Our Favorite Clean Perfumes in 2022

September 9, 2022

If you’ve tried clean fragrances in the past and have come up short, you owe it to yourself to TRY AGAIN. Clean fragrance has come a long way. I’m talking, no more trying to wean yourself onto patchouli oil, lol. These days we are getting what feels like real luxury scents…and in some cases even better. Here are our current faves

a woman sprays her wrist with a clean perfume

By: Lisa Fennessy + TOG Team

IN THIS POST:

What to consider when buying perfume

If you’ve dipped your toe into the wellness scene by even just an inch, I’m sure this is not the first time you’ve heard “buyer beware” language used when it comes to buying fragrances. It’s not new news but it’s also ladened with nuance. 

In a nutshell, fragrances pose a “special” circumstance when it comes to making an informed decision because according to the Federal Fair Packaging and Labeling Act of 1973, brands do not need to disclose fragrance ingredients. This applies to fragrances and perfumes that you spray on your body as well as to the word fragrance or parfum or perfume indicated on an ingredient list for products (skincare, toiletries, cleaning products, etc). 

So, I have two beefs with this. The first beef is NONDISCLOSURE. AKA, brands can legit legally put ingredients in their products and not tell you what they are. Like, how is someone going to try and sell me something to put on my body and not tell me what’s in it? Nah bruh. The second beef is that some of these undisclosed ingredients are actually really concerning like phthalates, linked to endocrine disruption. NO THANKS! 

How do we apply this information? Nine times out of 10 I’m going to stand behind the tip, “If you see fragrance listed on an ingredient list, put it back.” BUT, clean beauty as a movement is pushing for more transparency…and we are starting to see it. 

For example, Credo is advocating for radical fragrance transparency meaning they have challenged all 120 brand partners to fully disclose all fragrance ingredients. 71 have complied and now full fragrance ingredient lists are visible on the Credo website…even if they are not on the brand’s packaging yet 😱. 

We are also seeing some fragrance brands step out on their own accord making their ingredient lists fully transparent like Abbot NYC and Henry Rose for example. 

What this means is that we, as consumers, are given the power to look at ingredient lists and decide for ourselves if we want to put something on our bodies or not. It’s a massive power shift from brand to buyer and I’m here for it.

In the meantime, because nondisclosure is still so rampant, I love encouraging people to rely on third party certifications / verifications to help make the best decision for you. If a fragrance is third party vetted it means that someone (outside of the brand itself) has looked at the ingredients and put their stamp of approval on them. You can read more about which standards we recommend using here.


TOG team’s clean perfume personalities

Besides navigating ingredient lists, the other part that makes choosing a fragrance so hard is that it’s personal. Not only do scents smell different to different people, but each individual’s body chemistry will bring out different notes in a complex fragrance blend. That said, you probably know what types of scents you gravitate towards. Here are the TOG team’s perfume personalities to help when reading through our recs.

Lisa’s perfume personality

More than anything else I am drawn to a big, bold, musky fragrance. I can’t breakaway from the idea that that those spicy, big, grounded scents equal sex appeal for me…and alway will. Like, hit me with some Drakkar Noir and I’m dead. That being said, I also enjoy mixing it up with something totally not this—something super light, flowery, delicate and pretty—like rose or neroli. I also hate the smell of gardenia.

Nicolle’s perfume personality

I tend to choose scents with a floral top note and a grounding base. Sweet, with a bit of depth and maybe some bright citrus on top. Jasmine and vetiver are two individual fragrances I love, and love together. 

Kristy’s perfume personality

I gravitate toward subtle and light scents because I’m easily overwhelmed by fragrances. I adore earthy florals and all things minty fresh. My fave floral is jasmine, as I now realize it is featured prominently in my perfume and go-to hand cream. I did learn (the hard way) that my love for jasmine does NOT translate into beverages, as I had to throw away a full glass of jasmine iced tea last week (that tasted EXACTLY like my perfume and lotion).


TOG team’s clean perfume faves







a flat lay collection of clean perfumes

Clean perfume FAQs

What does it mean if a fragrance is third-party vetted?

If a fragrance is third party vetted it means that someone (outside of the brand itself) has looked at the ingredients and put their stamp of approval on them. You can read more about which standards we recommend using here.

Which clean perfume smells the best?

Our current favorites include Vyrao Free 00 Eau de ParfumHenry Rose Jake’s House, Heretic Parfum Dirty Grass, and Strange Invisibles Dimanche. Click through to learn more about each of them.

How can I tell if a perfume is clean?

It is important to look at the ingredients – all of them. In a nutshell, fragrances pose a “special” circumstance when it comes to making an informed decision because according to the Federal Fair Packaging and Labeling Act of 1973, brands do not need to disclose fragrance ingredients. This applies to fragrances and perfumes that you spray on your body as well as to the word fragrance or parfum or perfume indicated on an ingredient list for products (skincare, toiletries, cleaning products, etc). You can read more about which standards we recommend using here.


What’s your go to clean perfume?

xo, Lisa + TOG Team in cursive

TOG Team Note: This article contains affiliate links. TOG uses affiliate links as a source for revenue to fund operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. TOG stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.

By Lisa Fennessy

Lisa is the founder of This Organic Girl. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!

4 Comments

  1. Reply

    Heather McDonald Gaillot

    Love Nue Co’s Functional Fragrance. Their other two are nice as well but I get more comments about the former from random people on the street!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Thanks for adding! xo, L

  2. Reply

    Erin

    I always used to wear one of the little perfumes you can get at Whole Foods (Nemat Enterprises), but then I realized I had no idea what was in them. I used to get compliments all the time, and I would really love to keep wearing it. Do you happen to know what is in those? Last time I checked I could not figure it out.

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Most of the time you need to reach out and ask for an “ingredient list” from perfumes. If they are sold at Whole Foods the chances are high that they will share it. Go ahead and ask them for a list and see what they say! xo, L

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