Let’s face it, these days you’re not really a celebrity until you have your own fragrance. Since the dawn of the new millennium, celebrity fragrances have become as common as the cold. To put it into perspective, in 2002, there were only 10 celebrity branded fragrance launches. Fast forward to 2012, and 85 celebrity branded fragrances were released unto the public, making the field highly competitive.
Anyone from athletes, to movie stars, to musicians, have created multiple signature scents, and continue to profit immensely from them. Celebrity scents, which are typically more affordable than those from the big perfume houses (i.e Chanel, Dior), account for 40% of sales within the fragrance industry. As a popular public figure, it only makes sense to endorse your very own product, to successfully reach your legion of fans across the globe. It would be silly to be a popular face today, and not capitalize on it as easily as cultivating a signature scent.
A few examples of famous celebrities who surprisingly don’t have their own fragrance and are likely missing out on millions in profit as a result are: Jessica Alba, Gisele Bundchen, Demi Lovato, Miley Cyrus, Ariana Grande and a handful of others. The following list outlines 12 very wise celebrities that have capitalized off their fame by creating fragrances worth millions.
12. Sean Combs – Unforgivable
Sean Combs, better known as Puff daddy or P.diddy, reportedly collects $17.5 million annually from his fragrance Unforgivable, since its debut in 2005. The following year after its debut, Unforgivable was ranked the highest earning celebrity fragrance of 2006, a first for a male celebrity. A large portion of Sean Comb’s $700 million net worth derives from his fragrance line alone. Both male and female versions of the scent are available. Unforgivable is one of the pricier celebrity fragrances on the list, retailing anywhere from $69-$300 per bottle.
11. Lady Gaga – FAME
Mother Monster Lady Gaga released her first signature scent FAME, in 2012. The pop-star reveals that among the ingredients of crushed heart of tiger orchidea and pulverized apricot, are biological ingredients like a hint of her own blood sample, and semen. The source of semen is unclear, though rumors of Lady G’s true gender have ironically come into question in the past. The singer describes her fragrance on The Kyle and Jackie O Show by saying, “You just get the after feeling of sex from the semen, and the blood is sort of primal. It was taken out of my own blood sample, so it’s a sense of having me on your skin.” FAME has sold over 50 million bottles since its debut in 2012, and has since been followed by a second signature scent Eau de Gaga, released in August 2014.
10. Derek Jeter – Driven
In 2006, Professional Baseball player Derek Jeter partnered with Avon to create Driven, his first cologne. To date, sales are upwards of $30 million and the cologne was ranked the second best selling fragrance by Euromonitor, just 4 years ago. Containing notes of driftwood, crushed leaves, bamboo, lavender, spearmint, oak moss and a few other natural elements, Driven frequently receives positive reviews among men and women. Consumers invest in Derek’s strong, masculine persona, which is why it’s one of the best selling colognes on the market.
9. Jay Z – Gold
In November 2014, hip hop icon Jay-Z released his premier cologne in collaboration with department store Barney’s. The signature scent was released to rave reviews, and quickly claimed the number one spot for the highest selling fragrance of the year. According to huffingtonpost.com, the rapper doesn’t plan on accepting a dime of profits and instead, plans to donate 25% of sales to The Shawn Carter Foundation, which provides college scholarships to students with financial needs. Gold reportedly sold 3 times as many bottles as Red Lacoste, only a month after its release.
8. Sarah Jessica Parker – Lovely
In 2010, Sex & The City star Sarah Jessica Parker’s perfume collection had sales of over $45 million. The first of which Lovely, made its debut in 2004 and sold $60 million worth in the first 2 years following its release. Her best selling perfumes reportedly account for nearly $10 million of her $90 million net worth. The most popular scent in her collection Lovely, contains a blend of lavender, mandarin oranges and a glamorous touch of apple martini, proving to be a major hit among loyal Sex & The City fans.
