The Best Powdery Perfumes for Every Single Scent Vibe


best powdery perfumes

18 Powdery Perfumes To Sniff ASAPCourtesy/Ying Chen

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Once upon a time, powdery perfumes were once classified as fragrances that smelled like powder cosmetic compacts and generally had notes of violet, orris, rose, and/or musks. Despite being considered classics, I honestly didn’t love them. They were always too mature and stuffy for me. But in 2023? Powdery perfumes have a whole new vibe, and are much more wearable IMO.

Today’s powdery perfumes are complex, thanks to the addition of notes like vanilla or sandalwood, says perfumer Bérénice Watteau. “Many powdery perfumes have a velvety and enveloping feel on the skin, making them a great fit for anybody who is looking for a warm, creamy fragrance,” Watteau explains. If this type of scent sounds appealing, then you’re in the right place, because I rounded up the 18 best powdery perfumes of 2023, below. I’ve personally spritzed and sniffed each one, and can confidently say there’s a powdery perfume on the list for every type of fragrance vibe.

Keep scrolling for the full list of best powdery perfumes, including lightweight body mists, luxe scents for special occasions, hair perfumes you can wear everyday, travel-friendly rollerball perfumes, and more.

You Eau de Parfum

This powdery musk from Glossier is one of the best-selling fragrances at Sephora for a reason. For me, the notes of pink pepper, iris and abrox are the scent equivalent of well-fitting jeans and a white t-shirt. Effortless, easy, and comfortable. When I want to feel like an elevated version of myself– not too fussy, but still polished– I always find myself reaching for the bottle.

Glowing customer review: “The perfect balance. If you hate heavy, thick scents or super floral scents, this is perfect. I bought this blind and it was the best perfume purchase I’ve ever made. It’s light, not overpowering, and smells amazing. I get so many compliments!”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fglossier-glossier-you-eau-de-parfum-P504364&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>You Eau de Parfum</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$68.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Xtra Milk Fragrance

Ever since I received a travel-sized sample of this powdery second-skin scent, I’ve been hooked. Bergamot, white musk, and amber come together to create a sweet and warm perfume that feels like being wrapped in a hug. Although it’s the amplified version of their “Milk” layering scent, I find that it’s the perfect intensity and yields all-day wear.

Glowing customer review: “I have never received so many compliments in my life until I started wearing this fragrance. It’s both warming and subtle but somehow catches the nose of anyone who comes close! Even my husband made a comment and that NEVER happens.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fcredobeauty.com%2Fproducts%2Fextra-milk-fragrance&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Xtra Milk Fragrance</p><p>credobeauty.com</p><p>$30.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

No 19 Eau De Parfum

This Chanel perfume is a tried-and-true powdery scent with notes of orris and iris, says Watteau. The scent got its name from Gabrielle Chanel’s birthday, August 19th, and it’s said to be one of the few fragrances that she wore regularly.

Glowing customer review: “I have been wearing No. 19 for about 30 years. Since I wear it daily it has become, what I would call, my signature scent. I once read that American women typically wear fragrance only for special occasions, and that wearing a favorite daily might be more fun/interesting/classic. I started doing this and have never regretted it. Thanks for being the perfect fragrance touchstone in my life.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.chanel.com%2Fus%2Ffragrance%2Fp%2F119530%2Fn19-eau-de-parfum-spray%2F&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>No 19 Eau De Parfum</p><p>chanel.com</p><p>$165.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Bohème Eau de Parfum

If you’re a fan of LoveShackFancy’s floral-printed dresses and whimsical designs, then you’re doing to love their new fragrance collection—especially their floral, powdery perfume called Bohème. The pretty pastel bottle houses a fragrance that’s floral and sweet, but still feels grown-up thanks to grounding notes of warm white amber and sandalwood.

Glowing customer review: “Wearing this scent makes me feel hot and powerful. The blackcurrant, peony, and white amber notes blend beautifully together. It’s the perfect balance of floral and warm. It’s mild which limits the longevity but I can’t stop wearing it!!!”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fboheme-eau-de-parfum-P507887&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Bohème Eau de Parfum</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$125.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Flower By Kenzo

This is another classic powdery perfume, according to Watteau. It’s a floral-forward scent (thanks to notes of pink pepper, violet, rose, and jasmine) and has a hint of vanilla and white musk too for a soft, creamy finish. IMO it’s the perfect everyday perfume with a little bit of a kick.

