9 Le Labo Scents That Are Low-Key Better Than Santal 33 (There, I Said It)

Look, I’ll be the first to admit that Le Labo’s iconic Santal 33 scent smells really good. In addition to owning a bottle myself, the scent has become so wildly popular over the years that’s it’s basically a calling card for in-the-know Millennials. Basically, if you know, you know. But the Brooklyn-based perfume brand has so many more oil-based unisex scents to offer beyond its best-seller—and I’m here to walk you through which ones to consider.

For my own fragrance-buying mission and for your fragrance-buying missions (I’m here to serve), I asked Le Labo to send me samples of their best-selling scents, and they kindly shared their Discovery Kit filled with 17 sample-sized spritzes. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been switching up my scent on a daily basis, because variety is the spice of life, and I wanted to give you my honest reviews of the nine best Le Labo perfumes.

There are plenty of fragrance reviews out there, but I find them to be quite technical, speaking to all of the different layered notes in a scent. My reviews are more about how they’ll make you feel when wearing them, the best occasions and seasons to wear them for, how versatile they are, etc. Keep scrolling if you’re intrigued and be sure to head all the way to the bottom for what I think is the best Le Labo fragrance.

Fragrance Family: Floral. Key Notes: Rose, musk, mandarin orange

Fragrance Family: Floral. Key Notes: Jasmine, musk, sandalwood, vanilla

Fragrance Family: Floral. Key Notes: Bergamot, petitgrain, lemon

Fragrance Family: Musk. Key Notes: Ambrette seed, citrus

Fragrance Family: Woody. Key Notes: Bergamot, amber, musk, grapefruit, vetiver, petitgrain, vanilla, orange blossom, cedar

Fragrance Family: Fresh. Key Notes: Patchouli, juniper berry, ozonic notes, musk, green leaves, ambroxan

Fragrance Family: Musk. Key Notes: Ambergris, ambrette, musk, pear, amyl salicylate. I may be biased because this is actually a scent I’ve been wearing for a few years now, but I will say it’s not for everyone. It’s the brainchild of Le Labo and AnOther Mag but unlike the brand’s city exclusive scents, this one was adopted into its permanent line, making it widely available throughout the year.  My mom sniffed it once and told me she thought it smelled bad although maybe that’s on purpose as others have classified the fragrance’s simplistic scent profile as “industrial”. It’s one of those unisex fragrances that will surely earn you compliments if you can pull it off. 

Fragrance Family: Floral. Key Notes: Rose, cumin, vetiver, cedar, oud, musk, guaiac wood, olibanum, labdanum. deep, earthy rose I was surprised to like so much. A departure from the overly sweet and girly perfumes of my teenage years. This is the type of fragrance you want to keep sniffing every five seconds, it’s just that good.

Fragrance Family: Woody. Key Notes: Bergamot, fig, bay leaf, cedar, vetiver, hay, tobacco. I first caught a whiff of this scent on my friend Sam who is one of those people who is cool without trying and I think it describes the scent perfectly. It has this deep intensity to it that’s a bit intoxicating in the same way that Santal 33 is. It’s distinctive and sophisticated, so I would say this reads like a really alluring scent to wear on a date or out to dinner as it strikes me as being perfect for going out at night.

Next up: Everyone Deserves At Least One Chanel Perfume—These Are the Best 5