What girl doesn’t like to smell nice at the office? Wearing perfume when you go out on a hot date is one thing, but wearing it at the office comes with a bit less freedom and a much longer list of considerations. Choosing the right perfume is both an art and a science, so think before you spray with these four tips for choosing workplace-appropriate perfumes.
1. The Nature of Perfume
Like all good things in life, there is such a thing as too much perfume. Remember that perfume is designed for a simple spritz and that’s it. Don’t feel obligated to dab your fragrance on your neck, wrists, ears, chest, underarms and every square inch of your body just to smell good. Remember that scents are powerful, and you can’t just easily wipe them off if you go overboard. My personal method for applying comes from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy’s fiercest fashionista Kyan Douglas, who goes by the motto: “Spray, delay and walk away.”
I’m just as guilty of loving Britney Spears’ cotton candy-flavored Fantasy perfume as the next gal, but wearing this to work might create an “Oops I did it again” moment. I think most women can decide for themselves which perfumes are obviously out of the question, but how do you choose the right scent when everyone has their own opinion on what they like or don’t like in a fragrance? You don’t want to let your scent overshadow your resume in an interview or distract from your performance report at the company meeting. Aim for neutral scents like mint and citrus to keep it simple and universally appealing. For example, Prada’s Infusion d’Iris combines orange blossom, moist iris, mandarin and incense for a light, energizing aura.
3. Stick to One
Every girl likes to customize her scent by combining fragrances, but the office might not be the best place to show off your creative side– at least not in that respect. The same way you want to avoid flashy and overly busy office wear, your perfume should reflect a polished and simple tone. Remember that scents don’t only come from your perfume bottle. Try to be aware of the many scents coming from your shampoo, body wash, lotion, detergent and deodorant to avoid coming on too strong. Consider investing in a supply of scent-free hygiene alternatives to avoid overpowering your co-workers during the weekdays.
4. Go Light
If your boss can smell you coming before you even get through the door, you might want to think about opting for a lighter fragrance. Citrus-based fragrances are always a light, crisp choice that won’t hang in the air, but some floral scents can also be subtle and refreshing. Marc Jacob’s Daisy perfume is a popular light scent for a sophisticated touch. However, sometimes the best option for subtlety is using a body mist or scented lotion for the lightest fragrance. Bath and Body Works features a refreshing Sweet Pea body mist that smells like sweet peas, watery pears, loganberries and rhubarb on a Mediterranean breeze.
The workplace may not be the right setting for showing off your impeccable perfume taste, but that doesn’t mean you can’t sport a pleasant, feminine fragrance during your nine to five. Keep these rules in mind and try to use your best judgment when testing out new fragrances. When in doubt, talk to the professionals at the cosmetic department or ask your female co-workers what they recommend for an office-appropriate scent.
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