See if you can get an appointment with a fragrance consultant. Not the types that work for brands, but ones who understand fragrance theory. Main points in bold below – longer explanation & context if you care to read the rest of the story.
I used to love musk & vanilla-based fragrances like Angel, Obsession or Flowerbomb. Then I ended up with luxury department store as a client (Holt Renfrew for Canadians – kind of like Barneys or Harrods as reference for non-Canucks.)
Holts flew in a French fragrance consultant for a beauty event. Can’t remember her name but imagine a living version of Cruella Deville (she wasn’t an animal hater but had the black hair with the white streak in the middle of her forehead thing going on.)
She describeddifferent fragrance notes, how they are important for selecting fragrance and that fragrance should change by season and time of day (probably a ploy to sell more). She said to pick a fragrance based on your skin undertones (musky, woody, floral, fruity etc).
It was a little weird when she and her assistant each grabbed one of my wrists, brought them close to their noses and proceeded to close their eyes and inhale deeply (basically their noses were touching my arm).
She then stops and declares to me “You have fruity undertones.” And looked very satisfied with that proclamation. So I said “Wait…what exactly do you mean by that? How am I supposed to use that information to get a fragrance? Do I buy a fruity one or find one to balance out my fruity tones?”
She looked at my like I was a complete idiot…anyway, you don’t counter balance it, you find a fragrance that is the same tones as your own. She then recommended a few fruity fragrances and I chose one.
Ladies…I kid you not – I have NEVER, ever had so many compliments on a fragrance. Coworkers, girlfriends, strangers who had never heard the story. One of my friends even bought the same one, she liked it so much.
Since then, I’ve stuck to that formula and had WAY better success picking out fragrances. I now save the musky, and mysterious ones for my scented candles.