Contributed by Christina Jacobs – Mombati Writers Group (MWG)
Getting a subtle hint of our favourite scents throughout the day can be refreshing and a lovely pick me up. However, with the exorbitant prices of some of our favourite perfumes these days, we understand how important it is that a little goes a long way. There are several pro techniques you can adapt into your daily routine to help you apply your perfume correctly and ensure you’re smelling your best all through the day. We have compiled this list of tips and tricks, just for you.
The chemical components of perfumes are designed in such a way that they give their optimal performance when they react with the skin’s natural warmth. Therefore, you want to ensure your skin is prepared by moisturizing with an unscented body cream or lotion before applying your perfume. Use a lotion in the same scent as your perfume, if possible. If your skin is extra dry, you might want to apply a small amount of Vaseline or petroleum jelly beforehand as dry skin will make the fragrance fade at a faster rate. For an even better experience, perfume manufacturers advise that your skin is clean from a bath or shower and completely dry before applying the lotion, Vaseline and perfume. It is also not a good idea to cover up scented areas of your skin with clothing. The scent will diffuse better if applied to areas that are exposed to air. An exception to the rule is if you live in an extremely hot climate where your body is more likely to sweat. The sweat will reach with the natural oils of the skin and destroy the finer notes of the perfume. In this case, it is better to spritz onto clothing such as insides of jackets or scarves.
Where’s the pulse?
Pulse points are the parts of your body on which you can feel your heartbeat and where the arteries are closest to the skin. These points hold the warmest temperature, and they help the fragrance emit stronger. The most commonly known pulse points are the wrists and the neck but there are a few lesser-known ones as well such as the elbow and knee creases, behind the ear and near the clavicle. Perfume application on these points will keep the fragrance lasting longer. Be sure to avoid areas with broken or sensitive skin however as perfume can act as an irritant.
To spray or not to spray
Most people have a tendency to rub their wrists together after spraying on them. This, however, crushes the top notes of the fragrance and does not allow for the layers to properly react. French-Armenian perfumer Francis Kurkdjian states that the friction from rubbing your wrists together will heat up your skin and produce natural enzymes that will change the scent. Some floral scents are especially affected by heat and will lose some of their crispness. The best practice therefore is to let it dry naturally or dab away excess product onto another pulse point such as your neck.
It is also important to know your chosen brand of perfume as all perfumes contain different levels of fragrance concentration. This is why the required amount needed to be spritzed will vary in intensity. The purest blends should only need one to two spritzes for optimal effect. Try not to re-apply too often as perfume should only be subtly noticeable.
Another faux-paus that a lot of people tend to make is to overload on products. Various brands of body oils, lotions and dry shampoos will all have their own fragrances. Layering this with your expensive perfume will not allow the true fragrance of the perfume to come through. Perfume manufacturers therefore advise that you use unscented products instead for the best experience.
While these techniques will avoid wastage and help a little go a long way, it is also important to consider where you are storing your perfume bottles. As they are sensitive to water, humidity and drastically changing temperatures, the bathroom is probably not the best place to store them. Places like window sills or anywhere exposed to direct sunlight would also damage the chemical makeup of your perfume. It is therefore best to store them inside a dresser or vanity drawer or any cool and dark place. The ultimate temperature for storage is 21 degrees Celsius. We tend to spend quite a bit of money on our favourite luxury designer perfumes and by getting in these habits, you can preserve the longevity of them for much longer.
While all these tips will keep your perfume lasting longer, it should be consumed at a relatively brisk pace. If it stays empty for too long, the oxygen in the bottle will react with the scent’s molecules and start altering it. Perfume manufacturers therefore recommend smaller vessels as they can remain fresh up until three months. If you do end up with a bigger decanter however, you can always empty it into smaller vials and refill as needed.
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