Ultimate YSL Y Buying Guide: Each Y Fragrance, Ranked


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In 1964, French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent released his first fragrance, Y Eau de Toilette for Her, with YSL Pour Homme launching in 1975.

Fast-forward to today, and the YSL male fragrance line has evolved remarkably, with Dominique Ropion working on the latest YSL Y collection.

The current YSL Y lineup is masculine and confident, with each scent comprising of a fresh yet spicy, uplifting opening, aromatic heart, and smooth lingering dry-down.

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YSL Y Fragrances, Ranked

In the name of research, I have personally ranked each YSL Y fragrance, from the fresh and versatile Y Eau de Toilette to the latest Y L’Elixir.

5. Y L’Elixir

Y L’Elixir
Credit: Yves Saint Laurent

Review

New for 2024, Y L’Elixir, is at position 5. Compared to the original Y, it may be too heavy on the geranium for some.

The fragrance opens with bergamot, ginger, elemi, and saffron. Its heart is aromatic, featuring a blast of lavender and geranium. Dry-down is resinous and woody.

Top Notes:

Bergamot, Ginger, Elemi, Saffron

Mid Notes:

Lavender, Sage, Juniper, Geranium

Base Notes:

Fir Balsam Absolu, Olibanum, Cypriol, Patchouli, Oud

Seasons & Longevity

An any-season scent, it’s a unique choice for special occasions, although this Elixir version surprisingly will only last around 4 hours.

Any Season
Longevity 4+ hours

4. Y Eau de Toilette

Y Eau de Toilette
Credit: Yves Saint Laurent

Review

At position 4 is Y Eau de Toilette, a fresh and invigorating fragrance that is light yet impactful and ideal for everyday wear.

Bergamot, aldehydes, and ginger ensure a bright start. The heart introduces hints of lavender and geranium, with woody aromas and ambergris in the base.

Top Notes:

Bergamot, Aldehydes, Ginger

Mid Notes:

Lavender, Geranium, Clary Sage

Base Notes:

Cedarwood, Olibanum, Ambergris

Seasons & Longevity

Best suited for warmer months like spring and summer due to its fresh character. It’s perfect for daytime wear, lasting a respectable 6+ hours.

Seasons: Spring,Summer
Longevity 6+ hours

3. Y Le Parfum

Y Le Parfum
Credit: Yves Saint Laurent

Review

At position 3 is Y Le Parfum, the best of both worlds, bright yet with complex aromatic aromas that exude confidence.

Zesty grapefruit, ginger and bright aldehydes deliver a strikingly fresh yet spicy beginning that really caught my attention. 

The heart is packed with lavender, clary sage, and geranium for a herbaceous warmth. Vanilla and cedar bring masculine warmth.

Top Notes:

Grapefruit, Ginger, Elemi, Aldehydes

Mid Notes:

Lavender, Clary Sage, Geranium

Base Notes:

Cedarwood, Patchouli, Tonka Bean, Olibanum

Seasons & Longevity

A versatile any-season scent in my book, this fragrance pairs well with daytime lunches, fun evenings out or formal events. 

Its longevity is decent at 5+ hours, with a presence that can last long into the night.

Any Season
Longevity 5+ hours

2. Y Eau de Parfum

Y Eau de Parfum
Credit: Yves Saint Laurent

Review

Y Eau de Parfum is at number 2, a scent bridging the gap between freshness and intensity. It’s a versatile scent that carries you from work to play.

To my nose, the opening is mostly apple and ginger, with aromatic sage, lavender, and juniper berries in the heart.

Its discreet base of tonka bean, vetiver, and frankincense rounds it out with masculine warmth. Let the compliments commence.

Top Notes:

Apple, bergamot, ginger, elemi, aldehydes

Mid Notes:

Geranium, juniper, sage, lavender

Base Notes:

tonka bean, vetiver, frankincense, operamide

Seasons & Longevity

Y Eau de Parfum is great for spring, summer and autumn. It’s an excellent daytime fragrance that works in any situation.

Lasting 7+ hours with solid projection, it can comfortably last through a workday or an evening outing.

Seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn
Longevity 7+ hours

1. Y Eau de Parfum Intense

Y Eau de Parfum Intense
Credit: Yves Saint Laurent

Review

My tip pick, taking pole position, is Y Eau de Parfum Intense, an aromatic woody scent that is robust and refined, perfect for those wanting to make a lasting impression.

Bergamot and aldehydes do their level best to overpower the spicy ginger note in the opening, but that lush ginger aroma shines through.

The heart is full of aromatic intrigue, with lavender, clary sage, geranium, and iris providing a floral-spicy display with woody vetiver dominating the base.

Top Notes:

Bergamot, Juniper Berries, Ginger, Aldehydes

Mid Notes:

Lavender, Clary Sage, Geranium, Iris Concrete

Base Notes:

Cedarwood, Patchouli, Vetiver, Grey Amber Accord

Seasons & Longevity

For me, Y Eau de Parfum Intense is a versatile choice, working well for any season or occasion, from casual lunch dates to black-tie evening events.

Its longevity of 8+ hours is impressive, and it sticks with you well into the night.

Any Season
Longevity 8+ hours
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Conclusion

Overall, I must say that I find YSL’s Y collection incredibly wearable, although YSL Y L’Elixir went a bit overboard on the geranium for me personally.

Whether you want something fresh and versatile like Y Eau de Toilette or a deeper interpretation like Y Le Parfum, there’s a Y fragrance to suit your style and mood. 

So, if you are on the lookout for a confident, versatile, aromatic masculine scent that is not too heavy, Yves Saint Laurent can deliver.

Also read: Unveiling YSL MYSLF: How Does It Stack Up Against Y EDP?

Also Read: 5 Best Acqua di Gio Fragrances By Giorgio Armani

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Further Reading

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