How to choose a Fragrance

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Fragrances for Men & Women
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Fragrances for Men & Women

About  Perfume  &    Choosing a Fragrance
 
The most practical way to start describing a perfume is according to its concentration level, the family it belongs to, and the notes of the scent, which all affect the overall impression of a perfume from first application to the last lingering hint of scent.
Here at The Royal Perfumery we hope to assist you in understanding some more about the total world of fragrances for both Men and Women.
 
Perfume oil is necessarily diluted with a solvent because undiluted oils (natural or synthetic) contain high concentrations of volatile components that will likely result in allergic reactions and possibly injury when applied directly to skin or clothing. Solvents also volatilize the essential oils, helping to diffuse them into the air.
 
By far the most common solvent for perfume oil dilution is ethanol or a mixture of Ethanol and water.
Ethanol, also known as ethyl alcohol, drinking alcohol or grain alcohol, is a flammable, colourless, slightly toxic chemical compound with a distinctive perfume-like odor, and is the alcohol found in alcoholic drinks. In common usage, it is often referred to simply as alcohol.
 Perfume oil can also be diluted by means of neutral-smelling lipids such as jojoba, fractionated coconut oil or wax.
 The concentration by percent/volume of perfume oil is as follows:
 
Perfume extract:   20%-40% aromatic compounds
Eau de Parfum:    10-30% aromatic compounds
Eau de Toilette:    5-20% aromatic compounds
Eau de Cologne:   2-5% aromatic compounds
 
As the percentage of aromatic compounds decreases, so does the intensity and longevity of the scent created. Different perfumeries or perfume houses assign different amounts of oils to each of their perfumes. Therefore, although the oil concentration of a perfume in ''eau de Parfum'' (EDP) dilution will necessarily be higher than the same perfume in ''eau de toilette'' (EDT) form within the same range, the actual amounts can vary between perfume houses.
 
Note:
An EDT from one house may be stronger than an EDP from another!
 In addition the formulation (ingredients) can change from EDT to EDP to give a totally different fragrance at “dry down”.
 
Try both the EDT and the EDP versions of a fragrance, personal preference can lean towards either of these.
 Furthermore, some fragrances with the same ''product name'' but having a different ''concentration name'' may not only differ in their dilutions, but actually use different perfume oil mixtures altogether. For instance, in order to make the EDT version of a fragrance brighter and fresher than its EDP, the EDT oil may be "tweaked" to contain slightly more top notes or less base notes. In some cases, words such as "''extrême''" or ''concentrée'' appended to fragrance names might indicate completely different fragrances that relates only because of a similar perfume ''accord''. An instance to this would be Chanel‘s  ''Pour Monsieur'' and ''Pour Monsieur Concentrée''.
 
Eau de cologne (EDC) was originally a specific fragrance of a citrus nature and weak in concentration made in Cologne, Germany.
However in recent decades the term has become generic for a weakly concentrated perfume of any kind.
 
TraditionalThe traditional classification which emerged around 1900 comprised the following categories:
Single Floral: Fragrances that are dominated by a scent from one particular flower; in French called a soliflore.
Floral Bouquet: Containing the combination of several flowers in a scent.
Ambery: A large fragrance class featuring the scents of vanilla nd animal scents together with flowers and woods. Can be enhanced by camphorous oils and incense resins, which bring to mind Victorian Era imagery of the Middle East and Far East
Woody: Fragrances that are dominated by woody scents, typically of Sandalwood and Cedar.Patchouli, with its Camphoraceous smell, is commonly found in these perfumes.
Leather: A family of fragrances which features the scents of Honey, Tobacco, Wood and Wood Tars in its middle or base notes and a scent that alludes to leather.
Chpre : Meaning Cyprus in French, this includes fragrances built on a similar accord consisting of bergamot, oakmoss, patchouli, and lab danum This family of fragrances is named after a perfume byFrancois Coty.
Fougère: Meaning Fern in French, built on a base of lavender,, coumarin, and oakmoss. Houbigant's Fougère Royale pioneered the use of this base. Many men's fragrances belong to this family of fragrances, which is characterized by its sharp herbaceous and woody scent.
 
ModernSince 1945, due to great advances in the technology of perfume creation (i.e., compound design and synthesis) as well as the natural development of styles and tastes; new categories have emerged to describe modern scents:
Bright Floral: combining the traditional Single Floral & Floral Bouquet categories.
Green: a lighter and more modern interpretation of the Chypre type.
Oceanic/Ozone: the newest category in perfume history, appearing in 1991 with Christian Dior's Dune. A very clean, modern smell leading to many of the modern androgynous perfumes.
Citrus or Fruity: An old fragrance family that until recently consisted mainly of "freshening" eau de colognes due to the low tenacity of citrus scents. Development of newer fragrance compounds has allowed for the creation of primarily citrus fragrances.
Gourmand: scents with "edible" or "dessert"-like qualities. These often contain notes like vanilla andtonka bean, as well as synthetic components designed to resemble food flavors. An example is Thierry Mugler’s Angel.
 
