You have likely heard of patchouli, but when most people are asked what it smells like, they are left blank. But there is no doubt that you would recognize this scent the moment it hits your nose. That is because patchouli is the most widely used fragrance in perfume and forms a heady and rich base of hundreds of perfumes.
It is versatile and frequently used in fragrances for both men and women and many different fragrance families. There are so many beautiful perfumes with patchouli out there that it can quickly become like a perfume minefield. But our list of the best patchouli perfume will demonstrate some of the most well-loved.
About Perfumes With Patchouli
There are not many fragrances that do not use patchouli in one way or another. This is the most popular scent used in creating fragrances, and it is not limited to perfumes. Patchouli is widely used in home fragrance products like candles and air fresheners as well as cosmetic products.
It is so popular because it is one of the most intense scents and has an unmistakable aroma that can be overpowering if used in large quantities.
Patchouli is a rich and earthy scent that can be sweet or spicy. It is so diverse and can be paired with many other scents, further demonstrating why it is so frequently used. Perfumes that contain patchouli are usually woody and aromatic, but there are many floral fragrances. In the 1990s, patchouli was popular in gourmand perfumes and is still used for these sweeter fragrances today.
17 Best Patchouli Scented Perfumes
Since patchouli is one of the most common base notes used in perfumes, it is not surprising that there are many fragrances that contain it. When you look for patchouli-based perfume, you will undoubtedly find many options. These are some of what we believe to be the best patchouli perfumes available.
1. Patchouli 24 Le Labo
You might be forgiven for thinking that this was medicine rather than perfume. But that is reminiscent of the brand and gives a unique character to the perfume before you have even opened the bottle.
This is a woody chypre fragrance for men and women. Although, most would agree that it errs slightly more on the masculine side. It is undoubtedly a fragrance that will stay with you; just a few sprays will see you through the day and beyond.
The perfume is ideal for a warm winter’s evening by the fire and has an indulgent and seductive aroma. The top notes of patchouli combine with a heart of birch and styrax for a simple yet delightful blend. This is followed by an intense vanilla base for a sweeter finish.
If you love an earthy and smoky fragrance, this brings those accords together effortlessly in one of the richest and luxurious patchouli perfumes.
2. Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris
Mon Paris is a glamorous and girly fragrance that is presented in a flacon that matches this personality. Yves Saint Laurant launched this modern take on their classic Paris fragrance in 2016, and it has become the go-to scent for millions of women. It is sweet yet sensual and works well for everyday wear.
This Chypre perfume comprises a beautiful head of raspberry, pear, strawberry, and orange for an unexpected fruity start. The middles notes are jasmine and peony, complemented by a base of patchouli, cedar, and moss. This is a truly unique mix of scents that is sure to captivate.
The perfume was designed to dazzle, and it certainly does that with its modern and enticing aroma. It is perfect for romantic women with a sense of adventure. It is great for wearing during the day before, allowing the superb longevity to linger into an evening with a lover.
3. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle
Chanel brings us this delightfully feminine and pure Oriental floral fragrance different from any other perfume in this fragrance family. You might expect an intensely woody accord but what you are treated to is far lighter and unexpected.
The perfume comes in a beautiful bottle that is typical of the brand; classy, elegant, and luxurious. This scent was launched in 2001 and has since been a favorite of many women due to its versatility; wear at any time of the year and for all occasions.
The fragrance begins with a hit of fruity notes, including bergamot, orange, and grapefruit, before revealing a floral heart of rose and jasmine. The base has indulgent patchouli with vanilla and musk.
Coco Mademoiselle is the ideal fragrance for a youthful woman who is daring, spontaneous, and brave. Someone who wants to live life to the full with all of the most luxurious things.
4. Flowerbomb Viktor&Rolf
This is one of the most iconic perfumes of recent times and has had women clamoring to own a bottle. It is not surprising when you take your first inhale of its incredible scent. Flowerbomb is an oriental floral perfume that is fresh, vibrant, and invigorating. It can be worn when you want to lift your mood and feel at your best.
The top notes are tea, bergamot, and osmanthus and these are followed by middle notes of rose, orchid, and jasmine. The dry down reveals a heady base of musk and patchouli that is beautifully long-lasting and aromatic.
This glamorous fragrance would work well for women who want a signature scent that is unmistakable and that they can wear for all occasions. It is sophisticated and yet light with a hint of fun.
