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  1. #1

    Default Body types and chemistry

    I was browsing through old threads and found one discussing D&G Light Blue, particularly how the scent seemed to vary fairly widely from person to person. This is certainly true for me - I was spraying the scent on a few friends yesterday and it turned out far more "light" on them whereas it would be pretty rich on me. The same goes for many other scents - what smells lighter, fresher, fruitier on a friend will smell fairly flowery, rich, musky on me...

    I've heard for the most part that people with "bigger" bodies tend to retain perfumes more easily than your standard size 0, but that hasn't held up in my case, either. Certain perfumes linger forever on a thinner friend's skin while disappear within half an hour on mine, which is pretty strange. Perfumes also tend to smell very different from the bottle on my wrists - once again, certain notes always become very sharp and prominent. It's one of the reasons I tend to go for lighter scents, since I know they'll just turn "dark" on me anyways. I'm Asian and live in a fairly predominant Asian community, and I feel like I have both a different body type and scent type than most other Asians... evidenced by the fact that perfumes smell far brighter on their skin than mine.

    Anybody else want to share some knowledge/experience?
    If nothing ever changed, there'd be no butterflies.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    If you search the forums for "body chemistry" you will turn up a few threads. I think the jury is still out on there being a definite correlation to how a scent smells on dark/light/dry/oily skin or tall/short/thin/large person. Probably diet, blood type, and other chemical factors of the body have more to do with it than phenotypical appearance, but definitely scents smell different on people. Also different people (and skins) "hold" scent longer/better than others.

    You could also do a search for "jojoba oil" as that is often discussed in terms of drier skins and as a base for holding scent on drier types.

    In my personal experience, I can't say there is a standard for me. Some scents stay on me a long time and some don't (D&G Light Blue is one that lasts a long time on me; others include Chloe Narcissus, Tom Ford Black Orchid, and Gucci Rush. Some that leave me far sooner than I'd like include Molinard Habanita and Rochas Tocade).
    Beauty is but the sensible image of the Infinite.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I simply cannot buy light perfumes; they do not last on me.
    I am a small person, rather short, with a thin build.
    Maybe my metabolism is fast. I blame that.
    My skin has alot of yellow-orange pigment, and my hair was almost black brown before it started going, ahem, white.
    So, put me down as a scent-killer with those particular characteristics.

  4. #4

    CologneJunkie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    This is a VERY interesting question. On me, most feminine perfumes turn into a loud sickly headachey mess. My chemistry works SO MUCH BETTER with more masculine scents. For example, M7 turns very subtle and powdery on me. Also, occasionally there will be times when scents tend to differ on me from day to day. About every 4th time I wear CK be, it becomes dull and muted instead of sparkling and musky. Last time I wore Gaultier2, it became VERY loud and cloying, but I think that was because I was sweating a lot and additionally my Aunt Flo was visiting. To me, it makes more sense that frags smell different from one person to the next due to chemistry, diet, etc rather than body type, but who knows?
    "Wait...is David Bowie really God?" - Penelope Garcia

  5. #5

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    This topic fascinates me as well. I'm very small - 5'2, 95 lbs., and like Purplebird7 - have a fast metabolism. (Freakishly fast, really, because I'm 41 and I have hypothyroidism). I eat sugar like crazy and I live on ice cream. It's awful, really, because I have the worst diet in the world. If I gained wait I would have to eat healthy foods. My skin has yellow undertones, some freckles, and my natural haircolor is auburn. (It's now blonde, and even blonder over the, ahem, gray strands...{{Purplebird7}})

    Fragrances usually have above average lasting power on me, and the fragrances with legendary lasting power, (Angel, Nuits de NoHo, Fire Island, etc.) last through showers on my skin. Sweet scents tend to get overly sweet and can nauseate me. It's probably a reaction to all that sugar in my body, LOL!

    One thing that may factor. I'm an avid gardener and I spend a lot of time outside. Sunshine intensifies fragrance on my skin - so maybe that's a factor as well? When I'm cold, (like when I'm stuck inside and some idiot has set the air conditioning to sub-zero temperatures), my fragrance disappears, and is definitely less sweet.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I'm half-Chinese, half pallid English and a bit porkier than I should be. The two people I most often go perfume shopping with are my mother (extremely pale blonde, pale skin, also a bit porkier than she should be - I pray she doesn't read this) and a very good friend who has a collection even larger than mine. (Unaccountably, she doesn't post here.) She's very pale and very, very slim, with gorgeous red hair.

