I was scrolling through Twitter last night when three words struck terror in my heart: Pizza Hut Perfume.
I'm not sure if this offends me more as a pizza lover or a perfume lover, but I am definitely offended. Look, I love the smell of pizza (though not, particularly, Pizza Hut), and I love a good gourmand perfume (gourmand perfumes are essentially comprised of "edible" notes, vanilla being the most common). But frankly, this is just madness. I want to smell pizza, not smell like pizza.
If this gimmick sounds like a joke, that's because it started out as one. The Canadian social media Grip Limited handles Pizza Hut's social media, and last summer they asked fans to name a hypothetical perfume that smelled like fresh pizza. The response was such that the marketing team for Pizza Hut hired a specialist -- an aromachologist, as they are known -- "to design a limited-edition scent."
AND THEN THEY MADE IT. And they are shipping bottles to the Facebook fans who "won" free samples this week.
Smelling like food is nothing new, and I would argue there is nothing wrong with it; I am currently wearing Jo Malone's Vanilla and Anise, which is strongly gourmand. To me, it's very Christmas-y and reminds me of my grandmother's pizzelle cookies. Most folks are familiar with gourmand notes in perfume: from fresh green notes of citrus (lime, lemon, grapefruit) and herbs (green tea, basil, grass) to warmer, sweeter notes like vanilla, anise, amber, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and honey.
I want the same things in a pizza that I want in a perfume: nuanced scents (or flavors) that provide a layered sensory experience. In my experience, Pizza Hut does not deliver that pizza to my door, so I have a tough time believing they will deliver the olfactory experience to my nose. They claim the scent's top notes are "freshly-baked, hand-tossed dough" -- a shame they focused on making their perfume smell like that, rather than making their pizza TASTE LIKE IT.
My advice: If you want to smell like pizza, you should make one from scratch: it's a win-win. In the meantime, here are a few suggestions to help you smell pizza-adjacent:
Perfume with Bread Notes: Rye Bread by Demeter
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Perfume with Oregano Notes: Ambre Sultan by Serge Lutens
Perfume with Basil Notes: Lime, Basil & Mandarin by Jo Malone