Although it's completely invisible once it makes contact with your skin, fragrance has the weird ability to say so much about your own personality and tastes while you remain completely silent, and has the potential to leave a lasting impression on anyone who catches a passing whiff. Traditionally, applying the scent on your pulse points was the go-to method, as the heat from your wrists, behind your hears, and on your neck would make the notes more prominent, but according to perfumer Louise Turner, who is the nose behind Carolina Herrera's new Good Girl fragrance, pretty much anything goes. "Wherever you want to be perfumed is the correct place to apply fragrance—even the spray and walk through method is good," she tells us. "The only thing I'd recommend against is rubbing your wrists together after you spray it on. I don't know why some people always want to do that, but it doesn't last as long when applied that way." The rubbing motion breaks apart the fragrance molecules, so Turner recommends first allowing the perfume to settle into your skin, and if you must, opt for tapping motions rather than rubbing. If you don't like the way the scent develops with your skin chemistry, try misting your hair or your clothing instead so that the notes stay true to what you smell in the bottle.
Your perfume should leave somewhat of a trail, but there's a fine line between a subtle hint, and an overpowering aroma that could easily trigger a headache for those around you—especially if you've been wearing one scent for a while. "Something I hear people say is that they get to a stage where you can't smell it on yourself anymore, but to a certain degree, that's normal because you get used to it," she continues. "But then, you have the tendency to over-perfume because you'll spray it on again." According to Turner, fragrances generally have a lifespan of 4 to 6 hours, with some slightly longer depending on the notes used. It should still be pretty prominent to everyone else if you perfume in the morning, leaving no need for a touch-up, though if the urge gets the better of you, do so after 4 to 6 hours. Better yet, ask your friend to the left if your signature scent is too strong before making any sudden movements to reapply.