5 Feminine Perfumes That Are Not Too Sweet


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Certain occasions call for perfumes that are not too sweet. When going out for a fancy lunch, a shopping trip in the city, or a trip to the theatre, I prefer to wear a less sweet fragrance that is more classic in style.

Perfumes with light floral notes blended with herbs, spices, musk and wood can be effortlessly feminine yet not sweet or overly cloying. The following fragrances are ideal for fancy daytime events when smelling like a sugar-coated treat is NOT what you are after.

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5 Perfumes That Are Not Too Sweet

Here are 5 perfumes that are not too sweet that prove you don’t have to smell like a fruity/vanilla sugar-bomb to feel feminine and confident.

1. Versace Oud Oriental Pour Femme Eau de Parfum

Versace Oud Oriental Pour Femme Eau de Parfum
Credit: Versace

Review

Versace Oud Oriental Pour Femme Eau de Parfum is a stunning non-sweet woody-floral fragrance with an oriental persona that is luxurious and refined.

Opening notes of saffron spiced rose leads to a heart of earthy patchouli and powdery heliotrope. Dry down reveals wood and leather notes that add feminine complexity and sophistication. Similar to Creed Royal Princess Eau de Parfum.

Settling to a trio of wood, rose, and leather, this fragrance is ideal for autumn/winter wear. Smells effortlessly classy, so one to wear for the evening when dressed to impress.

Jump to my full review of Versace Oud Oriental Pour Femme Eau de Parfum (plus discover 9 other stunning Versace fragrances for women).

Top Notes:

Rose, Saffron, Freesia

Mid Notes:

Patchouli, Violet, Heliotrope

Base Notes:

Agarwood, Leather, Sandalwood, Vanilla

Price & Reviews

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2. Vilhelm Peony Couture Eau de Parfum

Vilhelm Peony Couture Eau de Parfum
Credit: Vilhelm

Review

Vilhelm Peony Couture Eau de Parfum is a master class of how to create a straight-up floral fragrance without being too sweet or overly girly.

The opening of black pepper and anise is spicy right from the start. Delicate rose and fragrant peony blooms from the heart with just the right amount of softness. A smokey/woody base keeps this fragrance feeling sensual and mysterious. 

This spicy/smokey floral masterpiece smells incredibly expensive and is best worn during spring and summer. More of a daytime and early evening scent, in my opinion.

You can read my full review of Vilhelm Peony Couture Eau de Parfum (plus discover 9 other niche Vilhelm fragrances for women)

Top Notes:

Black Pepper, Anise

Mid Notes:

Peony, Turkish Rose

Base Notes:

Incense, Cedar

Price & Reviews

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3. Tiffany & Co Intense Eau de Parfum

Tiffany & Co Intense Eau de Parfum
Credit: Tiffany & Co

Review

Tiffany & Co Intense Eau de Parfum is an addictive blend of powder, musk and resin notes with a fancy spa day soapy aroma. 

Soft pear, mandarin leaf and pink pepper are first to delight in the opening. Powdery iris dominating the heart is feminine but not too sweet. Dry-down unleashes exotic musk and smooth cashmeran.

I can see myself wearing this fragrance any time of year. One to reach or when you want to feel extra special and feminine without wandering around like a sugar-bomb.

You can read my full review of Tiffany & Co Intense Eau de Parfum (plus discover 5 other niche Tiffany fragrances to fall in love with)

Top Notes:

Pear, Mandarin lead, Pink Pepper

Mid Notes:

Iris, Rose, Jasmin

Base Notes:

Musk, Benzoin, Cashmeran, Vanilla, Carrot Seeds, Amber

Price & Reviews

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4. Chanel No 19 Poudre Eau de Parfum

Chanel No 19 Poudre Eau de Parfum
Credit: Chanel

Review

Chanel No 19 Poudre Eau de Parfum is a magnificent green and powdery feminine fragrance that is elegant, charming and oh-so Chanel.

Spicy/green and slightly bitter galbanum is soothed by powdery iris in the heart. Neroli adds only the merest touch of sweetness. Vetiver and musk in the base are silky smooth and refined.

I personally would wear this well-balanced powdery/green floral fragrance in any season as it’s incredibly versatile. More of a classy daytime scent, perhaps enjoying afternoon tea somewhere fancy with a glass of bubbly.

You can read my full review of Chanel No 19 Poudre Eau de Parfum in my 10 Best Chanel Perfumes For Summer article.

Also, consider Prada Les Infusions de Prada Iris Eau de Parfum as it’s similar.

Top Notes:

Galbanum, Iris, Neroli

Mid Notes:

Vetiver

Base Notes:

White Musk

Price & Reviews

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5. Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud Silk Mood Eau de Parfum

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud Silk Mood
Credit: Maison Francis Kurkdjian

Review

Last on the list is Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud Silk Mood Eau de Parfum. This alluring woody/rose fragrance oozes feminine class and has hardly any sweetness at all.

Delicate rose is first to bloom, supported by the herb-like scent of chamomile and a splash of zesty bergamot. Woody notes and papyrus in the base provide depth and balance for a complex, confident, and glamorous fragrance.

I would recommend this fragrance for autumn/winter. Although it’s floral, the woody notes are ideal for the colder seasons. This is a fragrance tailor-made for night owls.

You can read my full review of Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud Silk Mood (plus discover 9 other Maison Francis Kurkdjian fragrances for women to delight the senses)

Top Notes:

Bergamot

Mid Notes:

Rose, chamomile, hedione

Base Notes:

Woody notes, oud, papyrus

Price & Reviews

You can check the latest pricing, see customer reviews and shop online:

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Conclusion

So, there you have it, 5 perfumes that are not too sweet but still smell incredibly feminine, charming and elegant. When looking for a non-sweet fragrance, I tend to lean towards something lightly floral with sensual spices, herbs, musk and wood.

Regarding floral notes, iris, in particular, adds a beautiful powdery vibe without being too sweet. Rose is also another good choice as it’s glamorous without being too sweet or cloying.

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Further Reading

Below are some additional articles from Viora London’s blog. We write articles on a number of interesting lifestyle topics such as fragrance, beauty, luxury accessories and more.

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