Glowing customer review: “This has been my go to fragrance for years. The fragrance is light and flowery. It lasts for quite a while and is never strong or overpowering. I always get compliments when I wear it.”

<p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000C230XU?tag=syn-yahoo-20&ascsubtag=%5Bartid%7C10049.g.45615422%5Bsrc%7Cyahoo-us" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Flower By Kenzo </p><p>amazon.com</p><p>$48.96</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

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Flower By Kenzo

amazon.com

$48.96

Suite 302 Eau de Parfum

If you’re as obsessed with the Beckham documentary as I am, you’ll appreciate that this scent was inspired by Victoria and David’s anniversary trips to Paris. It’s somewhat powdery and super sophisticated/sensual/moody thanks to notes of black cherry, rose centifolia, midnight violet, and tobacco leaf.

Glowing customer review: “I am a perfume collector. I have every perfume imaginable but none compare to Suite 302! I can’t even consider wearing any other scent again. I’m always asked what perfume I’m wearing because everyone loves it! You will NEVER regret this purchase! Oh, and did I mention it lasts and lasts and lasts.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fvictoriabeckhambeauty.com%2Fproducts%2Fsuite-302&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Suite 302 Eau de Parfum</p><p>victoriabeckhambeauty.com</p><p>$32.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Twilly d’Hermès Eau de Parfum

Named after the brand’s iconic “Twilly” scarves, this unexpected powdery perfume is infused with notes of ginger, sandalwood, and tuberose for a fun and youthful vibe. And just saying, it makes a really nice holiday gift for the girl in your life who’s been manifesting a Birkin.

Glowing customer review: “This isn’t my typical scent profile. I tend to go more spicy and less floral. However, the lightness of this really won me over. It’s floral without being overly sweet. My boyfriend said it smells amazing so I guess it wins.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nordstrom.com%2Fs%2F6726180&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Twilly d'Hermès Eau de Parfum</p><p>nordstrom.com</p><p>$148.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Aromatherapy Lavender Vanilla Pillow and Body Mist

This budget-friendly mist doubles as a pillow mist and powdery body mist. It’s formulated with lavender and vanilla and promises to envelop your linens (and your skin) in a dreamy haze that will help you drift off to sleep.

  • Scent type: Mist

  • Size: 5.3 fl oz

Glowing customer review: “I stopped wearing perfumes many years ago having developed an allergy to their sprays. I started wearing lavender instead. I never tire of the clean, relaxing scent on my skin and clothes. I was thrilled when l discovered this product. Its scent never tires or disappoints me. I can use it safely with no allergic response.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bathandbodyworks.com%2Fp%2Flavender-vanilla-pillow-and-body-mist-026662943.html&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Aromatherapy Lavender Vanilla Pillow and Body Mist</p><p>bathandbodyworks.com</p><p>$14.95</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

The Alchemist’s Garden Winter’s Spring Eau de Parfum

If you or a v bougie friend are in the market for an earthy, yet powdery scent, I’d recommend you take a whiff of this pick from Gucci. Drawing inspiration from the first blooms of spring, the juice inside the stunning bottle is filled with notes of mimosa, pepper, and musk.

Glowing customer review: “I love it! It smells just like mimosa flowers on the tree. It’s so bright and yellow floral, powdery and feminine. It’s absolutely beautiful. I love the squirrel on the bottle too.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nordstrom.com%2Fs%2F5519923&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>The Alchemist's Garden Winter's Spring Eau de Parfum</p><p>nordstrom.com</p><p>$384.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

The Signature Scent Hair Fragrance

I’m one of those people who tries to go as long as humanly possible without washing my hair. And contrary to what you may think, my secret weapon for keeping my strands smelling fresh in between washes isn’t dry shampoo, it’s this powdery hair perfume from Crown Affair. Unlike traditional fragrances, this non-drying formula is formulated without alcohol and is infused with hair-friendly hydrating agents like glycerin and aloe leaf extract.