    We have all stood together and sniffed things in unison. Frequently they've turned out very differently - my friend and I had the most extreme difference with one of Roja Dove's limited editions of 100 bottles (sorry, but I forget which number it was; it was the lovely citrusy one with remarkable staying power, if that's any help), which was *entirely* different on the pair of us. On me it was very transparent and light, on her much darker. Benjamin, the very knowledgeable and lovely SA at Roja Dove was so surprised by the difference that he spent about five minutes smelling us both in amazement. She also can't wear cumin; it's much sweatier on her than it is on me.

    I wear a lot of Apres l'Ondee, and my mother loved it, and decided she wanted a bottle. She tried some of mine - and again, where it's transparent and almost metallic on me, it's sickly and almost powdery on her. That said, she has much better compatibility with Caron perfumes than I do. On me they smell a lot sweeter.

    I feel lucky. On the whole, I *like* the way things smell on me.

    A note on the greasy skin thing (and I'm going to regret admitting this). I had some ovarian problems which led to me putting a lot of weight on, and have been taking Xenical, the weight loss pill that stops your body from digesting fat, for several months (a total success - I'm positively sylph-like now). My skin's a lot drier since I've been taking it, but I've noticed no difference at all in the way my perfumes smell or last, which surprised me.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    Quote Originally Posted by Tovah View Post
    [FONT=Georgia]. . . . My skin has yellow undertones, some freckles, and my natural haircolor is auburn . . . . Fragrances usually have above average lasting power on me, and the fragrances with legendary lasting power, (Angel, Nuits de NoHo, Fire Island, etc.) last through showers on my skin. Sweet scents tend to get overly sweet and can nauseate me.
    I have similar colouring (auburn hair, freckles), although my body type is very different; I'm fairly compact and muscular, and my metabolism is not particularly rapid. My skin also brings out sweet notes, however, though not to an extent that I find offensive; sweet notes do tend to bury herbal and green notes (as in the lavander in Jicky or Musc Ravageur). My skin also magnifies even the slightest hint of powder in a fragrance, so it ends up smelling dessicated and as though it had been buried half-unstoppered at the back of a drawer for 50 years.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    This is very interesting. I'm quite small, just below 5' 3" and slender. I have neutral undertones, brown hair with a red tinge and very fair skin that burns easily. My skin is very dry, I have to apply body lotion every day or it will become flaky, my face is also very dry and craves constant moisture. I have a high metabolism and are restless and want to move around a lot.

    Many perfumes become too sweet on my skin, it's amost as if my skin has a vanilla tone in it to begin with. The same perfume applied to my arm and to my mums arm, will always become very sweet and vanilla on me, and much more flowery or fruity (and better) on my mother for example.

    Perfumes stay very long on my skin. D&G The one, stayed more than 14 hours, two showers and a vigorous scrubbing (wanted to get rid of it), CK Euphoria stays at least one shower and almost 24 hours. Strong perfumes can stay more than 24 hours on my skin. Very few disappear within a few hours. I almost never have to apply perfume a second time during a day and I'm used to smelling them faintly even after a shower.
    Last edited by Wearw; 15th April 2007 at 04:49 PM. Reason: Updated with more information

  9. #9

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    Yes, it is interesting. I'm medium height (5'7), and my body type is a "modified" English pear. I say modified, because I've spent the last 20 years in the gym adding muscle to my upper body to balance it out. My arms are positively Linda Hamilton-esque, but I still have jiggly thighs.
    I have pale, yellow-toned skin that burns atrociously in the sun and never really tans, beyond looking slightly dirty. Brown hair, dark green/hazel eyes. I had greasy skin and hair as a kid and spots for most of my life.
    Perfume never smells as cloying on me as it does on most other people. I can put Hypnotic Poison on and after the topnotes have burned off, it smells like a tasteful man's cologne.
    However, very little has any sillage at all on me.
    Light summer scents last two seconds and don't project at all.
    I feel the cold a lot more than most people, despite exercising. I put on weight easily.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I'm 4'8" (yes, yes, let the short jokes commence) and...134 pounds (MUCH porkier than I should be...but fear not! I'm on WeightWatchers!). I'm also Filipino, and have had extremely dry skin for the past few years. I have a hard time with florals..they tend to go very thin and shrill on me, and also a very VERY hard time with certain musks (particularly the musk used in SJP Lovely). I find the characterization of larger body/darker skin = long lasting doesn't hold true for me. I'm a pudgy, brown-skinned Filipino girl and certain scents just will not last. Instead of coloring, skin type my be a better expression of body chemistry...as I do have dry skin.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I am Tovah and Purplebird - like and light scents are wasting money for me. I have to wear heavy orientals or white heady flowers to be able to smell scent at least two hours after application. Light skin tone and golden brown hair, green-hazelnut eyes. Rapid metabolism, fiery Gemini constantly moving. Much sugar consumption. Skin is not so dry but not oily - rather normal and ehm - ageing. :-)

