15 Fragrance Hacks to Make Your Perfume Last Longer

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Who wouldn’t love to smell great all day? Wearing your favorite fragrance can certainly help, but you may have noticed that many perfumes wear off by lunchtime. This is likely because you’re not applying your perfume the right way. Most people don’t realize there are best practices for applying fragrance, many of which make perfume last longer. Unfortunately, if you store your perfume in the bathroom or on a display shelf, you’re not storing it correctly either. Here we’ll cover some tips and best practices for getting the most out of your perfume — both for wearing it and storing it.

How to Make Your Perfume Last Longer

To make your perfume last longer you will want to ensure the perfume is able to connect with your skin and stay put all day. To do this, you will want to follow as many of the below perfume rules as you are able to. Here we also cover how to make your perfume last longer in the bottle!

Illustration that says "How to Make Your Perfume Last Longer"

  1. Apply right after your shower.

    Starting with proper application helps ensure your fragrance lasts all day. For best results, apply your perfume right after you shower and dry off.

  2. Make sure skin is moisturized before application.

    Applying unscented lotion before you spritz on your perfume will moisturize your skin and lock in your fragrance better.

  3. Spray or dab onto bare skin.

    Keep fabric and clothing from obstructing your fragrance. Perfume smells best and lasts the longest when able to meld with the natural oils of your body.

  4. Apply to your pulse points.

    Fragrance reacts to heat, and applying to your pulse points can help release scent throughout the day. Try spritzing the nape of your neck, insides of your elbows, wrists, or the back of your knees.

    Which Pulse Points to Put Perfume ON

  5. Smear a small amount of Vaseline to your pulse points before applying.

    If you need some extra life out of your fragrance, rub a small amount of Vaseline onto your pulse points before application. The balm will act as an additional moisturizing lock for the scent, helping it last even longer.

  6. Don’t rub the fragrance in.

    Rubbing your wrists together breaks down the chemicals and causes top notes to break down faster than they would have otherwise. If you can’t spray your fragrance, gently dab it on your skin.

  7. Spray fragrance onto your hairbrush and brush through your hair.

    If you want some extra scent in your hair, you can spray it on your brush and run it through dry hair. Don’t spritz directly onto your hair, as the alcohol in many perfumes can cause damage. 

  8. Use matching scented lotion and other products.

    Another way to maximize your fragrance is to buy the lotions, body washes, and other products sold alongside it. Clean, Calvin Klein, Versace, and other popular brands offer matching products to compliment their fragrances.

  9. Spray perfume on cotton balls and put in a plastic bag to use for touch-ups.

    For a scent boost on-the-go, spritz your perfume on a couple of cotton balls or q-tips and, while they’re wet, place them in a plastic bag and squeeze out all of the air. They should stay moist enough to apply later in the day.

    Graphic that says Make the Most Out of Your Perfume

  10. Pour the last of used perfume into an unscented lotion bottle to prevent waste.

    Make the most of every last drop of your fragrance. If your bottle no longer sprays, add the remaining scent to some unscented moisturizer to create a lotion that smells like your perfume.

  11. Line your drawers with perfume to subtly scent clothing.

    If you have a signature scent, you can get your clothing to smell like it as well. Line your drawers with tissue paper that has been spritzed a few times and allow the scent to permeate the fabrics.

  12. Store your perfume in a cool, dark place.

    Fragrance can break down in fluctuating temperatures or humidity. Instead of storing your scents in the bathroom, keep it in a cool drawer away from direct sunlight.

    graphic that explains how to store your perfume

  13. Keep your perfume in its original bottle.

    While this process is somewhat outdated, some people still like to store their perfume in separate, fancy bottles. While this might look sophisticated, it will allow air to saturate your fragrance, which can also alter its chemical makeup.

  14. Don’t shake your perfume bottle.

    Shaking the perfume can also allow air to infuse the fragrance and shorten its lifespan.

  15. Buy the right strength of perfume.

    Some perfumes will naturally last longer than others, both on the skin and in the bottle. Perfume and cologne are sold in different concentrations, meaning there are different ratios of fragrance oil to alcohol.

illustration of perfume bottles

What Type of Perfume Lasts the Longest?

As we discussed above, you can buy different concentrations of perfume. The strength of the perfume you buy will determine how long it lasts on the skin. The more concentrated forms, like pure parfum, will cost the most while the less concentrated versions of the same scent, like eau de toilette, will cost less.

However, you can also buy perfumes that will have a longer shelf life. Perfumes with more prominent base notes will have a longer shelf life than those with prominent top notes. Base notes usually include woody or balsamic flavors as well as those with a spicier scent. If your perfume contains Oriental scents such as patchouli and amber, it’s likely to have a longer shelf life.

Perfumes with lighter prominent base notes are more volatile. The more volatile your scent, the quicker it will likely expire. This includes citrus, floral and green scents.

a graphic that outlines the scent families

If you’re unsure what notes are strongest in your perfume of choice, you can look at its scent family information. This can usually be found online or in the product description. If you’re new to perfume you can also take a perfume quiz to determine which scent is best for you. If you’re concerned about longevity, keep its prominent base notes as well as the concentration in mind when you’re ready to buy.

By using these tips you can prime your fragrance to last as long as possible. Start the process by buying the correct type of perfume for your needs. Then store it correctly and avoid doing anything that might cause the fragrance to decompose. If you’re using perfume application best practices, you will know that you’re getting the very most out of your signature scent!

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