The scent of money: What perfumes do the royals wear?

·5-min read
The Duchess of Cambridge receives flowers after departing Truro Cathedral at the start of a day-long tour of Cornwall.
The Duchess of Cambridge receives flowers in Cornwall - but what's her favourite floral scent? (PA Images)

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Without getting up close and personal, it's hard to know what scents the royals waft behind them.

But this week, according to Marie Claire online, news of The Duchess of Cambridge's favourite perfume has gone viral. And it's not Charlie by Revlon, or even Beyonce's Heat Rush that fragrances the future Queen.

Kate is a classy dresser, and her signature scent is just as special, with Susan Kelley, founder of the site What Kate Wore, commenting, "I’ve seen people on social media who have bumped into Kate when she’s out shopping and have said she smells amazing, like raspberry and fruit – very clean, crisp smells."

It's not just the palace washing powder - Kate apparently favours Jo Malone Orange Blossom Cologne, described by the makers as: "A shimmering garden oasis. Clementine flower sparkles over a heart of orange blossom and water lily, with warm undertones of orris and balsamic vetiver. Pure delight."

No wonder the crowds love her. For her wedding, however, Kate wore Illuminum's White Gardenia Petals, in keeping with her beautiful white dress.

Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, comes out of Westminster Abbey, with her husband Britain's Prince William (not pictured) following their wedding ceremony, in central London, on April 29, 2011. AFP PHOTO / CARL DE SOUZA (Photo by Carl DE SOUZA / AFP) (Photo by CARL DE SOUZA/AFP via Getty Images)
And the bride wore White Gardenia Petals...(Photo by CARL DE SOUZA/AFP via Getty Images)

The other royals have varied - but aristocratic - tastes of their own when it comes to fine fragrances. 

William is said to wear Ralph Lauren Polo Cologne, (because who wouldn't match their scent to their sport if they could?) and Penhaligon's Blenheim Bouquet - Blenheim being the Palace that's the family seat of the Duke of Marlborough, who was related to Princess Diana, William's mum. Clearly, the Prince likes to keep his fragrances in the family. 

Launched in 1902, Blenheim Bouquet's top notes are Amalfi lemon, lime and lavender, with base notes of pine, black pepper and musk. Positively edible.

The Duke of Cambridge after taking part in the Out-Sourcing Inc Royal Charity Polo Cup 2021 at Guards Polo Club, Windsor, which will help raise funds and awareness for charities supported by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Picture date: Friday July 9, 2021.
One likes to match one's fragrance to one's favourite sport... (PA images)

'Harry, by contrast, is more of a typical bloke, allegedly favouring Davidoff Cool Water in the past, though rumour has it he's now swapped to Terre dHermès, a warm, leathery fragrance, described as emanating "the warmth and density of wood combined with the softness of benzoin and the sparkle of shiso." 

No, we don't know either - though perhaps Meghan is sophisticated enough to appreciate it. 

Photo by: KGC-375/STAR MAX/IPx
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle are greeted as they arrive to attend a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair at Nottingham Contemporary in Nottingham, central England, on December 1, 2017. 
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visited Nottingham in their first set of engagements together since announcing their engagement. During their first engagament of the day at a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair the prince and Markle met representatives from a number of institutes and charities that do specific work around HIV/AIDS.
California girl Meghan favours ocean and citrus scents (Photo by: KGC-375/STAR MAX/IPx 2017 12/1/17)

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Meghan herself is said to be a fan of many perfumes. She once told an interviewer: "Fragrance is my favourite thing. So much so that if I leave the house and I don’t put any on, I’ll turn around and go back home.”

She reportedly loves Cote d’Azur Eau de Parfum by Oribe and Wild Bluebell and Wood Sage & Sea Salt colognes by Jo Malone, the latter described as "“waves breaking white, the air fresh with sea salt and spray. Alive with the mineral scent of the rugged cliffs. Mingling with the woody earthiness of sage. Lively, spirited and totally joyful."

It could almost be describing her life in California...

The London brand Floris crafted a special perfume for her wedding day, too, redolent with 'Mediterranean and citrus notes.'

Watch: Fans flock to Windsor for Harry, Meghan wedding

By contrast, Prince Charles is a traditionalist when it comes to both architecture and aftershave. His favoured fragrance is Green Irish Tweed, by haute perfume house Creed, which retails for £245.

He is also said to like Floris for Men. 

The Prince of Wales during a visit to Donaghadee Harbour where he viewed stones which line the harbour walls and were decorated with messages of hope by local people during the pandemic. The prince also unveiled a plaque to commemorate the Bicentenary of the Royal Charter of Donaghadee Harbour and the laying of the harbour's foundation stone. Picture date: Wednesday May 19, 2021.
Prince Charles: Likes to smell tweedy, even if he's not wearing tweed. (PA Images)

The Queen is, of course, the ultimate authority - and can choose any fragrance she likes from the perfume houses of the globe. She is an unfussy monarch, however, and reportedly favours White Rose by Floris, and Guerlain’s L’Heure Bleue.

White Rose is described as "a bouquet of velvet roses, sparkling with an unexpected splash of cool iris, wrapped in warm amber and rich, earthy musk. Uncover a story of contrasts – the old world and the new, the perfect with the imperfect, drama and poise, town and country...Drawing on the creative home of the Floris family, White Rose has its heart in London’s Mayfair."

Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh on their wedding day.
Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh on their wedding day. She was scented with White Roses by Floris. (PA)

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If anything sums up the Queen, surely this does - and she was born in Mayfair, so what better tribute to her heritage? The Queen reportedly wore White Rose on her wedding day, and has a lifelong love of the nostalgic scent. 

Princess Diana wore Houbigant's Quelques Fleurs on her own wedding day and was reportedly very nervous alighting from the carriage, as she had spilled some on the silk skirt of her dress as she got ready, and was trying to conceal the stain. 

LONDON, UK - JULY 29, 1981: Royal Wedding. Photo Of Diana Princess of Wales taken by Ron Bull July 29, 1981.        (Ron Bull/Toronto Star via Getty Images)
Nobody noticed the perfume stain... (Ron Bull/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Watch: Some high-end perfumes use a rare type of whale poop

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