The sexiest perfumes and colognes are easy to wear again and again—by design. "Fragrances which belong to the Narcotics olfactive family, for their addictive aspect, are the sexiest," founder of Kilian Paris Kilian Hennessy tells BAZAAR.com. "Because ultimately, when it comes to seduction, you want to wear a scent that is intoxicating to your partner." For anyone who finds picking out a sexy scent as difficult as choosing a new polish color at their local salon, the perfumer advises sticking with notes like tuberose or orange blossom that share particularly addictive aromas.
While what we consider the most alluring fragrance notes can be subjective, Nordstrom national beauty director Autumne West says most shoppers tend to gravitate toward earthy, woody scents for ultimate sex appeal. "I find that when most people describe a scent they think is ‘sexy,’ it's almost always one with hints of vanilla mixed with something woody, spicy, or sometimes rose," she explains. "It’s usually the balance of sweet and strong that can bring forth those moody vibes with extra appeal. Our customers generally love to mix their already known favorite fragrances with a new refresh on a classic. For Valentine’s Day, we expect they will love scents from Dior, Jo Malone, Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Creed, and Valentino." Bond No. 9 founder Laurice Rahmé says floral fragrances are among her brand's top sellers around the 14th. "For Valentine’s Day, we sell many rose-noted scents, like Nolita, Gold Coast, and Perfumista Avenue,” she says.
And to extend the life of your scent of choice, or create a new olfactory experience altogether, experts suggest layering your fragrances. "Amber, patchouli, and vanilla notes layer well, and last for hours,” Rahmé adds. But whatever your combination of choice, it's ultimately based on what makes you feel best. "Fragrance layering comes down to personal preference. There are no rules in fragrance, but it must work for the individual, and give them a feeling of pleasure," Hennessy continues. "Layering products from the same line is an effective way to make a fragrance last." West agrees, noting that this kind of scent customization is also an easy way to take a signature fragrance up a few notches on special occasions. "Layering is a great way to differentiate you scent, especially if you love a classic," she says. West advises starting with a scented lotion or cream, and finishing with its companion parfum or eau de toilette for longer wear.
For those looking for a quick confidence boost, or to entice a current (or potential) beau, Hennessy notes that the best spots on the body to spritz on a fragrance are, "everywhere you want to be kissed." Here, we've rounded up a few standout scents that professionals and BAZAAR editors consider among the sexiest fragrances of all-time.