NEWS: Michael Edwards’ Fragrances of the World 2016


Post by Ainslie Walker


To their absolute credit, Michael Edwards, ‘the perfume experts expert’ and his Fragrances of the World team have once again produced the industries only comprehensive, accurate and impartial fragrance classification annual.


Luca Turin accurately states: it is “…a map, the only one in existence, which lets everyone, beginner or pro, set out into the mysterious world of perfume”

Michael Edwards’ Fragrances of the World 2016

32nd Edition: April release

Fragrances Of The World 2016 Cover Front

The small team undertakes an immense workload to stay abreast of the wave…or should I say tsunami of global fragrances launched each year. In 2014, 1768 new fragrances were launched and in 2015 there were 2044 – the first time more than 2000 have occurred over any 12 month period. To illuminate you a little into their workday, a minimum of 6 fragrances per day require evaluation, 8 if weekends are excluded and holidays ignored! Considering the rigorous classification methods employed by Michael and the team – evaluating every new fragrance and crosschecking the results with the brands and the perfumers to ensure accuracy – you have to wonder if they ever sleep?!

For this edition, a change in design, binding and layout was necessary to accommodate the sheer quantity of fragrances now showcased between the covers. Michael explains the eruption of new artisan fragrances, more than 800 compared to some 500 in 2014 and the increase in “collections, collections and more collections” as the reason for the steep rise in numbers.

Presented in both French and English, this year’s data is showcased alongside captivating imagery of raw perfume ingredients. The work of internationally acclaimed Australian floral artist Saskia Havekes of Grandiflora. The images define each family and illustrate the raw emotion and textures of the fragrance groups.


A forward by Luca Turin, renowned fragrance critic and commentator, impresses the magnitude of Michael’s work labeling him ‘the Linnaeus of perfume’ and describing Fragrances of the World ® as ‘’the only comprehensive, historically accurate, factually reliable and artistically consistent database of fragrance in existence.’

Michael is indeed the industry’s only impartial and independent authority. He makes no charge for listing or classifying new fragrances, declining both advertising and sponsorship. This year sees feminine, masculine and shared (unisex) fragrances merged into one consolidated index, with gender colour coded. Discontinued fragrances now are separately indexed for easier referencing.

Ainslie-and-Michael Edwards

Known fondly as ‘the fragrance bible,’ each edition is a collector’s item, keepsake, object of desire and THE industry’s go-to, exhaustive, encyclopedic reference. A masterpiece. Irreplaceable to the industry and to this day, unmatched. Each volume is an historic capsule of this moment in time, in fragrance, and all that has lead up to it.

“I use his book and database practically every day, and never cease to be amazed at the connections it allows me to make, the insights it provides, the “aha!” moments it springs on me. “ Luca Turin

Available from from April. WE NEED THIS EDITION, I can assure you.

Have you ever owned/seen/used a copy? Tell me some of your “aha!” moments.

Xx Ainslie

6 thoughts on “NEWS: Michael Edwards’ Fragrances of the World 2016

  1. Interesting article! I wasn’t aware that such a book is out there on the market. I’ve checked out their homepage and browsed through the free pages. Is it only a list of perfumes divided into various categories or are there some additional descriptions?
    As for “aha” moments – I had mine, when I started esploring the noses behind my favourite perfumes. Suddenly I realized that many of them were the work of JC Ellena.


    • It’s an amazing discovery! It lists fragrances under family with year they were released. It shows masculine/feminine and shared, discontinued etc.
      Their data base, which you can sign up to for an annual fee has perfumer, bottle designer, little description and official notes.
      I use both the book and data base and couldn’t do what I do without them! (Plus I loose myself for hours amongst the fascinating information and links they provide!)


  2. Hi Ainslie,
    I was hoping that someone in my house would have taken the hint last year when the 2015 version of Fragrances of the World was offered at a discount – and you talked about it right here on APJ! Alas, not one of my loved ones was paying attention. I suppose I will have to be more blunt this year when they ask me what gift I would like, for whatever occasion. Thank you for the update!
    Azar xx


    • Oh what a shame!! You must treat yourself this year and possibly upgrade your loved ones or spell it out to them!! ;D print out the review and pop it on your fridge covered in “want” “want” “WANT” and your b’day date??
      X Goodluck!!


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