How to Choose Your Fragrance

In a recent meeting, a stranger complimented me ‘You smell divine’. I have to admit that this compliment not only made me confident but also made me feel good the entire day. Since then, I never dress up without a fragrance.

Fragrance not only makes you attractive but also fosters deeper emotional connections. ‘Smell triggers memories better than sight.’ So next time when heading for a meeting, do not forget your cologne.

Here’s a quick guide to choosing your fragrance.

Understand Fragrance Families

Fragrances are categorized into four families woody, oriental, floral and fresh. And a perfume is a combination of two or more fragrance notes.

The top note is the immediate lighter smell of the fragrance that hits the nose first. The top note lasts from 15 minutes to 2 hours. Typically top notes are floral scents, citrus, fruity scents, powdery scents, marines and aquatics, and spices such as cinnamon.

The middle note is the main element of the fragrance. Middle notes develop after the top note clears and can last 3-5 hours after being sprayed. This mostly include heavier floral scents such as jasmine, or green scents such as grass or stone. Spice scents such as cinnamon and clove can appear here, along with fruity scents as well.

Base note is the last to develop and are often the bolder notes of the scent which become more noticeable later in the day. Base notes lay the foundation and will determine how long the fragrance lasts on your skin. They tend to last from 5 to 10 hours. Typical base notes are sandalwood, moss, vetiver, vanilla, tar, leather, smoke, tobacco, and musk.

Some fragrances will smell the same to you or on you from the initial spray up until you wash it off; these are called linear fragrances. Others — called non-linear — will change and go through the layers of notes over time.

Therefore, you should try all fragrance families and buy a perfume where you like all the notes. Or, you may want to buy a fragrance which stays same throughout. You are the best person to determine which scent suits you.

Therefore, you should observe all top, middle and base notes of a fragrance for a day before finalizing one.

You may try finding your fragrance personality here

Eau Fraiche with 1-3% perfume in alcohol and water, is the most diluted version of fragrance, it lasts for less than an hour. Eau de Cologne composed of 2-4% perfume tends to last about 2 hours. Eau de Toilette is a composition with 5-15% perfume lasts for about 3 hours. Eau de Parfum contains 15-20% perfume and lasts for about 5 to 8 hours. Parfum, most expensive of all fragrance options is composed of 20-30% perfume and can last up to 24 hours.

One of the biggest drivers of price of a perfume is the amount of perfume oil concentrate it contains. Eau Fraiche are much cheaper than Eau de Parfum.

So next time when buying perfume, do keep in mind its concentration level viz a viz its pricing.

Keep in mind the occasion

You will not want your perfume to overpower you in office and give no fragrance when in a party at night. Therefore, it is important to keep in mind the occasion and season while wearing perfume.

So for a daytime, opt for aromatic, fresh, citrus fragrances. Light concentrations are recommended which may require a mid-day top up to keep you going all day.

For lingering fragrance to pull you through scents of food and people around on a night date, you should consider higher concentrations and heavy floral, oud and spice base fragrances.

Summers make you sweaty so reach for a fragrance with crisp, light notes that will help you feel fresh and clean. Fresh aquatic fragrances are always safer.

For winters, look for rich and musky tones like incense, patchouli, amber, fig, vanilla, fresh dew, cassis, rose, bergamot, lemon that give you warm feeling of comfort.

Test your perfume

Test your perfume over a period of a day. Always try the fragrance on your wrist to see how it smells with your body chemistry. If you try it on the paper strips you will be able to smell only the top notes.

Between smelling each fragrance, refresh your palate with something strong like coffee beans. Walk around the departmental store and smell the fragrances at various intervals.

Did you know that our sense of smell is keener as the day wears on and also in warmer weather. So, keep your fragrance shopping later in the day so that you can truly smell the different perfumes.

If you are new to fragrances buy the smaller bottles simply because you don’t know how often you will be wearing it, and when your tastes may change.


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