  • Scent type: Hair mist

  • Size: 3.4 fl oz.

Glowing customer review: “I fell in love with the Crown Affair scent after purchasing the oil and deep conditioner and wished I could have it in a body mist/hair mist. And they delivered! I spray this into my hair on day two or day three and it freshens up the scent and lasts a decent amount of time. My favorite thing to do is spray it in my hair and then braid it. So good!”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fthe-signature-scent-hair-perfume-P507964&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>The Signature Scent Hair Fragrance</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$85.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Fresh Cream

Dessert lovers, listen up. Notes of whipped cream, butter cream, and tonka bean join forces in this beloved fragrance for a delicious aroma that’s reminiscent of fresh baked goods straight out of the oven. And unlike many vanilla fragrances, this doesn’t feel overly sweet or cloying thanks to a soft, powdery finish.

Glowing customer review: “I was looking for a vanilla girl aesthetic fragrance, and bought this on a whim after seeing someone recommend it on TikTok. It’s so perfect and the vanilla cream scent is lovely. Not overpowering or fake-y. I just wish the scent didn’t fade as quickly. It’s really a great everyday perfume, and I get so many compliments on it when I wear it!”

Not Your Baby Eau de Parfum

I love all of Phlur’s fragrances because they tell a story (Missing Person, anyone?), including Not Your Baby. This powdery composition of mimosa, cardamom, and bergamot melts with milky vanilla and tonka bean to create a playful and provocative feeling that I can’t get enough of.

Glowing customer review: “Smells amazing! I am a fragrance freak and collect perfumes and this is one of my favorite new ones. Also for me, this did last. I sprayed some on each wrist and could still smell it 14+hours later.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fphlur-not-your-baby-eau-de-parfum-P482726&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Not Your Baby Eau de Parfum</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$96.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Cashmine Vanilla Glow On Perfume Oil

The brand’s pillow sprays, body lotions, and candles brought me in, but this delicious rollerball oil keeps me coming back for more. It’s the perfect travel-sized fragrance, doesn’t break the bank, has a long-lasting finish, and it imparts a sense of calm thanks to vanilla, warm amber, and creamy musk notes

  • Scent type: Perfume oil

  • Size: .84 fl oz

Glowing customer review: “Wow! This smells amazing. It’s easily become one of my favorite perfumes. I love the fact that it’s oil-based because it lasts the whole day and a little goes a long way! It’s not too overpowering, but has such a warm and comforting scent.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.target.com%2Fp%2Fbeing-frenshe-glow-on-roll-on-fragrance-with-essential-oils-fresh-cashmere-vanilla-0-84-fl-oz%2F-%2FA-85360323&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Cashmine Vanilla Glow On Perfume Oil</p><p>target.com</p><p>$14.99</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Replica Bubble Bath

Powdery scents are often described as “clean,” but it doesn’t get much cleaner than this bubble bath-inspired number from Margiela. The fresh and floral combo calls in carefree memories of bathtime, but with an elevated feel courtesy of rose, musk, and coconut milk notes.

Glowing customer review: “I expected this to be more of a skin scent, but this perfume actually is has really good projection. It is such a nice clean scent, and the dry-down is nice too. Replica scents that I’ve tried always blow me away with their quality and longevity. This is a staple for me during the summer.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fmaison-margiela-replica-bubble-bath-P466135&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Replica Bubble Bath</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$85.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Chloé Eau de Parfum

Not to sound completely unhinged, but I named my dog after this perfume lol. To me, it’s a classic powdery scent that won’t go out of style and somehow smells amazing on everyone who wears it. After wearing it for 15+ years, I still smile when I smell the blend of floral and powdery notes on my skin.

Glowing customer review: “Hands down my favorite perfume of all time. It’s feminine and soft, but not overly sweet. The powdery/floral combo is light but noticeable and just makes me feel put together. A little goes a long way, and it lasts for hours, which makes the price point hurt a tiny bit less over time, lol. Can’t recommend this scent enough.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fchloe-eau-de-parfum-P256308&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Chloé Eau de Parfum</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$133.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

La Panthère Eau de Parfum Spray

This gardenia-heavy fragrance from Cartier is blended with a velvety musk accord to create a powdery floral scent that’s loved even by those who aren’t typically into floral scents. In true Cartier fashion, the fragrance lives in a stunning bottle that has a sculpted face of a panther on it, deeming it vanity-worthy IMO.

