How to Find the Perfect Fragrance

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When it comes to fragrance, it's an addition to your personal style and your scent can make-or-break it. Many of us walk the mall smelling strip after strip of scented paper, but to understand your signature scent and what complements you is beneficial to elevating your style. The first step in finding your signature fragrance is to know the difference between Perfume, Eau de Perfume (Parfume), and Eau de Toilette. 

Perfume
Perfume is the most concentrated of all the fragrance options, and is the most expensive for this reason. Typically containing 15-40% pure perfume extract, it tends to be slightly oilier and thicker. 

Eau de Perfume
Eau de Perfume or Parfume uses the same perfume essence (10-20%), but less of it and more alcohol and water. This is preferred as the smell is a bit lighter and usually does not last as long. 

Eau de Toilette
Toilettes are common day-to-day sprays that are sold in stores like Bath & Body Works. Containing 4-15% pure perfume essence and a high alcohol content - toilettes lighten up quickly. 

In addition to understanding the difference between the different strengths of a fragrance, you should know that many fragrances fall into the category of aromatic, chypre, citrus, floral, leather, oriental, and woody. Many fragrances have a blend of two or more, but knowing the key note in your fragrance will help in selecting a fragrance that corresponds with your personality and enhances your style. Below I'm listing the key notes for each category.

Aromatic - Herbal
Chypre - Warm, Mossy-Wood with a hint of citrus
Citrus - Fruity, Citrus
Floral - Floral
Leather - Floral, Tart, Velvety, Smoky
Oriental - Amber, Musk, Vanilla
Woody - Wood

Ok, so you know all the basics of a fragrance, but still don't know what to select. The best thing to do is find your options. To know what works best your personality, style, and skin is to test a few different ones, but think about whether you want to smell like citrus or wood. Also, think about your daily life; if you're in jeans and sneakers a citrus scent may be best; if you're in a suit and oxfords a spicier woody scent may be better.

The amount of fragrances out there is overwhelming, so try them on. Before you purchase anything, ask for three or four samples, take them home and try one for an entire week. See how it works with you and your daily life. Spray them on your wrist and in the crook of your elbow, wait 15 minutes and see how the fragrance reacts to your skin. What you smell after 15 minutes will stick around for the remainder of the day. 

This sounds like a lot of trouble, but trust me - it's worth every effort to find a signature fragrance that works well with your personality and style. What are some of your favorite fragrances? Tweet me and let me know; I'm always looking for a new one!