    Maybe we can make some conclusions after a few contributions here, or the statistics.
    Last edited by Alicka61; 13th April 2007 at 02:37 PM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    A really interesting subject! It would be so fun if it turns out possible to say something about bodytypes and skinchemistry!! I am the first one tall and with almost oily skin who is writing, I think.
    I am tall (178 cm), slim, fair-skined, my hair is medium blond and my eyes are greyish blue. My colours are neutrale. My skin, who is ageing, is finaly almost normal. It has been oily.
    On me perfumes turns sweet and vanillic, if it has the possibiliy. There are quite many frags I don´t wear, as they just becomes boring on my skin. Hypnotic Poison, for example, is nothing but vanilla on me...
    I do think perfumes stays quite long time on my skin. I can wear light perfumes, but I do prefer a little substans in what I wear, so I don´t own any really light perfume.
    Last edited by Margareta; 13th April 2007 at 04:14 PM. Reason: My lousy spelling... Sorry, foks!
    Faves right now: Chanel No 19, Stella Rose Absolute, L´Heure Bleu, Elixir de Merveilles, Samsara.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    This is very interesting!

    I always thought it had only to do with my dry skin, but for posterity, here is my phenotype:

    I am 5'7", light brown haired, blue eyed (well, sometimes gray or green), with a rather large physique. I'm not saying I'm porky. No, not that. Just curvy and also muscular. I'm about 160 lbs right now, but I'm also 4.5 months pregnant. My usual body weight is around 150 lbs, but when I'm on birth control pills, regardless of the brand, it can be quite a bit higher. My skin, as I said, is dry, and very, very light. I have the Irish complexion, without the freckles. I suppose I have more of the Irish complexion you would find on a black-haired Irish girl, with some yellow undertones, I mean. My metabolism is sluggish. That runs in the family.

    And here it is... most perfumes disappear rapidly on me, within about an hour or two. However, the ones that stay have woody base notes, and those always become highly vanilliac on me. Take Dune by Dior. Most women can't wear it for fear of smelling just like a man. On me, though it is pleasant and sweet, and will even last through a shower. Incidentally, the only other frag I've had that can last through a shower is Dior Addict. Everything else disappears, incl., but not limited to florals, fruity, green, fresh, citrus, etc. An exception is Bvlgari Extreme, which, with careful application, will last well into the night. But I can't wear anything that is specifically geared towards being sweet, or it will become like frosting on me. No Angel, no Britney Spears, no straight-up Vanillas.
    --------------------------------------
    Actually, my body looks a lot like the girl in my avatar; thus my choice of it!
    Last edited by Kotori; 15th April 2007 at 03:35 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
    And he whose soul is flat -- the sky
    Will cave in on him by and by.

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  14. #14

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I am short and slender (but not bony) with dark hair and eyes. I have freckles and light to medium skin. I have dry skin. I'm not sure what this means about the fragrances I can wear but I think that what I chose to wear has more to do with if it makes me nauseous or not.

    I found that in the past few years I have become more sensitive to scents. So while I could once wear scents like Samsara, I am now too sensitive to the scent to wear it most of the time. It really does make me queasy. I still like smelling it on other people and wearing it occasionally.

    In terms of body chemistry, I like the smell of chypres but most of them smell bitter on my skin. I also can not wear fruity scents (such as Miss Dior Cherie) because they smell ~disgusting~ after about ten minutes on my skin. I have an extremely difficult chemistry - this is another reason why my wardrobe is so small.
    "Voici mon secret. Il est tres simple: on ne voit bien qu'avec le coeur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux."
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  15. #15

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    Quote Originally Posted by Wearw View Post
    This is very interesting. I'm quite small, have neutral undertones, brown hair with a red tinge and very fair skin that's also quite dry.

    Many perfumes become too sweet on my skin, it's amost as if my skin has a vanilla tone in it to begin with. The same perfume applied to my arm and to my mums arm, will always become very sweet and vanilla on me, and much more flowery or fruity (and better) on my mother for example.
    I'm the same as you with the small build, brown hair with red tinge and very fair dry skin. I find most of the 'light' perfumes just vanish on me, and I've been wearing NR For Her EDT today and I've had to spray it on twice, and it's gone now. I have to wear EDP for longevity, or oil-based perfumes. The ones that last the best on me are strong perfumes, like White Linen and JPG Classique. I think White Linen wins the prize for longevity out of all my perfumes actually.

