You could consider it going the extra mile to gift something that’s useful and awakens the senses, so if you haven’t already picked up a Mother’s Day gift, might we suggest a few things that smell wonderful, many of which we’ve touted on the site before. Note: We’ve actually smelled these things with our own noses and can vouch for their lovely odors.
If your mom’s looking for a new signature scent, you might want to treat her to this rose-scented perfume that Strategist beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton says is “classic without smelling old lady–ish, and always makes me feel fresh and elegant.” And it’s not too much for sensitive noses.
For on-the-go moms, this solid perfume is totally shatterproof and, according to writer Kaitlin Phillips, rubbing a little on your wrist in public “is as innocuous as quickly applying hand lotion.”
Make sure you let mom know this woodsy-smelling incense has “reached ubiquitous-in-Brooklyn status,” according to Strategist associate editor Katy Schneider.
For the mom who’s all about keeping her home fresh, gift this all-natural cleaning spray beloved by Claire Mazur, co-founder of Of a Kind. It “just smells phenomenal,” she says. “It’s got this citrus scent because of the neroli, and it doesn’t even smell like a cleaner.”
And for the mom who loves to cook, try this plant-derived soap with coconut extract and vitamin E that the staff at Bowery Kitchen Supplies say they “can’t keep it in stock,” because it smells so good.
Hippie moms will appreciate this earthy candle that actress Abby Elliott says “doesn’t necessarily smell like pot, but it’s nice and smoky.”
Carole Radziwill loves these long-lasting, “fresh laundry”–smelling candles. “You wake up and smell it, and think, It’s going to be a good day,” she says.
Make sure mom’s ahead of the trends with these candles that “smell really good in unassuming ways,” and are our pick for the next status candles.
These exfoliating sugar cubes have made a fan of the Into the Gloss’ Ashley Weatherford because “they leave skin soft and smooth without depositing an oily residue, and come in a range of fruity scents,” though she prefers this muted, nutty coconut one.
This velvety body cream — made from candlenuts found in Bali — was praised by Kathleen Hou as “one of the best-smelling body lotions, period,” if you want to smell like a tropical combination of “powdered vanilla pudding, coconut, and white tropical flowers in the humid sun.”
Should you want a buttery body cream that smells like sweets, Kathleen Hou says this one replicates the post-gommage feel of going to a hammam and “reminds me of the yellow, buttery almond cookies my mom used to buy me in Chinese bakeries.”
We own and love this Skinfood toner because it has the most soothing peach scent — like spring in a bottle — and, coupled with the actual cooling effect of the toner, it is a very refreshing way to end a long day.
After two minutes in the microwave, says writer Alex Ronan, this toasty lavender pillow has a multitude of uses. “I’ll sprawl out with it on my stomach when I have cramps or have eaten too much takeout. Or I’ll retreat to bed and drape the whole thing over my face if I’m feeling particularly unable to face the world.”
A distinctive Hinoki-scented hand soap that says she knows what’s in right now.
For someone addicted to the scent of rose, who wouldn’t balk at spraying said scent in her hair, Rio says this Diptyque hair spray “is vibrant and lovely without being too aggressive or hair-product-y-smelling. There’s also camellia oil in it, which provides nourishment for your lovely locks.”
Strategist editor Alexis Swerdloff says that when she dabs on some of this aromatic stress-treatment oil from Tata Harper, she’s suddenly “someone in an Architectural Digest spread wearing a long camel-colored cashmere cardigan, white pants, a pair of Tods loafers, walking through the atrium of my beachfront Bridgehampton estate to adjust a flower arrangement.”
The hand soap that Lesley Arfin can’t live without: “I used to hate washing my hands — it’s so boring! That all changed once I discovered this soap. Sometimes, I do a little bathroom drive-by, skip the toilet business altogether, and just let my hands live it up. The bottle is a sturdy glass, the graphic design is simple and pretty, and you can order refills.”
Bodywash was from Byredo in the brand’s signature Gypsy Water scent, which one Basenotes commenter aptly describes as smelling like “lemon Hostess cupcakes tempered by a dose of dry woods.”
When she wants a little pick-me-up: This Mario Badescu facial spray, made with aloe herbs and rosewater, is both “refreshing and soothing, with just the right bit of floral-ness,” says the Strategist’s own Camilla Cho. Tavi Gevinson uses it as “a reset button during a tedious, overwhelming, or high concentration day.”
This affordable French candle, a favorite of writer Zachary Wampler, “is not abrasive, but rich and warm. It’s the sort of fragrance I could imagine wafting through a chalet in wintry Gstaad while I count the diamonds on my fictional tennis bracelet.”
A lush coconut-oil body scrub that Ashley Weatherford uses weekly, which she says “smells sweet — like rose, naturally — and the scent slowly dissipates as the day wears on.”
This lotion, with just the faintest hint of peony, comes in a nice, millennial-pink box.
All of Oribe’s products have a particular light scent — simultaneously flowery and fruity — that’s a big part of the appeal, like this texturizing spray for beachy waves that the Cut’s Amelia Diamond described as “so good that I also use it as an alternative to both perfume and Febreze.”
This lip balm features a faint (and delightful) scent of sweet lime and mint.
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