Friday, July 6, 2012

Fragrance Fun Facts

Fragrance Fun Facts
When sampling scents (for you or for the home) stop after 3 scents. After that your nose can get overloaded and you won’t get a true sense of the fragrance. You can clear your palette so to speak by sniffing coffee beans if you want to continue sampling.

Fragrance is affected by our personal body chemistry so don’t base your choice of personal fragrance on the scent right out of the bottle, or on another person. Try some on, and wear it for a day so you can get a true sense of how it will react with your personal chemistry.  Choose a small spot, so you can easily wash it off if it turns unpleasant.

Fragrance can also be affected by the things you eat. Pungent or spicy foods can alter your personal scent, and react with your fragrance, altering it’s scent.

Of course sweat also has an affect – perfumes and colognes do not always cover body odor, sometimes they combine with it to make a whole new smell. If you’ll be in direct sunlight for any amount of time, you’ll want to avoid applying fragrance in exposed areas even if you won’t be sweating because sun exposure and fragrance don’t mix well.

There are different types and forms of fragrance each with different levels of potency, quality, scent and of course price depending on how much of the fragrance essential oils they have in them

Splash forms of fragrance such as after shave contain the lightest concentration of fragrance oils the rest being mostly alcohol which is why you get that lovely stinging sensation when you actually use after shave AFTER you shave. Alcohol is also very drying so I don’t recommend the use of aftershave. Your best bet is a nice moisturizer with sunscreen, and spritz cologne elsewhere, or an after shave lotion.

Body sprays are next with just slightly more fragrance than a splash.

Eau de Cologne and Eau de Toilette are the next, containing about 5-15% essential oils. These are the most common forms in men’s fragrance and a less expensive option for women’s scents.

Eau de Parfum is the most common form in Women’s fragrance and contains up to 20% essential oils

Parfums are the highest concentration and the most expensive with as much as double the concentration of oils as eau de parfum.

Perfumes and colognes are typically made up of different notes, although there are sometimes single note fragrances, most have 3 notes. A base note a mid note and a top note.

  • Top notes: The scents that are perceived immediately on application of a perfume. Top notes consist of small, light molecules that evaporate quickly. They form a person's initial impression of a perfume and thus are very important in the selling of a perfume. Also called the head notes.
  • Middle notes: The scent of a perfume that emerges just prior to when the top notes dissipate. The middle note compounds form the "heart" or main body of a perfume and act to mask the often unpleasant initial impression of base notes, which become more pleasant with time. They are also called the heart notes.
  • Base notes: The scent of a perfume that appears close to the departure of the middle notes. The base and middle notes together are the main theme of a perfume. Base notes bring depth and solidity to a perfume. Compounds of this class of scents are typically rich and "deep" and are usually not perceived until 30 minutes after application.
How to wear your fragrance.
First and foremost, for the sake of those around you, always obey the arms length rule. Your fragrance should not enter the room before you, nor should anyone be able to tell you were in the room by taking a deep breath after you have left. No one standing more than arm’s length away should be able to smell your fragrance.

Fragrance rises so don’t limit your application to behind your ears or on your neck. Aim for your pulse points and warm spot – crook of the elbow, back of the knees etc.

You may need to reapply … fragrance typically last 3-4 hours depending on what form you use and again, your personal chemistry.   Layering fragrance helps it to last longer. Using a body wash, and especially a body lotion that matches your fragrance will help the scent hold longer. Dryer skin will loose the scent faster than well moisturized skin.

Before reapplying though you should make use of a friend or loved one’s nose. We do get used to our own scent after about an hour. Many people end up violating the arms length rule by reapplying their fragrance too often because they don’t “smell” it any more

If you use a deodorant soap, it can neutralize your fragrance.

Be careful about spraying fragrance on your hair. Hair is porous and retains fragrance well, but be sure to spray on freshly shampooed hair without gels or sprays. Oils, dirt and other hair products can distort the scent, especially if they themselves are scented.

Enjoy your fragrance. Don’t save it for special occasions. Fragrance will evaporate and change once it’s opened, even sprays as those bring in more air with each spray. Keep it fresh by storing in a cool dry place, away from the sun…which by the way is not your bathroom.

Avoid applying fragrance directly on clothing as the oils can stain.
You can also spray your favorite fragrance on cotton balls and tuck them in your drawers and closets or spritz on your sheets for sweet dreams.

Chris Arnold
Avon Gold Leader
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