How To Apply Perfume, According to a Pro

Applying perfume is always the most exciting part of your beauty routine because it's usually the last step before you head out of the door. The right spritz here and a dab of your favorite scent enhance your look and instantly boost your confidence. Since this is such a crucial step, we want to make sure you're applying your fragrance correctly because there is an art to it. Ahead, Christopher Gordon, leading perfumer, shares his tried and true techniques on the dos and don'ts of perfume application. 

How should you prep skin for perfume application?
Dry skin doesn't hold perfume as well as moisturized skin. So, while you don't have to technically prep your skin, "applying a layer of moisturizer before the fragrance, especially if scented with the same fragrance, will help it last longer," says Gordon.

What areas should you apply? 
It sounds obvious, but don't get too adventurous and spray places like your face. The classic spots like "the wrists, the neck, behind the ears, and the back of the knees” are the places you should focus on, states Gordon. 

How many spritzes does each area need?
One or two spritzes are all you need, but remember, if your fragrance is lighter, adjust the number of sprays based on your preference. 

Should perfume be rubbed in or let it dry?
Rubbing your wrists together can make the scent disappear quicker, so instead, spray each wrist and let it air dry.

Is walking into your scent a do or a don't? Please explain
A direct spritz onto the skin is all you truly need, but "to apply a light mist of fragrance all over the body, spraying into the air and then walking into the mist is effective. This way, the scent ends up in a very light layer all over the body's upper half, making it less concentrated," shares Gordon.

What about applying to clothes? Do it or skip it? Please explain. 
Clothing fibers hold smells longer and can be a great way to get a prominent application. Try spraying scarves and hats in the colder months for prolonged wear. 

How long does a fragrance last?
The lasting power of fragrance depends on the type of scent. "Eau de Cologne is meant to last a short time — 15 minutes or so — while an Eau de Parfum can last eight hours or more. The formulation, concentration, and activity level of the wearer can all affect longevity," explains Gordon. 

How often should you reapply?
"All-natural perfumes can last as little as an hour and will require more frequent re-application. However, if you are wearing an Eau de Parfum, you shouldn't need to reapply for a good eight hours or until after you bathe," Gordon notes.

Does the application need to change based on the season? Please explain.
It doesn't, but that being said, people gravitate toward specific seasonal notes. “People tend to choose lighter scents focused on citrus and light florals in the summer, while heavier scents are preferred in the cooler months. But this is a matter of personal taste, and there's no right or wrong answer," says Gordon.