For some, scent defines who they are and when it becomes a part of your everyday, a signature fragrance can provide a sense of familiarity and even a comfort to loved ones. But how do you choose a scent that matches your personality and, more importantly, your body’s chemistry?
Sniffing out your perfect fragrance comes down to two things: your preference and your body’s chemistry. Once you find a scent you like, trying it out is vital—what smells good in the bottle might not be the same once it’s on your skin, since everyone’s hormones and pheromones are different and ultimately affect the final smell. It might take a bit of trial and error to connect with your ideal scent, but we’ve got a few tips that’ll make it a little easier.
Know what you like (and what you don’t)
Did you know that our sense of smell is closely linked to memories? Think back to a smell that’s familiar and you might also conjure up a few memories that go along with it. The scent of flowers on a warm, sunny spring day; the scent of a fresh rainfall as you used to walk to school; or maybe the musky scent of your dad’s cologne that would linger long after he’d left a room. Take a moment to think about some of your favorite scents (or even some of the ones you know you don’t like!) and what emotions they evoke. Then, make a list of those scents. It’s a great place to start your smelly journey!
Shop by scent and feeling
Though each one of our perfumes is unique, we can put them into a few descriptive categories to help narrow down your search for the perfect fragrance.
These perfumes are romantic and complex. They inspire confidence, sensuality and love with prominent notes of rose, jasmine and lavender.
Woody notes from ingredients like patchouli and sandalwood give these perfumes a grounding, calm personality. They exude an air of mystery and leave you feeling inspired.
Energizing, refreshing scents like citrus, mint and green grassy aromas grace these perfumes. Spritz or dab on for an uplifting experience that’ll set the intention for your day.
Nostalgic scents like vanilla, coffee and tonka create perfumes that feel both comfortable and indulgent. These fragrances are reminiscent of warm hospitality and inspire feelings of contentment.
You’ll find that many perfume retailers list the different notes of each of their perfumes. Once you know which of the fragrance families you prefer, it’ll be easy to identify which scents belong within them.
Once you’ve decided on a particular fragrance family, get out there and start smelling. Different blends will appeal to different people. If you can get a small tester of a scent you think you love, grab it and wear it when you’re stressed, outdoors, at work or anywhere else you can think of—and if at any time you’re unsure about the scent, move on. You want to be sure that you love your new scent in every situation. There’s nothing worse than the smell of something you’re just not happy with.
Don’t be afraid to shop online, either! A detailed description on a product’s page will give you a clear idea of every note within the scent you’re interested in. Once you think you’d like to test one out, purchase the smallest bottle—usually a very small cost—and test it out. If you don’t love it, most places have a great return policy so you don’t have to stick with it.