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Fragrance and fashion

Myth Busters: Does Applying unscented lotion boost fragrance performance?

As fragrance enthusiasts, we’re always trying to find new ways to love and appreciate our scents. Sometimes, that comes in the form of layering, allowing us to fully immerse into the nuances that each and every note presents. In other instances, we see it emerge as a bit of an addiction, watching as our collection slowly spreads like wildfire. However, in recent years a new trend has emerged which gives fragrance enthusiasts the chance to appreciate their favourites on their skin for longer.

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unscented lotion and fragrance performance

Fragrance influencers, content creators, and aficionados alike have often raved about the act of applying unscented lotion before spraying your fragrance. Countless times, influencers have promoted benefits that are associated with the scent binding onto the lotion, before your skin. Therefore, the fragrance would have the chance to sit deeper, ultimately lasting longer.

Facebook members have often been skeptical of the method, along with fragrance lovers from all over. While some rave about its remarkable benefits, others report little to no benefit. L’Oreal went as far as posting an article on their American website in 2020 claiming that applying lotion would have an assortment of benefits. “That’s why one of our holy grail fragrance hacks is to layer perfume and lotion for a captivating scent that lingers.”

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unscented lotion and fragrance performance

For the reader’s benefit, along with my own, I went ahead and tested three fragrances on my skin. On the left arm, I applied two sprays without an undercoat of moisturizer, while my right arm experienced the full effect. My wrists received a healthy dose of Xerjoff Naxos, a Tobacco bomb that seems to have a long-lasting effect on anyone who has experienced it. The inner arm was sprayed with Paco Rabanne’s Phantom, a nuanced scent with sweetness to boast. Finally, my hand was complete with Amouage Saffron Hamra, a powerful attar.

Xerjoff Naxos
unscented lotion and fragrance performance

Beginning with the non-scented side, each and every fragrance performed to my liking. Xerjoff Naxos lasted powerfully for about 2 and a half hours, before comfortably residing as a skin scent for another 10. Phantom performed as expected, sitting for about 6 hours on my skin, and projecting well for 1 and a half hours. Finally, Saffron Hamra continued into the next day, lasting for 2 hours while projecting hard, followed by 25 hours of a consistent skin scent.

Phantom By Paco Rabbane
unscented lotion and fragrance performance

I hoped this myth would be a hoax, just so I didn’t have to add another step to my getting ready routine. And it’s safe to say that I won’t be implementing the lotion to my regiment.

Each and every scent experienced a benefit of at least 2 more hours of longevity as a skin scent, with negligible increase in terms of initial projection. However, for my own purposes, this isn’t substantial enough to put into practice.

A further application is promising if your fragrance lasts a short period of time, and you’re hoping to extend that length by an hour or so. As well, if you’re hoping to make your clubbing scent last beyond the taxi ride home, then this may be an effective practice for you.

To conclude my findings, I believe that there is a clear benefit to extending a fragrance’s life on your skin. Although, the added time may or may not be impactful depending on your specific needs.