My favourite thing about perfumes, is that everyone has a different take on them. Some people might prefer to lock down a “signature scent’ they wear all the time that becomes distinctly them, while others might own a wardrobe of perfumes they choose from depending on the occasion or their mood.
For the most part, curating a perfume collection can be quite the financial investment, which is why finding a scent you truly love is especially important. If you’re someone who is big on wearing scents that are distinctive and unique, layering perfumes is a great way to achieve that.
First off, a few things to know about layering perfumes:
#1 The best perfumes to layer are the ones with simpler, minimalist scents. Essentially, a perfume with fewer ingredients will work better in a layered situation. Perfumes that tend to have a scent like Vanilla, Jasmine, Cedar, or other “clean” or single-note scents are often simple enough to layer.
#2 Make sure you apply your heavier scents before the lighter ones so you don’t overpower the lighter scents. You might also have to adjust the ratio to balance out a heavier scent, like one spritz of the heavy scent and two or three of a lighter one.
#3 Layering doesn’t have to mean perfume plus perfume. You can layer with different products like a body lotion in one scent topped with a fragrance in another.
Perfume brands well suited for layering:
#1 Commodity perfumes
I raved about these perfumes recently as a lover of all things minimalist and scents named ‘Moss’. The collection of black (heavier) and white (lighter) scents from Commodity are beautiful on their own and make for great fragrance cocktails when layered. If trying out the scents in stores isn’t enough for you to decide, you can always buy the smaller 10ml versions ($36) of a few of your favourites to suss out which ones you like best and how they can be layered. The full-size 100ml bottles retail for $146 each, which is a bit more of an investment, though reasonably priced for the quality.
#2 Jo Malone colognes
If you’re familiar with this London-based brand, you’ll be aware of how wonderfully minimalist its range of scents is. To help you out with your selection, the colognes are organised according to core notes like floral, woody, citrusy, or spicy, and even have wonderfully unusual fragrances like Earl Grey & Cucumber. The website has a handy tool that can help you figure out a combination that might suit you. All you have to do is choose a base scent you like, and the site will recommend another cologne that you can layer over it to give it a warmer or fresher scent.
Alternatively, you could just head down to any of their four boutiques and let one of the lovely staff help you with a fragrance consultation which is absolutely free. The colognes are priced from $102 for a 30ml bottle or double that for a 100ml bottle.
While more well-known for their tinted lip balms and skincare best-sellers like the Soy Face Cleanser and Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask, the brand also carries a range of fragrances that are subtle and unique. You can choose from a range of scents like Honeysuckle, Pink Jasmine, Sake, Sugar Lychee, or Brown Sugar, among others. While they’re great alone, some layered combinations work well to make a scent less sweet or floral (or more so if that’s your preference).
The scents are available in 10ml rollerballs ($37), 30ml ($82) or 100ml ($148) bottles and can be found at Fresh boutiques or Sephora.