chanel fragrance - Best Summer Perfumes For Women

With the upcoming summer season upon us, it’s time to refresh your fragrance collection. In today’s article about the best summer perfumes for women, you’ll find that smelling fabulous ain’t exclusive only to colder seasons.

All those who are anticipating summer vacation know that as the days grow warmer and longer, we tend to wear fresher scents that are effervescent and airy.

Some may also know that just one spritz of our favorite perfume can instantly transform us to our favorite locations we previously visited and reminds us of the people we shared these moments with.

This goes even further, and according to South Tree – “Smell is in fact the strongest human sense, and contrary to popular belief, maybe just as powerful as the snout sniffers in dogs and rodents (to certain degrees).”

Olfactory memory was the main idea around which this article about summer fragrances for ladies was created, and us the fact that you are getting a bit of advice from the opposite sex which also gives you an idea of how men perceive the scents ladies wear during summertime.

My previous article in the same vein as this one but for men strived to provide more than just a random top 10 list and also included more about perfumery in general, shopping tips, and more so that you have everything you need before you purchase a perfume.

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Professional perfume tips

In this section of the best summer perfumes for Women article, you’ll find perfumes chosen by a man who brings a breath of fresh air into this topic.

As for me, I always either test these perfumes on myself, or on my girlfriend so that I get a clear picture of the scent development, longevity, and sillage.

The following section serves as an educational tool before the actual list if you haven’t already read it in my previous edition of best summer fragrances for Men.

What defines summer perfumes?

When we think about summer, what kind of association comes to your mind first? Sea, vacation, suntan lotion, sand, juicy fruits, cocktails, and more. Right?

So, in terms of scent, it’s not strange to see summer perfumes made of similar vibrant notes such as the following:

  • peony
  • lemon
  • orange
  • green tea
  • magnolia
  • light woods
  • musks
  • sea notes
  • ambroxan
  • neroli
  • peach
  • jasmine
  • rose

These easygoing notes, which uplift our mood, set the tone for the following topic.

Fragrance families

Fragrance families are a classification system used by the perfume industry in order to place different scents into olfactive groups.

Besides olfactive groups, in the perfumes word, we also have two other terms:

  • Notes
  • Accords

Notes are commonly known as perfume indigents, and accords are “fantasy” notes made from several other notes to get one distinct accord(note).

Notes and accords are separated into three different classes known as the perfume pyramid:

  • Top Notes
  • Middle Notes
  • Base Notes

Each of the separate note stages is carefully created by perfumes to evaporate accordingly.

For example, top notes such as citruses evaporate faster than for instance, Cedarwood and Vetiver found in the middle or base stage of the perfume.

In modern perfumery, accords are a vital part of creating a harmonious blend of two or more notes into a distinctive smell.


The fragrance wheel is a great tool to determine what kind of scents you may like. As you can see, colors blend into each other, and opposite colors clash.

The groups bordering one another tend to share common scent characteristics, similarities, and differences in their odor profile.

The main groups of Oriental, Floral, Woody, and Fresh and also divided into sub-groups and it is a great place to start for perfume beginners.

For example, woody and oriental families share the common warm and dry theme, while fresh and florals are sparkly, powdery, and airy.

Read more about fragrance families and fragrance wheel here.

Fragrance strengths & perfume concentrations

Fragrance strengths and perfume concentrations refer to raw material oil concentration, and affect sillage and projection.

All perfume products fall into these main categories:

  • Eau Fraiche 1-3%
  • After Shave/Mist/Splash 1-3%
  • Eau de Cologne 2-4%
  • Eau de Toilette 5-15%
  • Eau de Parfum 15-20%
  • Pure Parfum/Extrait de Parfum 20-40%

For an easy way to visual guide to see the concentration differences, check out the infographic below.


Read more about this topic here.

How to wear perfume

If you have ever wondered why your perfume may only last about an hour or two, the reason may be that you are not wearing your perfume the best way.

Here are five top tips on how should you wear perfume:

  1. Find your favorite perfume – it’s important to test potential perfume many times before purchasing. Always spray the perfume on the skin when testing.
  2. Choose the scent for the right occasion/season – The daytime fragrance is usually lighter, citrusy, effervescent, and lasts less while nighttime fragrances are stronger and denser with “heavier” notes. That’s why it’s important to consider what kind of perfume you want before buying and choosing the right perfume for particular occasions and seasons. This also applies to your job and your lifestyle.
  3. Spray perfume on the skin – The ideal way of wearing the perfume is by applying it directly to the skin. Perfume products are made to best interact with our skin and our body heat.
  4. Don’t rub your skin – Instead of rubbing the perfume into the wrists, after spraying the perfume, you can gently dab the wrists a couple of times, and keep this habit without affecting the perfume.
  5. Spraying less is often more – Many people overspray their perfume, and block their scent receptors. To avoid this happening to you, do not spray more than 2 to 4 sprays maximum.

