Last updated on September 23rd, 2022 at 07:14 am
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Are you wondering how to find a signature scent?
Or you can also wear perfume every day as a pick-me-up. It certainly helps with my bad moods.
Finding your perfect perfume can be difficult when there are so many out there in the market.
How do you even start finding the ONE for you?
This is a guide that will teach you exactly how to find a signature scent.
How to Find A Signature Scent Methods
1) Decide The Perfume Family For Your Perfect Perfume
What perfume family do you like?
Fresh? Floral? Woody? Oriental? Citrus?
This is the first step. After knowing what perfume family you like, you can eliminate the other options and focus on the one(s) for you.
For example, I have a strong preference for light floral perfumes.
I’m also open to some citrus scents but the perfect perfume for me has to be light. Heavy scents make me nauseous so I know woody and oriental scents are out of the question.
For those who might not know what kind of perfume family you like, use the website Fragantica.
Fragrantica is a wonderful website where you can find out more information about perfumes as well as read reviews from people who have bought them before.
It’s a helpful website I visit often.
2) Looking Up Your Potential Perfect Perfume
Once you’ve decided on the perfume family, start doing some research on some perfume brands you might be interested in.
There are also a lot of luxury designer fashion brands such as Chanel, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton that make their own perfumes.
Most fragrance companies have their own website describing each perfume in their line briefly along with the top, middle, and bottom notes.
Personally, I tend to put most of my focus on the bottom notes because that’s the smell that lasts the longest (and the top notes are what you first smell when you spray it on).
If you have strong preferences about certain smells you don’t like, then you know you won’t even have to bother going to smell them in store.
For example, I do not like cedar or leather notes so I know to skip these perfumes when I see these scents as one of the notes.
Why Do Your Research
The reason I recommend doing some research on perfumes before going to a store in person is because you don’t want to waste the opportunity.
You get a better idea of what’s worth smelling.
If you smell too many perfumes, your nose will get clogged up.
There’s always smelling coffee beans to clear up your nose but apparently, study shows that it doesn’t do much.
So you might want to be a bit picky about what you smell in the store unless you want to visit the store all the time.
3) Visiting Stores in Person
One of the most exciting parts of this process is being able to smell all these perfumes in real life. Reading their online description does not compare.
If you did do your research, this is the time to smell the ones you wanted!
Sephora is a great store to visit for finding new perfumes for two reasons.
- You can smell perfumes from different brands
- No one is following you around. All the perfume bottles are there so you can browse freely without any pressure
I know that a salesperson is trying to be helpful by asking me how they can help me today but I prefer to look around by myself.
If I do need help, I’ll ask but otherwise, please leave me alone.
Does anyone else feel this way?
a) Smell the Cap for a First Impression
I would smell the cap first to get a first impression.
See how you feel about it.
Is it worth spraying on a blotter sheet or on your skin directly?
b) Spraying Perfume on Blotter Sheets
Once you smelled the cap and decided you like the scent enough, spray it on a blotter sheet before spraying it on your skin.
Depending on the perfume’s longevity, some scents can stay on your skin for 5+ hours. That’s a long time to be smelling something you don’t like.
It’s even worse if it gets on your clothes because the smell can linger for days.
Spraying on blotter sheets is easy because if you don’t like the perfume, you can just toss it out before moving on.
c) Spraying Perfume Directly Onto Skin
If you like the smell on the blotter sheet, it’s time to spray it onto your skin.
You might be wondering what the difference is but there is!
I once bought a perfume where I like the scent on a blotter sheet but hate it on my skin. It’s a pity too because it was an expensive one.
Why does perfume smell differently from a blotter sheet versus your skin?
It’s your body chemistry. That’s why you might like a perfume on someone else but you find that it smells different on you.
Before committing to a full bottle of perfume, I highly recommend you spray the perfume directly onto your skin.
Leave it on for a couple of hours and see how you truly feel about the scent.
I would go as far as to suggest spraying the perfume on yourself on another day. For example, if you spray perfume on your skin for one day, I’ll do another day to make sure that I still like it.
The novelty might wear off and there can be a chance where you realize you don’t like perfume that much anymore. I’ve certainly had that happen to me.
4) Getting Recommendations
When you are at niche perfume counters since as Jo Malone, you can’t roam around as freely smelling whatever perfume you would like.
A salesperson would probably ask you what you’re looking for.
If you tell them what kind of perfumes you like, they might be able to recommend a few scents to you.
Through research, sometimes, it’s not enough to know what scents you won’t like. You might not like the website’s description of the perfume but if you smell it in real life, you’ll find that it’s not bad.
These salespeople should know the products extremely well.
They might recommend you some scents that you weren’t even planning to smell. It’s another way of discovering scents.
You can also ask your friends and family which perfumes they would recommend.
However, fragrances are extremely subjective.
A perfume your friend likes doesn’t mean you’ll like it too. But it is a good starting point because you’re more likely to believe them over salespeople.
5) Buying Discovery Sets
A discovery set is essentially samples of different perfumes of the same brand. You can get a feel of what the brand is like because most brands don’t include all of their perfumes in their discovery sets.
This is my favourite way to discover new scents but it’s also the most expensive way because you have to pay for them (or you might get them as Christmas gifts like me).
You can only be at a store for so long before your nose feels clogged up with perfume. Also, wouldn’t you prefer to smell these fragrances in your own time?
Buying perfume discovery sets means you can do it in the comfort of your own home. You can also spray it on yourself a couple of times.
I do the usual process of spraying all the samples onto a piece of paper first (no blotter sheets at home) and then for the ones I like enough, I spray them on my skin.
That’s how I discovered Nest’s Wisteria Blue, a signature scent that I used for more than a year.
6) Ask for Samples
Depending on where you live, this might not be a realistic option.
In Hong Kong, if you walk up to a perfume counter to ask for samples, the salespeople will probably turn you down. Unless you’re a customer who shops with them often.
I’m not sure why that is. Maybe they’re afraid of people abusing the policy?
This option is even better than the discovery set option because you’re receiving perfume samples for free!
7) Buy Smaller Sized Perfume Bottles
My last tip is to buy a smaller bottle of perfume. If you’re like me and get sick of scents easily, buying a 100mL bottle is too much of a commitment. I don’t end up using all of it before it expires.
(Most of the perfumes I buy say they last for 3 years. Check your perfume box for details.)
Unfortunately, not all perfumes have the option of having several sizes but so far, the ones I usually like do.
I tend to go with the 50mL ones but I’m even considering buying 30mL bottles in the future. This way, I’m more likely to use it all.
Final Thoughts – How to Find A Signature Scent
I’ve been obsessed with perfumes the past few months and have smelled a couple of dozen from all sorts of brands.
These were the steps I went through to find the perfect perfume for me.
You can always buy a perfume randomly but I don’t recommend this unless they’re affordable. It’s really hard to find your perfect perfume especially if you’re picky.
Perfumes can also be really pricey so I would tell my younger self to spray it directly on my skin.
Wait for a little so that I am sure I like perfume enough before buying it.
There have been a few bottles where I changed my mind about them later and I still feel bad about it.
They are currently sitting on my beauty counter with my skincare as I don’t want to toss them out just yet.
It might be more work but these steps will ensure that you will find your perfect perfume.
Now to You – How to Find A Signature Scent
Are there any other tips you would like to add on how to find a signature scent?
Let me know in the comments down below!