How To Layer Perfumes For A Scent All Your Own

Looking for a way to define your personal style? A signature scent might be the perfect new accessory for you to flaunt. Not only does the perfume you wear speak to your own tastes, but it's a great way to allure and attract others as well. According to Bon Parfumeur, perfume is an indicator of our personality, so you're immediately letting people get familiar with you when you wear one. Your signature scent, therefore, is a subconscious way others will remember you by and how they'll perceive you, and that's why many are turning to the art of perfume layering to create their own truly unique and one-of-a-kind signature scents.


Perfume layering, also known as scent mixing or fragrance cocktailing, is a technique by which anyone can create their own signature perfume fragrance by layering multiple perfumed products at once. Layering perfumes is a technique that allows you to create a truly unique scent. However, with such a wide variety of fragrances to choose from, it can be difficult to know which type of perfume to choose (via Insider). Not sure where to start? Here's everything you need to know about perfume layering.

What is perfume layering?

Perfume layering refers to the practice of combining several fragrances in order to have a personalized signature fragrance. Not only is perfume layering a way to obtain your own scent personality, but it also encourages you to learn about which beauty products and fragrance families suit your beauty needs. "Perfume layering is the fragrance equivalent of bespoke haute couture. It's all about discovering what works and what doesn't on your skin and for your olfactory sense," fragrance expert Demi Rawling wrote for Harper's Bazaar. The key to successfully choosing your favorite fragrance profile is choosing scents that make you feel good and boost your confidence.


According to Woman & Home, the allure of fragrance layering comes, in part, from the human experience. Smell is perhaps the sense that offers the most emotional impact. However, perfume layering doesn't have to mean spritzing a few perfumes on top of one another either. It can also refer to the practice of using various body oils, lotions, scents, and creams from the same fragrance family to increase the longevity of a single perfume. Putting on the complimentary lotion for our scent can add intensity and long-lastingness to your wearing experience.

What scents go well together?

In the fragrance world, perfume can be divided into seven different fragrance families: woody, citrus, gourmand, floral, fruity, spicy, and aquatic (via Byrdie). As a general rule, you want to start by layering scents that are in or close to the same scent family, such as florals blending well with spicy, citrusy, and woodsy scents or woodsy and floral scents generally blend well with all other scents. If fragrance layering is intimidating to you (or you don't want to waste expensive products), you can stick to layering scents within the same family to ensure your layered perfume hits the right note.


Layering scents isn't exclusive to perfumes; you can choose scented body oils, lotions, and creams from the same fragrance family to extend the wear of your perfume. When layering with perfume, start with creams or lotions first, then oils second, and fragrances last. According to Nylon, weaker fragrances are great here because they can easily be built upon. You can also begin with something "universally appealing like" — Nylon offers rose and vanilla — to ensure that your signature scent will be liked by many. From there, you can go wild to create your own scent.

How to properly layer perfumes

To understand how to best combine your chosen scents, you'll want to first choose a strong fragrance to use as your base layer — also known as the bottom note of the fragrance. The bottom note is what develops last and is the fragrance that will linger the longest. "Generally, you want to layer your dominant scent last," CEO of Demeter Fragrance Library Mark Crames tells PopSugar. "The more complex the blend, and the bigger the notes, the more adjustment and experimentation will be necessary to get the sequence and proportions just as you want it."


The additional two scents you'll choose should complement the bottom note. Choose a middle note fragrance to act as the heart of the fragrance. This scent will be warmer and softer than the bottom note scent but will still pack a punch. Finally, the top note scent is the fragrance that others will smell right away and should be the lightest, freshest scent of the three. "Beginners should focus on wearing two or three scents at once — at least until they get the hang of it — and always give your mixture a non-skin try first" (via Refinery29). Combined, these perfume layers will create a powerful and long-lasting scent that evolves with you throughout your day.