This question was posed to me multiple times on Quora, so I decided to do a detailed post on it. Everyone wants their perfume to stay the day, and also be perceptible to others. There are ways of making it work, though yes, some perfumes in themselves are more long-lasting and strong and others very fleeting owing to the kind of notes, quality of ingredients used and concentration (Read about it here).
This post is about how to work with the perfume bottle you have already invested in:
Perfume Application: How
i. Spraying the Air
There is a age-old perfume application method of spraying the air, and walking through the cloud of perfume, for a overall diffused distribution of the perfume oils. This gives a very nice sillage and trail, but I feel the longevity is less if applied like this. And also it leads to a lot of wastage of the product…Grrrrrr
ii. Spraying on the pulse points
This is another perfume application method we usually see and read about. The logic behind this method of application is that pulse points are supposed to be warmer, and perfume oils need the warmth to become activated and evaporate. The aroma we get is once the molecules evaporate, and since warmer skin will evaporate more molecules, it will give a bigger sillage and trail, but the longevity will be less, as it will evaporate sooner.
iii. Spraying on moisturised skin:
this method of perfume application is really important, even if applying on pulse points, moisturize them first and then apply. The moisturized skin retains perfumes better, that’s why on some oily skinned beauties the perfume will keep going strong throughout the day, whereas the dry skinned ones would be reapplying again and again. The logic behind it?? The perfume contains oils, and dry skin absorbs oils. The moisturized skin is already quenched, and the perfume oils sit on it longer without getting absorbed.
iv. Spraying on clothes:
this is my go to perfume application method for fragrances that don’t last well. The clothes typically hold the perfume molecules way longer than skin. But do ensure it is cotton or wool or something similar that you are spraying, as synthetic clothes do not hold the fragrance molecules. WARNING: Perfumes can stain the clothes. Keep them away from your silks and other expensive clothes, the kinds that have embroidery and zari work etc, it can blacken them.
The thing with spraying on clothes is that the perfume does not evolve much, and stays quite linear. Also, a perfume interacts with our skin chemistry, and smelly different on everyone, which does not happen when sprayed on clothes. The sillage is also comparatively lower on clothes, as there is no body heat to activat
Perfume application on hair is something I don’t recommend, as the alcohol in perfumes can be harmful to the hair and can dry them out. However, typically, the perfumes last the longest on hair, and also gives rise to a very nice sillage. My Quick fix for it?? Apply on the back of neck, the alcohol evaporates, and only the perfume molecules get rubbed onto hair. Also you can spray your comb, give it a minute for the alcohol to evaporate, and then comb through your hair.
In general, spray perfumes on clean skin, as it retains the perfume longer. Spray it just after a warm bath, on moisturized skin, as the pores are still open and will retain the scent longer. also you can use it along with other scented products to layer it, and increase the longevity (Read about it here).
Perfume Application: Where
This is mostly covered in how to apply but still I will list down my favourite spots, that work the best for me.
i. Neck and décolletage: for me, this is where the perfume lasts the longest. I generously spray on both sides of neck and décolletage.
ii. Back of neck: another go to place, the area stays hidden by hair, and hence the evaporation is slow, and also a nice trail is created when your hair moves.
iii. Clothes: all my clothes get sprayed, for some longevity.
iv. Back: this is where I spray for the trail, i.e. the sillage you leave behind once you walk forward.
v. Wrists: not something I prefer, as it doesn’t last much on me, and also if you wash your hands frequently, it tends to get washed off. Also DO NOT rub your wrists together, as it tends to break down the molecules, and it will fade faster.
vi. Crook of elbow: another pulse point, that I don’t like spraying on, as it doesn’t last.
vii. Shoulders: this is another preferred spot, as the perfume tends to last quite well.
viii. Behind Knees: this is another pulse point, but I don’t prefer it as I don’t feel the scent rises so much to become perceptible.
Do you have a favourite spot? Or method that I have missed, Please do comment and share!!