How To Layer Fragrance So Your Skin Always Smells Amazing

Humans have been using scent for millennia, but if you were asked to explain how you apply your fragrance, you’d probably respond with a description that entails you spritzing in the vague direction of the neck and wrists while hoping for the best. Applying our scent is something we don’t really think much about, but what if those automatic motions actually prevented our perfume from lingering? What if you could create a longer lasting, all-over scent impression by layering several products and taking care of how and where you apply your fragrance? There’s so much more to perfume than a ‘spritz and go’ attitude, so I’m here to give you a helping hand and explain the composition of scent to ensure you always smell incredible.

First of all, lets understand a bit about how fragrances are created… Most perfumes are composed of three ‘notes’ or elements – the base, heart and top note. The ‘top notes’ are composed of the lightest molecules, causing them to evaporate first to leave a slightly different lingering scent beneath. Top notes often include the spiciest, strongest and most unusual scents so they intrigue you without hanging around too long. The ‘heart notes’ appear roughly three hours after application and are often made up of the scents that you remember or associate with the product; these often include the main floral or woody notes that you catch while pushing hair behind your ear. The ‘base notes’ appear roughly five hours after application and are often used as a ‘fixative’ to ensure the top and heart notes appear as the designer intends; these provide the scent that your fragrance evolves into over time – which is often very different from what you first applied. Because these elements evaporate and change over time, a scent applied at 8am will smell very different at 3pm.

So knowing this, how can we ensure we’re always smelling fab? Fragrance layering is key in creating an aura of beauty, while ensuring you remain perfectly fragrant from morning until night. Starting off in the shower, use a body wash or lotion that complements your chosen perfume for the day – if you’re a fan of nutty or warm scents, opt for something like Dove Coconut, Pistachio or Almond Body Wash, or use a touch of Go Fresh for fruity notes including Pomegranate, Lemon and Peach. Lathering up a rich wash will not only leave skin feeling smooth and ready for fragrance to be applied, but it will leave a lingering scent on skin which you can build upon. I’m also a big fan of using body lotions that provide a delicate fragrance, and Dove’s Purely Pampering Pistachio and Coconut ranges are great at helping to hydrate skin while leaving a subtle scent behind. Although they only last for a short time, they’re a great way to start your morning routine off on a great foot and complement your chosen fragrance; what’s even better is that body lotions actually provide a base on which scent can hold on to, helping it to last a lot longer than when applied to bare skin.

When it comes to applying perfume, why not opt for a couple of complementary scents that will work together and create something truly unique? Not only will this make you stand out from the crowd, but the two fragrances will ensure the notes evaporate at different times and theoretically last longer. It’s incredible how combining fragrances you think are statement enough alone completely changes their overall makeup; Jo Malone are great at designing statement scents that work both alone and combined with one or two other fragrances, changing the strength of notes completely. If you want to tone down some of the more spicey, floral or musty tones in a scent, add something a little softer – vanilla and musk work really well here. If you want to spice up a scent, then add a touch of pepper or a masculine note for something truly unique. There’s no magic answer to creating the ultimate fragrance (it’s all about experimenting and creating something that works for you,) but if you’re confused about where to start, opt for two favourite fragrances with the same heart note – such as bergamot, rose or jasmine. This will ensure common ground and a natural blend.

So, where should we be applying our scent to ensure longevity? You may have heard the phrase ‘pulse point’ many times before, but not really understood what this meant… ‘Pulse points’ are locations on the body where the blood vessels are closest to the skin: inner wrists, base of the throat, behind ear lobes, cleavage, behind knees and the inner elbows. These spots emanate heat, which can help fragrance to evaporate from your skin into the air. Applying your perfume to these points will enable it to react with your body heat and continue to emit scent throughout the day – just don’t rub your wrists together after you’ve sprayed, or you’ll start to break down the scent and prevent it from lasting. Your hair is also a great place to apply scent, as it’s lacking the heat that often changes the formation of fragrance over time. Many women love to spritz their barnets or even walk into a mist of fragrance for a subtle all-over result, while others prefer to take pop an atomiser in their bag and top-up throughout the day – it’s about finding what works for you and your skin.

Fragrance is such a personal thing, but there are lots of little things you can do to ensure you’re not only smelling fabulous, but that your perfume lingers for longer. Why not try layering it up, starting in the shower, and see what a difference it can make to you!

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Dove and is part
of our Body Beautiful Week. 

However, all opinions are my own.

Features PR samples unless otherwise stated. To read my full disclaimer, click here.  




  1. Jasmine Stewart
    March 28, 2015 / 1:28 pm

    I definitely think I need to start better coordinating which body butter/spray/fragrance I'm using so they go together a little better instead of being a random mix of smells! xx Magpie Jasmine

  2. Sara Fleming
    March 28, 2015 / 1:29 pm

    Great tips! I don't like using anything too heavily scented as it irritates my skin, so hopefully these tips will help!

  3. Lou
    March 28, 2015 / 4:37 pm

    This is such great advice and something that I find hard to do in the warmer months.

  4. Amanda Bootes
    March 28, 2015 / 9:46 pm

    Brilliant advice as always. I will definitely be thinking a tad more about my chosen scents and the best way to layer them up!!

  5. Anonymous
    March 29, 2015 / 2:34 am

    great article, i always try to make all the scented products i use match 🙂

  6. Sciencekoekje
    March 29, 2015 / 7:35 am

    Good food for thought. Never thought about to combine several scents. I am always scared to end up smelling cheap and perfume overladen. But i can imagine that when done in a good way that it can be amazing. The body lotion as base for perfume is a great idea. That so makes sense, and i did not consider it. Thx for all the hints.

  7. Amanda
    March 29, 2015 / 9:35 am

    What a great post, I will definitely be applying my perfume with more thought next time rather than just spritzing all over xxAmanda –

  8. Catherine Sayer
    March 29, 2015 / 1:43 pm

    Great tips! I love using lots of fragranced products and layering them up so you smell lovely all day! x

  9. Honeypot Blogs
    March 29, 2015 / 3:50 pm

    This is such a great post, with some much information and tips I haven't even thought about before!xxHoneypot Blogs

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