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  1. #1
    Dependent starshipvelcro's Avatar
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    Default The power of scent memory

    Seems like a gift and a curse sometimes.

    Or sometimes just bizarre. So many of my fragrances when I smell are linked to events in my memory. It seems like a weird, often non-considered aspect of this hobby. Especially as my collection grows, I find I use certain fragrances less, almost to the point where I know if I have a certain special moment coming up, depending on the fragrance I choose, it might/probably will remind me of whatever is going to happen while I'm wearing it in the future.

    Example,

    Allure Homme, reminds me of 2010 New Years, I'm brought right back to the room I was in with the people I was with.

    Every time I smell Polo Blue I'm pretty much reminded of the first time I realized there was more to fragrances than what I thought, and my subsequent trip to the mall to smell all I could.

    The first time I smelled GIT (that I knew) I realized it wasn't the first time I smelled it, and it took me back to a time on vacation when I smelled the exact same thing. On a plane, even reminded me of what I was eating at the time.

    New Haarlem reminds me of a date night, Rocas Man reminds me of a giant shopping trip, Black Orchid reminds me of sitting on a friends couch watching TV, hell I smelled some old Kirra cologne and I was instantly transported back to high school.

    The weirdest is Frapin L'humaniste, whenever I smell the bottle I can almost taste the Chinese food I was eating at the time (when I got it in the mail I was eating at the time and I just had to smell it)

    I just thought it was an interesting aspect of fragrances, one that I never really considered to be a potential problem, but I guess that's one of the fun aspects of life. Anyone have any fun memories like that? Anyone have any fragrance ruined by an associated memory?

  2. #2

    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Fragrance always triggers memories for me and I would guess a lot of people. Balafre reminds me always of my wedding day.

  3. #3
    Ken_Russell's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Strangely or note, apart from the many memories linked to various scents, I also tend to be reminiscing about memories linked to non-perfume or only marginally fragrance-linked products: for instance, today I rediscovered at the mall a particular affordable brand of rather usual, generic shower gel, yet I played with the thought of re-purchasing it, simply because it reminded me of an
    exceedingly happy holiday season

  4. #4
    Dorje123's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    I agree, scent is entirely subjective and our preferences are directly linked to scent memory.

    Scent memory is interesting, but also can be a hindrance. When scent memory is triggered sometimes it can obscure the "real" smell, like seeing a rope on the ground and thinking it is a snake. How many times have you heard someone judge a frag as "ONLY baby powder", or smells "just like shampoo", or anything along those lines? These interpretations are seldom shared by a majority of people who experience the frag because they are personal scent memory associations. Most of the time, these associations prevent us from experiencing the actual notes that make up the frag, a person who smells a frag as "only baby powder" does not experience the frag in the same way as someone who does not share the same association. So in this way, I feel scent memories can be a real hindrance to experiencing a frag as it is meant to be experienced.

  5. #5
    Basenotes Junkie Profumo Saggio's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Scent is the most powerful memory trigger of all the senses. Good or bad a particular smell will act to bring a memory long forgotten to the surface. Fragrance is a wonderful thing but can betray you when you least expect.
    Current Favorites:
    1. Le 3me Homme - Caron
    2. Yatagan - Caron
    3. Van Cleef & Arples Pour Homme
    4. Dolce & Gabbana pour Homme
    5. Kouros - YSL
    6. L'Anarchiste - Caron
    7. Xeryus - Givenchy
    8. V.I.P. Special Reserve - Giorgio Beverly Hills
    9. The Dreamer - Versace
    10. Nobile - Gucci

  6. #6
    hedonist222's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    I haven't linked perfume to too many memories.

    I suppose some can do the link subconsciously, whilst others, like myself, need to exert conscious effort to bridge the two senses.

    My wife once told me that if she ever linked something good to a certain perfume that she wasn't planning on replenishing , that she'd leave a good amount (10-15ml) to smell f
    Traum vernichtung


    for swap/sale:





  7. #7
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Indeed, associations are formed from the environment manifested at the time of the particular event using all of our senses. Thenceforth, a particular association would subconsciously be connected with similar events. For instance, one can hardly forget the first time an intimate setting was experienced, and resultantly, minor, somewhat vague associations bring forth an enjoyable or not so enjoyable association. Those associations would include the smells inherent in the association, and one's particular affinity or aversion to that scent.
    Particular associations, from eventful as well as mundane occurrences, are made throughout one's life, and it is truly amazing how the relevant associations seem to last a lifetime.

  8. #8

    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol

  9. #9
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Very interesting topic as I find this to be very true. Whenever I wore Armani Attitude, my girlfriend will tell me that she recalls our first date. Its the same when she wore Burberry weekend!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    Ive been there only twice in my life. And both times I actually thought i smelt Aventus which was impossible!
    Current Top 5:
    1. Frederic Malle L'eau d'Hiver
    2. Tom Ford Noir de Noir
    3. Dior Homme / Dior Homme Intense
    4. Thierry Mugler A*Men Pure Havane / Pure Malt
    5. Creed Aventus / Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille

  10. #10
    Basenotes Member
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    Happens to me somewhat regularly. It's definitely odd.

  11. #11

    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Quote Originally Posted by hednic View Post
    Fragrance always triggers memories for me and I would guess a lot of people. Balafre reminds me always of my wedding day.
    Fragrance always triggers memories for me also.....Many of my Niche Fragrances were purchased while on vacation.....These fragrances bring back many memories.....Gary

  12. #12
    Dependent tonghpafu's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Not necessarily a fragrance but I have this old tube of shaving cream at home and every time i visit home and use it (I live at University), I can remember the Amazon rainforest and the humidity/mud and using a shitty Bic single use razor. I think I'm going to lock that tube away for future memories.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    This has happened to me on more than 1 occasion. Really neat phenomenon.

  13. #13
    Super Member Reza's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    If the sensation is vivid it is most likely not without a source. Memories are generally impressionistic and lack details. But if by "whiff" you do mean the impression of a scent, then yes, your brain could do that, the same way that you may remember someone's face for no apparent reason.

  14. #14
    Dependent starshipvelcro's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    It's never been strong, and I don't know if it's exactly what you're talking about, but I sometimes get the general smell of a fragrance stuck in my head and I'll have to try to remember what the name of it was. Almost like a song that you can't remember the artist. There's never anything that provokes it, and it's very annoying when I can't remember it.

  15. #15
    cadenz's Avatar
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    Default Re: The power of scent memory

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Hunter View Post
    Has anyone experienced a "scent ghost memory". It's when you are going about your business and your nose catches a whiff of a fragrance then it is gone but there is no source for the scent. Its if your mind has remembered a scent so strongly that you can actually smell it just for a second. Weird.lol
    HELL YES! I was leaving a minor league ballgame last year and I fleetingly caught a whiff of the most exquisite fragrance that a body could smell. It was a cologne and ---OH, HOW!--I wish that I could've accosted the person amongst the throng of fans and wrangled the damn name of that wonderful fragrance out of him. I know there are thousands and thousands of fragrances out here but that smell is UNMISTAKABLE to my nose! Will I ever get the slim-to-none chance of running into that lovely smell again so that I can purchase a bottle? I guess I will be forever haunted by that glorious whiff! But that has inspired me to wear my best stuff to open air affairs like that so that I may haunt and leave behind some wretched soul. LOL!

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