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Gourmand Fragrances – discover the olfactory gourmand in you

Gourmand fragrances are creamy, with wonderful aromas of caramel, roasted almonds or cocoa with marshmallows. When they come into contact with the skin they develop an irresistibly sweet aroma that you would otherwise only experience on a visit to the patisserie. Yet this fragrance family has more to offer than just sweet, dessert-like aromas. Perhaps you’ve already tried them out, or maybe this is your first encounter. In case you’ve ever asked yourself what a gourmand fragrance really is, here’s the answer

11 June 2024 • 4 min. reading time

Fact check: The meaning of “gourmand”, the name for these enticing fragrances

Let’s go in search of clues to discover what makes gourmand perfumes so fascinating. Fact check: Gourmand is a French word that means gourmet or somebody with a sweet tooth, depending on the translation. It refers to someone who has a refined palate and appreciates the pleasures in life. So far, so good.

The gourmand fragrance family is a little more complicated to define. Just because a fragrance is very sweet doesn’t automatically make it a gourmand perfume. A mere hint of cocoa or vanilla among the delicate floral notes isn’t enough, either. Instead, the bouquet as a whole should represent a sweet dish, a drink or a combination of both.

The concept behind Gourmand perfume is most comparable with the preparation of a dessert or drink. The perfumer attempts the olfactory combination of the individual components to create a harmonious and aromatic work of art. Ideally, the fragrance will trigger past memories of precious moments. Typical fragrance notes in Gourmand perfumes are:

  • Sugar, candy floss, caramel and honey
  • Chocolate
  • Sweet fruits such as strawberry or melon
  • Coconut, almond and hazelnut
  • Cocoa or coffee
  • Aromatic spices such as cinnamon, cardamom and clove

It's no wonder that this family of fragrances has such a strong effect on our emotional state. Most people have intense memories of the sweet smells associated with childhood scenarios.

Pioneering work: the origin of gourmand fragrances

In the past, gourmand perfumes were made exclusively with natural aromas. This severely limited the perfumers’ options and the fragrance family lacked diversity. Since the invention of synthetic fragrances and aromas, the range of gourmand fragrances has expanded. There are now very few concepts that have not been implemented in a gourmand fragrance.

The origins of gourmand perfumes can be traced back to the 1980s. It was in this era of shoulder pads and shaggy hair that the first gourmand fragrances achieved their breakthrough. And it is none other than Thierry Mugler who takes credit for their “invention”. According to him, “Angel” was the first real gourmand fragrance on the market. A glance at the perfume pyramid and aromas soon makes it clear that this high-end perfume is a genuine gourmand fragrance. But whether it actually was the first of its kind is impossible to verify today.

In any case, Angel triggered a hype that reached its peak in the 90s when sweet and fruity aromas went out of fashion. Today gourmand perfumes have a fixed place among the fragrance families. And, let’s be honest, without these powdery, sugary and chocolatey essences the perfume scene would be a lot less interesting. It's no wonder that almost every high-end brand now has at least one gourmand fragrance in its range.

Luxurious gourmand fragrances

Interesting facts about gourmand perfumes

  • Gourmand fragrances don’t necessarily have to be lavish or dominating. There are also more subtle variants that only reveal their true nature when they come into contact with the skin. Many summery, fresh fragrances also have gourmand notes to add the necessary depth.

  • The exceptionally sweet creations with aromas of tiramisu, honey candy or candy floss with caramel and roasted strawberries are usually women's fragrances. Gourmand fragrances for men tend to have more pungent notes of dark chocolate, coffee, whisky or rum.

  • While light, floral and fresh creations are often preferred in the summer, winter is the time when gourmand fragrances come into their own. We simply love snuggling up in a blanket and smelling of biscuits, apple pie or hot chocolate with cinnamon. Spices such as cinnamon, chilli or vanilla also warm the body from the inside and are comforting on dark nights.

  • It's no secret that aromas affect our emotions. Do you have a natural sweet tooth? Then there's a good chance that you’ll love gourmand fragrances.

The secret superpower of gourmand fragrances

Extensive research has been conducted into the connection between scents and our cravings . The same applies to the manipulative effect of certain aromas on the brain. That's why gourmand perfumes have another, less well-known superpower: They can satisfy our craving for sweets. By savouring your favourite sweet treat in olfactory form, you can trick your brain and you suddenly lose the urge to actually eat it. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work for everyone. But it’s certainly worth a try, isn’t it?


Would you like to extend the staying power of your gourmand fragrance? Then apply a rich lotion or some skin oil to the skin before you apply it. The fat molecules make the fragrances adhere to the skin and exude their charismatic scent for longer.

Gourmand perfumes: FAQs

Are there sweet gourmand fragrances for men too? Gone are the days when fragrances were only worn by either men or women. Today, people simply wear the perfumes they love and the perfumes that suit their personality or mood. Don't be distracted by whether your gourmand fragrance is on the women's or men's shelf. Simply enjoy the freedom to wear whatever you like.
When’s the best time to wear a gourmand fragrance? Many perfumes in this fragrance family are too intensive for everyday wear. However, there are plenty of opportunities to make a statement with a hint of sweetness, such as a romantic first date or a lavish night of partying. This is where gourmand fragrances come into their own, exuding a special aura that transforms you into a seductress. Some people wear a spritz to bed to make the most of the calming effect of gourmand scents.


Gourmand fragrances are a firm fixture on perfume shelves with an established reputation as the “sweet exotics” among the fragrance families. The leap from niche market into high-end range was child's play. These deliciously aromatic fragrances have direct access to to our subconscious minds and can even function as diet aids for some people. So it’s no wonder that gourmand fragrances are irresistible. These olfactory temptations not only smell heavenly, they also take you straight back to the comforting moments of your childhood.

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