Sunday, March 18, 2007

Scents and Scentsibility

It's allergy season, but pollen might not be the only thing making you sneeze. Perfume could also be causing your nasal irritations.

How many times have you walked by someone (usually a woman) and were immediately bombarded by a wall of fragrance? Not a great experience. Having encountered this problem yesterday, I got to thinking about perfume etiquette. Since we all smell things differently, what makes one perfume beautiful to me may make it obnoxious to you. And, when you wear too much of the stuff, you might end up going through the world like Pepe LePew.

So, here are the dos and don'ts when it comes to fragrance:

  • Apply perfume conservatively but directly to your pulse points. Pulse points include the nape of your neck, behind your knees, behind your wrists, your cleavage, or in the crooks of your elbow. Just spray the scent once directly on the pulse point(s) of your choice.
  • Be aware that the longer you use a perfume, the less you are going to smell it. You get used to your favorite perfume and lose your ability to detect it, so be aware of this fact if you're into your 10th bottle of Chanel No. 5.
  • Be courteous and know when not to wear perfume. Some theaters ask patrons to refrain from wearing perfumes, but you also should remain fragrance-free when flying, going to a wine tasting or nice dinner (your scent may interfere with your ability to taste wine/food properly), or if you're going to any public event that will put you in very close proximity to others.
  • Overdo it. Perfume is an intimate product, and should only be enjoyed (and apparent) to you and people who come in close contact with you. If you spay every pulse point on your body, your clothes, and your hair, you'll be in the center of a cloud of stink, sure to offend everyone within a 5-foot radius of you. Not good.
  • Spay perfume in the air and then walk under the mist. A lot of people apply their perfume this way and it really makes no sense. You've fragranced the air, not yourself...probably not what you had in mind.
  • Get in a rut. Instead, change your scents periodically. Some scents are more appropriate for specific seasons, so it's a good idea to change your signature scent as the weather changes.

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