You've probably wondered why a perfume smells different depending on who wears it, or whether its durability depends on how intense it is.
Much has been written about perfumery, but sometimes it's hard to distinguish fact from fiction. We debunk some common myths about perfume and its application.
The more intense a perfume is, the longer it lasts on the skin.
This is a false statement. The durability of a perfume on the skin does not depend on how powerful or intense its fragrance is but on the sum of different factors such as the percentage of oil in the skin (the drier the skin the less the perfume retains), the climate, the percentage of perfume concentration and the design of the perfume (the more base notes it has, the longer it lasts).
Rubbing your wrists helps to fix the perfume.
This is not true either. Perfume is often applied in the wrist area as it is a pulse point, but rubbing the wrists together does not help the fragrance to set. It is also not true that it destroys the perfume molecules, but it can help the perfume to dissipate faster.
We debunk some common myths about perfume and its application.
The more expensive the perfume, the better.
It is related but the price of a perfume depends on different elements, from the quality of its ingredients, to the design of its bottle or the brand/perfumer who has created it. Although it is important that the raw material is of good quality, as in niche perfumery, part of the magic of a perfume lies in all the intangible values associated with it.
It smells different on me.
This statement is true. The pH of each person's skin transforms the perfume when it is applied because we all have a distinctive body odour. This is a characteristic that makes a perfume have as many versions as the skin on which it is applied, but it can also be frustrating when you like a fragrance and it doesn't smell as you expected once you try it.
A perfume is for life.
Definitely not. It is difficult to determine the shelf life of a perfume, you have to let the alcohol evaporate as it is the ingredient that ages the worst. After a few minutes check if the color has changed, but most importantly, you have to smell it and assess if you still recognise it. Like much of what surrounds perfumery, there are no strict rules. All fragrances change over time and it doesn't have to be a negative thing, the only thing that matters is that you still like it. Of course, perfume does not improve, like wine, over the years, so it is important to enjoy it and keep it in a cool place without too much light.