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Top 10 Most Expensive Perfumes In The World: Chanel No 5 Is Not The Top One!

Category: Financial News

What is the most expensive perfume in 2020? It’s a DKNY Golden Delicious Million Dollar Fragrance Bottle worth one million dollars. Much of the price though is not about what’s inside the bottle, but the bottle itself, a cornucopia of gems from the famed jeweler Martin Katz. The perfume tops our list for this year’s most expensive perfume, which are:

  1. DKNY Golden Delicious Million Dollar Fragrance Bottle – $1 million
  2. Clive Christian No. 1 Imperial Majesty Perfume – $12,721.89 per ounce
  3. Baccarat Les Larmes Sacrees de Thebes – $6,800 per ounce
  4. Chanel Grand Extrait – $4,200 per ounce
  5. Clive Christian No. 1 – $2,150 per ounce
  6. Hermès 24 Faubourg – $1,500 per ounce
  7. Caron Poivre – $1,000 per ounce
  8. Joy by Jean Patou – $850 per ounce
  9. JAR Bolt of Lightning – $765 per ounce
  10. Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien – $441.18 per ounce

Everybody wants to smell good to create a great impression on others. For this reason, the global fragrance, antiperspirant, and deodorant market was expected to top $72.7 billion in 2018. Why are people willing to spend huge sums of money on expensive perfumes? quotes an aromatherapy expert who says that fragrances can change our physical and emotional state. Refreshing perfumes stimulate our olfactory nerve as well as areas of the brain that control our emotions and memories.

Now let’s look at why some perfumes are so expensive.  Some of them cost up to several thousand dollars. There are three main reasons that drive up the prices of the most expensive perfumes. These are: rare ingredients, marketing costs, and packaging expenses.

Let’s start with rare ingredients. Many perfumes are made from the musk secreted by a rare animal, or oils obtained from a tree, root, or flower petal. On the other hand, some scents are cheap because they are manufactured using synthetic ingredients created in a lab.

Take the example of Joy perfume by Jean Patou. This scent ranks among the most expensive perfumes because it takes 28 dozen roses and 10,600 jasmine flowers to make a single bottle. The maker derives just 1/25 ounce of oil from 8,000 jasmine flowers. Other rare ingredients included in this perfume include orris, ambergris from sperm whales, oud, and Bulgarian Rose.

The second element that drives up the prices of the most expensive perfumes is marketing and hard-sell. Perfume makers spend a lot of money on ad campaigns and celebrity endorsers. The customer ends up paying for these expenses. The irony is that you may be shelling out for a fragrance that the celebrity promoter may not even be using in real life.

Another strategy used by top perfume brands is to market their product like a fine wine or art. They put only a limited amount of bottles in the market and this exclusivity generates buzz and interest. There are many rich buyers who are willing to shell out an astronomical amount to earn the bragging rights for owning an exclusive bottle of a top perfume brand.

Finally, packaging also plays a big role in the high prices. Some perfume brands package their product in fine and expensive Baccarat crystal bottles. Others place solid gold bobs and bits or diamonds in the bottles and this also boosts up the final price.

Now that you have learnt about the attraction of perfumes and the reasons for the high cost of top brands, let’s get down to the brass tacks and look at the top 10 most expensive perfumes in 2020:

10. Annick Goutal Eau d’Hadrien – $441.18 per ounce

This fragrance was launched in 1981 and continues to be popular today. Its ingredients are a blend of citrus splashes, herbal and sweet, basil, and ylang-ylang. This scent is ideal for evening wear. The bottle is designed attractively in a unique shape. The product is a joint effort by two top companies, Francis Camail and Annick Goutal, and it is still creating waves decades after its introduction.

9. JAR Bolt of Lightning – $765 per ounce

This is a floral scent for women that was launched in 2001. Its ingredients include green notes, freshly cut tuberose, and oriental flowers packaged in a beautiful hand cut bottle that can light up any vanity or dresser. JAR stands for Joel A. Rosenthal, a jeweler, who is the brainchild behind this item.

