How Skin Scents Can be Secret Assets for the Fragrance Lover?

Most fragrance lovers are moved by the power of perfume on a visceral level. Scents coming from a pretty bottle, floating expansively in the air, tingling the nostrils with the promise of something exciting or calming the mind with the aura of serenity? We all know the feeling. However, there is a growing body of evidence that what is perceived as “my skin but better” scents that stay close to the skin and mimic its particular biology, are great options for a wider range of occasions and fabulous compliment-getters. Can skin scents be secret assets for the fragrance lover? Here at LKNU, we are certain that with our proficient guidance anyone can find their perfect elixir of compatibility -or two, or three! 

TikTok is full of perfume fans talking about my- skin-but-better scents in endless reels of practically the same thing. But how can anyone’s skin smell the same, so that there is a universal pattern for everyone? The short answer is there isn’t, but there are some guidelines on what suits most and how to find one’s perfect fit, provided one knows the science behind it. Like a sexy voice murmuring low and sonorous, the perfect skin scent becomes an asset.

In order to better understand skin scents we need to first address a bit of how things work. First of all, our skin is a veritable chemistry lab. What is usually referred to as skin chemistry is more skin biology, our olfactory imprint. Apocrine sweat glands, a subset of exocrine excretory glands, produce clean liquid, i.e. sweat, which is then broken down by bacteria normally living on the epidermis. The amount of fats and proteins we consume, our hormones and any possible disruptor therein which regulate skin metabolites, any medication we might be taking, and the specifics of the diet we follow all subtly affect our personal odour. For instance, a famous perfumer is able to distinguish by smell alone people on an aeroplane, according to their cultural eating habits. Westerners exude more a cheesy smell due to their high consumption of dairy, while most Asians have a lighter, subtly sour scent thank to eating soy. Yoghurt consumption also works well for balancing pH levels and increasing good bacteria in the gut, resulting in more pleasant overall body odour. The many additional scented products we come into contact with in our daily life, from antiperspirant/deodorant to hair styling products and remnants of fabric softeners and perfume from previous use on our clothes, also affect our olfactory imprint. It can all so easily become a cacophony of odours!

Therefore it stands to reason that more and more fragrance is not always conductive to great responses from those coming into contact with you. There is something to recommend soft scents, those my-skin-but-better compositions which make you want to cuddle yourself and revel in your own smell. Sensual, effortless and unassuming smelling? Count us in! Fragrances which stay close to the body, work with it and not against it, and which provide a sense of comfort and naturalness. They include materials which mesh with our skin, like lactones (from the Latin prefix lact- for milk) and musky molecules mimicking human skin, or citrusy touches that cancel out sweat’s imprint. Lactones can be naturally found in peaches, coconut and in so called “creamy notes” in various formulae. But skin scents also comprise ingredients we know and love from daily use, for example white musk from the various popular laundry detergents or body lotions which signify grooming and cleanliness, or vanilla pods which thanks to their olfactory references spark up neurons in the brain conditioned to translate the delicious smell into home and comfort.

Fragrance diffusion and evaporation also accounts for the manner in which skin scents can be a secret asset. Skin scents are formulated to have a lower volume and therefore to expand less and to evaporate at a lower register, possessing heavier molecules that are staying close to the epidermis but do not shout out loud. Vanilla, lighter ambers, some sweeter resins like oppoponax and benzoin, and definitely musk with its sensual aura are prime components to the my skin but better brigade.  

Our soft category of fragrances in the LKNU catalogue includes the super stars of skin scents and is constantly upgraded to highlight the very best among them. If you want to start light and easy we recommend Madja Bekkali’s J’ai fait un rêve clair, a cocoon of a scent that rises from the body in secret powdery whispers petering out to soft nothings in a lover’s embrace. For those with a sweet tooth (and we know how many of you there are out there!) Flavia Vanilla by Parle-Moi de Parfum is the perfect comforting skin scent, imbuing the body with the delectable aroma of rich vanilla and pastel shades of lilac and hawthorn, everything elevated into a reassuring embrace of serenity. Flavia Vanilla is a perfect scent for going out as well as for office where people have many different tastes, it can’t ever offend anyone; on the contrary it will have the compliments raining on. Opus 1144 by UNUM is a different genre of soft and low, the tendrils of smokiness rising like incense tears in a censer, the scent of spiritual balance and feeling at once with the world. Finally for instances when you want to -ahem- get it on, a fragrance like Under my Skin by Francesca Bianchi, the Netherlands-based perfumer of sensual scents, is the ticket to ride. Carnal, lustful, dusty thanks to the inclusion of orris butter, the most expansive ingredient in all perfumery, it blooms on while retaining the wearer’s individual personal skin chemistry.

Skin scents can be powerful allies in making you unforgettable and enjoy yourself both at business and play. You can explore our collection of soft skin scents here or at the comfort and luxury of our Melbourne showroom.

©2023 Arlette - LKNU Parfumerie.