Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Wedding Bells: Perfume Ideas for Choosing the Perfect Fragrance to Get Married In

There's nothing worse than totally metamorphosing Kafkaesque-like into a different creature on your wedding day. Even though the temptation for many women (and a handful of men) to live their very own fairy tale seems insurmountable, try to resist it. Apart from all the other details that should correspond to the style of wedding you and your beloved choose, your respective fragrances should reflect an extension of your personality, exalted to its best, with just that extra little touch for marking the day as more special than any other. In perfume terms, that means your signature scent might be a little too predictable, even if perfect for you, necessitating to go the extra mile. A subtle twist might be just the thing to create an indelible mark on your beloved's memory and that special aura that will put you in the accompanying festive mood.

Source: via Vernetta on Pinterest

Another important, perhaps even more important, consideration is how your fragrance will mingle with the weather, the surroundings, the conditions in which you will be subjected to: Don't try to beat a Florida summer wedding with humidity tilting at 98% by wearing your beloved heavy oriental that was perfect back in wintertime Chicago. Don't subject your guests to gusts of soured juice coming off your bridal dress. Similarly, an over-ornate baroque composition might seem a little pretentious on a beach ceremony where you're appearing barefoot, and a meaningful exclusive niche might go amiss on a groom with no tie and no jacket. There's a reason why the Greek word ωραίος (synonym for "beautiful", but even more exalted to include intelligence and smarts in the mix) literally means "in good time" : synchronizing with your surroundings is considered the ne plus ultra of the elegant person.

This is also not the time nor the place to experiment with weird scents, hoping to pass off as more sophisticated than you are. Weddings are by their own nature a bit of a conservative occasion, a celebration of the ritualistic triumph over unconventionality, so there's only so much you can get away with. Perhaps another consideration for the bride especially is what flowers will the bouquet contain: you wouldn't want to drown out the delicate scent of roses with an overpowering resinous perfume as you wouldn't want to pair daisies with a bitter-tinged, very elegant chypre.
Above all, apply lightly, renew if need be in the middle of the reception, or plan ahead using the technique of layering body cream in a matching scent ~if available~ for long-lasting effects and don't give it too much fret and fuss. Perfume is supposed to be enjoyable, not stressful!

So, catering to different types (because come on, admit it, that's how all wedding planners guide you, don't they) I have come up with suggestions for scents for the ladies and the gentlemen on this precious path to a new life. Naturally, feel free to add your own, sample lots of things as soon as you decide on the date, bring your beloved along for the testing and allow perfume some time to mingle with your sensibilities and your skin before making any final decision. You will (hopefully) want to remember this scent for the rest of your life.

Source: shopruche.com via Lil on Pinterest

The Romantic Type

For the ladies: Chamade (Guerlain), Amoureuse (Parfums DelRae), Quel Amour (Annick Goutal), Drole de Rose (L'Artisan Parfumeur), vintage Diorissimo (Dior)
For the gents: Dior Homme (Dior), Habit Rouge (Guerlain),  Gaiac 10 (Le Labo)

Source: youtu.be via marhta on Pinterest

The Classic Type

For the ladies: Danger (Roja Dove), Chanel No.5, Caleche (Hermes), Antonia (Puredistance), Fleurs d'Oranger (Serge Lutens)
For the gents: Rive Gauche pour Homme (YSL), Derby (Guerlain), Cologne Bigarrade (F.Malle)

The Purist Type

For the ladies: Infusion d'Iris (Prada), L'Eau de Chloe (Chloe), Parfum d'Ete (Kenzo)
For the gents: Eau de Merveilles (Hermes), Eau de Guerlain (Guerlain), Cologne (Mugler)

The Adventurous Type

For the ladies: Diorling (Dior), Tiempe Passate (Antonia's Flowers), Bois des Iles (Chanel)
For the gents: Santal Blanc (Serge Lutens), Ormonde Man (Ormonde Jayne), Sycomore (Chanel)

The Casual Type

For the ladies: Pure White Linen (Lauder), Jennifer Aniston Eau de Parfum, Kenzo Amour
For the gents: Terre d'Hermes (Hermes), The pour un Ete (L'Artisan Parfumeur), Reverie au Jardin (Tauer), Philosykos (Diptyque)

Congratulations on your special day and may your scented memories accompany you for a lifetime together.