8. Joy by Jean Patou – $850 per ounce

Jean Patou is a top brand in the perfume industry. He made Joy doubly explosive by adding two times the amount of ingredients which include 10,000 Grasse jasmine flowers, tuberose, ylang-ylang, Bulgarian rose, and 28 dozen roses. The jasmine flowers are harvested in a period of two weeks in summer in the town of Grasse, France. One of the main reasons for its high price is that only 50 limited edition bottles of Joy are made each year.

Joy has an interesting history. It was originally created by Henri Almeras who collaborated with Jean Patou in 1929 to produce this awesome fragrance. The scent has the power to remove depression and make the wearer feel lively and joyful. No wonder, it continues to be sought after even today.

7. Caron Poivre – $1,000 per ounce

This unique fragrance was created in 1954 to commemorate 50 years of fragrance production by Caron. It is an intriguing scent that combines a spicy peppery smell (poivre means pepper in French) with a woody base and rich floral heart. The result is a brave, strong, and bracing unisex perfume that is delightfully packaged in an appealing handcrafted Baccarat bottle embellished with a luxurious white gold collar and crystal.

6. Hermès 24 Faubourg – $1,500 per ounce

The high price of this perfume is because only 1,000 exclusive bottles have been created. The unforgettable fragrance is the result of the combination of iris, sandalwood, ambergris, vanilla, ylang-ylang, patchouli, tiare flower, jasmine, and orange blossom ingredients. These ingredients combine to create a long-lasting, soothing scent that elevates the mood. The perfume gets its name from the address of Hermes’ flagship store in Paris. It was created by Bernard Bourjois and Maurice Roucel, and packaged in elegant 1-oz St. Louis crystal bottles.

5. Clive Christian No. 1 – $2,150 per ounce

Clive Christian is a top maker of quality perfumes. He has created a number of popular scents among which the No. 1 takes the cake. This perfume was rated the most expensive fragrance in 2001 and 2006 when its original editions were launched. There are two flavors: Floral Oriental for women and Woody Oriental for men.

There is good reason for this fragrance’s luxurious smell. Its top notes are made from thyme, cardamom, Sicilian mandarin nutmeg, lime, and bergamot. The heart notes are a combination of lily of the valley, rose, jasmine, ylang-ylang, and heliotrope. The base notes are a result of vetiver, vanilla, amber wood, cedar wood, and sandalwood. This enchanting perfume is packaged in a handmade crystal bottle that has a neck made of 24-karat gold-plated sterling silver, set with a solitaire.

4. Chanel Grand Extrait – $4,200 per ounce

Perhaps the most famous brand in the perfume industry, Chanel, created this amazing scent in 1921. It has become a treasure that is sought after by fragrance collectors and perfume connoisseurs. This feminine fragrance exudes the smell of fresh abstract flowers. It is packaged attractively in a masterly piece of artwork.

In 1921, Coco Chanel wished to create a unique perfume that cannot be copied. Designer Ernest Beaux obliged her by using expensive ingredients of that time such as superior ylang-ylang, Rose de Mai, and jasmine from Grasse. The fragrance was then enhanced with its signature feature which is a 1% overdose of aliphatic aldehydes, a chemical that improves scents.

3. Baccarat Les Larmes Sacrees de Thebes – $6,800 per ounce

Baccarat was originally a maker of impeccable crystal products and it entered the fragrance industry in the 1990s. This item is part is of its three exclusive limited-edition perfumes. Its fragrance is the result of a combination of myrrh, frankincense, musk, sandalwood, myrtle, basil, cardamom, ylang-ylang, geranium, jasmine, and amber, packaged delightfully in a unique pyramid-shaped crystal bottle.

The fragrance’s name means “Sacred Tears of Thebes” and it was designed by Christine Nagel. One of the main reasons why it is so expensive is because the bottle is handmade by Baccarat experts and is capped by an amethyst crystal. The bottle has a bubble of yellow crystal blown inside that hosts the scent.

2. Clive Christian No. 1 Imperial Majesty Perfume – $12,721.89 per ounce

This enchanting and sophisticated fragrance for women is created by a combination of ingredients including Tahitian vanilla, ylang-ylang, rosa centafolis, Italian cinnamon, jasmine, orris root, and rose oil. You are sure to feel like the Greek goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite, when you wear this perfume.

