The Beauty Insider:

The street-stopping scents you’ve always wanted to know    

If you’re a fragrance aficionado, there’s nothing like the thrill of being chased down the street and asked, “Excuse me, what perfume are you wearing?” We asked top Beauty Editors, Influencers and Selfridges Buyers to lift the lid on their ultimate stop-you-in-the-street scents, so you don’t have to pluck up the courage to chase after them...

Sophie Beresiner, Beauty & Style Director at BURO.

Ex Nihilo – Fleur Narcotique

"I have never smelt anything like this in my life. It’s kind of, um… I don’t quite know how to succinctly describe its amazingness – and I’m literally an expert at words. Imagine a fat peony (because, yes, there’s peony in it, but it’s peony season and I can’t stop thinking about peonies) dipped in sherbet. It’s incandescent – which I loathe to use to describe a perfume, but in this case, it’s true. I’ve recruited about seven of my friends to this scent – only the special ones because I kind of don’t want to share the secret, if I’m honest. Damn, just blown it."

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Le Labo – AnOther 13

"Apparently, this is supposed to smell like magazine pages. Maybe it appeals to the journalist in me. Maybe it’s just that perfect blend of intrigue and animalic musk. I’ve had strangers lean over their table at lunch and ask ‘Who is it who’s smelling that amazing? You! What is it?’ I’ve had people elongate their hello hugs so they can keep their nostrils near the nape of my neck. I’m telling you: this is the key to how to win friends and influence people, bottled."

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Melissa McGinnis, Beauty Buying Manager at Selfridges

Juliette Has a Gun – Not a Perfume

"ThShop nowis has been one of my go-tos for 10 years now. It’s a fragrance made out of a single element – Cetalox – a synthetic version of ambergris. It’s not overpowering and emits almost a soft halo of scent around you. I wear this a lot in the office as it’s super clean, feminine and musky; colleagues are always commenting on how amazing I smell. As it doesn’t contain any other allergens or phthalates, it’s also hypo-allergenic so a great option for anyone sensitive to perfume."

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Trish McEvoy – 100

"I was given a lab sample of this fragrance two years ago before it launched, and I ended up wearing it all summer. I would be in a grocery store, a taxi, or a restaurant and people would stop me and ask me what I was wearing. I think a lot of taxi drivers’ wives ended up with this fragrance for their birthday! It’s one of my favourite fragrances to wear in the summer because it starts out fairly sparkling but has an amazing warmth with the base notes of leather and Tonka bean."

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Adella Family, Buyer of Couture & Fragrance at Selfridges

Tom Ford – F*cking Fabulous

"The name really says it all. Tom Ford’s most irreverent fragrance to date is a decadent, oriental leather; a modern-day head-turner with an unforgettable air of mystery. For me, spraying this fragrance is like putting on my favourite vintage leather jacket. It makes me feel powerful, feminine and sexy. The downside? Having to share it with my boyfriend, which is why my bottle is now indefinitely housed on my desk at work to stop prying hands."

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Loewe – Paseando por la Calle Mayor

"A spritz of this floral, fruity fragrance is the perfect finishing touch to any summer outfit. The fresh scent is the equivalent of taking the first sip of a juicy cocktail on a warm summer evening. Bliss! Even better is that the bottle is wrapped in a beautiful buttery leather to match my prized Loewe handbag."

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Fleur de Force, Beauty & Lifestyle Influencer

Byredo – Bal D’Afrique

"Byredo’s stylish Bal D’Afrique is one of my most worn fragrances. It manages to be both unusual yet immensely (seemingly universally!) likeable at the same time. A rare feat. Combining Moroccan cedarwood, bergamot and notes of zesty lemon, it’s my go-to pick for summer."

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Jo Malone London – Velvet Rose & Oud Cologne Intense

"The oud for people who ‘don’t usually like oud’, this heady, sweet and velvety smooth scent always receives compliments whenever I wear it. People tend to be surprised when I tell them it’s Jo Malone as it may not be as recognisable as some of their other fragrances, but I’m so glad I discovered it."

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Grace Gargini, Beauty Editor at Selfridges

Frederic Malle – Portrait of a Lady

"It’s possible I’m swayed by the name, but I always feel like a grown-up when I wear Portrait of a Lady. When I say rose, don’t worry – this isn’t the powdery rose your grandma would douse herself in before your Sunday roast as a kid. This modern take blends rose essence with fresh berries, patchouli and sandalwood for a heady oriental twist. I reach for this on the days I want to feel elegant, poised and quietly confident. It’s the Audrey Hepburn of perfume."

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Escentric Molecules – Molecule 01

"Like an unsuspecting indie film winning the Palme d'Or at awards season, Molecule 01 quickly gained cult status through word of mouth and hardcore fandom. The scent itself is a pretty unique make up. It consists of one singular molecule – Iso E Super – which adapts to your natural pheromones, so it smells different on everyone. It’s an elusive little number that’s hard to pin down and is deceptively subtle – you might not even be able to smell it on yourself at times – but boy does it cause a commotion. I’ve had countless incidents of women quizzing me in the queue at Pret."

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The ones to watch

These up-and-coming fragrances are well on their way to achieving cult status.

1. Thameen – Patiala
This citrusy, mossy, musky delight is tricky to keep in stock in our Beauty Hall.

2. N.C.P Olfactive
After a decade of obsessing over scent, actress Noomi Rapace’s new fragrances are as chic as you’d expect.

3. Initio – Oud to Greatness
If you’re a fan of oud, get yourself to a counter to smell this delicious scent. Stat.

4. Paco Rabanne – Pacollection
The first new fragrances from the brand in over a decade, exclusive to Selfridges.

5. Chrome Hearts – +22+
Drumroll please… LA label Chrome Hearts is launching fragrance, exclusively at Selfridges. Stay tuned.

1. Thameen – Patiala
This citrusy, mossy, musky delight is tricky to keep in stock in our Beauty Hall.

2. N.C.P Olfactive
After a decade of obsessing over scent, actress Noomi Rapace’s new fragrances are as chic as you’d expect.

3. Initio – Oud to Greatness
If you’re a fan of oud, get yourself to a counter to smell this delicious scent. Stat.

4. Paco Rabanne – Pacollection
The first new fragrances from the brand in over a decade, exclusive to Selfridges.

5. Chrome Hearts – +22+
Drumroll please… LA label Chrome Hearts is launching fragrance, exclusively at Selfridges. Stay tuned.