BACK TO NATURE

Some women don't wear perfume, they say, because they are wary of chemicals in the formulas or are sensitive to synthetic scents. Many would like to have a signature scent that lingers subtly in a room even after they've left, but they cannot stomach the potential headache.

Fortunately, several companies make all-natural and organic fragrances that might be good alternatives for those who have always stayed away from the shelves at Sephora because of sensitivity to traditional perfumes.

"Basically you have organics, naturals and botanicals," says Adam Eastwood, co-founder of Luckyscent.com, a website selling hard-to-find and specialty scents, and Scent Bar, its bricks-and-mortar counterpart. "'Botanical perfume' means it's all-natural and vegan," he says, "so no animal products, beeswax, musk or ambergris is used. 'Natural' fragrances are made from all-natural ingredients rather than synthesized ones."

But, he adds, if a product is not also organic, the wearer could still be exposed to pesticides and fertilizers that were used in the cultivation of the scent's natural ingredients.

French company Honore des Pres makes organic perfume that comes packaged in whimsical marmalade jars and to-go style coffee cups. The scents do not contain any petrochemicals or synthetic perfumes. They are also free of coloring agents, animal byproducts and ingredients known to irritate sensitive skin.

The "nose" behind this line is famed perfumer Olivia Giacobetti, who has also created scents for L'Artisan, Costes, Penhaligon's and Diptyque. Giacobetti's creations for the company include a creamy coconut scent called Coconut Love and a fresh green mix named Nu Green.

A recently launched line called Crow Water + Parfum is entirely water-based, eliminating alcohol, which can sometimes be drying or irritating to the skin.

Creator Emily Lape wanted a healthful and natural perfume, and she's come up with six scents. All are water-based and void of parabens, oils and phthalates as well as being cruelty-free.