What’s the first thing you notice about someone when they walk into a room? While some might say it’s their eyes, their smile, or even their shoes, there is one thing that precedes them all. So, what is it? Their scent. You might never have realised it, but when someone is wearing a captivating perfume or cologne, it enters the room even before they do, announcing their arrival in the most dramatic of fashions and turning heads before anyone even knows who is on the way. With this in mind, choosing the right fragrance is an excellent way to ensure you make the right impression on someone special, and can be just as powerful at sealing the deal in an important business meeting or setting the right tone for another important occasion of note.
The best way to get it right? Choose something entirely unique. Doing so won’t just ensure that you get noticed for all the right reasons but will leave a lasting impression, too. It’s all very well catching someone’s attention in the first place, but ensuring that you remain in their minds long after you meet is the real key to being memorable. Finding the right combination of fragrance notes to express your mood and personality can be fun, but also a little complicated.
Knowing Your Fragrance Notes
Fragrances can smell entirely different on each individual, which is often what makes them so exciting
Each fragrance is composed of a variety of different fragrance notes that combine to create a particular scent. In basic terms, these are simply made up of the essential oils within a fragrance – and like musical notes, ‘dance’ with one another to create a dramatic, impactful and often extremely alluring end result. Notes play a central role in the overall appeal of a perfume, so getting to know which ones work for you and identifying those you like the most will go a long way towards helping you to choose a perfume or cologne.
Each scent comprises three notes; the top, middle and base notes. The top note is often the first one that you will notice when spritzing a fragrance, and despite being the faintest overall, has a higher volatility level than the others. Basing your choice on a top note alone can often lead to disappointment later, because these only last for around 10-15 minutes before fading to make way for the middle notes – which is exactly why it’s so important to try on and wear a perfume before for while before deciding if it’s the right one for you.
Often referred to as the heart notes, the middle notes linger longer than the top notes, mixing with the base notes to create a heady and intoxicating appeal. Generally speaking, you’ll be able to smell the base notes on your skin several hours later, so it’s important that you like them – and that they combine well with the base notes – which are the foundation of the fragrance overall and penetrate the skin most effectively to interact with your individual pheromones, thus creating the final effect. Because each person’s body chemistry is different, fragrances can smell entirely different on each individual, which is often what makes them so exciting.
For a light and subtle daytime scent, opt for an eau fraiche, which has a concentration percentage of just 1-3 percent
Have you ever noticed that, when some people pass at an event or in the street, their perfume or cologne smells much stronger than yours? It’s not because they’ve gone overboard with the spritzing, but more likely the fact that they have chosen a higher strength variety, such as an eau de parfum, for maximum impact. Of course, these types of fragrances aren’t appropriate for every occasion, and knowing the different strengths and types available to you is a great way to learn how to mix and match depending on where you are going. What works for the office might not work for a red carpet event, and vice versa, and you certainly don’t have to just stick to one fragrance until you run out.
For a light and subtle daytime scent, opt for an eau fraiche, which has a concentration percentage of just 1-3 percent. These are great if you’re keen to make an impression without going overboard – but the downside is that you’ll need to top up every 30-60 minutes, which can often mean that you get through a lot of product in a relatively short space of time. Nonetheless, when it comes to fragrances, price reflects intensity, so an eau fraîche or eau de cologne – which at 5 percent concentration, is the next level up and lingers for around two hours on the skin – will cost significantly less than their higher-strength counterparts.
An eau de toilette is a good middle-of-the-road option, making it also one of the most versatile. Not too subtle but not too strong, it works well for almost all eventualities, and is one of the most popular varieties on the market. Of course, it you’re looking for decadence, all-out extravagance and the greatest possible allure, then waste no time in heading straight for an eau de parfum, which is 15-18 percent concentrated, and will last from 6-8 hours – or better yet, a perfume – which despite being used generically to describe variety of different fragrances, actually refers to a 20-30 percent concentrated blend that will last you for an entire day.
Test out your shortlisted fragrances on your skin for a minimum of fifteen minutes in order to determine which you like best
The final pick
So, now that you’ve identified the notes you like and the level of intensity you’re looking for, there’s only one thing left to do – it’s time to take your pick. So, how exactly should you do it? It’s important to test out your shortlisted fragrances on your skin for a minimum of fifteen minutes in order to determine which you like best, as it takes a little time for a scent to interact with your body chemistry and produce the end result. It might take a few trips to the perfumery, but as they say, patience is a virtue – and the perfect scent you end up with will be more than worth the effort.