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There is an art to selecting perfume

Beauty rituals

There is an art to selecting perfume. Please note, this chapter is one for real ladies. Do we truly know how to wear perfume? Queen’s Mag has looked into the issue.

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Advice dates back 200 years but, cosmetics-wise, have we made any progress? Yes, we have, but the master perfumers of the time are still recognised for many aspects of the art.

How is the smell of perfume structured?

There are three layers of scent in perfume: the top note, middle note and base note.  The top note is what you smell first and only lingers for an hour. The second is the perfume’s main scent and that can stay for five or six hours.  The last one will be our signature scent for the rest of the day. There is therefore no need to worry if the top note fades fast.

What is the difference between perfume and eau de toilette?

There are no regulations in place regarding perfume concentration, but standard measures of concentrations are used to distinguish between juices.

The most highly concentrated perfumes or extracts (20% upwards) are obviously the most expensive. Eau de parfum contains between 12% and 20% concentrated perfume essences and is expensive because of the high concentration of perfume extracts.

Eau de toilette is generally fresher with more top notes. It has between 7% and 12% concentrated perfume essence.

Eau de cologne (4% to 6% concentrated perfume essence), eau fraîche (less than 4%). Those with lower levels of concentrated perfume can be sprayed throughout the day. They are fresh. The smell is not heady.

Our advice 

  • Spray a cloud of perfume in front of you and walk into it so that the scent clings to you, your skin and your hair.
  • If you are wearing a light scent, you can focus on “hot” parts of your body: the back of the neck, inner wrists, behind the ears or even the knees, cleavage, etc.
  • Fragrance your clothes: scarves, jacket, trouser hems, even your umbrella! If you use an eau fraîche, you can even fragrance your sheets and pillows.

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