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How To Choose Women’s Perfume - Fragrance Families

Buying women's perfume can be confusing when there are so many different options out there. If you are overwhelmed by the available choices, a good way to pick womens perfume is to select a fragrance family that matches your personality.

Most women's perfumes fit into one of six fragrance families: fresh, fruity, floral, foody, oriental, or woody (also known as chypre). There are also subcategories within each of the main categories, but the differences among them are slight, so beginners shouldn't concern themselves with them.

Women's Perfume Choices

Fresh fragrances are clean, youthful, and energetic. They feature marine notes intended to simulate the smell of the ocean, or other water-based scents. They frequently have the words "water","ice","rain" or "cool" in their name and are often colored blue or packaged in blue bottles. This fragrance family is ideal for sporty, active women. Some popular fresh designer fragrances are Issey Miyake L'Eau de Issey, Bulgari Blu Notte, Marc Jacobs Rain, Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gio, and Davidoff Cool Water.

Fruity fragrances are similar to fresh fragrances in their casual vibe and energy, but they also add sweetness to the mix. Most fruity fragrances have citrus notes such as lemon, lime, orange or grapefruit, although apple, grape, cherry, peach and raspberry are also popular choices for fruity women's perfume. Women who love fruity fragrances are usually outgoing optimists. Some of the most popular fruity fragrances on the market today are Fresh Sugar, Acqua di Parma Colonia, L.A.M.B. by Gwen Stefani, and Cartier Eau de Cartier.

Floral fragrances are self-explanatory; one or more flowers are the dominant notes in these women's perfumes, with rose, jasmine, gardenia, and tuberose being the most popular. Floral fragrances are favored by feminine and romantic women. Floral fragrances are the most popular fragrance category, and Dior J'Adore, Stella McCartney Stella, Yves Saint Laurent Baby Doll and Salvatore Ferragamo Incanto Charms are just some of the many floral perfumes popular today.

Foody fragrances, also known as gourmand fragrances, are a relatively new category and are designed to appeal to a woman's (or her man's) sweet tooth; most of them feature chocolate or vanilla as the dominant note. Foody fragrances appeal to women who are nurturing and affectionate. Some currently popular foody fragrances are Aquolina Chocolovers, Thierry Mugler Angel, Britney Spears Fantasy, and Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Abricot.

Oriental fragrances have warm, spicy top notes such as cinnamon, amber and musk. This type of women's perfume is favored by sophisticates with a sense of drama who are not afraid to be the center of attention. Some well-known classic oriental fragrances are Yves Saint Laurent Opium, Guerlain Shalimar and Calvin Klein Obsession.

Woody or chypre perfumes are spicy like orientals, but more mellow and natural. They feature wood and moss notes such as cedar, sandalwood, patchouli and vetiver, and are the most unisex of the six fragrance families. Women who prefer woody scents are likely to be free-spirited and earthy. Some currently popular woody fragrances are Gucci Rush, Fendi Palazzo and Miss Boucheron.

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