How-to: choose a summer scent
It seems like just yesterday I was discussing the ins and outs of your nose and how it becomes seriously fussy during winter when it comes to its perfume preference. Its love of intense, heavy, woody notes is precisely what it craves during the cooler months, really.
But guess what? Your snout is equally as picky when the warm weather hits, as it turns away from the juices that are powerful and moody, and instead welcomes a force of fresh, citrusy notes. Why? Well, heat amplifies the notes in a perfume, meaning the intense fragrance you've been sporting during winter will be oh-so-overpowering and even a wee bit sickening during spring and summer.
This is where the subtle, light, crisp scents come in. When September swings around we look for fruity, citrus notes such as mandarin, grapefruit, neroli and bergamot, for an instant hit of freshness. However, citrus notes evaporate quickly – longevity is not their strong point – so this is why fragrance connoisseurs often team them with floral notes (think jasmine, lily of the valley and rose) to give them some guts and staying power. Smart, huh?
Wait, you’re not a fan of zesty scents? You can still play around with fragrances in summer, just look for something a little more exotic with grassy, woody notes or even coconut. You'll still smell fresh and light, just a little more mysterious.
SENSATIONAL SUMMERTIME PERFUME PICKS
L.I.L.Y by Stella McCartney ($110, 50ml): named after her dad’s nickname for her mum (Linda, I love you), this juice revolves around the aptly chosen heart notes of Lily of the Valley. It’s florally, feminine and delicate.
Tommy Hilfiger Tommy Girl Summer 2012: who needs a holiday when this perfume features a vivid collection of frangipani, linden blossom, magnolia, coconut water, guava, red berry and beach wood notes? It’s an escape in itself!
Radiance by Britney Spears: deliciously fresh with top notes of wild berries and soft dewy petals, the heart notes of orange and jasmine give this summer scent some punch.
Coach Signature EDT ($160, 100mL): a soft floral, this tarty fragrance, complete with notes of green mandarin, waterlily and guava, is given a subtly sweet finish thanks to its notes of honey and orange flower.
Impulse Love Puzzle: containing an exotic blend of oriental and citrus notes, this body spray is the perfect afternoon pick-me-up (and it makes a great alternative if you can’t afford a new perfume!)
SJP NYC: if the thought of Italian mandarin, wild red strawberries and vanilla absolute don’t float your boat, I don’t know what will. This is bright, fun, and perfect for when the warm weather hits.
Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay: you'll be whisked back to your childhood mere seconds after spritzing this scent. Bursting with the sweet fragrance of blackberries, combined with the freshness of grapefruit and just-picked bay leaves, this makes for one mouth-watering summertime perfume.
Do you switch-up your perfume in the warmer months? What’s your favourite crisp, fresh, zesty summer scent?
PS. Love your fragrances? Read these:
How-to: prevent scent clashing
Scentsational: Ralph Lauren’s pony-esque perfumes
The best way to find a new fragrance
Powerful perfume pick-me-ups
DKNY takes us on a scent-sational journey
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