June 22, 2023
We know the weather is responsible for a lot of things: our moods, the state of our hair, but did you know it can also affect how our fragrance wears throughout the day? Yep, according to research not only does the weather affect wear, it can also actually affect the smell of your scent. So, as we’re firmly in the cooler months let's explore this a little more.
It’s all about the evaporation rate
As you may or may not know, the evaporation rate (that is, the rate it changes from liquid to vapour) slows in winter and on top of this humidity lowers making the air more dry. What this means for fragrance is that the molecules dissipate at a slower rate (because it takes longer to move from liquid to vape) and it doesn’t “wear down” as much aka: you don’t move through the fragrance journey from top notes to base notes and it won’t emanate like it normally would.
The good news — and the not-so-good-news for winter fragrance
The good news in this is that your scent naturally wears for longer, specifically the top and middle notes. These notes — the first things you smell when you spritz a perfume — will hang on the skin for longer, and it may take even more time to get to the base notes (if at all) so the effect is a lot more subtle.The not-so-good news is that you’re probably not going to get the full potential of the fragrance.
What happens to perfume with heat
In summer, (or warmer climates) the opposite is true, with the top notes dissipating quickly and the base notes hanging around for the long haul so you really get the full effect of the fragrance. In science speak, aromatic molecules need heat to essentially activate and cold weather limits this, but in saying that each note reacts differently to temperature.
Your body and perfume
We can’t blame everything on the weather either. Your body chemistry also plays a part. If you have naturally dry skin, fragrance molecules will find it difficult to adhere to the skin (and also evaporate faster), and conversely will cling better to moisturised or oily skins. And that is yet another reason why it’s essential to keep your body nourished and moisturised.
Fragrance for winter
All is not lost in the colder months - there is definitely something you can do. The first is to keep yourself — and your body hydrated and moisturised to give your fragrance a chance. And the second is to make the switch to EDP’s (Eau de Parfum) which have a higher concentration of oils (15-20%) so will last longer on the skin. In addition, woodier notes also generally last longer, so if this is in your fragrance remit, go for those notes.