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How and Where To Apply Perfume Properly

There’s nothing more annoying than dishing out for an expensive perfume only to find that just a couple of hours after spritzing, the scent has faded away. For many, the solution is simple – just apply more. But drowning your body in perfume is a sure way to burn through that expensive bottle whilst suffocating those around you.

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The good news is it’s easy to make your fragrances last longer with just a few simple steps. Read on to learn how.

7 Tips on How and Where to Apply Your Perfume or Cologne Properly


1. Choose the right fragrance formula

The first thing to consider is what’s in your formula, as this has a huge effect on how long the scent lasts. Perfumes are generally more oil-based, making them more pungent and longer-lasting. On the other hand, eau-de-toilette is more water-based (hence the ‘eau’, which is French for water). This means that eau-de-toilette is less potent and you should apply more to achieve the same effect. 

But it doesn’t stop there. The type of ingredients used can also affect how long a fragrance lasts. Natural citrus ingredients, for example, tend not to last as long as those such as vanilla, patchouli, and other woods.

Finally, think about whether you’re using natural or synthetic ingredients.

Fernweh Editions Fern & Petals Candle

It’s tempting to assume that natural ingredients would automatically trump synthetic ones, but this is not the case. Natural ingredients tend to be more expensive and less long-lasting than synthetic ones. They’re also more likely to cause an allergic reaction, so always conduct a skin test before purchasing.


2. Exfoliate and moisturize skin before applying fragrance

A vital step is to ensure your skin is moist before applying scent. Apply an unscented moisturizer or Vaseline before spritzing to make your skin oilier and thus more effective at retaining scent. Moist skin provides a great base in the same way that primer does for a foundation. 

3. Apply fragrance by targeting your pulse points

Where you choose to apply perfume has a big effect on lasting power. Your pulse points are areas like the nape of your neck, your wrists, the backs of your knees and the insides of your elbows. These are the best areas to target, as throughout the day, natural fluctuations in your body temperature will help emit your scent continuously.

Think about what you’re wearing, too. You want to give your scent room to breathe so that it’s not stifled or rubbed away. If wearing long sleeves, for example, it’d be a good idea to skip applying to your wrists and apply more to your chest and neck instead.

4. Layer your fragrances

If you’re feeling creative, you can layer your fragrances to create a custom, longer-lasting scent. Try out a few combinations of oils and perfumes on some fragrance blotters and see what works. Once you’ve got a winning combo, test it on your skin to see how it reacts with your natural oils.

Make sure you spray the strongest scent first, followed by the weaker ones so that the first one doesn’t overpower those lighter aromas.

5. Dab, don’t rub perfumes

This one might not be news to you, but it’s very important, nonetheless. When applying your scent, do not, we repeat, do not rub – and that includes rubbing wrists together. Why? Well, rubbing breaks down all the top notes, those scents that are most prominent in the first 5 minutes after spraying. Also, it mixes the perfume heavily with your natural oils, altering the smell.

6. Match your scented products

It takes some dedication, but it’s well worth it if you truly want your scent to last. If you can match your scent across a range of products such as a body wash, moisturizer, and perfume, then the scent deeply infuse into your skin.

7. Bonus Tip: Don’t forget to perfume your hair

We spray scent all over our bodies, so why should our hair miss out on the fun? A common concern is that the alcohol in fragrances might dry out your hair. While this is true if you were to spray directly, there is a solution. Spray some fragrance on your brush before running it through your hair and it’ll leave it lightly scented and undamaged.

Let’s get it right

Smelling amazing shouldn’t have to be a marathon of respraying and topping up. Thankfully, with these simple tips, you can make that freshly fragranced feeling last all day long.

How and Where To Apply Perfume Properly

Annie is a self-motivated, ambitious, enthusiastic individual and a self-proclaimed "people person." Her passion for communication and problem-solving is evident in a variety of media. She currently lives with her family in Washington DC.