Choosing a summer perfume

You know when summer has arrived because it smells. Not just of barbeques, weed in the park and sun lotion. But the smell of things warmed up; trees, flowers, tarmac, fence panels, pavements. Almost everything smells different in the warm sunshine.

Perfume warmed up also smells different – you’ve probably noticed. If you’ve got a signature scent, you’ll know that different facets of it come out in the heat. And if you’re a fragrance-wardrobe type of person, you’re likely to instinctively reach for a different scent when the temperature starts rising.

So it’s no surprise that ‘summer fragrance’ is a thing. Usually these fragrances are lighter, brighter and fall under a few categories; citrus, green, marine, white/tropical floral, or coconut/sun lotion.

But why are these the smells of summer – who decided that?  Some smells such as citrus, green, and herbal scents are just natural choices – they’re refreshing, reviving and they smell clean – which is exactly what you want when you’re hot and sweaty.

The scent of white, tropical florals are associated with summer because they’re the flowers with the biggest, boldest aromas on warm days and night – they’re literally the smell of summer blooms.

And as for sun lotion and coconut smells, that’s down to our associations with summer. It’s a much newer category of summer scent because it’s only been around as long as sun lotion has!

Scent, emotion and memory as so strongly intertwined that all of the above categories have worked their way into our collective consciousness. The more we all wear, say, lemon, jasmine and coconut scents in summer, the more they become summer scents. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It can be hard to break those associations and create new ones. Do we even want to? (When it comes to gender and fragrance, probably yes.)

When it comes to picking a summer scent there are few things to keep in mind:

  1. We can’t stress this one enough – wear what you LIKE. If you want to smell like oud, leather and spice on a hot day – go for it. There is no wrong or right approach, it’s just down to what you like.
  2. Consider how and where you want to wear it. Wearing an alcohol-based perfume in the sunshine isn’t a good idea, and keep in mind a lot of natural materials are skin sensitisers in sun. So either wear your fragrance on your clothes, in the evening OR… stay in the shade. Your skin will thank you for that too.
  3. Try it on. How does it dry down on you? A lot of citrus materials natural have a very quick lifespan – there’s nothing wrong with at all, it just means if you want your perfume to last all day, you’ll have to reapply it a few times. All our full-size bottles come with a 2ml sample for you to try before you crack open the big bottle. If you don’t like how it wears on you, you can send it back.

If you’re looking for a summer fragrance these are a few that we love:

  • About Thyme, by… us! Of course we love one of our own. This can be worn any time of year, but it smells especially good in the summer. You can read more about the inspiration behind it here. Notes of thyme (naturally) bergamot, vetiver, sandalwood and tonka, along with the tiniest touch of lavender, create a sunny, uplifting fragrance.
  • Agua de Colonia Concentrada by Alvarez Gomez. This super fresh Spanish scent was launched in 1912. You know it’s good when it’s been going for that long. Predominantly lemony, it’s also got notes of lavender, geranium and eucalyptus.