Read more about wearing perfume here.

Perfume shopping tips

No matter if you are a beginner or an experienced lad in the perfume game, there are always a good couple of perfume shopping rules you should follow:

Thankfully, we are living in a digital age where almost everything and anything is just a few clicks away. Besides Scent Grail, there are many fantastic websites about perfume to do proper research before ever going into a perfume shop or buying online.

These ones I recommend:

  1. Fragrantica – best for checking out new perfume releases.
  2. Basenotes – knowledgeable perfume community
  3. Parfumo – the best mix of both

Those who like are more into watching videos, there is a huge fragrance community on YouTube that provides great information about perfume reviews, tips & tricks, and interviews with perfumers.

Read more about which Fragrance Reviewers that I still watch.

The third great option for doing perfume research is by joining some of the many fragrance groups found on Facebook such as:

  1. The Fragrance Guru Nation
  2. Fragcomm Bangladesh
  3. Gents Scents Fragrance Family

Last, but not least, before buying any perfume, don’t forget to check out my S.P.A. Signature Factor Guide. It is the easiest and the most relevant fragrance-buying guide on the web.

Perfumes are not cheap. Especially, if you are buying more than one perfume per month. Personally, I shop retail only in cases when I cannot get a hold of perfume online, or the price is similar to those found via fragrance discounters.

Sampling a perfume at least five times before a purchase is a golden rule, and that’s where retailers are your best friends.

I have created a whole article based on the best fragrance discounters so that you can get safe and affordable perfume deals.

While it may get tempting to test everything in sight, now that you came to the perfume shop, pick three, spray one on the neck and the wrists, and let it rest for about 15 seconds before smelling them.

Olfactory fatigue is a real thing, especially if you are sampling stronger stuff like 1 Million or Mugler Angel.

Spraying the perfume on the skin is a must, even though I suspect you already know that by testing the perfume via paper blotter, it’s not the same deal since the fragrance doesn’t get to develop as it would on your skin.

I understand if some of you may be a little shy to talk to sales associates or know more from them which is much more common than you may think, but it’s nice to talk about perfume with someone knowledgeable, and hey, you may even learn something new.

Since you are going to do this the right way, there’s no need to “reset” your olfactive palette and smell the coffee beans.

Before your rush and purchase the fragrance straight away, step outside the shop and enjoy the experience.

Read more about perfume shopping tips here.

The best summer perfumes for women: The List

beach next to the road

It’s always more challenging for me to delve into the ladies’ side of perfumery since I mostly wear unisex or men’s fragrances which made this list even more fun to do.

Not to forget to mention that I get an occasional strange look in perfume shops when testing women’s perfume in fragrance shops which was also neat.

Without further ado, let’s see which best summer perfumes for women made the latest Scent Grail list.

1. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle

Why have I picked Coco Mademoiselle: I can hardly think about any other fragrance out there that smells so elegant and works this good in the heat as Coco Mademoiselle.

Citrus top notes make this perfume modern, while heavier notes such as the patchouli and rose to make it timeless. Coco Mademoiselle is still one of the most-sold ladies’ perfumes in the world even after 20 years of its release which just proves that fact.

Also stands as one of the most wearable Chanel’s up to this date, and probably the last Chanel for ladies that made such a big impact on the fashion world.

It is very warm, but I could see this being worn all year round with herbal notes blending with flowers/woods and giving it a full-bodied experience. A perfume every woman should have in their collection.

  • Perfumer: Jacques Polge
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Parfum
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Woody
  • Release Date: 2001
  • Most dominant notes: Orange, Rose, and Patchouli
  • Age Group: 18+
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer, and Fall
  • Occasions: Any occasion
  • Longevity and Sillage: 24 hours with great projection
  • Uniqueness: 5/5
  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Yellow, Brown, Green
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A+

2. Hermès Eau des Merveilles

Why have I picked Eau des Merveilles: If you had slept on this masterpiece until now, it is the perfect time to discover it before the summer heat hits. Coming from Hermes, a brand equally important in the perfume world as Dior or Chanel, I guarantee you’ll fall in love with airy Eau des Merveilles that wears like a second skin.

A well-blended bitter orange scent with a tad of sweetness that gets more resinous and woody as the scent dries down while not overpowering the citruses.

I also get a touch of saltiness, metallic notes, and a powder depending on the which time of the year I smell it. Usually linear but it’s a chameleon in disguise that doesn’t project too much, and lats just enough to get you through the working day.

Some have mentioned that Eau des Merveilles leans on the unisex side, which I agree with. It does resemble the orange found in the Terre d’Hermes.