The fragrance is a creation of the renowned perfumer Roja Dave. Its highlight is the unique bottle that is a made of a material that is very hard to work with as it can easily break during the production process if due care is not maintained. The bottle’s neck is made of 18-carat gold inset with a five-carat brilliant-cut diamond.

1. DKNY Golden Delicious Million Dollar Fragrance Bottle – $1 million

This record-breaking most expensive perfume was jointly created by renowned designer DKNY in collaboration with noted jewelry designer Martin Katz. The main reason for the exorbitant price is the one-of-a-kind bottle that contains a 2.43-carat yellow Canary diamond in the cap, 4.03-carat rose-cut diamond, 3.07-carat oval-cut ruby, 1.06-carat Paraiba tourmaline from Brazil, 4 rose-cut diamonds, 15 stunning pink diamonds from Australia, 7.18- carat oval Cabochon sapphire from Sri Lanka, 2,700 white diamonds, and 183 yellow sapphires.

Each stone was carefully hand placed and the entire manufacturing process took about 1,500 hours. But the hard work and diligence was worth it as the end result is a stunning image of the New York City skyline. This million-dollar perfume was created for a noble cause as the sale proceeds were donated to the ‘Action Against Hunger’ charity organization.

Nestor Gilbert

By Nestor Gilbert

Senior writer for FinancesOnline. If he is not writing about the booming SaaS and B2B industry, with special focus on developments in CRM and business intelligence software spaces, he is editing manuscripts for aspiring and veteran authors. He has compiled years of experience editing book titles and writing for popular marketing and technical publications.

Brajendu Sharma says:

I love my . Chanel Grand Extrait – $4,200 per ounce, the regular one. It is expensive to me, 300 or so for an ounce, but I have worn it since I was 19, (46 now).

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Wendy M says:

The money from that $1million bottle was donated Freedom from Hunger. It was probably purchased by a man for the love of his life ... and maybe he'll be allowed out of the dog house for a few days after that gift, while he could also write the amount off on his tax bill as a donation to charity. I'd say that covers all the bases of the comments I've read here.

I Love wearing a good quality perfume because it makes me feel beautiful ... I have a couple of old favourites that I alternate between depending on the season, if it's day or evening, or I just want a pick me up. I love to get a waft of my own perfume as my arm or wrist brushes against my nose ... If you use a cream beneath your perfume, it will last all day and into the evening. I usually put my perfume on after my shower, but I keep a small bottle in my handbag just in case I forget.

I don't buy much in the way of shoes or clothing, nor do I spend money on eating out, buying coffee or alcohol. I haven't even been having professional manicures over the last few years. I do my best to recycle & reuse for the sake of the planet ... and my wallet, and I make regular donations to a couple of charities.

My perfume makes me feel good about myself, and it gives me an understated confidence as I walk out the door, even if it is just to the supermarket! So my guilty little pleasures are a good perfume, a good haircut & colour and nice lingerie.
As one ages, ones needs ... and wants, become a lot less ... so I have no qualms about those few items that some may consider extravagant.

Reply to this comment »
Cindy Lou Who says:

And I thought my $125 perfume was expensive! And I don't even BUY perfume that often, maybe once every year or two. That's ludicrous to spend thousands on perfume. If I had that kind of money at my disposal, I'd help our serious homeless crisis. And I'd help people going hungry thanks to the ridiculous changes in EBT qualifications.

Reply to this comment »
Janet says:

Hi Cindy Lou You took the words right out of my mouth. Good for you girl...
yes, too bad not everyone else thinks like us. I too would give to the hungry
and the homeless if I had the kind of money people throw away on extravagant
perfume. We, my dear are the lucky ones because we have a heart, while the
other selfish people only think of themselves!!!!

Reply to this comment »
In reply to Janet's comment, Alexis says:

So quick to judge and we shouldn't. There are some people who can afford this and give to the homeless. If we only worried about our own lane's, life would would be much smoother. Happy people... happy life! Rich or not! Sigh....

Annette says:

I have several different perfumes and I know it might sound strange, but I wear a perfume which is in a box which matches my clothes. Expensive perfumes are lovely and they stay on all day but I would not buy a perfume in a bottle which is studded with precious stones or gold. It is unnecessary and very nickable from your handbag and anyway, perfumes should be kept in the box and in a cool dark place to keep them fresh so what is the point of expensive bottles.

