You know what? Fragrance has to be the most under-utilized category in beauty. Especially if you're looking to, ahem, attract—or retain the attentions of—a member of the opposite sex. We're usually so focused on the physical, tangible things, like whether our skin is flawless enough or if our hair is sufficiently shiny. Both good goals to have, obvi, but there is just something about scent that takes everything to the next level. Few words make a girl's heart sing more than a handsome man uttering: "You smell so good!" AMIRITE?
Of course, not all fragrances are man-friendly. Quite the opposite, in fact. I have an obscene collection of scents, but I'd put a healthy majority of them into the man-repelling category along with the looks we discussed in this post. (In addition to hating yellow nail polish, guys don't like it when you smell like grandma. Trust.)
Now, don't get me wrong—I'm not saying you can't still wear what you like. DUH. But if you're anything like me, you wear certain scents at certain times... and so here's what I would choose for any upcoming Valentine's Day celebrations.
Currently in heavy rotation: Aquolina Pink Sugar
I resisted this one for a long time because, well, it looks like something a 12-year-old might wear. I got over it after finding it on sale at Winners (suck it, Sephora!) and the rest is beauty history. (Actually, I liked it so much that I did skulk back to Sephora to buy the rollerball version as well.) Anyway, there's just something about this one—it's almost sickly sweet on first application (think cotton candy), but the dry-down is amazing, kind of musky and fruity and vanilla-ish all at once. It lasts like crazy, and it's currently rivalling Child in terms of garnering compliments from guys. Even ones that aren't trying to hit on you! (My friend L. exclaimed "You smell like fruit!" the last time I saw him. I think that meant he liked it.)
Guaranteed to leave an impression on him: Child
I've made no secret on this blog of Child's magical powers. This is one of the cultiest of cult fragrances, and so it's quite hard to come by—Canadians can order it from beautyhabit.com. So, true story: I am positive that I was asked out on a date once because of this. It's the only explanation, because I'm sure I was being otherwise borderline obnoxious. Also? More than one cab driver has felt compelled to tell me I smell amazing (one even made me write down the name so he could buy it for his wife). That's never happened with any other scent. And this is on top of all the multiple females who have asked me what it is so that they could order their own bottles. (Get the oil—it lasts longer.)
Conclusion: I SWEAR they put drugs in this. Note that it is a white floral. (I'm less into florals in the summer, so Child is currently having a time-out from my rotation.)
The perfect mix of "clean" and "sexy": J.Lo Glow
I know, how tacky, right? I'll never forget the look on one of my editor's faces when she told me I smelled great, asked me what I was wearing... and then I admitted that it was J.Lo Glow. (Hint: Never do that. Total career-killing move. I was supposed to say something like Hermes.) That said, on this blog I will be completely unapologetic about my love for this fragrance. I adore soapy scents, but they're so hard to get right. This one nails it: it makes you feel clean, like you just got out of the shower, but there's that musky note that brings the seksi. It achieves the perfect balance that I was never able to achieve with things like Philosophy Amazing Grace, Bobbi Brown Bath (ugh) or The Body Shop White Musk. Seriously, get over the bottle and just try some.
Michael Michael Kors
I used to wear this, but find it a tad too tuberose-y for me... although I know it's a man-magnet for lots of ladies. Extremely feminine.
Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Abricot
Another somewhat juvenile scent, but it's my favourite of all the CSP's. You can't go wrong with vanilla, and the apricot note is really pretty and unique (more so than all the Lavanila varieties, I think).
If by Apothia
This one is currently undergoing testing! I ordered it from L.A. based on the description alone—it's like a muskier, tarter version of Child—and so far, I adore it. It's not as feminine-floral as Child, nor is it as sexy as J.Lo, but it's a lovely, cuddly, subtle scent. Maybe something you'd wear on casual weekends instead of hawt dates.
So '80s-tastic! This is my girlfriend J.'s signature scent, and on her it is simply the most beautiful thing you will ever encounter. (Seriously, at a wedding this summer when I was looking for her, I smelled her before I saw her. And I mean that in the best possible way ever.) Words cannot even describe how delicious this smells... IF you have the right body chemistry. On me? Not so great. Too heavy, and there was some weird patchouli note coming out that I had no idea was there. So... try before you buy, if you can. I see this all the time at Winners.
The scents I save for ME time
I still love my other fragrances like they're my children... but they definitely don't meet my V-Day criteria:
- Anything rose (like Stella McCartney) is waaaay too old lady.
- Extreme fruitiness, like Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom and Honey, is a bit too overpowering.
- Powdery is like the kiss of death—I love Chanel No. 19 Poudré, but would never wear it for a man.
- My citrusy scents like Chloé Eau de Fleurs Neroli or Anna Sui Secret Wish are kinda "meh" for romantic purposes.
- Same thing with Bobbi Brown Beach... I adore it, but it's so much like suntan lotion that I don't think the menz get it.
Anyway, tell me:
Do you wear certain scents for LOVE CONNECTIONS?
Which ones have generated the best reactions?
Have you tried any of my faves? (Just promise we'll wear them around different guys. There's nothing worse than discovering you're wearing the same scent as his ex-girlfriend. Or mother. Ouch.)