The Perfumes and Fragrances That Turn Men On—and Off

We asked a group of guys to sniff out the women's fragrances they love and loathe. The results surprised us. Keep reading to find out if our guy panel was turned on (or off) by fruity florals, sweet scents and clean perfumes.

Do you wear perfume everyday or just on special occasions?


Clean Scents

You're not the only one who likes that just-out-of-the-shower feeling. Our man testers said oui oui to Christian Dior's orchid-infused J'adore, claiming it smelled natural, like the girl next door. Of the Estée Lauder fragrance Pure White Linen, one guy said, "It smells fresh-in a sexy way that makes me want to jump into bed and mess up the sheets." He can thank the combination of gardenia petals, white freesia and dewy greens for that. Other clean scents to try: Lancôme's Miracle, Dolce & Gabbana's Light Blue and Elle Yves Saint Laurent.

Woody and Floral

Don't be put off if a perfume says musky, spicy or woody on the label. Although you might think the notes are masculine, these multilayered scents smell great on you-and will win him over in a big, big way. "It smells like pure sex. It really does. I'm giving it to my girlfriend the first chance I get," one guy said about Victoria's Secret's Very Sexy perfume, which boasts pepper, vanilla orchid and soft wood scents, among others. "If I smelled this on a girl," another guy said of the white pepper, patchouli and amber blend of Christian Lacroix Rouge, "I'd think she was pretty outgoing-which is a good thing-since it hits you a little bit more than the floral or powdery stuff." If you're into flirting through your fragrance, you could also try Calvin Klein's Secret Obsession or Tom Ford's Black Orchid.

Spicy Florals
You might think guys are all about younger women, but it turns out they don't want their gal pal to smell like one. Our sniffers loved sophisticated scents like Chanel's Chance and Daisy Marc Jacobs. Look for floral notes infused with sweeter ones (like vanilla) and spicier ones (like white woods). As one guy put it after sampling Chance, "It doesn't smell like something a high school girl would wear. It smells expensive." A signature scent that makes us feel (and smell) like a million bucks? Sign us up!

Related: 7 beauty looks that freak him out.


The smell our testers got the most excited about came from a street vendor selling meat outside a local perfumerie. But don't douse yourself in eau de shwarma just yet. "I don't think women should smell like food-nor should men for that matter," quipped one guy. Vanilla, however, was the exception. The men thought Laura Mercier's French Vanilla Soufflé Body Crème was lickably good.

Strong Florals
It may come as a surprise, but not too many guys are into stopping and smelling the roses-or any other kind of strong floral scent. "If it's too flowery, it makes me think of an old lady," noted one dude after getting a whiff of a bouquetlike perfume. (Maybe that explains why so many guys are hesitant to give flowers?)

Super Fruity

According to our scent testers, sugary-smelling, fruity perfumes make guys think of the candy store or the kitchen, not the bedroom. "It smells like Jolly Ranchers, and I like Jolly Ranchers, but I'm not sure I'd want a girl to smell like one," one tester said after inhaling an apple-scented spray. Pear, honeydew and lemon scents all fared the same: "Citrusy and desserty smells make me hungry, not turned on," another guy said. Case closed.

Find out what other scents turn men on and off. Plus, the one scent that all guys don't want you to wear.

More from Glamour for Valentine's Day: