Fragrance expert, Patti Kapla of Fragrancenet.com reveals the best way to score a scent that’s guaranteed to turn heads.
ESSENCE: How do you exactly define a signature scent?
Patti Kapla: A signature scent is the scent that makes you feel (and smell) your best. It is a reflection of who you are as an individual and it is the scent that people associate with you.
ESSENCE: What makes a scent uniquely yours?
Kapla: Just as you have your own sense of style, what makes a scent uniquely yours is ultimately how it makes you feel and how it expresses who you are. It is the scent that people remember you by, much like the smells that evoke memories of specific times in your life.
ESSENCE: How do you determine which scents are great for you?
Kapla: The same fragrance will smell different on everyone as the notes mix with your body’s natural oils and pheromones, resulting in a subtle changes. It’s best to get samples of a few fragrances you like and try one per day, being sure to avoid using scented body lotions or laundry detergents; they can alter the perfume. Pick a winner based on your initial reaction. Our sense of smell is extremely visceral. At the end of the day, it’s always best to go with the one you just couldn’t stop sniffing.
ESSENCE: Does your personality play a large part when deciding which scent is best?
Kapla: It’s extremely important to be true to you and consider your lifestyle, habits and personality when choosing your signature fragrance. A lot can be determined about a woman by the scent she chooses to wear, so find something that matches your personality. Pink, pink and more pink! If you’re the girl that loves frills, lace, flowers, a floral scent will make you feel truly feminine. If you’d rather go camping than to a cocktail party, a light and airy fragrance that holds the scent of soft fruits, flowers and woods would matches your zest for the outdoors. If fashion is your passion a delicate floral scent with underlying fruity notes that won’t overwhelm and distract from your couture-inspired wardrobe for the finishing touch on any ultra-trendy ensemble.
ESSENCE: Once you’ve found a winner, where should it be applied?
Kapla: Pulse points — think your wrists, inside your elbows, the nape of your neck, even in the crease behind your knees — are the places you should be concentrating your fragrance. The perfume will react with the natural fluctuations in your body temperature and emit scent throughout the day without it being overwhelming. Also keep in mind that Scents cling to moisturized skin. If you don’t have the matching lotions offered with your favorite scent, try applying Vaseline or a non-scented moisturizer to your pulse points before you apply your fragrance. It will give your scent something to hold on to!
ESSENCE: Is there such thing as over-using a signature scent? And when it is okay to move on from a scent you've worn for years?
Kapla: Just like your taste in foods and clothing changes as you age, your fragrance will most likely change as well. When you first start wearing fragrances you tend to wear soft, light fragrances. As you get older you will most likely gravitate towards celebrity and iconic fragrances. Once you have matured and your confidence level has evolved, you will choose a fragrance that reflects your individuality. Likewise, as you age, your body chemistry also changes. Medications, pregnancy, diet and environment can all change your olfactory receptors!