    I like to get 'value' out of my perfumes, so I tend to go for high concentrations, or perfumes with a huge sillage/longevity factor. Estee Lauder Beautiful was the only perfume I wore for several years, then I moved on to Amarige and wore that exclusively. These days, I'm more adventurous, but if a sampled perfume vanishes within half an hour or so of testing, I just don't bother. I have a tendency to turn some really good perfumes powdery. I'm having that problem with Mitsouko at the moment. I love it, but it goes 'old lady powdery' on me after a while. Very disappointing.

    Clemmie
    "I don't know the key to success,
    but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
    Bill Cosby

  16. #16

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I'm asian. At 5'5", I'm medium height for a westerner, but tall for an asian, fine boned and with a slender build. I'm older now and have normal to combination skin. In my younger days, I used to have really oily skin and had an acne problem.

    I have a relatively quick metabolism, but I do not sweat very much. I know this, as I tend to overheat when I exercise rather than perspire which can cool me down. When I do perspire, watch out, fragrances really intensifies quickly.

    I find that most fragrances (except for SL and guerlains) do not turn/evolve on me, in that the scent is fairly true to the notes. Also, fragrances do last on me, most EDTs will last 4 to 6 hours, EDPs will last a working day and pure parfums can go over 12 hours. I can wear most types of fragrances well, but somehow the florals, spicy orientals, complex floriorientals, woody, ambers and musks are best. I can't do heavy fruity and tropical fruity scents as most times they somehow smell cheap and trashy on me. However I can wear variations of citrus like neroli, lemon, orange and bergamot well.

    I apply lightly, so unless the fragrance is really heavy (like Giorgio ), they are never really cloying on me.

    I quite agree with Arhianrad, in that I think skin type, rather than colouring is a better expression of chemistry. I also think diet may also have an effect on how a fragrance projects. I find that if I had spicy food the night before, then the fragrance the next day is somewhat "different" than usual -- not different in a bad way, but different as in some notes can be more pronounced.

    Wish I have the time to research and analyze this more as it is a fascinating topic. In fact, I think the perfume houses probably have all sorts of research reports on this.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    I love this, so interesting everyone seems to be totally different instead of there being trends. I am average height (5ft 6in), blonde, curvy and muscular (very wide hips and muscular legs). My skin is normal/combination (can be slightly oily in summer). I sweat a lot! As do all my family. My metabolism is on the slow side but I have a particular problem with sugar and hormones so provided I avoid sugars it's slow/normal. I am a heavy build/frame...... anyways..............On me perfumes always go straight to base, they turn musky! Any spice/musk will be brought to the foreground so I can get away with the very sweet ones if I choose as they sweet notes are tempered with the depth. I have NEVER had a fragrance last after a shower and did not realise this was possible! I feel cheated! I have not noticed a difference in this with eating different foods but sometimes if I have a cold or something there is a slight difference. But that could easily also be my nose and sinuses. Nope just pure musk on me......everything that is, oh well I don't mind I suppose. I cannot wear the aquatics, they smell really off. The watery notes disappear and I get this strange twisted chemical note

  18. #18
    Basenotes Junkie Curly11's Avatar
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    Default Re: Body types and chemistry

    What an interesting topic. I am similar to purplebird in coloring. My hair is going grey, but it used to be a deep, blackish brown with auburn highlights. Hazel green eyes. I'm 5ft., 5in. with a slender to medium build though I can gain weight relatively easily if I let myself eat like a cow and then not get any exercise. My skin used to be oily, but these days it is very dry. I use gallons of lotion and moisturizers. So anyway, as far as perfumes go, I seem to do best with orientals and chypres. I used to wear Fracas almost exclusively, but I'm over that now. Just kidding! I do like florals in the spring and early summer. The more intense perfumes work best on me. For some odd reason, Chanel doesn't work well. I mean it simply doesn't last. For instance, I think Sycomore is grand, but it lasts only about 30 min. or so. Right now I can't get enough vanilla and it is a good choice because I get good longevity and projection from vanilla oriented perfumes. I am not comfortable in musks or other animalics. I have a bottle of Amouage Gold Woman and it is almost too much at times. Aldehydes sometimes give me bad headaches. Fracas was often a headache making fragrance for me.

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