5. Givenchy L’Interdit
In 2018, Givenchy launched this Oriental floral fragrance for women that is unlike any other scent on the market. Perhaps, apart from its predecessor, the original L’Interdit from 1957 which was dedicated to none other than Audrey Hepburn.
This is a glamorous, intoxicating, and unique fragrance that will leave a heavy trail behind the wearer, perfect for those who want to draw attention to themselves. It is a perfume that will create memories owing to its unique blend of notes. Top notes of pear and bergamot deliver a fresh start with a heart of orange blossom, jasmine sambac, and tuberose. The base is unapologetic and features patchouli, amber, and vetiver that goes on all day.
L’interdit is about the thrill of the forbidden and works well for daring women who want to take charge and live life their way.
6. White Patchouli Tom Ford
Tom Ford is known for their luxurious range of scents, and this one is just as luxurious and opulent as the rest of them. Made for ladies, the perfume has an accompanying body lotion, which offers a subtle hint of this fragrance for those days when you don’t want to be over-announced. Or wear the two together for an intense fragrance experience.
Top notes are white flower, coriander, and bergamot giving you a fresh head, quickly followed by a musky heart of musk and jasmine. The base is patchouli and woody notes, and this will linger well.
This is a strong and sweet perfume that is elegant and sophisticated. This personality is replicated in the white and gold bottle that oozes class.
7. Nightfall Patchouli Carolina Herrera
Patchouli is often seen to be a heavy scent, and if you want a patchouli-based perfume that doesn’t shy away, then this is for you. It is deep and daring, sensual, and dark.
Made for both men and women, this is a versatile fragrance but is best worn during the hours of the night. The fragrance was inspired by the energy of night time and the mystery of the dark. Perfect for a winter’s evening, this is a warm and spicy fragrance that will capture and demand attention wherever you go.
It has an incredible sillage but a simple blend of notes that don’t take away from the patchouli. Patchouli is paired with cinnamon and benzoin for a deep aromatic experience like no other.
8. Patchouli Imperial Christian Dior
This is one of the most celebrated patchouli-based perfumes of recent times, and since it’s launch in 2018, it has made a lasting impression on fragrance fans around the world.
It is a unisex fragrance that is strong and captivating. It would be an excellent scent for lovers who wanted to share a fragrance, and how it dries on the skin would be a beautiful complement.
The notes come together effortlessly for an extremely well-balanced perfume. Beginning with fresh bergamot and mandarin orange, you soon notice middle notes of cinnamon, coriander, and rose. The base is complex but perfectly aligned with patchouli, amber, cedar, tonka bean, sandalwood, and vanilla.
This is a unique fragrance that cannot be compared to anything else but is sophisticated and elegant.
9. Moonlight Patchouli Van Cleef & Arpels
One of the first things that you notice about this perfume is the beautiful bottle, which is dark and classy, a true focal point as it sits on the vanity unit. The fragrance inside is just as classy and uses a unique blend of scents for a perfume that would make a great signature scent.
Top notes of patchouli leaf and cacao offer a rich opening before a floral heart of Bulgarian rose and iris. The base is rich and intense, leather and suede with a surprising hint of fruity notes.
Wear Moonlight Patchouli on a fall evening or on a winter walk through crisp woodland to capture a feeling of being at one with nature. This earthy, woody Chypre fragrance will last incredibly well on the skin while leaving an enormous sillage behind you.
10. Amber & Patchouli Jo Malone
Jo Malone is known for her simplistic approach to fragrance; never will you see her using overly complex accords. This perfume is a perfect example of this. A simple blend of amber, patchouli, and guaiac wood come together for an Oriental woody fragrance that entices and allures.
The fragrance was inspired by the warm evenings of the Middle East, and you certainly get this feeling when wearing the fragrance.
It is perfect for both men and women and is a versatile perfume that suits a variety of occasions, all times of the year and any time of the day.
However, this is not an overbearing fragrance. A few spritzes of this will be enough to captivate those in the nearby vicinity without being too much.
11. Fleur de Patchouli Zara
This perfume is part of the Emotions collection by Zara and is an elegant yet mysterious woody fragrance for men and women. It has an air of mystery but is also incredibly uplifting, which makes this a rather diverse fragrance.
But with that in mind, one should remember that this is not a complex scent; it comprises a simple blend of guaiac wood, patchouli, and peony. The nose behind this fragrance was Jo Malone, famed for her incredible talent at effortlessly blending scents, and it shows in this fragrance.
