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  1. #1

    Question Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    I originally posted this idea in Fragrance Industry Discussions, but someone suggested it might get more posts here, so here goes!
    Diabetics apparently have problems because perfume goes too sweet on them. I read that high blood sugar levels can cause this problem. I have diabetic family members and my own blood sugar is quite high, and I have the exact same problem.
    I love florals, but after an hour many turn so sweet and cloying that I can't stand them! Paris YSL was great until it was apparently reformulated, but now I'm not that keen on it, and if anything it goes a bit sour on me.
    Parfum Sacre and N'Aimez Que Moi, both Caron, work well on me and don't go too sweet.
    Nahema also stays very true for quite a long time.
    Ombre Rose, L'Heure Bleue and Insolence become sickly-sweet on me very quickly, and I can't wear them at all, even though I like their top notes.
    Does anyone else have this problem?
    Are there any diabetics out there who might be able to comment? Or, even if you're not diabetic, have you noticed any changes when you eat sugar and white carbs?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    yes. if I eat sweet, perfumes smell sweeter.

    ...but that might be just an impression, though. Because I have my sense of taste saturated with sweet, you know, senses comunicate, so I might have been,somehow, saturated my sense of smell too, therefore, perfumes seem sweeter.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    My Mom is diabetic and when she uses perfume- they radiate on her much better than myself. L'Heure Bleue - even in EDT smells fab and long lasting so maybe there is something to be said about the sweetness of one's blood and perfume ?
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    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    I don't know about the assumption that high blood sugar equals better or worse sweetness of a fragrance. I would want to see the science behind the assertion. Cause and affect? Show me the data. Sorry, I hate to get all science-like on you but I am working on a science degree so it goes with the territory.
    Last edited by N_Tesla; 23rd June 2010 at 11:55 PM.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mimi Gardenia View Post
    My Mom is diabetic and when she uses perfume- they radiate on her much better than myself. L'Heure Bleue - even in EDT smells fab and long lasting so maybe there is something to be said about the sweetness of one's blood and perfume ?
    I believe there is relation between what is happening in one's body and how our scents assimilate. My husband and son can spritz on the same fragrance and it usually smells quite different. My husband has higher blood pressure, scents project more on him and tend to grab the basenotes from a scent very quickly. Everyone's skin will present fragrance differently, but I notice on me, my fragrances can change dramatically with my menstrual cycle. When I am sick they present differenly as well. Sometimes, even my mood can alter my fragrance. Our bodies are very powerful, filled with wonderous secretions and fluids. It only makes sense that our physical condition will affect our presentation of our fragrances.
    Last edited by suzi2qs; 24th June 2010 at 12:42 AM.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    I would love to see the science, too! And I agree that moods, hormone status, weather and other things can also alter scent. The blood sugar issue, though, looks interesting to me because it theoretically could be measured, if anyone could be bothered to do an experiment!
    My mother had borderline diabetes, like me, and only ever wore Coty Chypre until they stopped making it. Then she changed to something called French Fern, made by an English soap company! Definitely not sweet. I guess if she had loved L'Heure Bleue, it would have been a plus that it would last so long!
    Incidentally, I've just tested a sample of Amouage Epic Woman, and it's a gorgeous floral and not at all sweet ... so far!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    My son (age 11) has diabetes...he has a keen nose, and enjoys wearing frags ~ which I absolutely love!!!
    At any rate, I do not believe diabetes much affects how a particular scent smells on his body. That said, I do believe a persons diet has MORE of an influence! For example, if a person consumes alot of garlic, the odor of garlic can be percieved when smelling their skin. The same w/alchohol. I guess if diabetes greatly alters your food choices, it MAY be of consequence...interesting!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    I have type 2 diabetes, treated by diet, this was discovered last year. I have to say none of my fragrances smell any different on me. Neroli for me is the big NO, but it always has been turns clogging and overpowering as the day goes on.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    It's a bit of a mystery really - diabetes ,skin and perfume.
    Me- non diabetic,dry skin ,vegetarian- perfume smells OK , I guess ,longevity not excellent IMHO.
    Mom- diabetic, normal skin, meat eater - even light perfumes radiate and last.
    Last edited by Mimi Gardenia; 24th June 2010 at 04:19 PM.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    You can do more research, google may help you, but I have read that different physical & mental health conditions affect your natural body odor/smell. I don't recall if diabetes was one of the ones I read about. Medications can alter your skin scent as well.

