While golfer Walter Hagen wasn't actually referring to flowers when he coined the phrase "Stop and smell the roses," he hit the nail on the head when picking that particular bloom to lend glory to. For centuries, roses have been the symbol of love and romance, and a constant staple in fragrance and beauty. And while other notes such as lavender and citrus have become more prevalent in some of our favorite fragrances, the best rose perfumes of 2020 are making a huge comeback in 2020.
"Rose will forever be one of my favorite notes because of its narcotic sensuality," Kilian Hennessy, founder of Kilian Perfumes, tells TZR. "Roses along with citrus, spices, woods, and resins make for an exquisite and high-quality perfume." But after all these years, why is the age-old scent coming back around with such a vengeance? Well according to Linda G. Levy, president of The Fragrance Foundation, roses never really left — they just bloomed. "Rose has been an important element forever," she says. "However, I think there are phases it's gone through olfactory-wise, and what we once considered a rose scent — like what we smell when we walk through a garden — has taken on a different meaning." Levy also notes that it's not always the literal flower used in the formulation of many perfumes. "Natural fragrance isn't always better than synthetic," she says. "Sometimes the perfumer's interpretation is what they feel is a rose scent, rather than using the actual bloom."
But that's not all. As unisex perfumes become more prevalent — so much so that the Fragrance Foundation has created a "universal" category into its judging — rose is being incorporated into fragrances for both genders more than ever. And while most of us don't boast the discerning noses of Hennessy and Levy, there are certain things to sniff out to identify fragrances comprised of that famous flower. "Most of the time, fragrances are associated with memory," Levy says. "But if you can't identify rose that way, brands have made it much easier by sorting fragrances by florals, citrus, etc."
To properly draw forth the most out of your rose-blended aroma in your day-to-day wear, Hennessy says not to rub your fragrance, instead apply where "you want to be kissed," and pat it lightly it into the skin as to not disrupt the redolent chemistry. "Apply fragrance on skin for your partner, and on your clothes for the next day!" he jokes.
So ahead, check out twelve new perfumes overflowing with roses that are sophisticated, seductive, and masterfully blended.
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