Ladies and gentlemen, I am about to state the very obvious: The dating world is hard. Similarly, the perfume world is also confusing. Much like your doubts about whether someone is the "right" match for you, at one time or another, you've probably wondered, is a scent really working for me or should I move on?
Don't lie to yourself — we've all been there. So, I turned to some of the best and brightest in the fragrance biz to get all of my questions sorted.
Clara Malloy, the co-founder of Memo Paris, relayed to me one essential point: Your skin never lies. "You can't look up or predict when something will work for you, but your skin will tell you when you wear it." In other words, if you find yourself constantly reaching to wear it, chances are you're on the money.
Fragrance consultant, Tom Knotek agreed, reinforcing that, "You know what you like and what you don't like. You should know within a few minutes after putting it on your pulse points whether you like it, or it it is just falling off your skin." Further, Knotek suggested that it is important to try something you're not sure you will like, and to that end, always try it on your skin, as what's in the bottle might not smell the same on you.
At this point I understood that much like dating, you're gut will tell you if there's chemistry between you and that new bottle of olfactory goodness...or if there isn't. But, it turns out, that in order to really know if the feeling is "mutual," you should be careful of what you eat before testing a new perfume.
Much like ingesting a large garlicky meal might be off-putting to a potential suitor, it turns out that it can actually effect your body chemistry...and as a result the way a perfume interacts with your skin. Christopher Chong, the creative director of Amouage, suggests taking some important steps. "If you are serious about finding your right fragrance, I would recommend detoxing for a couple of days by avoiding spicy food and keep to a bland diet," he says.
Specific notes and fragrances can also become very unique to you simply by the way they mix with your body chemistry. What works with your own essence could smell completely different on someone else. Finding your perfect fragrance match can feel like a special experience, encouraging you to revisit the same scents time and time again.
"The skin is your biggest organ on the body, everything you eat and drink will be secreted through your skin," says Geza Schoen of Escentric Molecules. "The way a perfume relates to your pheromones and natural odor can almost make a complex perfume creation become your own with a particular scent created with its reactions to you."
So, will it be love at first sniff? You'll know when you know. It's chemical.