finding a signature fragrance

perfume vanity tray

Over drinks, a good friend of my boyfriend who had been seeing one of my best friends (and royally screwed up) explained to me that he had been thinking of her a lot recently, citing smelling her perfume at work earlier in the week as the cause of his reflection on his could-have-been-great relationship. He’s a very handsome guy, recently graduated with a promising future, who in my 2 years of knowing him very rarely lost grasp of his too cool for school persona to share emotions. But here he was visibly torn up, triggered by…a scent?

I began thinking about the power of having a “signature fragrance”. They hadn’t seen each other in well over a year, but the smell of her favorite perfume – Daisy by Marc Jacobs – was all that was needed to bring him back to a time that he was close to her and evoked nostalgia of the good times they had. He smelled her scent, on another woman nonetheless, and a week later still couldn’t get her out of his mind. I did a quick Google search and came across a HowStuffWorks article that states that fragrance “can bring on a flood of memories, influence people’s moods and even affect their work performance”. Our brains enable us to tie emotions and memories to scent and when we smell that scent again, our brain can elicit those ties immediately. It’s science.

So should you go out and buy Daisy by Marc Jacobs and wear your new signature fragrance every day for the rest of eternity in hopes that the one who got away will come back? Well, maybe (they did end up getting back together once he made an epic comeback and got his shit in line to do what he needed to do to get her back). Regardless, it may be a good idea to find your own signature scent, not for a man, but for yourself. One that means something to you and therefore enables you to brim with confidence on the many occasions where we need to feel our best. There’s importance in having a signature scent – it’s a whole lot of science with a dash of emotions, possibly even a fleeting moment in time…being able to curate these ties, not just for yourself, but for those you surround yourself with…that’s powerful!

There’s plenty of literature out there about how to find a signature scent, what specific scents represent, the science of scents, etc. which makes “scent-s”…ha! I’m so pun-y…but in all seriousness, if there’s anything I’ve learned today doing research on fragrance, it’s that the selection process is important. Here are a few resources for you to figure out the best signature fragrance for you so you can start best expressing yourself…and maybe also laying the ground work for driving future ex’s crazy.

1) Picking Your Signature Scent – A great web article from Birchbox about different scents broken down by notes

2) The Secret of Scent – A witty book that explores the science (sort-of) of scent on a molecular level. It’s fun, it’s out there, and definitely a neat read.

3) The Celebrity Fragrance Guide – A listing of celebrities’ favorite scents. If you’re unsure where to start, matching your fragrance to your current Hollywood spirit animal could be a good place to start.

My signature scent? Coco Chanel Mademoiselle. I’m nearing the end of the perfume bottle that I’ve had since high school and in light of graduating college in the next 5 months and beginning a new chapter of my life, I’m excited to find a new signature fragrance for myself.

What’s your signature fragrance? Tell me in the comments below!

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