For most people, choosing a fragrance for themselves can be tricky. They want to have a scent that reflects their character but doesn't smell like everyone else, and they want it to be memorable and speak to their emotions. When I was younger and in the early stages of studying perfumery, I fell in love with Orris - to me it smelt almost otherworldly and magical but grounded and earthy at the same time, but now when I smell it it doesn't have that same dramatic effect for me as it once did so I realise that my scent preferences have changed over time and this is infact quite normal.
So, how do you choose a fragrance that's going to reflect who you are and how you want to be seen?
Well first, you start with your fragrance family. A fragrance family is what perfumers use to put perfumes into groups based on their dominant character or notes in order to classify them. So say for instance you wanted a Rose perfume because you loved the smell of Roses, well then you would look for a perfume with Rose in it or one with floral notes or bouquet (a mix of flowers). It's important to understand the type of scents you like in order to find the perfect fragrance.
Some examples of great Rose fragrances are Dyptique's Eau Rose Perfume which is a subtle and sophisticated rose scent or Roses De Chloe by Chloe. Both are true to their character and for lovers of Roses you couldn't go much wrong with either of these two.
Of course there are many other scent profiles other then florals including: Spicy, Oriental, Woody, Fougere and Chypre to name just a few.
What does Fougere and Chypre mean?
Fougere is a term that was honed by the French to described a mossy, herbacious perfume. It usually has notes like Lavender, Vetiver, Bergamot and Oakmoss and it used to be a popular choice for women but these days it seems that alot of men's perfumes are Fougere's so I think it's safe to say that these days Fougere's appeal to both men and women.
Chypre comes from the word Cyprus and was created to reflect the dry, warmth of Cyprus typically displayed through it's notes of Oakmoss, Patchouli and Bergamot. Chypre's were very popular in the 19th century but because they are very heavy, complex and sophisticated fragrances they are best worn at night in an ultra glamorous surroundings as is befitting.
Aswell as the normal fragrance families perfumers are always trying to create new ones to add to the family and break the boundary's to what is the norm. This means that sooner or later it will be even harder to identify the characteristics of each perfumes but you will have even more beautiful fragrances to choose from which is of course very exciting.