Simply put: The fragrance space is as beautifully diverse as its saturated. From the age ol’ classics, celebrity fragrances to the latest glittery launches and ‘mix-it-yourself’ bespoke scents—there are infinite perfume choices out there. However, as much as we love navigating through the gorgeous glass-laden aisles and sniffing our hearts out, fragrance shopping can truly get a tad too overwhelming at times (not to mention an assault on the olfactory senses). Needless to say, the struggle of picking a perfect fragrance, let alone the indecision of how to select perfume is all too real.
Well, just so that you don’t have douse your nose in coffee beans for an eternity, a great starting point to embark on this aromatic journey is to get some deets on fragrance families. Since fragrances are more nuanced than you can ever imagine, this will help you identify your signature scent or find the perfect aroma for all those special occasions in your life. Plus, filter out your best fits, without putting your nose out of joint!
From spicy notes and woody bases to fresh florals and zesty citrus, here’s everything you need to know on how to choose perfume that’s tailor-made for you.
Love the fresh and feminine scent of roses, jasmine and lilies? Then consider Florals to be your fragrance personality. Elegant, light, powdery and romantic, these scents are feminine, soft and subtly sweet. As the name suggests, the scent comes from flowers; either a single flower scent or a combination of different flower scents. Known to be one of the most common families in the perfume universe, it might also encompass fruity accents such as delicious Peaches, Pears, Green Apples and Orange Blossoms for a fresh fruity punch. Summer in a bottle? Yes please!
Where: Day weddings or an evening at the ballet
Nykaa Recommends: Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau De Toilette Spray, Jimmy Choo Illicit Flower Eau De Toilette
Also known as ‘amber’ fragrances, these stand out because of their unique blend of warmth and sensuality. Oriental scents draw their richness from heady musk, vanilla and precious woods and are exotic, musky and understatedly seductive, Oriental notes are the ‘LBD’ equivalent of the fragrance world. These sensual scents feature a powerful blend of heady notes; think Musk, Ambergris interspersed with warm notes such as Amber, sweet notes such as Vanilla and Cinnamon or earthy notes such as Patchouli and Sandalwood that leaves behind a trail of mystery wherever you go. Va va voom.
Where: Cocktail hour with your girlfriends or candlelight dinner with your SO.
Nykaa Recommends: Carolina Herrera Good Girl Eau De Parfum, Calvin Klein Obsession For Women Eau De Parfum Spray
Woody scents are earthy and warm with mossy and leathery notes. Wood perfumes are very important when it comes to providing the base notes to a perfume scent and are the main basis for fragrance. Built on base notes of Vetiver, Sandalwood, Oakmoss, these fragrances will remind you of winding roads and smouldering leather aromas. Intensely earthy with a whiff of masculinity, woody notes are most often infused with citrusy notes to tone down intensity and impart a hint of freshness. If you are looking to be taken seriously, this one will send all the right messages.
Where: Important business meeting or elegant charity galas
Nykaa Recommends: Giorgio Armani Si Eau De Parfum, Givenchy Play For Her Intense Eau De Parfum
Sugar, spice and everything nice, that’s what defines spicy fragrances to a T. Spicy fragrances are perfume scents imbued with spices you would ordinarily find in a spice rack in the kitchen like Cinnamon, Ginger, Cardamom, Pepper, Cloves and Nutmeg, combined with oriental materials, such as woods and resins to form a base of notes that is at once distinct and pleasant. If it sounds too intense, pick one with hints of Rose, Vetiver and Orange Blossom for a dash of sweetness. Take it from us: You can’t do better than this.
Where: Sultry Saturday night vibes or glamorous red carpet events
Nykaa Recommends: Salvatore Ferragamo Signorina Misteriosa Eau De Parfum, Paco Rabanne Olympea Intense Eau de Parfum
This one includes all kinds of clean happy scents such as Citrus, Aqua and Oceanic notes to evoke your day-dreaming adventurous side. Look out for zesty notes like Mandarin and Bergamot if you like lime everything or pick an aquatic scent that takes your back to that sand and surf beach vacay. More often than not, you will find them paired with spicier notes for that perfect balance.
Where: Job interviews or tropical holidays
Nykaa Recommends: Nina Ricci Ricci Ricci Eau De Parfum, Roberto Cavalli Paradiso Azzurro Eau De Parfum