How to Choose the Right Scent for Your Personality
Perfume is hundreds of years old. The Egyptians understood the power of the sense of smell and perfected the whole concept of "scent." However, they were not the only civilization to explore the sense of smell. Many believe that perfume is much older than we think, perhaps being used in very early religious rituals. Next to sight, the sense of smell is the most powerful to those seeking a base connection. It draws others to us because it evokes an essence about "who" we are as individuals. Choose the right scent and you just may draw the right individual to you. However, choose the wrong one and the results may not be so successful. So how do you go about choosing the right scent? Let's explore.
- Make a list of the scents that you particularly like such as fruits, spices, or florals. If you have specific favorites within those categories (like the smell of a rose or patouille spice) be sure to highlight them.
- Make a list of the scents that you don't like. Be detailed.
- If you already have perfumes on hand, take a look at the ones that you tend wear most often versus those that you barely wear at all. This will give you insight into your more subconscious scent preferences. For example, if you discover that you tend to wear more floral scents, that tells you something about yourself. On the other hand, if you tend use spicy scents, that says something else altogether. Or perhaps you even combine floral and spices together, which is another clue. On the other hand, if you find that you tend to avoid certain types of scents like floral-based or spice-based scents, that tells you that they likely do not reflect who you are as an individual.
- If you haven't explored new perfumes in a while, take a trip to a local department store that has an extensive fragrance department. Better yet, if one is available in your area, visit a perfumery. Speak with a representative who is specifically trained in helping you to find the exact right scent for you. They will ask you questions about yourself and then steer you in the direction of scents that match. Or, in the case of a perfumery, they will help you to build your own personal scent. Ask for samples of your top choices if they are available. If not, often they can spray the scent choices on a card for you to make a temporary sample for further review. Pay attention to the price of the scent samples you choose since cost may ultimately have some kind of impact on your final choices.
- Take your samples home and share them with people who know you well. Ask them to choose the sample scent that seems to reflect who they think you are as a person. If that matches with your own choice of scent then you likely have a winning fragrance. If, on the other hand, you get a lot of different responses, that may tell you that there are a lot of different sides to your personality and that finding a single signature scent may be virtually impossible. That need not be a bad thing, however, it will likely change the idea of a single signature scent.
- Write down the attributes of your personality that best define you as an individual. If they remain virtually within a narrow corridor like "intelligent, serious, and sophisticated" or "bubbly, outgoing, and sensitive," then you may be able to find a single scent that will suit you. On the other hand, if your characteristics are all over the map, choosing a single scent to represent who you are may be much more difficult. Be sure to ask yourself if you respond to different scents at different times. For example, you love floral scents during the spring and summer when your sparkling personality is at its height. However, you prefer spicy musk-like scents in the fall and winter when you tend to be a bit more grounded and serious. You prefer lighter variations of the scent during the day and heavier versions when you're out on the town at night. That lets you know that purchasing a single purfume may not work for you because you won't likely wear it during the day since it will be too heavy.
- Be honest with yourself about what you want your scent to accomplish. Is it just to reflect who you are as a person? Is it to lighten your mood or tone? Is it to attract others to you? Understanding what you want from your scent will help you to zero in on the one that may best help you accomplish that goal.
- Match the personality attributes that you have written down and the things that you want to accomplish with your scent to the perfume samples that you have obtained. If there is a natural match, then that fragrance or fragrances may be just the ticket for you. Keep in mind, that you really don't have to be limited to a single scent. I personally have about a half dozen. There is one that I wear when I just want to be me. It is a light floral scent with a focus on gardenia. There is one that I wear when I want to draw my husband's attention. It is a clever mixture of floral (me) and spice (sex). There is one that I wear for professional occasions. It is light and fresh with a fruitier base that most people find less annoying. While obviously, if you can find a single scent that accomplishes everything, it may be less expensive that should not be your only reason for choosing it. If it is, you won't likely be happy with your choice.
- Once you have narrowed your choice down, then match that against the amount you are willing to spend on your signature fragrances. You may find that you can afford the parfume in some instances but only the eau de toillette in others. You must then decide if you can be happy with those selections. If so, then you are ready to make your purchases. If not, you may need to back up and start over by collecting some new samples and moving forward again.
- Once you have made your scent choice, wear it for a period of time before deciding whether or not it really meets your requirements. Ask yourself the following questions. How does it make you feel? Does it adequately reflect who you are as an individual? Does it accomplish what you want from your scent? How does the scent mix with your personal body chemistry? Have your received compliments or complaints about it? I once wore a perfume called "Poison." I loved it. I thought it adequately reflected me as an individual; complex with both a rich floral and fruity scent. However, my friends were kind enough to tell me that the scent didn't work with my body chemistry; that it came across too strong. Consequently, I moved on to a similar scent that worked better overall for me as well as for those around me. If you are not ultimately happy with your choice over the long haul, then back up to Step 4 and start over.