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Keri says:

Something weird about the ph of my skin, because most perfumes smell like bug spray or baby powder on me. So, I buy what goes with my personal chemistry; sometimes it's a more expensive one, sometimes it's not. I have been wearing No 5 for a while now. On me, the florals subside a bit and it has a warmer, deeper scent.

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C.J. Devante says:


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Kaththee says:

Interesting yes, but it would be more interesting to hear the top 10 most expensive formulations instead. The price of the bottles is really a different subject since the same fragrance is often sold in a different bottle.

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Tivi says:

Finally a smart comment!

Reply to this comment »
Shakila says:

I love channel but if I can't afford it, don't mind using an affordable one! Therefore liked Alex's statement "Live your life as you like within your means." Strongly agree with Alex.

Reply to this comment »
Chelsea says:

Not at women who are financially fortunate enough to purchase these are cold superficial bitches. They have money, they appreciate the painstaking arduous process that creates the worlds best perfume. Other women collect them, many save for them. The judgement, condemnation, & vitriol directed at women who would & could purchase one is nasty, and so brimming with jealous bitterness it's appalling.

Reply to this comment »
Alex says:

If a woman saves her wealth, she's greedy. If she spends it, she's frivolous and vain. Most of the people who try to pass judgement are jealous, or just angry that women have their own money to spend. Millionaire/Billionaire men buy silly things all the time, but God forbid a woman goes out to purchase something that makes her happy. Live your life as you like within your means.

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In reply to Alex's comment, Joyce Cartwright says:

I have enjoyed fine perfumes since I was in my early 20s. To me, fragrance is THE most important aspect of a woman's attire. My fragrances are expensive (I only buy eau de parfum or perfume),and they're worth every penny. The best fragrances contain the most oils, lasting all day and into evening. Even the top-selling perfumes lose potency with age, so I buy the smallest bottle I can. This allows me to buy more than one fragrance. I've been known to save for a few months to buy a perfume that smells wonderful on ME! I like wearing only a dab or two. My choices have garnered hundreds of compliments from men who remark "Your fragrance is delicious!"

Bella says:

I would absolutely buy in a nanosecond if I the kind of money required to buy these scents. Mainly because I love perfume and the way it makes me feel. It's always nice to wear perfume and know u smell good and wall up and stand next to a good looking man and watch his reaction. If you smell good, u will definitely notice a shift of his body and possibly a smile as he looks your way. Yes, perfume is magic and has no monetary limit.

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mamaliz says:

I love my Chanel no5, the regular one. It is expensive to me, 300 or so for an ounce, but I have worn it since I was 26, (54 now). I love the nostalgia I feel when I turn my head and I get a wiff! If money was not an issue, I would probably buy the $4000 one, but I like to surf and travel and that amout of money can buy alot of plane tickets, or like 5 surfboards................ or make a nice charitable donation to a non profit organization! ‍♀️

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Kat says:

I'm a chick. And I wear perfume to mask the scent of those around me who don't smell as good. Maybe you're confused by our objectives, men.

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T says:

You? Wear perfume to mask the scent of those around you who don't smell as good? Does that really makes sense to you? That's like saying you brush your teeth to cover bad breath for someone else, but their breath is still gonna stink. You make no damn sense! Stupid! Then you go further to talk about "our objectives". Speak for yourself

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In reply to T's comment, Bond says:

I was thinking about that too. The question is how much is the cost of perfume. Seems like it’s the fancy bottle that the perfume is made of. What’s the cost of the perfume bottled in a bottle from a dollar store? There are too many starving and homeless people out there. Before we think about buying a bottle of “million dollar perfume”, let’s think about the poor and needy. Omg

user 1432 says:

I have all of these perfumes and they smell absolutely enchanting, although don't store the Clive Christain No 1 in hot weather, the lid gets melted and stuck, I learnt the hard way! i absolutely recommend all of these.

Reply to this comment »

For me it's cool. After all, it's your money, your priority, your choice, your choice your pursuit your broke when you eventually run out of cash! Only hard/smart working guys reward themselves with expensive stuffs all the time. Life is too short to micro-manage.