Glowing customer review: “I fell in love with this perfume immediately. I have many perfumes and usually like the lighter clean scents. This is strong but light classy but young! I can wear a little or a lot of it and I never get tired of it. I have other Cartier perfumes and if I spray more than one or two times I get a headache. This is not like that! It just makes me happy! I feel this is one I will wear for a long time.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nordstrom.com%2Fs%2F3709906&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>La Panthère Eau de Parfum Spray</p><p>nordstrom.com</p><p>$108.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Paradoxe Eau de Parfum

This fragrance is unexpected in the best way. As the name “paradoxe” implies, the scent feels both timeless and modern thanks to a blend of neroli, orange blossom, rose clove, and powdery orris notes. It’s just one of those special scents that keeps people guessing, ya know?

Glowing customer review: “I love this Eau de Parfum. it combines the right amount of flora, earthy, and white musk scents. All of which I like but never thought how wonderful they would all go together.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sephora.com%2Fproduct%2Fparadoxe-eau-de-parfum-P501198&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Paradoxe Eau de Parfum</p><p>sephora.com</p><p>$125.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

Allegra Magnifying Sandalwood Eau de Parfum

I’m super into fragrance layering and this line of single note magnifiers from Bulgari makes it a breeze. When I’m wearing something overly sweet or floral, adding a spritz of this sensual, musky scent helps to bring balance and warmth, creating a unique-to-me fragrance. It can be worn on its own, too, and offers surprising lasting power.

Glowing customer review: “This perfume is one of my new absolute favorites!!! I love the long lasting scent and the super pleasant bright mustiness of the sandalwood. It’s soft, feminine, delicious and elegant!! Great smell that lasts hours after applying.”

<p><a href="https://go.redirectingat.com?id=74968X1596630&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bloomingdales.com%2Fshop%2Fproduct%2Fbvlgari-allegra-magnifying-sandalwood-eau-de-parfum-1.35-oz.&sref=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cosmopolitan.com%2Fstyle-beauty%2Fbeauty%2Fg45615422%2Fbest-powdery-perfumes%2F" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Shop Now;elm:context_link;itc:0" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Shop Now</a></p><p>Allegra Magnifying Sandalwood Eau de Parfum</p><p>Bloomingdales</p><p>$195.00</p><p></div></div></div><div class=

How to choose a powdery perfume:

Look for a fragrance with contrasting notes.

Watteau says that just like adding a touch of sea salt to chocolate to bring out its flavor, choosing a fragrance with contrasting notes will help it to really shine.“Powdery notes are fluffy, enveloping a super soft and comforting feeling if they’re well balanced, but without this element of contrast it can become dense and heavy or dry and suffocating,” Watteau says. She recommends going for something with a complementary green, citrus, or woody note to allow the fragrance to “breathe” and become more dimensional.

Consider others cent families you enjoy.

Powdery perfumes have evolved in recent years and because of this, many more fragrances that fit into the powder category than ever before. That means if you like florals, earthy scents, spicy fragrances, or even deep, more mysterious scents, you’ll be able to find a powdery perfume for your vibe. I recommend to shop by your your primary fragrance category first, and then look for words like “soft” “smooth” or “powdery” in the description.

When possible, sample before you buy.

Because fragrance can smell totally different from person to person, it’s helpful to try before you buy. If you’ve ever walked through the fragrance floor at a department store, you know that there are an endless number of tester strips available to you, so if there’s a fragrance you’re interested in, sample a spritz and see how the scent wears on your skin throughout the day.

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Meet the expert:

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Why trust Cosmopolitan?

Lisa DeSantis is a freelance writer who has been in the beauty industry for nearly ten years. She began her career in beauty and fashion at QVC and has since written for and contributed to top women’s magazines and digital brands such as Health, Real Simple, Cosmopolitan, Motherly, Byrdie and more. She has tested thousands of products and considers herself a professional guinea pig who’s always on the search for the next big trends in beauty, wellness, and beyond.

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