A guide to finding your signature scent
Your choice of fragrance - just like your choice of clothing - offers people a glimpse into your personality and tastes. Having a signature scent is about more than just smelling great; it can reignite memories, reinforce a positive image and have people reminiscing about you whenever they smell similar notes.
With so many different luxury perfumes on the market, finding one that you absolutely adore is easier said than done. There’s a few things to consider - but taking time to get this right is worth it in the long run.
Follow our simple guide to finding your signature scent and you’ll have people dying to know what you’ve been spritzing.
It’s not just about scent
While of course the fragrance itself matters, there’s more to consider than whether or not the smell suits you. There are different types of perfume, all of which offer a different level of longevity and strength. Those who are able to top up their perfumes from time to time can make do with a eau de toilette, which typically lasts about four hours on the skin. Don’t want to worry about spritzing yourself half way through the day? A eau de parfum lasts five to six hours, whereas a parfum lasts practically all day. Take this into consideration when choosing a fragrance rather than going by scent alone.
Make a note of your favourite smells
Perfume is a very personal thing, so your signature scents should be reminiscent of smells you love in your everyday life. Attracted to the smell of rich chocolate or caramel? A gourmand fragrance is the best choice for you. Likewise, if it’s strawberries, peach or fresh raspberries that satisfies your senses, choose a scent that contains elements of your favourite fruits. Those who love flowers are spoilt for choice as there are a range of floral perfumes available containing the likes of romantic rose, jasmine and ylang ylang. Start from what you love - and find a fragrance that reflects it.
Take note of the notes
All perfumes contain different levels of fragrance known as notes - top, heart and base. It’s important to be aware of all three of these and what they contain, as they all play a role in how the perfume smells.
The top note is what you’ll smell when you first spray the perfume, but only lasts for about ten minutes. Heart notes, just as the name suggests, are the heart of the perfume and make up 70% of the fragrance, lasting two to four hours. They combine with the base notes, which are considered the very foundation or core of the perfume. These last more than six hours. (Do keep in mind, however, that the longevity of the perfume depends on the type you buy, as mentioned above).
What kind of vibe do you want to give off?
Now that you know the basics of picking a perfume, you need to consider what kind of message you want to give off. Your signature scent is a clue to your personality, giving off a first impression to those around you. A zesty citrus perfume is incredibly energising and gives off the sense that you’re the life and soul of the party - whereas a sumptuous oriental scent is more mysterious and seductive. Floral perfumes are dainty, romantic and elegant, while a natural fougère scent makes you seem effortlessly cool.
There are many reasons why you should have a signature scent, so taking a little bit of time out of your day to browse some options and understand the notes is well worth it. Not only does the right fragrance add to your personal style - but your new-found knowledge will help you to shop for gifts for others too.
Keep up with the top stories from Reader’s Digest by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.