The Search for a New Signature Perfume
For the past 7 years I have worn Stella by Stella McCartney as my signature perfume. I have a lot of affinity for Stella- for me, the fresh rose fragrance is not too heavy and not too light , but à la Goldilocks and the three bears, just right. Over the years I have worn other fragrances- for special occasions or when going out in the evening, but Stella was the scent I chose to wear on my wedding day, and, subsequently most every other day of my adult life.
Then this Christmas we had some house guests- my brother-in-law and his new girlfriend came to stay with us for a week. This was my first time meeting his girlfriend- she is a nice woman and we hit it off. One day I went into the guest bathroom to change out the towels and freshen up their room. While doing so I spotted a bottle of perfume on the bathroom counter in amongst other cosmetics of my guest. I moved in closer and confirmed my suspicion. My brother-in-law’s girlfriend also wore Stella.
I wasn’t sure how I felt about this. I will not lie and say I wasn’t slightly disturbed. After all a perfume is a calling card of sorts, and a very personal one at that. Was there room for two people in the family to wear the same signature scent? I relayed my concerns to my cousin over the phone the next day. She said I was crazy and needed to calm down.
Now obviously I know that many other women wear Stella... it is a best selling scent after all! And I also know that the same perfume will not smell the same on different people- body chemistry can change the dynamic of the fragrance (Which is probably why I didn’t notice it on my brother-in-law’s girlfriend in the first place- I just thought she smelled good!)
Perhaps I was overreacting. Maybe I didn’t need to find a new signature scent… But the following morning when I went to adorn myself with the fragrance I paused while looking at the familiar deep purple bottle. I began to ruminate on the concept of a signature scent. Is one supposed to wear their signature scent until the day they die? Or does one change it up every decade when they analyze where they are in life? I picked Stella as my signature scent in my early 20s. My life is dramatically different now than it was back then. Does Stella aromatically encapsulate all that my new life has become?
Of that, I'm not sure... but I aim to find out!
Gradually over the next few months I will share with you my thoughts and notes on fragrances I’ve tried in the search for my new signature scent. Hopefully, at the end of this journey, I will find a new perfume to call my own.
What am I looking for? Something a bit more niche (less commercial) and unique. A scent that is moving and evocative. Not too bold, but rather something I could wear every day. A fragrance that my daughter will smell in 20 years time and think of me...
I would love to know… what is your signature scent… and is it time for a change?
Perfume flasks from ancient Rome, dating back to A.D. 200 - 400 are pictured above. They are featured at the Getty Villa in Malibu
Also, I am featured this week in Black Is the New Black. Click here for the link, or visit: www.thenewblackisblack.com to read my thoughts on style...
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