Scent is a powerful thing. It has the ability to take you back to your past, or to transport you to another place entirely. That’s where perfume can really come in useful. Certain smells immediately conjure up images of far-flung lands, making you feel happier and more relaxed in the process.
If you’re looking for a perfume that evokes a particular country in the world, here’s a quick guide to help you find it.
Which perfume for which country or continent?
- North Africa. Think of countries like Morocco, Tunisia and Egypt, and you’ll inevitably imagine rich spices or fragrant, heady flowers. If you want to be transported to North Africa, look for scents that contain ingredients like cinnamon, jasmine or rose. Oud oil is another great option; it’s been traditionally used by perfume makers for centuries and is very sensual and exotic.
- The Caribbean. What’s not to love about endless sandy beaches, swaying palm trees and crystal-clear waters? If you want to be taken to the Caribbean, search for fragrances with ingredients like coconut or ambergris. Coconut instantly takes you to a tropical paradise, while ambergris provides a hint of sea-salt, which is evocative of crashing waves.
- The UK countryside. If you love getting away to the countryside, then you should look for perfumes that feel fresh, breezy and light; capturing the essence of all that greenery. Perfumes that contain jasmine blossom, iris or magnolia will capture this to perfection. If you’re male, you’ll find that Green Irish Tweed encapsulates the scent of the country too.
- The Mediterranean. If you’ve ever been for a stroll along the coast in the Italian Riviera, you’ll know exactly what sort of smell hangs in the air; a sweet, citrussy scent from the nearby lemon trees, and the tang of olives and grapes. If you want to take yourself back to the Mediterranean, you’ll need a perfume that features strong citrus notes, such as lemon, bergamot or even grapefruit. Myrtle is another ingredient that depicts the essence of this part of the world.
- A taste of Asia. Asian-inspired scents often feature rich, deep notes; like ylang ylang (a flower that’s very much associated with countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines), musk and pepper. Look for perfumes that counterbalance this depth with sweetness; for example, a hint of vanilla or nutmeg.
- City landscapes. If you’re a fan of locations like New York, Berlin or London, you might want to go for a fragrance that is reminiscent of urban living. Love relaxing in downtown wine bars or restaurants? If so, look for a perfume that features leather or wood as a base note; this provides that scent of after-hours glamour. Fruity scents also capture the vibrancy of a city – for example, apple or lime.
- The wilds of the US. If you love rugged terrains and want to be taken there via your perfume, then seek out fragrances that contain masculine notes of pepper, cedar or a burst of citrus, like this Aventus alternative. In fact, don’t be afraid to look to male colognes for inspiration, as many of them feature ingredients that bring to mind these sorts of romantic, windswept landscapes.
The best way to find out which fragrance is right for you is to test them out. Most high street shops will be happy to provide you with a sample, or otherwise, you can order sample bottles from many online retailers. Think about the place you love most in the world, then look for a perfume that takes you back there – every time you spray it on yourself.