    I've never tracked what foods are related to how notes in my scents are more or less pronounced, but I do notice that it changes throughout the month, just like it does with hormone changes. I eat mostly carbs and vegetables, not much meat and have to make a conscious effort to get more protein in my diet on a daily basis. It's rare that a scent turns cloyingly sweet on me.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    My skin chemistry has always had a tendency to over-emphasize vanilla in fragrances, and diabetes has intensified that effect, so much so that I can't really enjoy Shalimar on myself anymore.

    Some of the medications I take for complications of diabetes have dramatically impacted how long a LOT of different scents last on me - My Sin is imperceptible after about half an hour, but on someone else is still there 12 hours later!

    Even my beloved L'Heure Bleue doesn't smell as good on me as it used to, and it only lasts a couple of hours, where it used to last until I washed it off - even if I went without a bath for 24 hours!
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  12. #12

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Quote Originally Posted by cathodera View Post
    My skin chemistry has always had a tendency to over-emphasize vanilla in fragrances, and diabetes has intensified that effect, so much so that I can't really enjoy Shalimar on myself anymore.

    Some of the medications I take for complications of diabetes have dramatically impacted how long a LOT of different scents last on me - My Sin is imperceptible after about half an hour, but on someone else is still there 12 hours later!

    Even my beloved L'Heure Bleue doesn't smell as good on me as it used to, and it only lasts a couple of hours, where it used to last until I washed it off - even if I went without a bath for 24 hours!
    This is so interesting. I have borderline diabetes (or prediabetes) and have noticed in the past 2-3 years that I too find Shalimar harder to wear, for the same reason - the vanilla comes on so strong that it overwhelms the other elements in the fragrant. Which is a shame, because I really like the scent, but not on me any more.
    I think blood sugar levels do have a strong effect, and they're now affecting me, unfortunately. Can't take L'Heure Bleue at all any more, it just smells like almond pastries on me these days. On the other hand, the less sweet florals are still fine, such as Amouage Epic Woman and La Rose de Rosine.
    Maybe one day someone will test their blood sugar levels and calibrate them with the perfume they're wearing - that would be some kind of science. Although, as so many other factors affect the sense of smell, maybe not. But worth doing, perhaps, for someone with a scent problem and a blood sugar meter!

  13. #13

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Quote Originally Posted by redrose View Post
    ...Maybe one day someone will test their blood sugar levels and calibrate them with the perfume they're wearing - that would be some kind of science. Although, as so many other factors affect the sense of smell, maybe not. But worth doing, perhaps, for someone with a scent problem and a blood sugar meter!
    I think it goes deeper than that, or Shalimar would smell like it used to unless my numbers happened to be way up, & the whole purpose of the pills/insulin and dietary habits are to keep it from being way up. Or way down.

    So it would have to be that when your body stops regulating it, that causes some whole-system biochemical change that affects it?

    Maybe somebody with a clue can explain this, I don't really have any idea what I'm talking about. :P
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    I also (used to) have blood sugar issues, but I keep my system in check by limiting carbs to a minimum. My overall health and energy has improved enormously, and if fragrances serve as any indication they usually smell true to themselves and have very good longevity on me.


  15. #15

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Quote Originally Posted by N_Tesla View Post
    I don't know about the assumption that high blood sugar equals better or worse sweetness of a fragrance. I would want to see the science behind the assertion. Cause and affect? Show me the data. Sorry, I hate to get all science-like on you but I am working on a science degree so it goes with the territory.
    I don't even know if there's any way to accurately and objetcively measure sweetness in scent at all. I'd be more confident in the results of research into the perceived sweetness of scents in diabetics vs. the general population, frankly.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morgaine View Post
    I don't even know if there's any way to accurately and objetcively measure sweetness in scent at all. I'd be more confident in the results of research into the perceived sweetness of scents in diabetics vs. the general population, frankly.
    Morgaine, I actually think this might be worthy of a grant for some impoverished science student somewhere! And it would be very useful for those of us with high blood sugar levels, too, as we might be able to see how our perceptions change at different times. We could then develop a scent wardrobe for every level!

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    If diabetics have sweet urine, which I understand to be the case, then perhaps that sweetness could show up elsewhere. It might vary from individual to individual. Some of us who eat asparagus get funny-smelling urine from it.

    We were visiting with a firefighter friend this morning, and he said that even days after he was at a fire, his girlfriend can smell smoke on his breath.
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Can high blood sugar levels make your scent smell too sweet?

    Well, I think I have found a silver lining to the cloud - I got a sample of Eden Botanicals Vanuatu sandalwood oil, which I noticed a couple of people here had found to be a little rough - but on me, it is just wonderful, and as the day has gone on, it has bloomed beautifully - with just the right touch of sweetness!
    Last edited by cathodera; 5th July 2010 at 11:47 AM.
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