happy already frags.
    Portia xx

  15. Axum says:

    It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who thinks of perfume in this way. I share some choices mentioned by others, but a couple of special pick-me-ups:
    Montale – Aoud Red Flowers
    Serge – Datura noir
    Serge – 5 O’Clock Eau gingembre
    Kenzo – Parfum d’ete
    Demeter – Green Tomato

  16. Suzanne says:

    Sometimes I hesitate to answer these questions because I feel like a broken record – it seems like I’m always going on and on about the same perfumes, but here you go anyway: 🙂
    Happy perfume: April Aromatics Jasmina
    Makes-me-feel-like-a-million-bucks: Amouage Opus I, Chanel No. 22, Frederic Malle Iris Poudre
    Comfort perfumes: the original Gucci Pour Homme, L’Artisan Tea for Two, Muscs Koublai Khan
    Contemplative perfume: Hermes Hiris … which I hardly ever wear. I guess I’m not big on contemplative perfumes. 🙂

  17. Enjoyed all the fun emoticons, Birgit. And your thoughts as well 🙂

    Bigarade Concentree was the first Malle fragrance I tried. I filled out the questionnaire, and they sent BC and Vetiver Extraordinaire. The former is my favourite orange blossom fragrance, and the latter is one of my top vetivers. Both make me feel good.

  18. Dear Olfactoria
    The serotonin is now really flowing.
    So, another trio to those already posted elswhere…
    Feerie Van Cleef and Arples – viliets, I can’t help myself.
    Bel Ami – it’s always good to have a friend
    Jardin Mediterranee – figs please!

    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

  19. Lyubov says:

    When I’m blue and distressed I reach for the comfort of musk, iris, anything soapy, powdery, cotton-sheet-like…Lovely – SJP, 2 – Comme des Garcons, Infusion d’Iris – Prada edp, Chanel 19 Poudre, Moschino Couture!, Mure et Musc Extreme…When I’m happy, my mind goes citrusy and gourmandish – Concentree Pamplemousse Rose – Hermes, Casmir – Chopard, Chance Eau Fraiche – Chanel, John Galliano edp…I regret I don’t have the chance to test some natural perfumes – a lot of reviews made me think they are pretty effective in making you feel better in times of depression or anger.

  20. Nice list! Where would we be if we couldn’t utilize fragrance as medicine? Perhaps in the grips of a much more unhealthy and uninteresting addiction. 🙂

  21. Alice says:

    I think I choose in response to the atmosphere of the day, ratehr than my own mood – in the way I woudl pick colours and textures of clothes. A few days ago I decided to ‘force’ spring (in the way they force fruits and flowers out of season in greenhouses)… so have lined up: temps d’une fete, Miyake A Scent and jour d’hermes. I’m not allowed to cave in to to any sweet/spicy temptations! Spring will happen, yes it will!

    • Olfactoria says:

      It will! I’m with you, Alice! I’m forcing it too with Jour d’Hermès and a new perfume from Olfactive Studio (called Flash Back, it’s spring in a bottle).

  22. Ines says:

    I’m late to commenting, I read the post yesterday and by now half of the ideas have disappeared from my mind. 🙂
    I couldn’t agree more with you about Bombay Bling and Bigarade. I smile just thinking of them. 🙂

    If I’m feeling a bit depressed, I usually don’t wear any perfume – as with some other situations where I don’t feel comfortable, in order not to start associating it with bad feelings.
    I do have my anger-type perfumes (Paestum Rose) and my romantic perfume (Lyric).

    And then I have my sportish type of day cologne – Jo Malone’s Nutmeg and Ginger.

    • Olfactoria says:

      It’s a good idea not to wear anything when you feel sad as not to associate it in the future. On the other hand you miss out on being comforted…

      Are you training for the marathon with Jo Malone? 😉

      • Ines says:

        Well, I’m not training for the marathon, but then again, I wasn’t training for the half-marathon either but our trainers made us do it. 😉
        I think they might be having that idea in their heads but are still keeping quiet about it.

        But yes, the answer to your question. 🙂

  23. Bee says:

    my happy go lucky summer scent: Vamp à NY; my empowering scent 31, rue Cambon; my “finally it’s spring” scent: winter flowers Kenzo; my “I want to be cosy and read a book”: MKK; my “asian-art-museum visit” scent: Dzonkha…my “I need to concentrate” scents are vetiver-heavy and so on and further

  24. Persolaise says:

    Thanks for setting us a fun task, B. I’m pleased to see Iris Ganache on your list. That one has a very calming effect on me as well 🙂

  25. Undina says:

    I’ve exhausted this topic for myself for now (and you read my thoughts so I won’t repeat myself here) but it is interesting to read other people’s thoughts.

  26. Eva S says:

    For a mood lifting perfume, I would go with Jour D’Hermes, Lys Soleia or maybe Iris Ukioke. For comfort Ambre de Merveille, Gourmand Coquin (just tried it!) and for some reason I find Memoir very comforting as well. Although if it’s a really bad day nothing but my trusted chypres will do- Mitsouko and Bandit.
    And thanks for the tip on MaiTais scarf-wearing tutorials, they’re really great!

  27. Late to the party but my happy fragrance is OJ Osmanthus. It never fails to lift my mood and make me think of summer. I would love to try Orange Sanguine, must look out for it.

  28. Pingback: Guerlain-klassikot, osa 2: Näkymätön minkkiturkki | Njaalgâhaisyeini

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