  • Perfumer: Ralf Schwieger and Nathalie Feisthauer
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Oriental
  • Release Date: 2004
  • Most dominant notes: Orange, Amber, and Fir
  • Age Group: 18+
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer, and Fall
  • Occasions: Leisure
  • Longevity and Sillage: 4 – 6 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 4/5
  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Brown, Green, Orange
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A+

3. Elizabeth Arden Green Tea

Why have I picked Green Tea: One thing I didn’t know until now was that Green Tea was made by the famous Francis Kurkdjian who has its own line which goes for quite a good buck.

Now, about Green Tea. I mean, there’s nothing to dislike about this creation. Easy to wear everyday scent with citrus/green scent profile. A refreshing and light creation to start your day on the right foot, and probably the most affordable women’s perfume on this list.

The scent smells gorgeous, comforting, and sophisticated while still being perceived as natural. You can’t go wrong with Green Tea, and certainly, you won’t expect it to smell this good. When you think that Jo Malone charges ten times more for similar creations, the value of this perfume skyrockets even more.

  • Perfumer: Francis Kurkdjian
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Green
  • Release Date: 1999
  • Most dominant notes: Tea, Lemon, and Mint
  • Age Group: 18+
  • Seasons: Any season
  • Occasions: Any occasion
  • Longevity and Sillage: 4 – 6 hours with discreet projection
  • Uniqueness: 3/5
  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Yellow, Green, Blue
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: B

4. Dolce&Gabbana Light Blue Sun For Women

Why have I picked Light Blue Sun: The combination of lemon, coconut, and frangipani sitting above the familiar musky Light Blue base makes the Sun the most interesting flanker up to this date.

This scent is good and strangely an underrated release from the line that will visually take you to the beach, coast, and similar places near the sea.

Citrusy top notes, fruits, and musk in the base blend well together and creates a fresh tropical fruity drink anyone would adore. As for longevity, it depends on where you wear it. I recommend wearing Sun in the office environment since the literal sun will soak it up from your skin much quicker.

I think this is such a great alternative or addition to the D&G Light Blue Intense.

  • Perfumer: Olivier Cresp
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Fruity
  • Release Date: 2019
  • Most dominant notes: Coconut Nectar, Lemon, Ozonic Notes
  • Age Group: 18+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Business and Leisure
  • Longevity and Sillage: 4 – 6 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 4/5
  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Yellow, White, Orange
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: B

5. Christian Dior Miss Dior

Why I have picked Miss Dior: It is one of my girlfriend’s favorite scents from her collection, and she says that Miss Dior is a simple elegance in a bottle.

As for me, I agree; when I smell it, I imagine a combination of fruits entangled with a marmalade of roses and the smell of clean patchouli slowly rising from the ground.

As someone familiar with the neroli note, I don’t get it here, so there’s no fear of you smelling like a grandma from the 1920s.

Longevity is also good for Eau de Toilette, but the main advantage is wearability. Wear it wherever you like. Beach or cocktail bar. Works the same. I believe it is one of the classiest recent Diors.

  • Perfumer:  Francois Demachy
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Floral Woody
  • Release Date: 2013
  • Most dominant notes: Rose, Neroli, and Patchouli
  • Age Group: 25+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Business and Leisure
  • Longevity and Sillage: 6 – 8 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 3/5
  • Value for money: 9/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Green, Pink, Yellow
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A

6. Acqua Di Parma Blu Mediterraneo – Mandorlo Di Sicilia

Why have I picked Mandorlo Di Sicilia: I love this creative masterpiece that has the guts to do something else from the citrus genre. Many associate Mandorlo di Sicilia with the smell of Fanta with touches of almond cherry syrup.

Besides the citrus opening found in almost every other Acqua di Parma perfume, this one is a straight oriental that works the best during the Summer nights and is immediately taken by the star anise and almond. Those who love long and carefree walks by the beach will enjoy this therapeutic fragrance even more.

The blend is smooth which is a common practice at Acqua di Parma house and the dry down is vanilla plus soft musk. Labeled as a unisex perfume, but for me, this one’s a straight women’s perfume. Recommended for lovers of oriental perfumes who would like to wear something elegant during the summer.

  • Perfumer: n/a
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Floral Oriental
  • Release Date: 1999
  • Most dominant notes: Almond, Vanilla, and Star Anise
  • Age Group: 18+
  • Seasons: Spring, Summer, and Fall
  • Occasions: Any occasion
  • Longevity and Sillage: 6 – 8 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 5/5
  • Value for money: 9/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Yellow, Light Brown, and Red
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A

7. Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune

Why have I picked Aqua Allegoria Pamplelune: This composition is without a doubt one of the best if not the best grapefruit-based fragrance on the market which makes it an ideal candidate for your next summer perfume purchase.

