Perfume is an extension and reflection of your personality and that’s why choosing a perfume that suits you is not easy. Given that fragrance preferences are very subjective and personal, a search for a single magic potion that will work on everyone for every event is meaningless.
The essential oils of a perfume react differently with each different person. Some perfumes are more suited to some personalities than others. There are several categories of scent that express different moods.
This is the largest and most popular category and is created mainly from flowers, including rose, carnation, orange blossom, gardenia and jasmine. These are often blended together to produce a distinctive floral bouquet. Popular scents: Ralph Lauren Romance, Yves Saint Laurent Paris, Daisy by Marc Jacobs.
Fragrances in this group come from citrus fruits such as lime, lemon, orange and mandarin. These fragrances project a sharp, tangy aura, which are naturally refreshing and uplifting. Citrus blend are among the oldest known scents. They were first worn by men and are now popular with women as well. Some popular examples: Calvin Klein CK One, Gucci Gucci.
This is a woody fragrance created by French perfumer Francois Coty, based on his impression of the island of Cyprus. The fragrance is dominated by pine aromas with hints of bergamot, oak moss, citrus and patchouli providing an earthy suite of aromas. Popular scents: Miss Dior Cherie by Dior, Alien by Thierry Mugler.
Oriental fragrances are a heady mix of spices, amber, balsams and resins suggesting warmth and exotic sensuality, and are popular for evening wear. Popular scents: Gucci Guilty by Gucci, Shalimar by Guerlain, Opium by Yves Saint Laurent, Flower by Kenzo.
Aromatic compositions include notes of lavender, geranium, moss and wood. This group primarily includes perfumes for men. Popular scents: Armani Emporio Remix for Him, Azzaro Pour Homme.
Green fragrances are fresh and alive aromas, with a hint of sharpness from young grassy scents blended with pine, juniper, leaves and herbs to create memorable perfumes. They reflect sporty personalities and they are most suited to daytime wear. Popular scents: Cartier So Pretty, Ralph Lauren Safari, DKNY Be Delicious Green Apple.
The choice of fragrance is often affected by season. Summer calls for cooler lighter fragrances, whereas winter might suggest warmer aromas.
Spring is the return of freshness, and autumn is a period of subtlety. Daywear and a choice for everyday work calls for a different perfume to an evening out. An intimate dinner might suggest a different aroma to a family get-together. When you are buying perfume for someone, consider when he or she might wear your choice.
The other consideration is the relative strengths of the essential oils, and the amount they are diluted.
There are four different categories according to the strength of the oils:
- Eau de parfum is the strongest concentration and typically contains 15-22 percent essential oils.
- Eau de toilette has a typical concentration of 8 to 15 percent essential oils.
- Eau de cologne (or Cologne) had a concentration of 4 to 8 percent of essential oils.
- Eau fraiche is the most diluted of scent with just 1 to 3 percent concentration of essential oils.
The different notes in a fragrance
Perfumes are works of architecture: they’re built in three-tiered scent pyramids comprising top notes (fresh, strong scents that are immediately apparent when you spray the perfume onto your skin), heart notes (more sensual scents that become apparent after about 10 minutes); and base notes (heavy, more durable notes that make the perfume last).
You can only really find out what a perfume’s real fragrance is like after an hour’s wear, when all three notes have come out.
Rules to application
A golden rule of perfumery that many tend to overlook or ignore is that all fragrances should be subtle. Even it’s the best perfume you’ve ever sniffed, go easy on the amount you apply. If you pour too much, you’ll be likely to reek of perfume and even cause headaches. The rule is to dab perfume on the inside of the wrists, the neck and behind the ears.
Perfumes can be applied safely onto the skin, especially since the essential oils in the composition are already diluted and blended with the other ingredients. Don’t use more than 2-3 drops in a single area. Some people prefer to spray perfume onto clothes. While cottons absorb perfume well, most silks stain badly. Be cautious before spraying perfume on expensive clothing.
– Don’t buy a fragrance because your friend wears it, fragrances smell completely different on different people.
– Over-applying, thinking that the scent will stay strong all day long, is not the way to go. To make sure that your fragrance lasts all day, use a body lotion in the same or complementing scent.
– Re-applying the perfume throughout the day is not recommendable. Your smelling sense becomes desensitized to fragrances and you will not be able to smell the perfume while others still can.
– Never put different perfumes on at the same time – the mixture of the scents will most likely make a horrible combination.
Just be beautiful, confident and enjoy the fragrance!