What Smells?

My number one favorite scent is baby powder. I walk down the aisle in the supermarket and breathe deep.

Sure, I like the smell of old-school Japanese erasers, summer rain or the breath of puppy. But that smell makes me swoon.

Makes me wonder why they don’t make men’s cologne or after-shave products in baby powder scent.

I guess not masculine enough.

But it begs the question-how do people choose their personal fragrance? Do people wear it for themselves? Or to attract others?

Me, I’m not a big fragrance wearer-I’m not sure why-that’s a lie- I actually know it’s because most fragrance gives me a headache.

When I was little I  loved dabbing a bit of my mom’s Chanel No.5 or Emeraude perfume behind my ears – she had the same tiny sample bottles for years but I loved them anyway.

In 7th grade I spritzed on lemon, strawberry perfume or Love’s Baby Soft. I think it went along with my blue eye shadow cased in a revolutionary crayon stick made by CoverGirl. In blue jeans and very long hair, I moved onto musk (the original!) and patchouli. Must have had something to do with my octagon shaped wire rimmed glasses.

Fast forward to high-school and disco and wearing Charlie!, Giogio, Halston and more musk!

Once I graduated college and into the workforce, I moved onto much headier perfumes like Dior’s Poison, Issey Miyake’s Green Tea, Issey, Angel et al.  Walking down Bishop Street after Mother’s or Valentine’s Days, the street was a smorgasbord of the latest perfume by Liz Claiborne, Anne Klein or whoever.  I think that’s when I started getting sensitive to fragrance.

Add to that people would give me fragrance that just didn’t work for me–among those, Chanel’s Coco, Estee Lauder Cinnabar/Youth Dew or Knowing.

Estee Lauder’s Knowing probably strongly influenced my path toward not wearing fragrance – or maybe it was Fracas.

To this day, when I smell Knowing or Hermes’ Earth, or anything with high jasmine notes-I either get a headache or nauseous.

I don’t know if middle-age has just made me more sensitive to fragrance or it was being assaulted by Estee Lauder’s Knowing or Hermes’ Earth as to when I actually stopped wearing perfume.

I used to love Polo, Armani and Halston Z-4, and even Polo Sport. But wave a bottle of any of those under my nose nowadays and I will probably get a headache. I love love my friends who wear these colognes, but…

if the guy wore one of these or Earth on a first date, there would not be another.

On the other hand, I enjoy the blue-eyed man’s scent whether he is fresh out of the shower -smelling like Dove, or curiously his chapstick or another mystery product he uses.  I actually don’t mind the cologne he wears that is usually soft and not demanding attention.

My best bud was known for wearing fragrance- mostly Thierry Mugler‘s Angel because it smelled like chocolate-women would practically faint when he walked by.

So does it really matter what your man or woman in your life is wearing?  Can you smell the real them through the hypnotic camouflage of bottled scent?

Must be able to–otherwise how would you find them in a crowd?

Me, I just like the smell of his skin.