Jun 30, 2023 | 7 min Read

Perfume Etiquette: The Right and Wrong Ways to Wear and Store Perfume

Perfume is more than just a fragrance; it is a powerful tool for self-expression and making a lasting impression. Whether you’re attending a social event, going to the office, or simply stepping out for a casual outing, the way you wear perfume can significantly impact how others perceive you. However, with great power comes great responsibility, and that’s where perfume etiquette comes into play.

In embracing perfume etiquette, we encourage you to express your individuality while being mindful of others. By adhering to these guidelines, you can create an olfactory aura that leaves a positive and lasting impact. So, let’s embark on this fragrant journey together and unlock the secrets of perfume etiquette that will elevate your scent game to new heights.

Choosing the Right Perfume for Your Skin Chemistry

When it comes to selecting the perfect perfume, understanding your personal preferences and body chemistry is essential to perfume etiquette. Perfume is a highly individualized choice, and what works for one person may not work for another. Take the time to explore different fragrance families such as floral, citrus, woody, or amber, and discover the scents that resonate with you. Pay attention to the notes you enjoy, whether it’s the freshness of bergamot, the warmth of vanilla, or the earthiness of patchouli. By understanding your preferences, you can narrow down the options and find fragrances that truly speak to your unique style.

Additionally, consider your body chemistry. Perfumes react differently with each individual’s skin chemistry, which means that a scent may smell different on you compared to someone else. Test perfumes on your skin before making a purchase to see how they evolve throughout the day. Note how the fragrance interacts with your body’s natural scent and whether it remains pleasant and well-balanced. By taking your body chemistry into account, you can find a perfume that harmonizes beautifully with your skin.


  • Do experiment with different perfume families and notes to find what you enjoy. 
  • Do take note of the fragrances that complement your body chemistry.
  • Do seek out sample sizes or decants to test perfumes over a longer period.


  • Don’t blindly follow trends or purchase a perfume just because it’s popular.
  • Don’t overlook the importance of testing perfumes on your own skin.
  • Don’t make hasty decisions without considering how a fragrance interacts with your body chemistry.


Consideration for Different Occasions and Environment

Perfume selection should also consider the occasion and environment in which it will be worn. Different settings call for different types of scents, and it’s important to choose perfumes that are appropriate and enhance the atmosphere.

For daytime and office settings, opt for lighter, fresher scents that are not overpowering. Citrus or floral-based perfumes are often well-suited for these environments, providing a refreshing and subtle aura. In formal events or evening occasions, consider more sophisticated and elegant fragrances that exude a sense of glamour. Amber, chypres, or deeper floral scents can add an alluring touch to your evening ensemble.


  • Do choose lighter, fresher scents for daytime and office settings.
  • Do opt for more sophisticated and elegant fragrances for formal events or evenings.
  • Do consider the atmosphere and dress code of the occasion when selecting a perfume.


  • Don’t wear overpowering or heavy scents in crowded or enclosed spaces.
  • Don’t overlook the impact a perfume can have on the overall ambiance of an event or environment.
  • Don’t neglect to consider the appropriateness of a perfume based on the occasion or setting.


Applying Perfume

When it comes to applying perfume, the key is to embrace the concept of “less is more.” Perfume should be a subtle enhancement of your natural scent rather than an overwhelming presence. A well-applied perfume should leave a beautiful trail as you pass by, inviting others to catch a hint of your fragrance without being overpowered by it.

Which Pulse Points to Put Perfume ON


  • Do apply perfume to pulse points for optimal diffusion.
  • Do apply perfume immediately after showering or moisturizing, when your skin is still slightly damp. This helps lock in the fragrance and prolong its longevity.
  • Do remember that others should notice your fragrance when they are in close proximity, not from a distance.


  • Don’t apply perfume to dry or dehydrated skin, as it may alter the scent and affect its longevity.
  • Don’t rub your wrists together after applying perfume, as it can break down the fragrance molecules and alter the scent.
  • Don’t apply perfume excessively, thinking that a stronger scent will last longer or be more impactful.


Recognize Scent Duration and Strength

Understanding the duration and strength of a perfume is essential for maintaining its optimal impact throughout the day. Each fragrance has its own longevity and projection, and being aware of these factors allows you to make informed decisions regarding reapplication and adjusting the intensity of the scent based on the setting.


  • Do consider the longevity of your perfume when selecting it for different occasions. For longer events or busy days, opt for fragrances with greater staying power.
  • Do take into account the projection of the scent. Some perfumes have a more subtle and intimate aura, while others have a stronger sillage that fills the space around you. Choose accordingly based on your personal style and the environment you’ll be in.
  • Do experiment with different application techniques to control the strength of the scent. Applying perfume in a fine mist or from a distance can help achieve a more subtle effect.


