The Three Greatest (almost) Natural Perfumes of All Time: IMHO

It is challenging to narrow down the greatest ‘almost all natural’ perfumes of all time to just three, as there are countless exquisite fragrances throughout history. However, based on their impact on the perfume industry and their enduring popularity, here are three of the greatest perfumes of all time…that were almost all natural. I’ll Call out synthetic items as I describe them. 

  1. Chanel No. 5: This iconic perfume was created in 1921 by French perfumer Ernest Beaux for fashion designer Coco Chanel. It is composed of a blend of natural ingredients such as jasmine, rose, ylang-ylang, and iris, and was the first fragrance to use a high concentration of synthetic aldehydes, which give it a modern, abstract character. Chanel No. 5 has remained popular for over a century and has inspired countless fragrances and imitations.

  2. Shalimar by Guerlain: Created in 1925 by Jacques Guerlain, Shalimar is a sensual 'far eastern' fragrance that blends natural ingredients such as iris, vanilla, and bergamot with synthetic materials such as coumarin and vanillin. It is often cited as one of the most beautiful perfumes of all time and has inspired countless other fragrances.

  3. Joy by Jean Patou: Created in 1930 by perfumer Henri Alméras, Joy is a floral fragrance that combines natural ingredients such as jasmine and rose with synthetic materials such as aldehydes and musk. It was famously described by fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli as "the most expensive perfume in the world," due to the high concentration of natural ingredients used in its composition. Joy is still considered a masterpiece of perfumery and remains popular to this day.

While these three fragrances are often cited as some of the greatest natural (mostly) perfumes of all time, there are countless other natural fragrances that have had a significant impact on the perfume industry and continue to captivate perfume lovers today.

Written by Darryl Hunter