7. Justin Bieber – Someday
Heart throb Justin Bieber very wisely released his first fragrance, Someday in 2011, in the midst of the bieber-fever epidemic that swept the world. The perfume sold over $3 million within the first month of its launch. Just a year later, he followed up with his second fragrance Girlfriend, which was launched exclusively at The Perfume Shop, and reportedly sold a bottle every minute during its opening week, thanks in large part to die hard fans that were camped out in front of stores the night before. Justin’s most recent fragrance The Key, was released in 2013. Collectively, Justin’s fragrance business alone is reportedly worth over $120 million.
6. Paris Hilton – Paris Hilton
Although the heiress has maintained a low profile in recent years, Paris Hilton’s perfume brands, a total of 17, have withstood the test of time, collectively worth an estimated $2 billion to date. The socialite has been able to pocket nearly 10% of those sales and reportedly credits her great aunt Elizabeth Taylor, who was formerly married to her great uncle Conrad Hilton Jr, for inspiring her to become a perfume mogul. She’s slipped behind the scenes for nearly a decade, but that hasn’t hurt her income one bit, as today Paris runs a multi-billion dollar empire with dozens of product lines that sell exceptionally well across the globe.
5. Beyonce – Heat
Despite having an actively successful career throughout the early millennium, megastar Beyonce didn’t launch her first fragrance until as recently as 2010. Naturally Heat flew off the shelves upon its release, where Beyonce sat at Macy’s signing autographs for the first hour. In 2013, Beyonce’s Heat was named the best selling celebrity fragrance brand worldwide, and has to date, exceeded $400 million in retail sales. With the 5-10% of sales that celebrities typically pocket from their fragrance lines, it’s safe to assume Beyonce has collected no less than $28 million from her perfume alone.
4. Celine Dion – Celine Dion
Legendary Chanteuse Celine Dion’s eight fragrance brands have sold a collective $850 million to date. Celebrities are typically guaranteed 5-10% of fragrance retail sales, which means Celine has pocketed anywhere from $42.5 million – $85.5 million in profits. Senior Vice President of Global Marketing for Coty Beauty, Steve Mormoris tells WWD.com, “Celine is one of the biggest female singers in history, and the attachment her fans have to her and to her fragrances is astounding. Every fragrance we launch with her does well.” The singer has said that Mimosa and wood are in nearly every one of her fragrances because they remind her of her childhood in Canada.
3. Jennifer Lopez – Glow by JLo
Over the past decade, Jennifer Lopez has reportedly pocketed over $82 million from her numerous fragrances, most notably her first, Glow. With that kind of passive income, it’s a wonder the superstar bothers keeping as busy as she’s been in past few years, having recently wrapped up a world tour, and currently occupying the judging panel of American Idol for the 4th time. With her first signature scent released in 2002, JLo is credited with the revival of the celebrity endorsed fragrance, which was initially popularized by Elizabeth Taylor, but faded out by the late 1980’s. Today JLo has more than 20 fragrances to her name. According to dailymail.co.uk, Jennifer reportedly earns more money from her fragrances than from her music. Every year, Jennifer Lopez continuously emerges as number one on the lists of highest selling celebrity perfumes.
2. Britney Spears – Curious
Pop princess Britney Spears’ debut fragrance Curious, is one of the highest selling celebrity fragrances of all time. Her fragrance line is among the more affordable brands with the cheapest bottle retailing for about $21. In total, Britney has created 16 scents, the first of which to date is still the most popular. Simon Comins, Superdrug Buying Director refers to Britney as the undisputed queen of celebrity fragrances for being the only celebrity to appear on Superdrug’s Top 10 Best Seller’s list every consecutive year, since its creation in 2006. The superstar reportedly receives 6% of fragrance sales as of 2004, and to date, has sold over $2 billion worth of perfume across the globe, guaranteeing the singer a profit of $120 million.
1. Elizabeth Taylor – White Diamonds
Hollywood icon Elizabeth Taylor, who starred in over 70 feature films, reportedly earned more money from her fragrances than all of her movies combined. Her debut fragrance Passion, which launched in 1987, sold $100 million by 1991, the year she launched her most famous fragrance, White Diamonds. Elizabeth’s debut scent is recognized as the first successful celebrity fragrance. White Diamonds remains one of the highest selling and most popular celebrity fragrances to this day, generating astounding sales of $80 million as recently as 2010, the year before the actress’s death.
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