Beauty & Health, First Blush


First Blush by Genivieve LeFranc


                                                                        “THE SCENT OF A WOMAN”

Coco Chanel once said, “A woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future.” While this pearl of wisdom may be true, I believe a woman who skips her scent spritz is missing out on one of the joys and mysteries of femininity. Perfume is one of the easiest ways to instantly feel sexy and beautiful, and is the perfect gift for both men and women, whether you’re treating yourself or being gifted by your valentine.


Perfume has the power to add sophistication, femininity, and flair with a simple spray. The options for fragrance are ever-expanding, which makes it easy to find something for everyone—from herbs and essential oils for Mother Nature types, to body mists and lotions for more reserved girls, to designer fragrances for those fierce fashionistas on top of trends. However, there are a few tricks to remember to ensure you smell like a meadow of flowers, not a closet filled with old ladies and fur coats.


The ultimate commandment when wearing perfume is less is more. You want to attract others with your enticing scent, not clear the room! There is a very fine line between just right and too much, and an overpowering douse of perfume ruins the notes of even the most beautiful, delicate fragrance. Apply to your neck or décolletage, behind the ears, on your wrists, or all three! Contrary to common wisdom, do not rub your wrists together! This muddles the various top notes in a fragrance and can alter the scent. For Valentine’s Day (or night!) mix it up and get creative where you spray your sexiest bottle of perfume. Mist your undergarments, lingerie, sheets, or brush through your hair. Just remember the alcohol in perfume can be drying to your locks, so walk through a misty cloud of your fragrance instead of spraying directly onto hair.


Some women rely on a signature fragrance to carry them faithfully through the years while some girls collect perfume like art. Whether you have an unwavering dedication to Chanel No. 5 or not, it’s always fun to explore new scents, and there are tricks to picking them out.


Don’t be afraid to break the standard fragrance rules of wearing citruses and florals in the summer and musk and vanillas in the winter. Wear what you like and what works for you! If there is a certain perfume you have in mind, spray it on your wrist and wear it around all day. That way you’ll know whether your love at first smell actually ends up making you sick to your stomach by the end of day. There are hundreds of other scents mingling in the department store air, so take your sample stick away from the perfume counter to appreciate its true aroma. And remember, different fragrances smell different on different people, so allow the perfume time to mingle with your own body chemistry.


Posh designer fragrances may make you feel fierce and fabulous, but these are not for everyone. If a crystal vile of Dior just isn’t your style or seems too overpowering, there are lots of great, lighter alternatives to perfume. Many designer fragrances are offered in bath gel, lotions, creams, and body wash versions. Even some scented deodorants can be so yummy smelling that they can act as a light form of fragrance for even the most perfume-averse woman. Body mists are light and refreshing, or after your bath, stand and spray the perfume in front of you and just walk through! Whichever option you choose, leave the sugary-smelling Bath and Body Works products to preteens perusing the mall. If I wanted to smell like “Midnight Pomegranate” or “Juniper Breeze” I’d order a cocktail!


For those of you—like me—who are die-hard for donning designer fragrances, my favorite way to wear perfume now is in my accessories! Many designer scents are offered in solid or roll-on versions, perfect for travel, the office, or your purse. Recently, designers have been taking this convenience one step further by making your to-go fragrance as solid perfume rings, necklaces, and key chains. These are a fun way to accessorize and keep you smelling as pretty as you look, and the adorable packaging make these gems excellent conversation pieces. Beyonce’s fragrance, Heat, and Michael Kors’s Very Hollywood rings are bedecked with big, glam jewels while Marc Jacob’s Daisy (also offered as a necklace) and Lola perfume rings are quirky, cool, cocktail options. Coach offers a solid perfume keychain charm perfect for preppies and Kat Von D has a black rose ring for your inner bad ass. No matter your style, they all have the same effect as a roll-on fragrance: convenience.


Christian Dior put it best when he said, “A woman’s perfume tells more about her than her handwriting.” Yet in a world where most things can be described by their appearance or taste or sound, the scent of a woman is often indescribable—magical, mysterious, and powerful.


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