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Perfume Prep 101

Meghana Rabindranath

The perfect prep before your next sweet-smelling purchase

If you’re finding it challenging to discover your signature scent, join the club. Though I’ve been through more bottles than I’d like to admit, I’ve never found the one. In my quest, to finding that perfect perfume (including Buzzfeed perfume quizzes, of course) I discovered that my perfume personality was super basic and also stumbled upon a bunch of ways to prep before I find my fragrance.

So, welcome to perfume prep 101! Here you will be schooled on all things perfume– the varieties, the application and most importantly how to make that smell last on you and in the bottles. Soon, you will be that nice smelling stranger that leaves a whiff of perfumed goodness as you walk by.  So whether you like to spray, rollerball or rub in, this is the perfect guide before (or after) you make that sweet-smelling purchase.

 

Types

Currently, perfumes, colognes, and fragrances of every type don't merely come in fancy spray bottles — they're also available in types such as body lotions, shower gels, soaps, and more. The types of perfume can vary from oils also known as ‘ikat’, to perfume concentrates. While we all have a preferred fragrance, sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the varieties of the same, but we’ve got your basics covered.

You will typically find three types of perfume concentrations, which are:

1. Parfum: The strongest perfume containing 40% of the concentrate (lasts 7-10 hours)

2. Eau de Parfum: Moderate and contains about 20% of the concentrate (lasts 4-6 hours)

3. Eau de Toilette: The mildest form of perfume concentrate with only 5% (lasts 2-3 hours)

So according to your preference of potency, take your pick. Our suggestion? Pick that Eau de Parfum, which should last around 6 hours ideally and isn’t too overbearing. Nobody wants to be that migraine-inducing co-worker with the super strong perfume.

 

Authenticity

Picture this: it’s the festive season, you’re feeling generous and decide to finally buy your best friend (or significant other) that expensive perfume they’ve been raving about. You find the best price online, pack it up pretty and gift it to them; only to then hear back that it’s a fake! So here are some guidelines that will save you the embarrassment and the heartache.

Firstly, look at the packaging of the products. Make sure the plastic wrap is packed neatly, a professional job with neat alignment and folds and no use of excessive glue or rubber.

Then, look for a control, batch or serial number so you can always go back to the main website to check for the same codes or contact the brand directly in case of doubt.

The overall appearance of the bottle should be up to standards. A smooth bottle, the spray nozzle should work with ease, there should be no sign of text smudges and finally, the cap of the bottle shouldn’t fall off when turned over

Lastly, the concentrate itself should feel light and dissolve easily, if you know your notes sniff them out and note that the fragrance should last for a minimum of 3 hours.

 

Application

 

I’m sure we all know that person who sprays on the perfume over every inch of their body like its going out of fashion and therefore manages to hold the fragrance the entire day (migraine-inducer alert!) But we’re here to show you how to apply your perfume for maximum effect, the classy way.

The conventional application of perfume is at pulse points, like behind the ears, the nape of the neck, and the insides of wrists and elbows, so that the pulse point will warm the perfume and release fragrance continuously, which is a great idea in theory. But, if you dig a little deeper for the rather unconventional areas to spray that stuff, it might last longer and travel further.

Large surface areas with hair are effective means of spreading an odour by evaporation, and since the apocrine glands and body hair appear simultaneously; that’s a bonus in sweet smell spreading! Also, the regions of the body that produce heat help with the same. So, show some love to these hot spots:

1. Upper lip

2. Belly button

3. Outer Ear

4. Behind the knees (yeah, we didn't think so either)

5. Small of the back

6. Undergarments

 

Longevity

 

Do you have that one friend that can live through the apocalypse and their perfume will still endure it all? While you’ve got yourself a lovely perfume that lasts for those two sprays and vanishes into thin air as if you never smelled delightful.

Layering your fragrances like your clothes, is in trend. Use the same shower gel, lotion and perfume to build on the fragrance, which will leave you with an uncompromising fragrance.

If you aren’t into the double-whammy effect, try putting on some Vaseline or an unscented lotion onto your body and double up in the parts you’ll spray for a subtle long lasting effect.

Spray some perfume on your hairbrush wait for it to dry and comb your hair (we love this one) and you’ll be smelling pleasant all day.

Spray the perfume directly onto your body right after a shower while skin is still damp to let the smell seep into your pores.

 

Storage

In terms of making that fragrance last in the bottle for ages, of course, store it in a place away from sunlight and heat. So if you're getting ready in the morning in your bathroom (because the lighting is always so perfect in there) make sure to not store perfumes in the bathroom as the humidity and light can actually speed the breakdown of your favourite scents.

When the Indian summers come along you could try storing perfumes in the refrigerator, if it isn't too cold so it remains at a consistently cool temperature and lasts longer. Also, it helps if you don’t lose the cap to your bottle (guilty!). It’s time to go find the signature scent now and if you're lucky enough to have found it, it’s time to preserve and apply it like a pro.

Image source: Pinterest

 

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