Fragrance Trends of 2020 and predictions for 2021

Happy New Year, everyone!

2020 has finally ended! Hopefully, 2021 will bring happiness and better perfumes. In this post, I am going to share designer fragrance trends of 2020 and predictions for 2021 based on 28 designer fragrances of 2020 and the current situation. I am going to list the fragrances at the end of this post and if you do not want to read, feel free to watch my youtube video linked above.

Trend 1:

Parfum and Intense

The biggest trend of 2020 was that most of the flankers of men’s fragrances are parfums and that of the ladies were intenses. For example, we had Jean Paul Gaultier La Male Le Parfum, Paco Rabanna Million Parfum, Tom Ford Black Orchid Parfum for men and for ladies, we had YSL Libre Intense, Lancome Idole Intense, Lancome La Vie Est Belle Intensement, Givenchy L’interdit Intense and Armani Si Passioni Intense.

One of the most frequently asked questions about fragrances on the sales floors is if a fragrance is a perfume or “toilet water”! For those of you, who don’t know what toilet water is, it is the same as EDT or eau de toilette that many brits like to call toilet water. Don’t laugh! Blame the French. The brands are doing what people demanded. You may argue that they made people demand it first. For the love of marketing that keeps businesses profitable to continue what they do, let’s not argue. Let us all enjoy flushing down the poor toilet waters, although there isn’t any rule to have a certain concentration of fragrance oil to call something an EDT or a parfum.

Trend 2:

Refillable Fragrances

Clean, conscious, sustainable, ethical, vegan, cruelty free and recyclable are on the rise but not quiet there yet. However, refills are making great strides. In the designer realm, besides Mugler and Hermes, we now have refils from Lancome, Dior and Armani (Lancome Idole refill, Giorgio Armani My Way refill and Dior Sauvage refill). Rather than releasing limited edition bottles, the industry is moving towards refillables. This is better for the environment due to less heavy packaging, that leads to less carbon footprint while shipping worldwide. This is also going to help customers save some money, especially since the economy is not at its best due to Covid19.

Trend 3:

Gender Benders

Although Moschino Toyboy is agendwr neutral fragrance from men’s side, most other men’s releases of 2020 were traditionally masculine. I am not sure if women are more open to gender benders than men, but I think ladies fragrances are starting to smell more unisex than ever before. The biggest examples are YSL Libre(2019) and Libre Intense(2020), which are both fougeres. Fougere is traditionally a mens fragrance family that has been adopted in female fragrances recently with theses fragrances. The other example is Boss Alive(2020). Although this is not marketed as androgynous or unisex, it is a woody aromatic, which is again more common in mens fragrances than ladies. Due to the similarities with Boss Bottled range and “barely there femininity” of jasmine, it smells unisex in my opinion. Apart from these three gender neutrals, vetiver, a traditionally masculine woody note, is seeping in the ladies fragrances like in Carolina Hererra Good Girl Supreme, Givenchy L’interdit Intense and YSL Libre Intense. Vetiver in female fragrances is not new, but I think in 2021, vetiver might bring more masculinity by being more prominently woody in ladies fragrances to make them gender benders.

Trend 4:

Exotic Fragrances

Holiday inspired fragrances featuring seascape and landscape for us to escape lockdown may become popular in 2021. Existing travel inspired fragrance ranges like Dior Escale or garden range of Hermes are probably going to be more appreciated because of all the cancelled holidays of 2020 and the uncertainties of travelling in 2021. Exotic flowers, fruits and spices may become more prominent in fragrances to enjoy during staycations.

Exotic flowers like tuberose might find a spotlight in 2021. Tuberose is nothing new this year, but it has a reputation of being too old school. In the last few years, fragrances like Gucci bloom and Givenchy l’interdit and their flankers brought this beautiful flower to the forefront. In 2020, tuberose started to bloom from more brands. Armani my way is a new pillar fragrance of 2020, that featured travel in the campaign and has tuberose as a dominant note. Besides, Dior J’adore’s flanker infinissime (2020), Jean Paul Gaultier so scandal (2020) and 2019’s scandal by night, L’interdit intense (2020) followed by L’interdit edt and edp have tuberose as a dominant note. In 2021, I hope to see some fresh and less cloying tuberose fragrances with other exotic floral notes like gardenia and ylang ylang.

Besides tuberose, I think exotic fruity fragrances like Mugler’s Angel Nova(2020) with lychee as a dominant note might be more appreciated. We have seen some mens fragrances with cardamom in 2020 like Jean Paul Gaultier La Male Le Parfum and Boss Bottled EDP and I think, alongside this popular spice, some other spices might become more popular than ever before.

Trend 5:

Sociable fragrances

Due to quarantine and social distancing, we have a lot to catch up with. I believe, we are going to be more sociable and have probably rekindled some old friendships. While being imprisoned by Covid19, grieving for all the lost lives and wondering if our old friends are safe made us rethink sociabilities. In terms of fragrances, it means inoffensive, mass appealing and comforting fragrances for the anticipated meetings. We might get some boozy ones to compensate for all the missed night outs of 2020. For the business point of view, it means until the economy is stable, there wont be any polarising fragrances. Fragrance houses are probably going to take low risks for stable sales while comforting people.

If you have read this far, please like this post and comment below to share your thoughts and predictions.

List of 28 designer fragrances released in 2020:

1. Jean Paul Gaultier La Male Le Parfum

2. Carolina Hererra Good Girl Supreme

3. D&G K EDP

4. Boss Alive

5. YSL Libre Intense

6. Valentino Voce Viva

7. Mugler Angel Nova

8. Paco Rabanne Million Parfum

9. Moschino Toyboy

10. Lancome Idole Intense

11. Lancome La Vie Est Belle Intensement

12. Boss Bottled EDP

13. Gucci Guilty EDP Pour Homme

14. Dior J’adore Infinissime

15. Giorgio Armani My Way

16. Givenchy L’interdit Intense

17. Black Orchid Parfum

18. Givenchy Irresistible

19. Fusion D’Issey

20. Tommy Impact

21. Lacoste Match Point

22. Victor & Rolf Spicebomb Night Vision

23. Miss Dior Rose & Roses

24. Dior Homme 2020

25. Jimmy Choo Blossom 2020

26. Marc Jacobs Perfect

27. Jean Paul Gaultier So Scandal

28. Ariana Grande REM

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