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Ana says:

1oz! While one half of me is going, "Whoa, I really want that perfume; just to wear it around and have a nostalgic "Breakfast at Tiffany's" moment!" and the other half of me is going, "For someone to buy this you'd either have to be filthy rich, disgustingly vain, a snobby gay (I am NOT saying that gays are snobby so don't you dare get on my back for that. Love is love.), or all three." Gawrsh!!! CRAZY (awesome or insane)

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Jibba Jabba says:

Unfortunately people with too much money, a large ego and too little inner peace try to justify spending so much to be exclusive and vanity and ego get the better of them in the Kal Yuga.

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edwin says:

To each its own, none of the above lists are better than AMOUAGE I totally agree with (ncba) Arabs make the best perfume in the world they just smell luxuriously natural

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arlene says:

Just remember no matter how expensive your perfume, know WHEN to use them or you'll end up too musky in a humid summer day. Generally, I prefer citrus-induced scents when it's hot and floral or lavender scent on cool weather.

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Cheryl says:

I agree with what you said about using perfume at the proper time. I once worked with a woman who lavishly sprayed Poison on each morning and then through the day. That was over 27 years ago and to this day that smell gives me a headache.

I prefer citrus scents in the daytime/warm weather and floral in afternoon/warm weather. The scent can switch up to more of a powdery musk for evening. Will further add that with all scents a little goes a long way...always!

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Lance Terrence says:

It's a nice list. But how did you come up with the list? You say it's a list of expensive perfumes but it looks like you just placed them in random order. It would have helped if you ranked them by their price tags.

Reply to this comment »
Kevin says:

Lance, the point is that women like things the way they like things. And, disagree if you want, we like women because they like the things they like and we fully appreciate those sweet scents.

Reply to this comment »
In reply to Kevin's comment, Mila & Jasmine says:

Someone marry this man, if he's not already taken!

Lance Terrence says:

I sincerely do not understand why women would spend so much for perfumes and scents. I do get that to smell good is an essential in today's world but shelling thousands of dollars for an ounce?! If there is a word that refers to a level above vanity, that would be the perfect adjective.

Reply to this comment »
Terry says:

The people that can afford Imperial Majesty have so much money that it's not even a consideration. I would be completely shocked if a woman that actually uses that perfume even knows what it costs.

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Sarah vanguese says:

A simple thing these celebrities have to show off their wealth.

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Hanalore says:

Clearly Lance you do not understand women. Women do not wear fragrance because it is costly. If we could afford Imperial Majesty, it would not mean we would buy it. Buying perfume number one objective is how it makes you feel. When we inhale, do the eyes close and we linger in the state of rapture. Through out the day, we love to be transported by our senses to that state of rapture even for a second. Second reason would be how we smell to others, these are only a few reasons.

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In reply to Hanalore's comment, Linda says:

Yes, Hanalore, it is that and the fact the experience you describe does not happen in the same way with cheap synthetic fragrances that often leave people around you coughing instead of closing their eyes and drinking in the wonderful scent. I would rather spend a couple hundred dollars for a tiny amount of something exquisite and use it sparingly, than douse myself with chemicals I substitutes.
Many thanks for your comment!

ncba says:

status, a twisted sense of priorities, and a black, twisted soul is why people [men and women] buy this extravagant stuff.
i dont even like these expensive western perfumes. they smell acrid, chemical, and totally unnatural. the arabs make the best perfumes. they smell like flowers. jasmine, frankincense, myrrh, oude are heavenly.

Reply to this comment »
In reply to ncba's comment, Jelimo2 says:

Probably only people with money would buy this perfume and who’s to tell anyone how they should spent their Money. The people who buy so-called expensive tennis shoes where many can’t afford them my two-cent is live and let live. It’s not our busy to be jealous....

In reply to ncba's comment, alba says:

Keep in mind that it's how you were raised- the colors, textures and scents that are meaningful to you so of course a person raised around the smells of the Arab world would not necessarily enjoy the same scents as someone raised in say in California. I personally don't care for the smell of Jasmine and Myrrh but I like Vanilla as well as Verbena and Lavender... everyone has their own favorites.

In reply to alba's comment, Zionist Star says:

true! to each is his own. so like i've never used a arabian cologne, dont know how they may smell, but i love what i find in NY, Paris, Belgium, San Francisco and so on.

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