That said, not all vanilla scents are made equal. Given how tricky it is to cultivate, the majority of the vanilla scents and flavourings you’ll come across (99% of them, in fact) are synthetic.
Effectively, it’s the Goldilocks porridge of perfume. Choose right and it can smell phenomenal – creamy, spicy and a little bit smoky. But first you have to find one that’s not too sickly and not too sweet.
As aromas go, vanilla has got one hell of a history. These days it can be discounted as too cloying or too basic but lest we forget, it’s a bona fide aphrodisiac with a proven ability to soothe, seduct and even increase arousal.
To really hit the jackpot, you have to make sure it’s partnered up with other scents that make you tick, suit your mood and play up the particular facet of the complex vanilla note that you’re most attracted to – whether that’s a candyfloss haze that focuses on sweetness, a dark, sultry, earthy number that kicks your dopamine (love hormone) into gear or a cosy, nuzzly number that envelops you in a cashmere-soft blanket of scent.
Still not convinced? Blind-sniffed, vanilla has an uncanny ability to come out on top. Rihanna’s favourite scent reached legendary status after those that caught a whiff of her (including Jennifer Lawrence, Cardi B and Nick Jonas) named her the best smelling celebrity hands-down. One of the major notes? A glug of sensual vanilla. It’s ambrosial, warm, sweet, creamy and intoxicating (just like you’d expect our goddess, Ri-Ri, to smell)
Meanwhile, when beauty PR manager, Steph Easton, wrote about her lack of a sense of smell for GLAMOUR UK, she reported crowd-sourcing her perfumes based on the reaction from others. The surprise smash-hit? Juicy Couture’s Viva La Juicy Gold Couture Eau De Parfum – a golden blend of honeysuckle, amber and – you guessed it – vanilla. Proof that you should never judge a book by its cover.