Mildly scented (and minimally priced) fragrances for nurses

Shutterstock | KieferPix
Shutterstock | KieferPix

Nurses spend a lot of time getting up close and personal with their patients, which is why a pleasant scent can be a welcome addition to any shared moment. Of course, all of our noses are different, and you should never disregard the possibility that your idea of a heavenly aroma could be another person’s idea of “mildly unbearable,” especially if taken to a point of excess.

To avoid irritating patients and coworkers who have a strong sense of smell, opt for a small dab of a more natural, subtle fragrance when you’re on the job. Now, since we know you don’t have a lot of spare time to hop from one department store counter to another, we went ahead and found 10 highly distinct yet equally mild fragrances for you.


1. Nest, White Sandalwood ($68)

Scent: “White Indian sandalwood blended with creamy almond, white musk and exotic spices.”

2. Coach, Poppy Citrine Blossom Eau de Toilette Spray ($45)

Scent: “Crisp, vibrant, sophisticated—like a sip of green tea.”

3. Estée Lauder, Modern Muse ($60)

Scent: Mandarin, jasmine, amber wood and patchouli.

4. BVLGARI, Pour Femme ($49)

Scent: “A classic and refined scent with hints of Sambac Jasmine tea and Prelude Rose.”

5. Banana Republic, Jade ($49)

Scent: Cotton flower and pomegranate.

6. Clinique, Aromatics Elixir ($31)

Scent: Chamomile, tuberose and amber.

7. Estée Lauder, White Linen ($48)

Scent: “Crisp, clean and fresh.”

8. Lavanila, Vanilla Blossom ($58)

Scent: Madagascar vanilla and nutmeg.

9. Victoria’s Secret, Love Spell Fragrance Mist ($14)

Scent: Peach, cherry blossom and white jasmine.

10. Elizabeth Arden, Green Tea Camellia ($22)

Scent: “Sheer bergamot, yuzu, sparkling lemon and green tea vapors; followed by middle notes of green tea leaves, Camellia sasanqua, white peony and Chinese magnolia; and finally, base notes of angelica musk, white birch and a touch of sweet spices.”

What’s your go-to fragrance for work? Tell us in the comments section below! 


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7 Responses to Mildly scented (and minimally priced) fragrances for nurses

  1. Charlene Beck

    Bath and Body Works Warm Vanilla Sugar

  2. ThreePalms

    Man, this will be a controversial article.

    All the fragrances you listed may or may not be acceptable to patients and coworkers depending on the level of reaction they have to any fragrances. The next issues is how much fragrance is applied and where. Some people will forever drench themselves in it and say they put barely any on. Some people will spray into the air and quickly walk through. There is no way to monitor this issue. I know some of the fragrances listed above could be barely spritzed once and it would be “light.” I also know other fragrances mentioned that if a coworker were to spritz once and I smelled it, I would be gagging, trying to wash it off my tongue. That is why facilities just flat out set policy at zero fragrance use.

    But when I’m at home and not going out, my favorite is Philosophy Pure Grace, just a spritz or two and it’s for my own enjoyment ♥

  3. Heather Shaw

    One of my favorite fragrances for work is by Philosophy and is called Fresh Cream. Its got a light vanilla scent, that isn’t obnoxious. I wear it to work and most of my clients really like it, and have made positive comments about it. It also comes in a body wash, and body cream, so you can layer the fragrance too. Personally I think some of the fragrances listed are way too heavy for work. I don’t want to offend anybody, so most days I forgo fragrance. Guess I’m an old school nurse.

  4. kpilk

    Nopenopenope. Ivory soap and water. NO fragrances. Ever.

  5. Liz Y

    Correct me if I am wrong but most work places are supposed to be scent free, not because the scent is offensive or to strong but because of the reactions some people may have to the chemicals in the perfumes….migraines, breathing problems ect….. the actual strength of the scent doesn’t stop a persons reaction, just because someone can’t smell the scent doesn’t mean they aren’t still exposed to the chemicals in your perfume…..please consider your patients and co-workers possible reactions when using any product with scents including laundry soaps, dryer sheets and scented hygiene products… the smoke from a cigarette there are numerous carcinogens in many of the products people use, we don’t allow smoking in our work places, to prevent exposure of those who choose not to smoke to these chemicals, therefore maybe we should better enforce the restriction of perfumes as well for similar reasons….

  6. tamrn37

    I wear Allure by Chanel. I have constantly gotten compliments from my patients when I was working as an RN. They always want to know what it is and where to get it. Expensive but perfect for work and everything else!

  7. peabody51

    I have been wearing Aromatics Elixir for as long as i have been an RN. Patients and fellow RNs are always asking me what i am wearing.