There’s something about the chilly fall and winter seasons that makes you want to bundle up and be surrounded by warm, cozy scents all day long. Perhaps there’s something about a classic holiday scent that helps us feel grounded and relaxed in a season that can be all about the hustle and bustle. Nothing beats the smell of a fresh pie in the oven, a warm cup of cocoa or a snow-capped pine tree outside your holiday cabin.
If you’re already getting excited about picking up some new holiday candles, now is the perfect time to try on other types of fragrances as well. After all, don’t you want to smell as warm, inviting and cozy as your home this holiday season?
Keep in mind that many “winter” perfumes are specially designed to be a bit heavier and more potent than summer perfumes – this is because the thick winter air doesn’t envelop fragrance quite the same way spring and summer air does.
Whether you’re shopping for gifts or simply want to treat yourself to some new sweet perfumes, here are some classic show-stopping winter notes you’ll want to wear to your next holiday party or special occasion:
So many “wintery” perfumes and candles include notes of amber, and it’s easy to see (and smell) why – amber inherently carries a sense of warmth and class that serves as a beautiful note for any perfume blend. It’s also relatively versatile, so it’s not uncommon to find it in both bright summer fragrances and heavy winter scents.
Perfumes with amber work great in the daytime or for those formal holiday parties. Depending on what it’s blended with, amber can either be very strong or super subtle – whatever suits your personality.
Patchouli is one of the most classic winter fragrances you’ll find. Its dark, woody nature blends as beautifully with the sweetness of vanilla as it does with the earthiness of sandalwood. You can’t go wrong with the woody, floral, musky fragrances patchouli accompanies.
Patchouli smells amazing when blended with sweeter scents like black rose or jasmine, as well. It’s the perfect choice if you’re looking for a slightly more earthy substitute for your go-to spring and summer scents.
Musk is technically not a single fragrance in and of itself, but rather a class of substances that all carry a similar woody note. Musk is a key ingredient in many perfumes, and you’ll find musks in a higher concentration in your winter bottles – in fact, that’s probably what’s giving it that special something you can’t quite put your finger on.
Any perfume with “musk” in the name or in the ingredient list is a perfect choice for a calming, warm winter fragrance.
4. Seasonal Baked Goods
You may be thinking to yourself, “I love a good frosted sugar cookie or pumpkin pie, but that doesn’t mean I want to smell like one!”
Don’t worry – we’re not suggesting you reach for the nearest sugary perfume and douse yourself with it. However, there are several high-quality fragrance brands that play with some of the most common sweet winter flavors, including vanilla, maple, cinnamon, sugar and certain types of nuts. The key to finding one that isn’t overwhelmingly sweet is to find a good mix of both a sweet undertone and warm, earthy high notes. As previously mentioned, patchouli and amber work excellently with sweeter fragrances.
Many fragrances that mimic the scents of freshly baked treats also place an emphasis on the warmth and depth of those scents, not just the sweetness itself. If you’re wary of trying a perfume that boasts notes of your favorite holiday dessert, give it a shot – you might be surprised at how well it suits you.
Like amber, sandalwood is another classic note that can be brightened up for summer or toned down for those chilly winter months. It’s another wonderful base note that complements a wide variety of other fragrances, and once you smell it, you’ll never be able to forget it.
Lovers of sandalwood often describe it as sensual, earthy, and even a bit buttery. It’s a very popular fragrance for candles in the winter, and works just as well in lotions and perfumes. Sandalwood is also another fragrance that can be as subtle or as strong as you’d like.
The Bottom Line
It’s important to remember that our body chemistry is ultimately what determines how a fragrance smells on us and how long it lasts. What smells amazing and strong on one person may not be quite as strong on you, and that’s okay! This is why winter is a great opportunity to play around with your taste and try fragrances you may not have considered before.
Another reason people choose to wear different scents in the winter is because the scent receptors in our noses actually have a more difficult time picking up fragrance when the air is thick and chilly. So when you’re shopping for the perfect perfume to top off your showstopping holiday party outfit, opt for an Eau de parfum rather than an Eau de toilette and Eau de cologne. Eau de parfum has a much denser fragrance that will carry you through the night and ensure that you leave a trail of sweetness (or earthiness, or woodiness) wherever you walk.