• Ingredients

Fragrance 101: Vanilla

Fragrance 101: Vanilla
For many, the inclusion of vanilla in a perfume is reason to avoid it—a risk that a fragrance will be overly sweet or verge on adolescent. But when vanilla is done right it doesn’t smell like faux cookies. Instead, it’s warm, delicate, comforting, addicting, and, yes, sophisticated all at once. It’s also intimate, lasting into the evening and lingering close to skin, so only your dearest know it’s there. Vanilla can either carry a scent or add substance to the heart or base of floral, citrus, or woods blends, making them luscious and rich.

Vanilla as we know it comes from vanilla bean, the long, skinny fruit of the vanilla orchid. The Totonac people of Mexico were the first to use the beloved spice, and the Aztecs ingeniously added it to a chocolate beverage called chocolatl. Today, vanilla is grown in tropical regions such as Indonesia, Polynesia, Madagascar, and Mexico. It’s impossible to imagine culinary life without it; in the hierarchy of baking, it’s up there with flour, eggs, sugar, and butter.

Ready to revisit the sweet-smelling scent of your youth? Discover Creed’s vanilla-laced eaux, below.  

For an Ethereal, Delicate Vanilla: White Amber

Picture amber: It’s golden, luminous, glistening. White Amber—part of Creed’s Les Royales Exclusives Collection—serves as an ode to the prized resin, and perfectly captures its unique, characteristic glow. Unlike most amber fragrances that are intensely rich and only suitable in colder weather, this fruity-floral is fresh, radiant, and surprisingly clean. What’s behind its glimmering effect? Smooth and velvety amber, tender fruits, light, perfectly-sweet vanilla, a floral accord, heady jasmine absolute, and creamy sandalwood. 

For a Vanilla Rush: Sublime Vanille

Sublime Vanille is a fragrance for vanilla lovers, but the elevated blend might also prove irresistible to those who never knew they could love vanilla. How to do the ingredient justice without making it cloyingly sweet: Take smooth, sugary, intoxicating vanilla from the Comoros, combine it with warm and spicy Tonka bean(a soft, pure Tonkin musk base), add just enough bergamot and sparkly, bright lemon to offset the creaminess of it all. In a word, it’s sensational, and just as much a treat for yourself as it is for those around you. 

For a Hint of Vanilla: Royal Princess Oud 

Royal Princess Oud is not your animalic oud. The initial blast is dense, romantic, and lush with powdery rich violet, the dewy, spicy scent of crushed rose petals and just enough bittersweet bergamot to freshen it up. As it dries, though, its namesake ingredient radiates, and it’s blended with a mixture of earthy Tuscan iris and patchouli along with our key note, vanilla, for a whisper of honeyed, gentle warmth. Olivier Creed was inspired by Henry Creed II’s couture sketches, and the complex mix lives up to its elegant origins.


Shop our full collection of fragrances here.

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