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The smell of style: Find your signature scent

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By Alexandra Hehlen

Are you one of those people that loves perfume?
I sometimes feel a little ashamed when I peek into my perfume drawer and see a rather large stash of scents piled on top of one another.
I have realized, however, that other people have the same issue I do, and that this dilemma is actually not a problem at all.
Perfume can act as accessories. They are added touches that can spruce up an outfit with a little spritz.
Since we have so many necklaces, bags, scarves and shoes, I believe there’s nothing wrong with owning a variety of perfume as well.
A consultant at Dillard’s once explained his reasoning on the subject to me. He told me that everyone should have their own “perfume wardrobe.”
This idea seemed much more appealing to me than having an unorganized stockpile of scents.
The concept of a “perfume wardrobe” may sound silly at first, after all, the word wardrobe is usually associated with clothing.
But more importantly, your wardrobe is a collection of the pieces that you love and that reflect your personality.
In this sense, perfume certainly fits the bill. The only scents we actually buy are the ones we truly adore. No one normally takes pleasure in wearing a perfume they detest.
Thus, accumulating a wide variety of fragrances you really enjoy allows you to formulate your own perfume wardrobe, so that on any given day, you can pick out a scent to match your mood or your outfit.
By accessorizing with perfume, you can add a third dimension to your outfit. Now, not only can you create an appealing ensemble, but you can accessorize it with a matching scent.
Imagine wearing a flowing summer dress printed with colorful blooms, and then accessorizing with an uplifting floral fragrance.
Let’s say you’re attending an important event like prom, and you’re wearing a classy red gown.
In comparison to a flirtatious summer perfume, squirt on a more serious scent that makes a mature impact. Think of stronger scents that contain hints of vanilla, sandalwood or even anise.
Remember that the eau du parfum version of the perfume lasts longer and is stronger than an eau du toilette.
To vary the strength of your favorite fragrance, consider buying a body lotion with the same scent.
Squirt the perfume on your wrist, rub both your wrists together, then run them along your jawbone and behind your ears, to distribute the scent most effectively.
With any perfume, especially with the stronger-smelling eau du parfum, make sure not to apply too much. You don’t want to smell like you took a bath in your fragrance.
Keep in mind that everyone is different, you may not like flowery perfume, or you may shy away from stronger scents.
The type of perfume you wear is completely up to you. In the end, the nose always knows best.

To see some of my favorite perfumes, suggest an idea for my next fashion column or gather some fashion inspiration please visit my blog at enstylopedia.tumblr.com.