As the last of the Christmas sales are tallied up, consumer research groups are sending in their numbers and preparing their lists of top selling perfumes in 2014. In many ways, it was a year that brought some surprises and at the same time ensured that some trends won’t be going away. For instance, despite the breathless proclamations of forecasting agencies last year, there are no signs that the gourmand trend is giving way to woods and chypres. The best selling perfume of the year in France is an extra sweet blend of caramel and cotton candy. But at the same time, the list contains incense accented blend of woods and a powdery floral.
The information comes from NPD Group and it was shared by ChallengeS, a French weekly. ChallengeS focuses on economic topics, so if you read French, please follow the link to learn what the new constellation of best sellers means for the French perfume market and L’Oréal in particular.
10. Flower by Kenzo (2000)
Soft and powdery, alternating between floral and musky notes, Flower is an intriguing perfume. It has a gentle personality, but its presence is distinctive and enveloping.
9. Guerlain Shalimar (1925)
Proof that while some newer fragrances may receive a lot of attention, French perfume wearers remain loyal to classics.
8. Christian Dior Miss Dior (2005)
This Miss Dior is the strawberry gourmand perfume, not the original 1947 composition (it’s now called Miss Dior L’Originale).
7. Thierry Mugler Angel (1993)
The grandmother of all contemporary gourmands has lost a little of its former hold on the market, but it’s still an important brand.
6. Yves Saint Laurent Opium (2009 reformulation of a 1977 classic)
It was a pleasant surprise to see Opium on the list, a fragrance that was nearly killed by regulations. Thanks to a successful and careful reformulation and timely relaunch, it’s back in its high ranking position.
5. Chanel No. 5 (1921)
An icon that needs no comments. It may slip a few slots, but it always graces France’s top 10 lists of best sellers.
4. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle (2001)
Like Angel, Coco Mademoiselle has been slipping in its popularity over the years, giving way to newer gourmand blends, but it’s still a popular perfume.
3. Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire (2012)
A successful morsel of almond macarons and raspberries from the old French house.
2. Christian Dior J’Adore (2000)
A radiant floral that can now be called a classic.
1. Lancôme La Vie est Belle (2012)
What does Paris smell like these days? “La Vie est Belle and boulangerie (bakery),” says a Parisian friend. According to NPD, La Vie est Belle brought L’Oréal 66 million euros in sales in 2014. La Vie est Belle is one of the biggest gourmands on the market, both in terms of its popularity and diffusion.
Image: Guerlain Shalimar ad.