How to Layer Fragrances—the Right Way

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Catching a whiff of your signature scent on a stranger can feel like more personal version of showing up to a party in the same dress as a fellow guest. It's uncomfortable and a little off-putting—after all, you're an original. Shouldn't your fragrance follow suit? That's where layering comes in. Layering scents "is a great option for those who don’t want to smell like anyone else,” says Greta Fitz, director of global marketing at Clean Perfume. "It allows you to expand your whole collection and find a fragrance to suit your every mood."

For beginners, Fitz suggests playing around with single-note perfumes, like those found in Clean Rollerball Travel Collection ($18, They allow you to blend simple duos, making it easier to sniff out successful pairings. The brand’s newest scent, Air, is a "connector": It was created especially for the purposes of layering. "When layered, it adds a fresh, floral base to any scent," says Fitz.


Great, but what if your collection is comprised of more traditional multi-note perfumes? Fitz suggests you start with two fragrances, one considerably stronger and headier than the other. Think mixing a woody musk with a lighter floral. "Florals are the most common commercial scents, and often the lightest," she says. "They tend to be sparkling and uplifting."

Once you've got your pair, layer the stronger of the two on your skin first. Mist the second one on right away. "A little remaining wetness allows the scents to really fuse," says Fitz. Dab—don't rub—the mixture onto your pulse points and bask in the glory of your unique-to-you creation.

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