A vast selection of fragrances for men and women makes finding the right one easier. Cave Shepherd Warrens, pictured here, is one of the more popular locations for fragrance shopping for yourself or others. (FP)
The holidays are the ideal time look your best for every occasion and adding a signature scent will seduce the senses of those around you, leaving a lasting impression. While choosing the right fragrance for your body can be tricky, this how-to guide gives you the tips you need to make the right choice.
Distinguishing Between Fragrances
So you’re trying to choose a fragrance and you have no idea what the difference is between “Eau de Toilette”, “Parfum” and “Eau de Cologne”? Here’s what these terms, and a few others, mean:
Parfum is highly concentrated, with a high price to match. They are comprised of 20 to 30 per cent pure perfume essence and a single application usually lasts as long as 24 hours.
Eau de Parfum is slightly less concentrated with 15 to 20 per cent pure perfume essence. It generally lasts between five to eight hours. The term is used for both male and female scents.
Eau de Toilette fragrances last approximately three hours as they are simply a light spray. The five to 15 per cent pure perfume essence of which it is made up, is dissolved in alcohol.
Eau de Cologne is comprised of two to four percent perfume oils in alcohol and water and lasts approximately two hours. It is normally associated with light, fresh or fruity scents for males.
Eau Fraiche is the least concentrated with only one to three per cent perfume oil in alcohol and water. This diluted fragrance may last for one hour or less.
The Rules of Fragrance Testing
The best way to determine if a particular fragrance will complement your natural body odour is to test it before you buy it.
Use your wrists and inner elbows to test fragrances on your body.
Never try more than four fragrances at once.
If you are new to fragrances, don’t test more than two scents.
Give yourself approximately one day to determine if the fragrance you like best, suits you.
Where possible, clear your olfactory palate in between fragrance tests if the store provides coffee beans or tea to do this.
Scent cards can provide an inaccurate representation of how the fragrance will smell on your body. Avoiding using them when fragrance shopping for yourself.
Applying Your Fragrance
So you’ve found the fragrance that suits you and now you’re ready to debut it! Gone are the days when a person would saturate themselves in a scent. That antiquated practice is sure to turn off the olfactory sense of others. Here are some tips on how to properly wear your new scent.
Apply the fragrance on two parts of your body. Select the two areas you prefer from these options: lower jaw, neck, shoulder, chest, inner elbow, forearm or wrist.
If you aren’t sure which areas to choose, try a different part each day and remember one spray is all you need. As you become more comfortable, you may spray a little more.
Spray the fragrance onto your body instead of rubbing it in, to avoid weakening the scent.
When your skin is dry, apply the fragrance to the chosen part of your body. This will allow your body heat to emit the scent throughout the day. Do not apply it to your clothing.
Only reapply the scent throughout the day if necessary. Should you do this, the wrist is recommended.
Less is more. Do not, I repeat, do not dowse yourself in the fragrance. The end result is usually extremely overwhelming and unpleasant to other people you encounter.
On that note, spraying the fragrance into the air and walking through it is a waste of the fragrance; do not do it.
Now that you have studied Fragrances 101, put your knowledge to the test as you shop for your perfect fragrance this Christmas.