It starts off with fizzy and photo-realistic grapefruit with hints of something green and earthy. It is not all about citruses as the hints of slight sweetness peek through as the fragrance progress to dry down, possibly coming from the black currant leaf and vanilla.

Bright and sweet but not cloying, Pamplelune is a nice warm-weather scent, relaxing and inviting you to experience it in its full glory

  • Perfumer: Jean-Paul Guerlain and Mathilde Laurent
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Toillete
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Aromatic
  • Release Date: 1999
  • Most dominant notes: Grapefruit, Bergamot, and Cassia
  • Age Group: 25+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Any occasion
  • Longevity and Sillage: 4 – 6 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 4/5
  • Value for money: 9/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Yellow, Blue, Green
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A

8. Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte

Why have I picked Aqua Universalis Forte: Ladies who like their perfumes to cut through the hot air in the heat will love the fact that Aqua Universalis Forte does all that and lasts the whole day.

You get what you pay for here, and the fragrance feels and performs just like its high price. Forte opens up very fresh citrusy and transforms into this beautiful bouquet of gentle flowers and white musk that keep the perfume wearable both for men and women. Simple but made from top-notch ingredients.

I don’t see how anyone would dislike Aqua Universalis Forte and just shows what kind of perfume magician Francis Kurkdjian is. A pristine fragrance that breathes class. Pricey or not, what you see here is not only one of the best summer fragrances out there but probably the best one there is to wear on a vacation.

When I think about Aqua Universalis Forte I always imagine the smell of the fresh linen and early summer.

  • Perfumer: Francis Kurkdjian
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Parfum
  • Fragrance Type: Citrus Floral
  • Release Date: 2011
  • Most dominant notes: White Flowers, Jasmine, and Lemon
  • Age Group: 25+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Any occasion
  • Longevity and Sillage: 10 – 12 hours with great longevity
  • Uniqueness: 4/5
  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: White, Yellow
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A+

9. Frederic Malle En Passant

Why have I picked En Passant: When you think about Lilac note in perfumery, we are often reminded of the old school “perfumy” scents from the past which En Passant thankfully isn’t.

So, what En Passant is then? In my experience, this is how would a real plant of lilac smell if someone was to extract its essential oils into a perfume bottle.

Other notes such as cucumber and “watery notes” add a captivating aura and work together to create a feeling of standing beside the lake or a river.

Each time I wore En Passant I was reminded of my childhood, lilac bushes in the parks, and other people’s lawns. Just amazing how one fragrance can transport you back more than 20 years in the past.

  • Perfumer: Olivia Giacobetti
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Parfum
  • Fragrance Type: Floral Aquatic
  • Release Date: 2000
  • Most dominant notes: Lilac, Watery Notes, and Cucumber
  • Age Group: 25+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Business and Leisure
  • Longevity and Sillage: 4 – 6 hours with moderate projection
  • Uniqueness: 5/5
  • Value for money: 9/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Pink, Blue, Green
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A

10. Tiziana Terenzi Kirke

Why have I picked Kirke: The most fun fragrance award on this best summer perfumes for women list goes to Kirke. Sometimes, you want to wear something sweet and musky during those hot summer nights and leave a great first impression.

Kirke is an intense fragrance, and I don’t recommend going with more than two sprays to enjoy it to its full potential. On me, it smells more musky than fruity by leaving a seductive scent trail, but this may vary depending on your skin chemistry.

The scent is dominated by passionfruit and raspberry, while peach and pear keep the fragrance from going into the overly cloying territory by softening it up. The dry down is an addictive mix of musk, sandalwood, and vanilla. Some have compared Kirke to Erba Pura from Xerjoff, but for me, that perfume is just too much. Go with Kirke instead.

  • Perfumer: Paolo Terenzi
  • Perfume Oil Concentration: Eau de Parfum
  • Fragrance Type: Fruity Musk
  • Release Date: 2015
  • Most dominant notes: Passionfruit, Musk, and Peach
  • Age Group: 20+
  • Seasons: Spring and Summer
  • Occasions: Leisure and Night Outs
  • Longevity and Sillage: 24+ hours with strong projection
  • Uniqueness: 4/5
  • Value for money: 9/10
  • Perfume Color Palette: Red, White, Pink
  • Holy Grail Scent Rating: A


beach accessories - best summer perfumes for women

With these summer fragrances, I bet you’ll smell better and fabulous this upcoming season, no matter which one you choose.

Take them on vacation, spray them before going to beach bars, or use them for relaxing at home.

What do you think about the best summer perfumes for women list? Am I missing something, or should I add some other interesting perfumes? Let me know in the comment section below.

If you have enjoyed this post, find out more Scent Grail articles about perfumery, check out top lists, and other helpful reviews via links below:




Until next time, have a great time and keep smelling like a million bucks!

Best, Marin!
#scentgrail #scentgrailtribe

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