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[ARTICLE BY G.Davenport]
Applying and selecting fragrances can be a daunting task if you let it. Going to every shop in the mall, the thought that others will think you stink no matter how great you think the scent is. Thinking about where to put it on, and how much to use, it can be stressful. What helps me is, I like to think of it as more of an art form. While I haven’t dedicated 10,000 hours to it, I would like to think that I have a pretty good grasp at it. I narrowed it down to a few key points and included a few tips that have made this road a lot smoother for me. A cliff notes of aroma if you will.
How to Choose:
There are many ways in which to choose the perfect scent for you. Some people use their local, if they live by the sea, how dry the air is, how hot it gets, etc. Some use their hobbies and activities. If they swim or hike a lot they may choose a cologne with a citrus or woodsy undertone. Some even go by season, even by personality. Personally I go by body chemistry. Body chemistry is so important, it doesn’t matter how good this cologne or oil smells on someone else, straight out of the bottle, on even on you when you first try it on. When finding a scent you like ,you must try it on and wear it for at least a few hours in order to see how the fragrance changes, because it will definitely change. Rule of thumb, never buy it before you try it! Not only to avoid smelling like an garbage can when you surprise your wife on date night, but also to avoid any possible allergic reactions. If you go to a high end fragrance shop or department store, they will have free samples for you to take home and use at your leisure. Use them to your advantage, while its nice to surprise your wife, its even better to get her approval on your new fragrance this will also give you that second opinion you may be in need of to make that decision.
Tip: Pleasing your spouse’s nasal palette is a sure way to bring them joy. It is a known fact that scent, memory, and pleasure senses are all connected. Send positive vibes their way every time you walk by with the right fragrance. I must warn you, it works adversely as well. More reason to get it right though guys!
When to Apply:
As a child I recall swapping colognes with my cousins and friends in my neighborhood. It didn’t matter what activity I participated in or where I had gone that day. I thought I smelled like a man which equaled smelling great in my eyes. Man I could not have been more wrong. With that said, the ideal time to apply cologne is right after a bath/shower. I know you are probably think “Duh!”, but its not just because your body is clean. The steam and heat from your bath helps to open your pours and allows your fragrance to soak in more. In addition to this guys, you must also know your skin type. I have extremely dry skin which literally drinks my cologne. This works for my personality because I don’t like to draw a lot of attention to myself. I do however like to smell nice. Rule of thumb, if your skin is dry, its okay to reapply. Brothers, if you have very oily skin, fortunately for you and your pockets, you will not need as much cologne. The cologne will stick to the natural oils in your skin and last a lot longer for you.
Tip: What you eat also effects your body chemistry and how you smell. It may be more advantageous to plan accordingly. Also try to refrain from using extremely scented soaps or shower gels, if you plan to wear cologne that day. The fragrances will mix, causing an entirely different scent. This may be something you like, or hate, either way just something to keep in mind.
Where to Apply:
This may seem basic to some but for me it took a little time. When I was younger I would just spray cologne directly onto my clothing. While this worked per say and lasted pretty long, my cologne wasn’t being utilized properly. It wasn’t mixing with my chemistry, creating that signature scent and was therefor just being wasted. The optimal places to spray your cologne or dab your oil is at the pulse points. I.E. Your wrist, neck, behind your ears etc. Some prefer to add the chest into the scenario. While those places are ideal, fragrance does exceptionally well attached to hair follicle and lasts pretty long. Be mindful of your amount and try to remember the amount that is right for you. Rule of thumb if your scent remains after you have left, using a little less might be for the best.
Tip: Try putting a little cologne in your brows, mustache and/or beard. This little trick is a great way to smell great for yourself and loved ones with out being olfactorily obnoxious to others.
How to Apply:
When applying your cologne or oil please keep others in mind. While I love my friends and family I do not wish to smell like them. In fact, it is a pet peeve of mine to shake a brothers hand and have his scent remain with me the rest of the day, no matter how many times I wash my hands. I think its is so inconsiderate. I also do not wish to walk down the hall and get sprayed in the face!
Apply your cologne at home. If you are reapplying use an appropriate facility such as the rest room or powder room. When applying oil or a cologne that does not have a spray bottle, dab directly onto the place of focus. Most fragrances come with an application wand, if it does not, use only the fingertips. After applying, wash your hands to avoid offending people like me, 🙂 and to prevent leaving your scent on everything you touch.
Lastly, when using a spray bottle, try to spray from a few inches away but directly to the point of interest. Do not rub the fragrance on. Rubbing on your cologne causes heat and friction, can change the molecular structure and thus change the scent. So, just be patient and let dry. Rule of thumb, if you are sprayed in the eye when you go to apply, chances are your focus point is too high.Like everything else mastering the art of fragrance is a learning process.
Do not be afraid. Take your time, do your research and remember smelling good is a practice of our beloved Prophet Muhammad S.A.W.
Anas b. Malik relates that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Women and fragrance have been made dear to my affections, but prayer was made the sweetness of my eyes.”
Be Bold, Be Elegant, Be You