How to choose a personal scent
A simple guide to finding the personal scent that’s right for you.
We all want to be that person who wafts into a room and has everyone asking, “who smells so good?” But the truth is, finding a signature scent is hard. And it’s not as simple as just buying something you like on someone else, either. Because of our own unique genetic makeup, body chemistry, diet and the individual pH of our skin, each personal scent will smell different on each person. But, that doesn’t mean finding your perfect perfume needs to be overwhelming, either. Just keep these few simple tips in mind.
Choose your fragrance family
Let’s get back to basics: what do you love to smell? What brings a smile to your face? Is it the smell of fresh-baked brownies? Frangipani blooming in summer? Or the smell of brand-new leather? Whatever it is, you need to start with your preference, and go from there. Fragrances generally fall into five main categories: Oriental, woody, floral, fresh (think watery scents and green/grassy vibes) and gourmand (typically one with edible notes like chocolate or caramel). Once you know what your preference is, and what category it falls into, you can start looking for core notes within these personal scent families.
Now comes the fun part – testing. The best place to search for your signature scent loves is at a fragrance counter, where you can test a few possibilities. Before you go, make sure your skin is fragrance-free and you’re not wearing any lotions or heavily scented body washes that will interfere with your testing. Start by smelling any scents that interest you on the tester cards, and then choosing your top two – or max – three. If you test any more the smells will get confused. Spray onto your body, preferably one on each wrist (and one in the elbow crease if you have a third). Then, it’s best to wait a few hours before you commit. This is because fragrances each have a scent journey that will wear differently throughout the day (especially if they have the traditional top, middle and base notes). So, smell your wrists again after an hour or two, just to make sure you still love it once the top notes have “worn down”.
Choose your type
OK, you’ve chosen your scent, you know what you like… now you need to decide on what type of personal scent you want. Generally these will fall into three categories: Eau de Cologne, Eau de Toilette and Eau de Parfum, with EDC being the lightest, and EDP lasting the longest, thanks to its relative concentration of perfume oil. This may also come down to budget as EDP’s are generally more expensive than their lighter counterparts also.
And there you have it! Your basic guide to choosing your signature, personal scent. Now all you have to do is find the one that’s right for you. And if you’re looking for a place to start, try our extensive collection of personal scents here. You’re welcome.