James asked in Beauty & StyleMakeup · 8 years ago

Why do some perfumes last so long?

5 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Best Answer

    Fragrances are complex mixtures of natural and synthetic chemicals diluted in alcohol (ethanol, specifically). That alcohol is the first thing to evaporate, which is why you should wait a few seconds before smelling a perfume on your skin. (If you don't, you'll get a nose full of booziness.) Once the alcohol is gone, the scent ingredients—known as top, middle, and bottom notes—develop. Top notes are fleeting (think citrus); you smell them first and then they disappear within a few minutes. Middle notes create the body of the scent and are usually floral or a combo of fruity and floral. Bottom notes are the fragrance anchors; they're the heaviest and stick around the longest. These are often woody, smoky, or musky. So if your favorite scent has serious staying power, it probably has more base notes in the mix.

  • Lava
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    The fixatives. It can be the strongest scent, and it will still fade quickly without a good fixative. They are usually waxy or greasy substances that hold the scent on the skin. On a microscopic level, it's rather clever how it works. The oily fixative floats on the surface of your skin, on like oil on water. The scent and other ingredients float within the wax, and since the scent and alcohol base are less dense than wax, the scent floats up through the wax and is slowly released, being carried away by the heat currents of your body. Without the heavy oil/wax to move through, the scent will float away quickly from your skin.

    Now I will scare you, some of the best scents may not be cruelty free. Ambergris, basically waxy whale barf, is an expensive but wonderful fix for perfume. It can be harvested naturally, but harvesters sometimes injure whales or other sea life to get it, because it's rare enough to be extremely valuable. Other perfumes may be made with civet cat musk, and generally the cats have to die to get their musk glands. Most companies, including Chanel, now use synthetic or cruelty free fixatives, but some high end scents may still use cat musk or ambergris that was not gathered nonharmfully.

    Hate to say it, but the vintage Chanel perfumes that I'm sure have civet musk in them last twice as long as the newer ones, and ambergris perfumes will last until you wash them off. Do what I did, raid your grandmother's perfume stash for vintage scents. That way you aren't buying perfumes that may harm animals, but you still get the old school No. 5 that smells great all day.

  • 8 years ago

    Chemicals in them and putting way too much on. My mom would say "If a man can smell you from 20 feet away you have too much on." All perfumes should be worn lightly enough that only when you are withing 2 to 5 feet of the person do you smell it.

  • 8 years ago

    the formulas may be better, the perfume type (eu de parfum, eu de toilet) differ and can make it last longer, and also where you apply it can affect how long it stays. if you use the matching scented shower and bath products, then you will smell more of the scent. also, spray it at the nape of your neck so that the little hairs will pick up the scent.

    hope this helps!

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  • 8 years ago

    Eau de Parfum lasts a lot longer than Eau de Toilette. Also if you spray your fragrance straight after a shower/bath, once your dry the smell is sealed in your skin

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