Fabulous Flankers
Fabulous Flankers

No word sets the eyes of the perfume-loving community rolling more enthusiastically than the word’flanker’, and it’s easy to see why. Flankers, which are the re-named and re-packaged spawn of familiar scents, tend to be less creative or unique than their forebears, due in part to the fact that they are a quick way for a brand to make a quick buck. But who can blame them, as what could be easier than shoving a new juice inside a familiar bottle and under a familiar name, I ask you? Not much, in truth.

So yes, flankers can be annoying, especially as they are nothing short of prolific nowadays. That said, they aren’t all bad and some really good fragrances have been the result of enthusiastic flankering. As you may have guessed, the subject of flankers has taken centre stage for my Escentual column this week (the first column of 2015, in fact) and within my little guide you’ll find six intriguing flankers that are as good as, if not better than the original scents they stem from. Click here to read my piece and don’t forget to tell me about your favourite flankers.


If like me, you’re fed up with the constant wave of flankers (please see my review of the two new CK One flankers) then I hope you will take this post as some kind of remedy, a tonic if you will. I could spend hours and hours moaning about how I hate flankers and name and shame some of the worst, that would be very easy, and not entirely true. What I would like to do instead is just make a few personal recommendations of what I think are some of the best.

What is a Flanker?

Most of you reading this blog will be familiar with flankers but for those who aren’t; a flanker is essentially a fragrance released using the same (or similar) name as another fragrance by the same house, think of it as a sort of sequel, so for example; Live Jazz is a flanker to the original Jazz by Yves Saint Laurent. The actual juice can be very similar, slightly similar or completely unrelated to the original fragrance.

Flankers are a cheap way of marketing a new fragrance without having to spend a huge amount of money on new concepts, bottle moulds and advertising. They are also a great way of marketing a ‘new’ product to consumers who are already fans of the original fragrance.

Not all flankers are bad, some brands use the opportunity to create a new interpretation of an established fragrance and these tend to be the flankers that work best, they bring something new and interesting to the table.