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"How do I choose a perfume?" It is an important question for many people who start discovering the wonderful world of fragrance. While some may ask for advice, others actually follow their own interests, exploring and learning. The main obstacle here is hesitation, uncertainty in one's own taste and choice. Perfume is linked directly to something so personal and intimate that often you would not dare to share it with anyone to protect yourself from feeling hurt or embarrassed.
I've seen many standard "methods" of narrowing possible perfume choices by olfactory families and favorite notes; it might be entertaining, but it leads nowhere. Inevitably we just rummage through familiar domains and discover nothing new. I would like to start from situations, not smells, but first a few words about communication.
Suggestions given by others
Very often I hear: "Trust nothing except your own nose." I think this is generally true, anyhow, even without this special reminder. But it does not mean that we shouldn't listen to others. My best discoveries have been made after someone's occasional remarks, a piece of inspiring information from books or magazines, or based on interesting people's advice. Very often we choose perfumes to impress others, so why should we entirely exclude their opinions? Do not limit your knowledge to your own experience, especially if you are at the beginning of your journey.
Perfume for attire and occasion
A good friend of mine has a very practical approach to fragrances. She chooses perfumes for day and night, for office and even for specific outfits; she explains that she looks and feels different in a variety of clothing. My way is much more erratic, but I really like this appreciation for order! It looks like a game, and you have an excuse to have and use many perfumes, each at its proper time. Together with a nice smell, you feel collected and ready for work or relaxed for the evening. It also seems compelling to break the rules and bloom in the office like a lustful tuberose, just to make a point.
This might be some extreme example of organizing olfactory time and space, but since we live our lives according to many rhythms, it is quite normal to make an aromatic accent on some of them... for example, seasons or vacations.