Here are a few of my own suggestions that I hope will help you navigate the maze of perfumes with confidence.
Choose a Fragrance Family
The easiest way to select a fragrance that you will like, or if purchasing a gift for someone, is to decide on a fragrance family. What does this mean? It means each of us have specific fragrance preferences whether it's for our home, or for ourselves as perfumes, aftershaves, and lotions.
The general fragrance families are floral [e.g., powder scents, roses, jasmine, berries], fresh [e.g., aquatic, ocean, citrus, rosemary, basil], woody [e.g., cedar, sandalwood, leathery], and oriental [e.g., spice, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla].
Choose the Fragrance Strength
The strongest perfume that will last the longest is called Eau du Parfum. It contains about 10 to 20 percent perfume oil and should last at least an eight-hour day.
The next strongest perfume is called Eau de Toilette. It contains less perfume oil at about 5 to 15 percent and will smell strong when first applied, but throughout the day will dissipate and have to be refreshed after about four hours.
Colognes have the least amount of actual perfume oil and are meant to be a light version of a particular fragrance. Most men's scents are colognes and women prefer the stronger perfume scents.
Each perfume brand will offer various options to purchase as a perfume, Eau de Toilette, cologne, body wash or scented lotion.
Many perfumes are very expensive, so ask for samples at the perfume counter before you buy. Sometimes, you can purchase small sample sizes of the perfume so you can try it out for a week or so to see if you like the scent and it works with your own body chemistry. Perfumes and colognes will smell slightly different on each person. So test it out first before making a big purchase of any particular scent.
Beware of Discount Store Perfumes
All perfumes, Eau de Toilettes and colognes have expiration dates. Discount beauty stores sell scents that have exceeded their shelf life and come from high-end Department stores that did not sell their stock. Most often, the scent will only last a few hours and you will have to keep reapplying it throughout the day, and the scent will not be full strength. Sometimes, the scent can degrade and have an alcohol smell to it. So, the advice is to purchase scents at a quality Department store or online from the manufacturer.
Layer Your Scent
After your bath or shower, you can layer a favorite scent to make it last longer throughout your day or if you're planning a special evening. You can use scented soap or body wash, scented body lotion, and scented body spray. Just make sure it's all the same scent or it will clash and may not smell very good. Most fragrance companies sell a variety of products in their scents so if budget is an issue, choose a scented lotion, body spray or cologne instead of the perfume.
As an alternative to perfumes and colognes, you can use your favorite essential oil, which is a concentrated extract from the plant it came from. For example, you can choose a lavender or rose scent which is from the actual flower. Mix a few drops in your unscented hand or body lotion for a nice fragrant aroma. Think out of the box with your scent, such as peppermint oil, lemongrass oil, or eucalyptus oil and either put a few drops on your wrists, around your neck, or the back of the ears and enjoy.
Disposing Perfume Bottles
Many companies sell small sizes of their most expensive perfumes as collector items. These can be fun to display and you can enjoy the scent that would normally be over your budget to purchase in the full size version.
For any of your scents, if the bottle is a pretty or unique design. either reuse it by purchasing a refill, or just store it on a shelf as a collector's item. Otherwise, just rinse and then discard the empty container. If the perfume has exceeded its shelf life and no longer has a strong scent or the scent has degraded and you can hardly smell it anymore and it's a full bottle, you can take it to a hazardous waste disposal center as it could damage your drain and water pipes.
Storage of Perfume
To increase and maintain the shelf life of your perfumes and colognes, be sure to keep them in a cool, dry place, out of sunlight, and out of humidity like your bathroom. Some perfume bottles are dark or shaded to prevent exposure to sunlight, but be sure to keep them on your vanity table and away from heat, sunlight and humidity.
Do not think that perfumes and fragrances are a mere luxury. It is commonly known that investing in fragrances and scents that you enjoy, is known to boost your mood and enhance memory, performance and well-being. Even persons who are allergic to some perfumes, most likely, they will not be allergic to natural plant extracts such as rosemary, lavender, lemon, roses and any natural scent. Some people that work in offices or small spaces, have to be careful about wearing heavy perfumes and colognes. However, natural fragrances are lighter and pleasing to everyone and will attract people to you. It will make you feel more confident and will bring a smile to your face and to others who have the pleasure of being in your presence.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2022 Nancy M