  1. MariaA16:39

    I was perplexed what to wear on my wedding day some years ago and since it was an early September wedding, still quite hot in Chalkidiki, I chose Light Blue D&G. It was fresh and summery and everyone liked it!!

  2. This is so timely as I am getting married in August. I am having the hardest time deciding what to wear. I was leaning towards Carnal Flower but now I'm not sure. I've been testing Estee Lauder's Tuberose Gardenia and I think it might be a possibility but I know I will change my mind 6,000 times before the wedding.

  3. Maria,

    I know the problem with hot weather. Seems like every time I get an invitation for a mid-July wedding locally I cuss a little under my breath (as do many guests I bet!)
    One getting married does need something light and refreshing which would not offend. Glad it worked for you!

  4. jen,

    oh they're both quite lovely! I was about to list them in the romantic category though perhaps I'd need to create a "sexy" category for them ;-)
    I think the EL has the necessary freshness & floralcy but also the great tenacity needed.
    Keep me posted! And congratulations!! :-)

  5. I've always thought of Puredistance I as a perfect wedding scent, of the more classical type I guess!

  6. brie21:57

    I always thought I would wear Nocturnes de Caron on my wedding day (the closest I had to a "signature scent" in the late 1980s) but by the time I actually met hubby and got married vintage Nocturnes was hard to find. Believe it or not I actually wore a very inexpensive EDT-a bouquet of white flowers called Heaven and it was made by the Gap. It was the scent I wore to the beach on my first date with hubby and the ONLY fragrance he ever complimented me on (remember, he is not fond of any fragrances due to seasonal allergies). We got married in the month of June in a beautiful setting in the mountains (acutally within a stone gazebo on the grounds of a very exclusive hotel) with just the judge and the wedding planner as a witness. It was somewhat informal so I guess my fragrance was a good choice!

  7. Holly01:32

    I just don't see the wedding scent in the same category as an accessory. Like brie, I would wear the favorite of my fiance.

  8. solanace10:15

    I got married in a farm's chapel, and I think my choice of Jolie Madame, simply because it was the best perfume I had, was not very clever. It did not fit the bright morning sun, my romantic dress or the white tulips bouquet. Today, I would have gone with PdN Odalisque.

    @ Brie,

    LOL! The only fragrance my husband ever complimented me on is an ordinary cologne that bores me to death. I guess they are way too macho to enjoy a feminin scent, even on a woman!

  9. I wore Une Fleur de Chanel for my spring 2000 wedding, and it fit perfectly! Sad it's discontinued!

  10. Dear E - You posted this on my wedding anniversary! Makes it easy for me to comment that my anniversary SOTD is always my wedding day fragrance, a mix of Annick Goutal's Rose Absolue and Joy. I loved it then as I love it now.

  11. Very interesting post as I will be the best man/κουμπάρος at my cousin's wedding this September and she likes jasmine and absolutely loved my Sarrasins. I was thinking of getting her a bottle as a wedding present but I am not sure this is a wedding type of jasmine or perhaps a bit too sexy for the occasion

  12. I think I'm going to wear Chypre Palatin. But I'm torn. I would love to wear Habit Rouge Extrait, but I wear the EDT all the time, and it wouldn't be special enough, somehow. I'd love to wear Derby, but it might be too severe. Ormonde Man my SO finds too cuminy (and I prefer OW to OM). I would even consider wearing HdP's Marquis de Sade/1740 as my wedding scent; my SO adores it but said it was 'not wedding appropriate'. I suppose that's debateable!

    She's torn between vintage chamade parfum, enlevement au serail and Promesse de l'aube. But there are some lovely ideas in this post - thank you!

  13. E,

    very true!! Good one :-)

  14. Brie,

    I think you picked the perfect thing, yeah!
    Nocturnes is more of an indoors affair, rather than outdoors.
    Your wedding sounds lovely! :-)

  15. Holly,

    that's one way of thinking about it, but what if the fiance doesn't have any fav? That happens to a lot of brides...