This is an ideal fragrance for people who are creative and want to display this element of their character in their scent. It is modern and simple yet would make an ideal signature scent.
12. Himalayan Patchouli Berry Pacifica
The first thing you notice about this perfume is the delightfully exotic bottle with a splash of red. The bouquet is as bright and inviting as the bottle and has been inspired by the festivals in Nepal for the spring equinox. Here, people are adorned in flowers and color, and this is replicated in the scent.
It is an aromatic, fruity fragrance that symbolizes new beginnings and love, perhaps ideal for a first date. But its fresh scent would also work well for day to day use, especially during the spring and summer months.
It brings together a unique combination of patchouli, sugar, grapefruit, and geranium that delivers an unmistakable scent. This is another unisex fragrance, although a lot of fragrance lovers might say that this is slightly more feminine.
13. Burberry My Burberry
When we tell you that the original Burberry trench coat partially inspires this fragrance, you may have a difficult time placing how it will smell. But when you find out that it also draws inspiration from a garden after the rain, the freshness and natural character begin to become apparent.
This perfume was released in 2014 for women and came in a spectacularly feminine bottle with a pretty gold bow. This represents the contents perfectly; it is feminine, luxurious, and light. It brings together top notes of bergamot, sweet pea, and lemon with a heart of freesia and peach. The base is rose, musk, and patchouli and will stay with you all day.
You could wear this to an art gallery opening or a lunch in a top hotel with friends; it screams class yet with a modern twist. It is vibrant and energetic and perfect for the lively, modern woman.
14. Patchouli Ardent Guerlain
If you were to imagine a genie’s bottle, you might picture this; this is exotic and alluring with royal blue and gold accents. The fragrance is made for all genders and is the perfect perfume for evening wear; an opulent ball or an intimate dinner party, perhaps.
There is no denying that this is an incredibly seductive scent and has a woofy floral accord with a deep muskiness. It has a head of fig and pink and black pepper with a heart of patchouli, rose, and cedar—something of an unconventional combination. The base is leather and musk and leaves a delicious and tantalizing trail behind you.
This is an excellent go-to fragrance for anyone who wants to show their seductive side or those who have a deep-seated sensuality that has to shine through.
15. Tempo Diptyque
Tempo is presented in a bottle that is unique to the Diptyque range, so you immediately know where this has come from. Inside, you will find a unisex fragrance that is earthy and aromatic-spicy.
One of the newer perfumes from the brand, released in 2018, Tempo is unique and intriguing. Not only this, but it is also extremely versatile with an accord that works well during the day or the evening.
The unique blend of notes includes patchouli, clary sage, mate, pink pepper, violet leaf, and bergamot. It is fresh yet spicy, and unlike any other fragrance on the market. Wear this to enchant a lover or to grab attention at an important event. It is a fragrance that won’t go unnoticed but also will not be over-pronounced.
16. New York Patchouli Bond No 9
There is something about this perfume that is fun, lively, and effortless. We aren’t sure whether it is the vibrant bottle that instantly captures your attention or the luxurious and fresh fragrance within. But one thing is for certain; this is a perfume that will leave a lasting impression.
Ir is a unisex Oriental floral fragrance that blends rose water with litchi and bergamot at the head for a very fresh start. The heart comprises lilac, patchouli, and lily before revealing a base of cedar, amber, and musk. It will leave behind an incredible sillage and has a longevity that cannot be rivaled, but it is not in your face.
This is the perfect perfume for summertime wear owing to its fresh character and will do just as well in the day as it will as an evening fragrance.
17. Dark Lord By Kilian
Made for men and with one of the sexiest and intriguing accords on the market, Dark Lord is not for the timid. This is a fragrance made for a man who is confident, sophisticated, and knows exactly what he wants. It exudes luxury and will seduce with a single spray; think of Christian Grey.
The perfume was created with the gentleman of the night in mind, and as such, this complements an evening event perfectly.
It has a natural elegance and blends bergamot and pepper at the head with a heart of rum and jasmine sambac. The intense base of leather, patchouli, and cedar goes on for days. There is no denying that this is one of the most attention-grabbing patchouli-based perfumes currently available.
How To Choose Your Patchouli Perfume
Patchouli is a scent that will certainly divide people; there is no denying that you will either love or hate this scent. Since patchouli is often used in the base notes of a fragrance, it is often one of the last things you will notice about the scent, so it is worth looking at the notes before purchasing your perfume.