The Fragrance WheelThe Fragrance wheel is a relatively new classification method that is widely used in retail and in the fragrance industry. The method was created in 1983 by Michael Edwards, a consultant in the perfume industry, who designed his own scheme of fragrance classification. The new scheme was created in order to simplify fragrance classification and naming scheme, as well as to show the relationships between each individual classes.
The five standard families consist of Floral, Oriental, Woody, Fougère, and Fresh, with the former four families being more "classic" while the latter consisting of newer bright and clean smelling citrus and oceanic fragrances that have arrived due to improvements in fragrance technology. With the exception of the Fougère family, each the families are in turn divided into three sub-groups and arranged around a wheel:

 1 Floral
Floral
Soft Floral
Floral Oriental 

2  Oriental
Soft Oriental
Oriental
Woody Oriental 
 
3  Woody
Woody
Mossy Woods
Dry Woods 

4  Fresh
Citrus
Green
Water 

5 Fougère
The Fougère family is placed at the center of this wheel since they are large family of scents that usually contain fragrance elements from each of the other four families.
In this classification scheme, Chanel No.5, which is traditionally classified as a "Floral Aldehyde" would be located under Soft Floral sub-group, and "Amber" scents would be placed within the Oriental group. As a class, Chypres is more difficult to place since they would located under parts of the Oriental and Woody families. For instance, Guerlain Mitsuoko, which is classically identified as a chypre will be placed under Mossy Woods, but Hermès Rouge, a chypre with more floral character, would be placed under Floral Oriental.
 
Fragrance Notes

Perfume is described in a musical metaphor as having Three 'notes', making the harmonious chord of the scent.  The notes unfold over time, with the immediate impression of the Top note leading to the deeper Middle notes, and the Base notes gradually appearing as the final stage.
These notes are created carefully with knowledge of the evaporation process of the perfume.
 
Top notes: The scents that are perceived immediately on application of a perfume. Top notes consist of small, light molecules that evaporate quickly: they form a person's initial impression of a perfume and thus are very important in the selling of a perfume. The scents of this note class are usually described as "fresh," "assertive" or "sharp." The compounds that contribute to top notes are strong in scent, very volatile, and evaporate quickly. Citrus and Ginger scents are common top notes. Also called the head notes.
Middle notes: The scent of a perfume that emerges after the top notes dissipate. The middle note compounds form the "heart" or main body of a perfume and act to mask the often unpleasant initial impression of base notes, which become more pleasant with time. Not surprisingly, the scent of middle note compounds is usually more mellow and "rounded." Scents from this note class appear anywhere from two minutes to one hour after the application of a perfume. Lavender and Rose scents are typical middle notes. Also called the heart notes.
Base notes: The scent of a perfume that appears after the departure of the middle notes. The base and middle notes together are the main theme of a perfume. Base notes bring depth and solidity to a perfume. Compounds of this class are often the fixatives used to hold and boost the strength of the lighter top and middle notes. Consisting of large, heavy molecules that evaporate slowly, compounds of this class of scents are typically rich and "deep" and are usually not perceived until 30 minutes after the application of the perfume or during the period of perfume dry down. Some base notes can still be detectable in excess of twenty-four hours after application, particularly the animalic notes.
 
Choosing a fragrance, whether you are Male or Female is an exciting experience which should be enjoyed and the final decision should be based on what you feel and like.
You are the one wearing the fragrance (although it does help if your partner also likes the same).
We hope the above information was of some assistance to you in helping you understand the complexity of the world of perfumes.
 
Here are some very good words of advice when choosing a fragrance.
Never go with a friend!
Fragrance is so personal and such a reflection of you as a person with your own personality and they could force their own tastes upon you.

Never rush the decision to choose a fragrance that suits you. The relationship could last a lifetime. (You and your Perfume) !!!
Fragrance notes evaporate at different rates and over the first 10 minutes following application to the skin, the fragrance can change several times.
The final fragrance ( “dry down”) may take 20 to 30 minutes to develop on your skin.
Try the fragrance you feel is “the one” go and have a coffee and see how you feel about it after 30 minutes.
Don’t wear any fragrance when you are intending choosing a new one.
Avoid going shopping for a new fragrance following eating spicy foods as this changes the chemistry in your skin and could possibly alter the auroma.
Never choose a fragrance because you felt it smelled good on someone else.  We are all individuals and it may not smell as nice on you, equally it may smell better!
Don’t judge a fragrance by smelling it from the bottle. You only smell the top notes and the diluted alcohol contained therein. It will not smell the same when applied to your skin.
The application of the fragrance to your body’s skin is the final ingredient of the fragrance!
Apply the fragrance (do NOT rub) and let it dry naturally. Wear for around 30 minutes after the Top notes have faded and the middle notes have come through and finally it has settled with the Base notes. This is the final Auroma and the time to make your decision.
 
Ignore sexual divisions!
Most women do not have any inhibitions with regard to wearing a men’s fragrance. Men can also smell sexy when wearing a woman’s fragrance.
Avoid trying too many fragrances at any one time.  This should be limited to four or five maximum.
 
Handy Tip
After smelling each fragrance, waft fresh coffee beans under your nose to “refresh” your sense of smell.
 
 💋   Have fun with fragrance !

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