Sensuous scents

A guide to finding the perfect perfume; Interview with Lea Seydoux, the new face of Prada's Candy.

smelly products 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
smelly products 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
A perfume for a man or a woman should be selected according to the individual’s personality and style. Therefore, you should identify the lifestyle, the kind of activity performed when wearing the perfume and specific applications such as a perfume for a special event, a perfume to be worn every day, etc.
For men, there are basically two kinds of scents. The first are the sporty scents, which are strong and quite dominant. The ideal ones have a light floral fragrance. The second kind is more romantic. These are a little sweet but should not be too strong.
For women, the description is much broader. Here too, the romantic scents are prevalent. They include delicate and strong scents, mostly with a dominant sweetness. Lighter, more refreshing scents project coolness and mild sourness and are sportier.
There are also unisex perfumes. These tend to be more refreshing, more transparent and lighter to suit both sexes.
When choosing a perfume for yourself, it’s preferable to select two or three perfumes and match the scent with the kind of activity performed. Generally speaking, in the evening it’s best to wear perfume with a deep, sweet and sensual scent. In the daytime, wear a perfume with a lighter scent that is invigorating and airy in terms of the cloud of fragrance it creates.
It’s important to select a perfume according to the season. In the winter, eau de parfum is usually favored over eau de toilette or eau de cologne. The parfum is the perfume’s extract; therefore, it enables us to connect to the deep scent, which is more concentrated than that of perfume.
In the summer we tend to use perfume on areas of the body that are not too exposed to the sun’s rays, since in the sun, perfume on the skin causes skin pigmentation. In winter we cover up our whole body, so we can create a cloud of perfume and enter it without worrying about exposure. Therefore, in the winter the perfume can be distributed more generously.
The design of a perfume bottle plays a significant role in the selection process. Although the scent won’t change if a bottle is blue or red, linear or in the shape of a woman’s body, you’ll feel the difference when you use the perfume in a designed bottle that you like. Usually, the bottle’s design and shade of color will reflect the scent of the perfume itself.
A bottle of men’s perfume is usually rougher, in shades of black, silver or other dark colors. A bottle of women’s perfume, in contrast, will be softer and more sculpted, transparent if the scent is delicate, greenish if the scent is refreshing, and red if the scent is sweet.
Standing at a perfume counter can make your head spin with the abundance of scents and colorful bottles in front of you. It isn’t easy to know how to choose from all those attractive bottles.
To start the selection process, decide on up to six perfumes and sniff the bottles. You can take two or three days to make the decision, going into the store every day to smell a few different perfumes until you narrow it down to two or three. Then choose one.
There’s a method that contributes to the success of this process. Start by spraying the perfumes on yourself, applying each scent to a different part, never parallel or close to each other, so that the scents will remain distinct. Spray the perfume on pulse points, such as the wrist and the crook of the elbow. After spraying, wait a minute or two before taking a whiff. Let the scent disperse in the air and blend in with your skin, then smell it. Sniff your skin between perfume applications, and you will discover your favorite scent.
Proud in Prada Model and actress Lea Seydoux is the spokesperson for Prada’s new perfume, Candy. In this interview, she describes the experience of representing an international perfume.
How would you describe Prada Candy in three words? Femininity. Glory. Vivacity.
You star in the commercial for Candy directed by Jean-Paul Goude. Who is your character in the ad? I play a girl who wants to be in control of her own life.
The commercial is based on a dramatic dance sequence, where your character is always leading, instead of the man. What was it like filming the dance? Dance is one of my passions. It’s amazing how the body can express emotions. I have the feeling that my body becomes a musical instrument when it comes to dance.
Did you watch any film clips that inspired the film? I’ve seen all of Jean-Paul’s videos. He has many inspirations, and I feel that we have the same taste. Maybe because of our cultural background, even though we’re not from the same generation.
What was it like to work with Jean-Paul Goude? A dream. Jean-Paul is a great artist. I learned a lot with him.
If Prada Candy were a film, what kind of film would it be? Certainly a musical comedy!