How to Choose the Right Fragrance: Perfume Personality Quiz
What Is Your Perfume Personality?
We all know her. And we all want to be her—the girl with the signature scent. The girl who commands the attention of the entire room the moment she walks in, without having to utter a word. The girl whose perfume lingers subtly in the room hours after she's gone, making everyone she's left behind inexplicably think of her and wish she was there.
What exactly does that mean, anyway—signature scent? We girls will dutifully smell sample after sample of perfume looking for it, but the signature scent is an elusive Holy Grail. Too often the search becomes a lifelong quest. The perfect perfume for you is the perfume that matches your personality. Sure, you could just pick up a bottle of the latest and greatest trendy designer fragrance—but do you really want to smell just like everyone else?
So before you head off on one more doomed mission to your department store perfume counter, find out your perfume personality!
- First, take the perfume personality quiz quiz below to discover your perfect perfume family.
- Then, when you find out which type of scent you were destined to wear, read on below to get better acquainted with your new family and to meet a few of my favorites from each category.
Actually, yes, I have really tried them all. Yes, I'm a little obsessed. Let's just say I've never fully recovered from the discontinuation of my one-time signature fragrance.
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These bottled bouquets are the most popular perfume family for women—one whiff and you'll understand why.
You're always the center of attention, and you wouldn't have it any other way. Flirtatious, vivacious, and playful, you're sweet but confident at the same time. Your little secret: you're a hopeless romantic. If your perfume personality is Floral you're an unmistakable girly-girl—and you're not afraid to show it. So spritz your pretty self with one of the fabulously feminine flowery fragrances and get out there, because the party can't start without you!
Bold blooms like roses, peonies, jasmine, orchid or freesia can each take a starring role. Or they can be blended together with each other and with other flowery notes for a myriad of different creative combinations. This is not your great-granny's powdery floral perfume. Today's florals are as bright and lively as the modern girls who wear them. Perfumers can warm up florals with sultry smooth hints of vanilla and moist amber. Spices might slink seductively through the base notes.
Even more wildly popular are the fruity florals--attention grabbing floral notes layered with ripe berries, blushing plums, juicy apricots, or sugary sweet lychee for a perfume that's anything but a shrinking violet.
Three Top Fragrances for Floral
- Juicy Couture Couture: This is the fruity floral that almost tempted to me forsake my quest to find the new perfect oakmoss fragrance...almost, but not quite. It's sweetly purple--purple flowers, purple fruits, but with a creamy, sensual base of sandalwood and vanilla. You will get noticed with this perfume. But hey, with your perfume personality, that's exactly what you want.
- Ralph Lauren Ralph Wild: This is an energetic scent that loves to have fun--and it will live up to it's name by driving your admirers wild. Jasmine and cherry blossom party it up with watermelon and strawberries. Any young lady who loves watermelon-flavored candy will love Ralph Wild.
- Armani Code Pour Femme: It's warm and spicy, with a sophisticated, feminine allure. Layers of notes, from orange blossom to honey, slyly unfold like voluptuous petals. When you smell your wrists at the end of an evening, it's a totally different experience than when you first sprayed it on.
If your perfume personality is Fresh, your fragrances can be citrus, green, or water--but they all exude cool.
The girl with the Fresh perfume personality is the girl who makes cool look effortless. She's laidback and low-key, but fun-loving and ready for anything. These perfumes are perfect for sporty girls with a quirky sense of humor, who live life to the fullest. If that sounds like you, then you'll love a light fresh fragrance that's as chill as you are.
Citrus fragrances explode with the zeal of juicy lemon, mandarin, and grapefruit. They're famous for being light and clean--but today the citruses are reinventing themselves as the new sexy scent with subtle woody and spicy notes or just a whisper of musk.
Green fragrances are crisp and sporty. Ever wished you could capture the smell of fresh-cut grass in a bottle? Then you need a green fragrance because they actually do just that. Other green notes include tea leaves or marine plants. The green fragrances have a sharper edge than any of the other women's fragrance families, so they're perfect when you don't want something quite so stereotypically girly.
Water fragrances are summer vacation in a bottle. Some water fragrances evoke an ocean breeze, others remind you of the way your skin smells after you get caught in a rainstorm. Water fragrances are always light and refreshing.
Three Fresh Picks
- Issey Miyake L'Eau D'Issey: Soft and clean, the smell of bare skin in the summer rain. Sparkles and refreshes, but with just a whisper of sensual warmth.
- DKNY Be Delicious: Be Delicious is one cool customer, with notes of green apple, cucumber, and grapefruit splashed over a base of blonde woods and white amber.
