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Can A Scent Make You More Attractive?

January 1 | 3 minute read

Memo Aphrodisiac Perfumes 16x9

Words by Christie Sinclair

Originally published on | February 11

Have you ever brushed past a stranger or pressed your nose to your lover’s collar and been completely overcome by their smell? Your pulse quickens. You can’t get your words out. And nothing will stop you from going back for just one more deep inhale so you can commit the scent – the moment – to your mind forever.

There’s no questioning the fact that certain scents can make you more appealing to others – it’s certainly one reason we douse ourselves in our favourite fragrances every day. However, there are specific scents that have an even more enthralling effect – a certain silent, seductive power, like an invisible message that can cause a profound response both physically and emotionally.

Instant attraction to a fragrance has a lot to do with the science, says Peta Morton (aka @petamarine), a marine scientist with a deep love of the history and chemistry of fragrance, who regularly takes to TikTok to talk about both passions.

So if you’re in the mood to drive people wild (Valentine’s Day is around the corner, after all) these are the scents Morton recommends you spritz.

Yet to be swept up in Baccarat Rouge’s warm, rich cloud? Morton thinks it’s time, revealing it was one of the first scents that had her truly obsessed: “My first ever trip to MECCA George Street, I went upstairs to the Perfumeria (my heaven) and spritzed one spray on my wrist. I was hooked. It felt like I’d thrown on a velvet dress and strolled into a jazz club,” she recalls. "Warm, animalic, earthy and salty – it’s hot. You just can’t go wrong with Baccarat.”
If the scent of soft bed sheets and clean skin gets you going, Morton recommends Diptyque’s “pared back, musky” Fleur de Peau. “Fleur de Peau feels sexy in the way being naked is sexy. It’s just you,” she explains, adding, “It’s just enough of everything. A little fresh and citrusy, a little salty, a little bit of rose, and something else.” That ‘x factor’ is actually the fragrance’s unexpected hero note: pink peppercorn. “On paper, it’s sharp and peppery (go figure), and even a little rosy – but it makes a fragrance come alive on the skin. It just sparkles,” Morton says.

Pink peppercorn makes another starring appearance in Promise, this time blended with ambergris and not one but two types of rose – and the result is guaranteed to drive you wild, according to Morton. “Perfumer Dominique Ropion balances all of these knock-you-out-of-the-park notes into something so unique and smooth, it’ll write your pickup lines for you. Promise is strong, but it’s not obnoxious or loud. It’s like silk pyjamas.”
“To me, Salt perfectly captures your skin after a long day at the beach – sweaty, salty, and warm,” says Morton. As the name suggests, Salt has a distinctive, well, salty opening, before developing into musky warmth and soft floral ylang ylang and Tahitian tiare. But its secret weapon is another oceanic element: the earthy, sweet note of ambergris, which “has been used as an aphrodisiac for centuries – and for good reason,” Morton explains.

Searching for a more sensual, confidence-boosting everyday scent? Libre is the answer. “The vanilla, musk and ambergris in the base have you sorted in the longevity and attractiveness of the scent,” Morton explains, adding, “But the real beauty of Libre is in the lavender – it’s herbal and crisp, but warmed up by the vanilla and blackcurrant, it becomes like the ‘little black dress’ of fragrances.”

Morton finds sea salt a universally complimentary note: “It just makes someone seem very natural,” she says. “In Jo Malone’s Wood Sage & Sea Salt, the salt is made a little less divisive by soft woods and herbal sage.” Try it on the skin, she says, and “it will come alive! To me, it feels like crisp linen shirts and drifting grey-green grasses on sand dunes.” That’s a moment you’ll definitely want to smell forever.

Our Fragrance Specialists are here to help you find the one this Valentine’s Day! Book your in-store consultation here.

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