"Vanilla isn’t plain to product developers. It’s the x-factor in most fragrances, conjuring feelings of craving, warmth and familiarity. Other scent trends come and go, but vanilla shows no sign of waning popularity, fragrance experts say. That is fueling a chase to find new iterations."
Thus begins the article by Ellen Byron on Wall Street Journal, more of an advertorial for the new Bath & Body Works Wild Madagascar Vanilla, but interesting all the same. Such as this nugget:
"Preference for vanilla appears to form before birth, helped by mothers using and eating so many things that contain it, says Pamela Dalton, a faculty member at Monell Chemical Senses Center, a scientific-research institution. Vanilla can be found in amniotic fluid and in breast milk so people are exposed extremely early on in life, she says. […]There's also the Dame Perfumery Scottsdale Black Flower Mexican Vanilla fragrance, out this past summer, which I haven't personally tried but which sounds promising. Vanilla is like the little black dress, an easy solution to a complex dilemma, a sure bet, a staple, the perfect nude lipstick of the beauty world.
By adulthood, most humans have had so many interactions with vanilla’s scent and flavor that nostalgia drives even more preference for it, says Dr. Dalton, who has studied humans’ ability to perceive the vanilla scent, even at low levels. “We’re very receptive to it, even when it’s blended in other mixtures,” she says."
Which prompts me to bump up my Vanilla Series on Perfume Shrine which highlighted some of the varieties of styles that vanilla fragrances can take and the top vanilla perfumes in each of them. Always current I suppose!