- D & G 1 Le Bateleur: A swaggering cocktail of spice and citrus notes, with a sly wink of cedar in the background.
Not just any kind of girl can rock an Oriental fragrance. But if you happen to be one of the rare, exquisite femme fatales with an Oriental perfume personality, then you should totally play it up with a rich, exotic perfume.
If your perfume personality is Oriental, you are truly one-of-a-kind: bold, sophisticated, and in control. You're mysterious and don't let people get to know you too quickly. Maybe you even have a bit of a dangerous daredevil side. If you're a passionate dreamer, then Oriental fragrances are definitely your perfume personality--let a spritz of one of these exotic scents whisk you away to faraway forgotten lands.
Oriental perfumes are made of everything that's warm, sensual, and opulent: gleaming amber notes and ancient spices like cinammon, nutmeg, and clove. These are laced with ethereal wisps of incense or drizzled with soft musk.
A newer subclass of Orientals called gourmands seem more like a dessert than a perfume--mouthwatering caramel notes, luscious dark or white chocolate, even a stirring of cappucino. They smell as delicious as they sound.
Oriental fragrances sometimes get unfairly accused of being obnoxious, overbearing, or old-ladyish. Don't be afraid of them! The latest reincarnations of these classic potions are irresistibly luscious and peerlessly hot. Just avoid anything that's just too heavy on the musk or anything that smells too powdery.
Three Irresistible Oriental Fragrances
- Calvin Klein Euphoria: Mysterious black orchid flirts with dewy, exotic fruits like persimmon and pomegranate, while gleaming liquid amber lazes in the background on a sandalwood base.
- Dior Midnight Poison: Live the darker fairytale with this intoxicating potion of black rose, amber, and patchouli. Comes on strong at first--but within it a few minutes it's worked its spell on you, leaving you absolutely hypnotized. This is the kind of the perfume that makes you compulsively sniff your wrists all night.
- Ralph Lauren Hot: It tempts and teases with spicy cinnamon, sumptuous mocha, and lush maple sugar. But the drydown is surprisingly comforting, with its creamy notes of milk, fig, and musk. Expect a lot of compliments.
Woody fragrances are earthy, sensual, and perfect for the modern bohemian goddess type of a girl.
Free-spirited and self-assured, the wearer of woody fragrances knows what she wants--and usually gets it. If your perfume personality is Woods, people might think you're stubborn. But you are also an amazing friend, deeply compassionate,and infinitely affectionate. The young woman who has a Woods perfume personality is wise beyond her years. Find an earthy perfume that's as warm and unique as you are.
The most popular woody fragrances for women are the lovely Chypre fragrances. Oak moss makes the sensual heart of all the Chypre fragrances. Usually spiked with musk and then cooled off with bergamot. The name Chypre comes from the French name for the Mediterranean isle of Cyprus--the birthplace of the goddess Venus herself. Chypre fragrances are an ancient perfume family--the Greeks and Romans were probably the first to mix mossy and animalic (musk) scents.
Dry woods are blends of notes that are usually considered tougher, more masculine--like leather, tobacco smoke, or burning cedar. Which makes them all the more commanding and provocative when worn by a gorgeous young woman. Go ahead--you have the perfume personality to pull it off!
Three Popular Woody Fragrances
- Narciso Rodriguez For Her: Your skin at its most velvety, glowingly musky. Like when you've been drowsing in the sunshine. That's exactly what Narciso Rodriguez for Her dries down into. But first it seduces you with vibrant opening notes of honey flower and orange blossom.
- Donna Karan Cashmere Mist: Cedar, sandalwood and vanilla notes, sometimes with a hint of suede, sometimes with a hint of smoke.
- Gucci by Gucci: Not a fragrance for the faint-hearted. A rich, earthy base of patchouli, musk, and oakmoss balanced precariously against a fearless top layer of guava and pear. But if you have a Woods perfume personality then we already know you're not faint-hearted!
What the Quiz Means
There is actually a little bit of science behind this perfume personality quiz. The perfume notes you can't resist reveal a lot about who you are.
There's a region of your brain, a primitive, instinctual region, which recognizes scents. This section of your brain is intimately connected with the emotional section of your brain, the limbic system. Here, all your most primal of reactions--desire, pleasure, fear, hunger, addiction--are born. Here, you hoard your deepest memories.
So your perfume personality, more than any flashy magazine ads, should guide you in your search for your signature fragrance!
Which Fragrance Family Do You Belong To?
Did You Find Your Match?
Did the Perfume Personality Quiz Totally Get You? Or Not So Much?
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.