  16. Solanace,

    oh well, it's a beautiful scent (especially in older batches) and therefore you can be forgiven for not picking the "proper" thing to match. Odalisque is indeed a very simpatico scent to natural smells. ;-)

  17. Annina,

    that's a bummer when it happens, especially on such a special day fragrance as that!

  18. OperaFan,

    awww, congratulations and happy anniversary!!
    What an ingenious choice: Joy is classic and an extra layer of rose would make it even more romantic to fit the day.

  19. Christo,

    first of all πάντα άξιος!! It's terrific you get to wed your cousin. Congrats!

    Sarrasins is absolutely fascinating (love it to bits), though yes, a bit sexy (it's a bedroom scent, if there ever was one). If I were you I would advice her to put on a light jasmine scent for the church/mayor's office ceremony (say Guerlain's Jasminora, still on counters or a bit of A la Nuit dabbed very lightly, it feels so natural and attuned to Greek sensibilities) and to layer over it some Sarrasins later on for the wedding night. ;-)
    Do get her some Sarrasins, since she loved it so. It's a magnificent perfume and I bet the couple will cherish it.

  20. Martinus,

    congrats on the impending nuptials!!

    All your choices sound great to me. I do agree the De Sade great as it is is a bit more intimate, more wedding night than wedding ceremony, if you catch my drift. ;-)
    I would advice Habit Rouge extrait indeed: it's special enough, it does smell a bit different than the edt to differentiate it and seems like a perfect fit for you. I love this scent, it's so cuddly, snuggly, plush...
    Your bride also has some terrific choices there. From the more romantic to the more freshly sexy. Hope she settles on something that pleases you both!

  21. Figuier18:21

    What a lovely list - and set of picutres! I wore AG Chevrefeuille for my early Spring wedding in the Alps. And I brought TF Black Orchid on the Italian honeymoon.

  22. Thank you Elena! We are very close with my cousin and I am very happy that I will be at her wedding in that capacity. And thank you for the very clever suggestion.

  23. Figuier,

    thanks a lot for your kind words!
    Your choices sound like just the perfect match for your wedding. Must have enjoyed yourselves too (ah, spring in the Alps...)

  24. Christo,

    any time :-D
    And all the best, sincerely; it's a great thing to get close to someone by choice and we only get to pick these relatives (spouses, best men and godfathers/godmothers) in our lives, so it's a precious connection.

  25. Well, I think it's been decided. I was sampling EL Tuberose Gardenia again last night and,unprompted, my fiance said, "you smell incredible!" I don't remember that reaction from anything else I've ever worn. Looks like I'm going to be purchasing a bottle of ELTG and no longer have to fret about what to wear for the big day.:-)

  26. Anonymous04:16

    I have been shacked up/domestic partners with my beloved for 25 years, and have been married to him for 15 years. I wore Acqua di Gio on my wedding day, and years later he told me that he didn't care for the scent. Oh, well. ;)

  27. My wedding day was so fraught I can hardly remember anything about getting ready! My own family refused to come, my in-laws behaved appallingly, one of them helping me to do make-up and dress, so it's not surprising that I can't remember applying perfume!

    Having said that, my husband bought me a bottle of Jardins de Bagatelle during the months before our wedding. I remember he told me he asked advice from a mutual friend who worked as a 'nose' in a pharmecutical company and was incredibly good at picking the scent you were wearing on first guess. I am pretty sure I would probably have worn the Jardins on the day.

    I know for a fact my husband wore Drakkar Noir.

    We are still happily married 25 years later which is more than I can say for any of my in-laws. And I can also say that happily, I am no longer a perfume ingenue, thanks to this blog and others like it!

    Thanks for the information and well-written posts!

  28. Jen,

    so good!! :-) Love this one myself.

  29. Anon,

    never mind, as long as you're happy together :-)

  30. Bella,

    beautiful story, thanks for sharing!
    JdB is a very "springlike" in feeling scent, for new beginnings, so it should fit perfectly such a day.
    And welcome to Perfume Shrine and thanks for your lovely compliment, hope to see you often on these pages.


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