  • Don’t assume that a perfume will last all day without any need for reapplication. Even long-lasting fragrances may fade over time. Carry a travel-sized atomizer with you for touch-ups if desired.
  • Don’t over-spray or apply too much perfume in an attempt to make it last longer. This can lead to an overpowering effect that may be unpleasant to those around you.
  • Don’t forget to consider the setting and the people you’ll be interacting with. In more intimate or enclosed spaces, opt for a lighter application to ensure a comfortable experience for everyone.


Perfume and Personal Space

By being mindful of personal boundaries, considering fragrance allergies and sensitivities, and adjusting perfume intensity for shared spaces, you can ensure that your fragrance choices contribute to a harmonious and comfortable environment for all. Remember, perfume should enhance the overall ambiance and be a pleasurable experience for everyone involved.


  • Do be conscious of others’ personal space and avoid direct contact.
  • Do take into account the projection and sillage of your perfume
  • Do opt for a more moderate application when in close proximity to others.


  • Don’t invade someone’s personal space with a strong or intrusive fragrance.
  • Don’t continuously reapply perfume throughout the day in shared spaces, as it can become overwhelming to others.
  • Don’t forget that a subtle fragrance that lingers gently is more appealing than an overpowering cloud that invades personal space.


Perfume Gifting Etiquette

Giving perfume as a gift can be a thoughtful and personal gesture. However, it’s important to approach perfume gifting with care and consideration. Understanding the recipient’s preferences, occasion, and cultural sensitivities can help ensure that your gift is well-received and appreciated.


  • Do take into account the recipient’s known fragrance preferences or wishlist.
  • Do choose timeless and versatile fragrances that appeal to a broad range of individuals.
  • Do keep receipts or provide gift receipts to allow for exchange or return if the fragrance doesn’t suit the recipient.


  • Don’t select highly polarizing or niche fragrances if you are uncertain about the recipient’s taste.
  • Don’t gift them used perfume that you were not satisfied with.
  • Don’t overlook the importance of a personal touch. Take the time to write a heartfelt message that accompanies the perfume gift.


Storing and Preserving Perfume

Proper storage and preservation of perfume are essential to maintain its quality, longevity, and fragrance integrity. By following a few simple guidelines, you can ensure that your perfumes remain in optimal condition, allowing you to enjoy them to their fullest extent. Here are some tips for storing and preserving your perfume collection.


graphic that explains how to store your perfume


  • Do store perfumes in cool, dry places away from direct sunlight or heat sources.
  • Do keep perfumes in their original packaging or opaque containers to minimize exposure.
  • Do discard perfumes that have changed color, scent, or consistency beyond their expiration date.


  • Don’t leave your perfumes exposed on a vanity or in a bathroom where they can be exposed to humidity and temperature fluctuations.
  • Don’t leave perfume bottles open or uncapped for extended periods of time.
  • Don’t hoard perfumes for an extended period without using them. Enjoy your collection and rotate through your fragrances.


Wearing perfume is an art, and mastering the art of wearing it with elegance and sensitivity can elevate the overall fragrance experience. By carefully selecting perfumes that reflect our personality, applying them with restraint and awareness, and understanding the impact of fragrance on others, we can create a harmonious environment where perfume becomes an extension of our identity.

Remember, perfume etiquette is not about strict rules but rather a set of guidelines that promote respect, consideration, and appreciation for the power of fragrance. By following these guidelines, we can navigate the world of perfumes with grace, creating a captivating and enjoyable olfactory journey for ourselves and those around us.

image of Wesleigh Hayes
Wesleigh Hayes

Wesleigh Hayes is a content writer and editor with a passion in all things beauty, lifestyle, and fragrances. Born and raised in Nashville, Wesleigh has always been fascinated by perfumes and how they are the perfect accessory for completing any outfit and making you feel confident. Her current fragrance favs are Dolce and Gabbana Pour Femme, Annick Goutal Tenue De Soiree and Vince Camuto Illuminaire.

More Articles from this Author
image of Wesleigh Hayes
Wesleigh Hayes

Wesleigh Hayes is a content writer and editor with a passion in all things beauty, lifestyle, and fragrances. Born and raised in Nashville, Wesleigh has always been fascinated by perfumes and how they are the perfect accessory for completing any outfit and making you feel confident. Her current fragrance favs are Dolce and Gabbana Pour Femme, Annick Goutal Tenue De Soiree and Vince Camuto Illuminaire.

More Articles from this Author

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