This would talk about a topic known to all but understood by few.Banish your ignorance now!!

We talk about perfumes this time.There are generally lot of unanswered questions which remain unanswered.I try to answer some of those:

Who’s got the power?

It is important to know the different concentrations available in perfumes. Let’s say you’ve selected a fragrance you really like; most companies make different versions of the same smell. Such as:

The Parfum – It’s the most expensive and has the longest staying power. It consists of 22 per cent essential perfume oils. Very few companies sell their scents in this form.

Eau de Parfum (EDP) – Lesser oil, more denatured ethyl alcohol and water. The perfume oil percentage is about 15 to 22 per cent.

Eau de Toilette (EDT) – Suitable for a work environment. Here the percentage is about eight – 15 per cent.

Eau de Cologne – The most inexpensive and weakest scent with a perfume percentage of four per cent.

After that come the aftershaves, the sprays, splashes, deodorants, shower gels and body lotions.

The right dab

A fragrance is your signature, take care to apply it carefully. Dab it on your skin and pulse points only, allowing it to dry naturally. The pulse point are where the blood vessels are closest to the skin giving off more heat and acting like mini fragrance pumps.

They are the wrist, behind the ear, crook of the arm and knee, base of the throat. Dabbing it on any other area will simply dry out the skin and have no staying power.


The first and foremost in perfume buying is to find out which ‘type’ of smell you are looking for. Perfumes often have close to 20 different ingredients in them. Everyday newer ones are being extracted for their use in the fragrance industry like soy milk, Jamaican pepper, even saffron — and all to remarkable effect – bringing together exotic elements of food and nature in one powerful head rush.

If the scent you plan to buy for your dear one is for daywear, opt for a lighter fragrance, something that’s perhaps fruity (Clinque Happy) or lightly fresh and floral (Escada Magnetism, Estee Lauder Pleasures Intense).

While choosing perfumes for the evening pick those that have qualities of musk in them, or a classic woodsy smell (Azzaro Visit), or with a touch of the Orient.

Of course then there’re also the sporty scents that have stronger citrus elements to maintain the feeling of freshness (Escada Sport) and Chypre, that are made up of components mostly derived from the Mediterranean (Dolce Vita, Miss Dior).

When shopping for perfumes, stick to no more than three or four perfumes so you don’t confuse them. A fragrance will smell different several minutes after you apply it, so give it some time before making any decisions. This is because the perfume is made up of top notes, middle notes and bottom notes.

The top notes are also called ‘The Spirit’. It is the first scent that hits you when you open the bottle. It is normally the lightest of the smells and disappears within five to 10 minutes and usually has citrus, mint, fruit or light spice ingredients in it. The middle notes, also called ‘The Heart’, is the bit that stays on after the first 15 minutes. Ingredients mostly consist of medium spices like cinnamon, light woods or moss or heavier citrus or fruity scents.

And finally the base notes also called ‘The Soul’ are the notes that last the longest (six to eight hours) and tend to have heavier, longer lasting ingredients like wood, leather, heavy spices (pepper). It is the base notes that leave a light trail behind you when you walk by.

While choosing a scent, some say that the best way to test perfume is to spray it on your skin as opposed to a scent card, because the acidity of the skin changes the scent from one person to another.

Besides, base notes that are usually warm and sensual, are stunted on the card and may go unnoticed whereas they would be very noticeable on the skin. After spraying the fragrance on your skin, wait a few moments before you decide whether or not you like it. This gives the alcohol time to evaporate, and for your skin to bring out the top notes.

Another way to do this is to spray a scent card from a distance so that the scent has some time to open on the way to the card.

Remember when choosing a perfume it is best to smell coffee beans between each scent in order to clear the sense of smell (like eating sorbet between courses of a meal to clear the palate).

One Response to Parfum

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