Think you know everything there is to know about fragrances? Ok, let’s play a game of two truths and a lie.
- It has a shelf life and can change in scent as it expires.
- It smells different on different skin types.
- Your wrists are the only place worth spraying it.
We’re not surprised if you find it hard to spot a scent myth from a scent legend. Here to help you decipher the best ways to make the most of your favourite fragrances, we’ve put together a handy list of ‘do’s and don’ts’. Now let’s get spraying started…
Target pulse points
It might feel like second nature to grab your favourite scent and spritz it straight onto your wrists and chest. But, there are other target areas worth paying attention to.
Try spraying areas where blood vessels are closer to your ‘pulse points’ as this is where most heat will be given off. Good areas to focus on include your ankles, behind your knees, décolleté and near your elbows – yes, really.
Layer, layer, layer
Most fragrances have matching scented lotions and potions that have been designed to maximise the longevity of your chosen spritz. The typical layering combination would be starting with the scented shower gel, then adding a generous later of body cream before finishing with a mist of perfume.
Gift sets featuring matching body care and fragranced products are perfect for mastering the art of layering:
Top tip: Be careful when layering up mismatched scented products as this could completely change your finishing scent! Unless, of course, that was the aim of the game.
If you want to apply perfume correctly, a little restraint goes a long way. While spraying fragrance into the air and walking into it may be the dramatic finishing touch to your night out ensemble – well, if it’s good enough for Elle Woods – it simply creates a mist and much of the scent goes to waste. It also may lead to stains on clothes and jewellery.
Instead, opt for a light spritz held at about 5-7 inches away from the targeted pulse points and pump between 2-3 times.
Spray at the right moment
The perfect time to spray aftershave or perfume is right after moisturising as moisturised skin holds fragrance better. Also, after a shower, your pores are open and able to soak up both moisture and scent really well.
Store in extreme temperatures
The best place to store your perfume or aftershave is in a cool, dry area. Also, if you have a cupboard of scents that you’re not ready to use yet – think last year’s birthday gift list – then do not take it out of the packaging until you’re ready to spray away.
Got carried away with the #Shelfie hype? You may want to reconsider displaying your fragrances if your shelf/dressing table is near a bright window or in the bathroom – the conditions won’t do the perfumes any favours. Direct sunlight or other extreme elements can completely change a product’s composition, so your sweet-smelling scent may become something entirely different and often will have a vinegar-esque note.
Dab, roll or rub
Dabbing, rolling or rubbing your perfume or aftershave is a big no-no! Doing any of these things will damage or negatively affect your scent. Rather than releasing the scent, it actually bruises the notes and this will affect its overall smell and longevity.
Applying perfume behind the earlobes is also a common mistake. This can mix with substances that the skin releases and gives off an unpleasant odour.
Although rollerball applicators are great for topping up on the go, it’s worth knowing that every time you roll the perfume it starts to mix with your skins’ natural oils. This could gradually alter the scent – so no you’re not going crazy it’s likely to change over time!
Wear the same fragrance all year
Over time, you may get attached to a ‘signature’ spritz, but try not to get stuck in a rut. Instead switch up your scent according to the season or the occasion. In fact most fragrances have been formulated with this in mind.
By day opt for light a breezy fragrance with citrus top notes that are not too overpowering for an open plan office environment.
As the sun sets, stronger notes such as jasmine, musk and patchouli are a great choice. These branch into the woody Oriental realm, which is perfectly suited to evening events. Although they may be heavier, these scents will last throughout the night.
Most people comment that after an hour or so they can no longer smell their own fragrance, but this doesn’t mean it has evaporated – it’s actually the contrary! If you can sense your own spritz then eventually it can give you a headache and this generally means the scent does not suit your skin type. If however you can no longer smell it, it has settled well on your skin.
So there’s no need to keep spraying every hour, instead reapply every 3-4 hours to freshen up the scent.