If you want a lighter patchouli-based perfume, you should go for something with intense citrus accords at the head, followed by a floral heart. This will deliver a fresh and sweet patchouli perfume that won’t be overpowering.
Conversely, if you love the aroma of patchouli and want something deeply rooted in this scent, you would opt for something that combines patchouli with few other scents. This will allow the aroma to come through. You might also use a fragrance that pairs patchouli with woody notes for a spicy and rich accord.
Full Guide On Perfumes With Patchouli
Patchouli is a plant from the mint family, although unlike its cousins that smell fresh and cool, this plant has an earthy and spicy aroma. It is often said to be earthy and is closely associated with the hippy movement of the 1960s.
The plant is a bush that can grow up to a meter in height and bursts with small white and purple flowers. It does not have much of an aroma when fresh, but when you dry out the leaves, that familiar aroma will be revealed. The patchouli plant’s essential oil is extracted from the dried leaves using a steam distillation process; much is the case for many essential oils.
Patchouli is native to South Asia in more tropical regions; in fact, almost 90% of all the world’s supply of the plant comes from Indonesia. Other areas where the plant is abundant are China, the Philippines, and Malaysia, all of which export the leaves. Patchouli is such a popular ingredient in the perfume industry and other fragrance industries like candles and home fragrances that more than 1500 tons of leaves are used annually around the world. Would you believe that it takes 250kg of patchouli leaves to make just 1kg of oil?
In the countries where patchouli grows natively, it has been used for many thousands of years in medicines and even in magic. There is a belief in some cultures that a potion containing patchouli might spur you forward in your love life as well as with your finances. But it was not until the 19th century that Europeans began to appreciate this aromatic plant’s qualities.
In the 19th century, silks were ordered to France from the East, but they were susceptible to damage from moths. Since patchouli is known to be a moth repellent, the silks were wrapped in patchouli leaves as they made their long journey down the silk road. Once the silks reached Paris, they were highly fragrant. The women who would wear them reveled in the scent of patchouli and sued this to seduce their lovers.
As news spread, patchouli soon made an appearance in Victorian England, where the wealthy would use the dried leaves in their potpourri. At this time, it was seen as a social status to be able to fragrance your home.
Since this time, the West has enjoyed the fragrance of patchouli, and in the 1960s, the scent really took off thanks to the hippy movement. People would buy small vials of patchouli oil and use it to mark their newfound Eastern spirituality. It was also linked with a new sexual liberation that had never before been seen in this culture. There is also some suggestion that patchouli’s fragrant aroma was often used to mask the potent smell of cannabis, which was widely used by those in the movement.
However, by the 1980s, it would appear that the Western world had tired of the intense fragrance of patchouli, and as such, perfumes containing the oil dwindled in popularity. However, by the 1990s, perfumers once again saw its appeal and reintroduced it in gourmand perfumes that were a huge hit with the younger people of the time.
From that moment to this, we have seen patchouli become one of the most widely used scents in the perfume industry, and it forms the base of many of the most iconic fragrances today.
Frequently Asked Questions On Perfumes With Patchouli
How to pronounce patchouli?
Patchouli is pronounced in a similar way as it is spelled; ‘puh – choo – lee’
What does patchouli smell like?
Patchouli is a strong smell that is both sweet and earthy. It is incredibly long-lasting.
Which perfumes have patchouli scent?
There are thousands of perfumes that use patchouli in their base, thanks to its strong nature. Some of the most famous are Marc Jacobs, Perfect and Fusion D’Issey by Issey Miyake.
What is the best patchouli perfume?
According to many fragrance fans, Tom Ford White Patchouli is widely accepted to be the best patchouli perfume.
When did patchouli become a popular perfume?
Patchouli first became widely used in fragrance in the 19th century in England. It was commonly used in potpourri in Victorian times, thanks to its potent aroma.
What does patchouli pair with in perfume making?
Patchouli goes very well with floral scents like rose and geranium but also pairs well with woody notes like sandalwood and cedar.
Final Thoughts On Patchouli Perfume
Patchouli is a rich and enticing fragrance that far outdoes all others in terms of longevity. For this reason, it is often used as a perfume base and is loved by many around the world.
It is a distinct smell that some people find too much. However, thanks to the clever combinations that we see in modern perfumery, you can take just a hint of patchouli or, if you prefer, a deeply intense fragrance.