Gardenia goodies - my favourite gardenia fragrances

10:28 AM

Gardenia is one of my favourite scents, in both bloom on the bush form and as a perfume note. If a new fragrance even has gardenia listed, I'll order a tester so I don't miss out discovering The One, that gardenia containing frag that I'll never tire of, that will never change with my body chemistry, and most importantly won't go all old lady florals on me. Gardenia has gotten a work-out recently, as perfume houses jerk away from fruity notes and turn back to the more classic scents like rose,violet and the big whites like jasmine and tuberose. Sometimes it's very, very good. Sometimes it's horrid.

After reviewing Douglas Hannant de Robert Piguet the other day, here's a few more gardenia treats I've loved.

Michael by Michael Kors

This is the first perfume I ever owned that wasn't by Bonne Bell, from an Impluse can, or that Body Shop Vanilla oil (which I still lurve). I nabbed a 5ml vial from one of my mum's gifts with purchase, and hoarded it for several years, using a teeny spritz only on super special occasions like my birthday, the year 7 dance at the local church and the day I met Human Nature. I also used a compass to etch on an extra 'M', making it the much more appropriate Michaela by Michael Kors. It's a very mellow floral, with a sweet tuberose and gardenia combo heading up a warm vanilla and amber base. I'd def buy it if I spotted it at a discounters, if only to reminisce about the time I wore it at Christmas on a 40 degree day and gave my cousin an asthma attack.

Marc Jacobs Woman

A super sheer gardenia that's classic without cloying. I dug this baby out as soon as it hit Sept 1st so I could get my Springtime on quick sticks.

MJ's super popular Daisy is worth a mention for being a sweeter, younger version,and another favourite for warmer days.


Can't have a gardenia round up without kai, celebs g scent of choice! It's a lovely simple scent, perfect for early summer to really get your tropics vibe going. I find it a little exxy for such a linear scent, but if it's in your budget, then it is quite lovely and never offensive.

Chanel Gardenia

My boyfriend thinks this smells like the old lady at our supermarket who dresses up in her vintage fur, heels and red lippy/jade shadow combo just to buy a litre of milk. I take that as a compliment,because this smells ah-mazing and who says I don't want to be the overdressed awesomeness she is one day anyway? Pure, old-Hollywood glamour, minus the mothballs,that echoes the creaminess of pure white petals.Bliss!

Shiseido Zen (3rd version)

Given my boyfriend's previous reactions to gardenia (namely, ew you stink) I'm a little smug that not only has he given Zen his shrug of approval, but he actually wears it himself! The neat little square bottle even sits on his perfume shelf, not mine, although I also use it regularly. Perhaps it's the lemony take on white florals? Or it could be the sandalwood dry-down? Honestly, I think it's because he's deemed the bottle 'manly' enough for his affection. Score one for gardenia!

MOR Snow Gardenia Body Lotion

I'm using this as my current body lotion, and God, it smells fantastic. Bright enough to avoid nana territory, floral enough to keep that bunch of fresh flowers note without heading to tropical  town (which is still lovely this time of year in its own right). I use it all-over in the morning, then top up with another white floral perfume, or toughen it up with a leather or black tea scent (Bvlgari Black is perfect for this).

Ok, calm down Michaela, but seriously this is amazing. And it's only $19.95! Crazy bargain right? I have the Belladonna version which I keep in my handbag for scent touch ups on floral frags, or for when I go camping/to the gym/beach and don't want to risk a spray bottle leaking its precious cargo. Snow Gardenia, you are mine!

These are just a few of my gardenia faves in regular rotation, believe me there's much more creamy petal goodness to be had out there, and for all tastes.

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24 brilliant comments

  1. Your boyfriend is absolutely right about Chanel Gardenia, but he says it like it's a bad thing! I have a few 'old lady' perfumes, including this one, and I love them. That should be a proper perfume category - orientals, florals, ozone, woody, old lady. HOW DO WE MAKE THAT HAPPEN?

  2. Ha, I agree! Nothing wrong with a little Nana smell. What are your other old lady favourites? I picked up a bottle of Shalimar at Goodwill ($6!) and it's the older formulation, which has tis awesome extra ompf to it. New favourite eau de old lady.

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