How to Choose a Summer Perfume – Ultimate Fragrance Guide

In this article you’ll find all there is to know about summer scents. This is all you need to know, to find the best summer fragrance for you.

The summer is one of those times of your year when people get out a lot for fun and socializing. We’d never be caught leaving our homes without a fantastic scent on us, and you shouldn’t either.

The seasonality of perfumes mean that you can’t wear just anything at any time of day or year. There are some fragrances that flourish best during a summer day and others for a winter night.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that your signature fragrance won’t dominate the same way it does at other times. It’s just that switching to a summer-strong scent seldom hurts.

Understanding this can help you figure out how to select a great scent for the summer. There are a lot of other things you should keep in mind too, and that’s what we are here to show you.

Why are there scents for summer

Let’s talk briefly about seasonality, because if you’re less versed in this, you might be wondering how perfumes can have strengths depending on the season.

When you let perfume sit on your skin, it is continuously released thanks to the heat that your skin gives off. This is why pulse points, where the blood runs close to the skin, like your wrist, are points to spray.

When you’re under the hot sun, there’s little need to depend on the warmth of your skin. Those sunrays will help evaporate the fragrance even faster, releasing it into the air more intensely.

Winter fragrances tend to have heavier, cloying scents. Having these evaporate at a rate much higher than they are intended to, such as in summer sun, can feel choking.

This is why summer fragrances tend to go for lighter, clean, and fresh formulations. This way, even under the heat of the summer, they’ll feel nice and comfortable.

Things to go for in a summer fragrance

The dynamic of perfumes in the hot summer sun is a bit different than it is in cooler weather. There are a few things you should go for in a perfume for the summer.

  • It is best to avoid spraying perfume directly on the skin when the sun is in full effect. This can cause certain skin conditions, so it is safest to simply spray it on your clothing instead.
  • Opt for EDTs in the summer. You get a lot more intensity from EDPs in general, but in the summer, it pays to go lighter on your scent, so an EDT will help you achieve that.
  • Look for less notes than more. Sometimes you don’t need a whole array of fragrance notes in the summer sun. Fragrances with less notes tend to feel lighter in general, which is best.
  • Go for those tropical notes. Summer is a time where people are ready to have fun, and nothing spells out fun more than the scents of the tropics. Tropical fruits and flowers make for great choices in fragrances this season.

Things to avoid during the summer

There are a few things you should absolutely avoid for scents that you plan on wearing frequently in the summer. These include the following:

  • Some notes are a no-no. Notes best known for being worn in the winter should be avoided. This includes tobacco, leather, spices, and thicker scents like amber. In the heat, these may begin to feel suffocating.
  • Stay clear of an overload of fragrance notes. While having more notes allows for a more complex fragrance, it can also mean that once it comes up against heat, all these notes go flying out at the same time. This can be overwhelming.

Tips to help you find the perfect summer scent

Even with the dos and donts in mind, it can be hard to know what to look out for when you’re actually looking for a summer scent. Well, here are some things to keep an eye open for:

  • Lighter notes like citrus, florals, green notes, water notes, and those of fruits, particularly tropical ones like coconut and mango, are typically seen in summer fragrances.
  • Know what you like. Everyone is different, and everyone has different tastes when it comes to what they find to smell amazing and what they don’t.

It is best to go for summer scents that contain notes you like. Make sure that these are summer ‘safe’ notes though. Avoid anything too heavy on spices or amber, or that contain tobacco.

  • Think of where you’ll be wearing it. There are a lot of fun things that happen in the summer. It might be going to the beach, birthday parties, playing sports, or attending weddings.

You don’t need a different scent for all of these though. Just think of the one place that you’re likely to go the most.

If it’s going to be the beach, go for something fresh and airy, with that citrus zest. Don’t forget our review of the best beach fragrances. If it will be a wedding, you’ll probably better with something more floral that won’t be overpowering.

The location will always have a lot of influence.

  • Try it on. There’s no better way to know which scents you will and won’t like besides testing them out. If you’re sampling in a store, you’ll want to give the fragrance a walk outside though.

The insides of perfume stores tend to be cool, so this won’t simulate the behavior your fragrance will have once you’re outside. Try to take it for a walk in the sun to test its performance.

  • Think of what smells like a casual scent to you. People go for weddings and dinners in the summer, but that’s not what that season is best known for.

It’s the hanging outside, playing sports, swimming, and going to the beach, that most people bring to mind.

These are all very casual activities because the summer is dominated by them. So unless you have a very specific plan for your summer fragrance, just think, “what smells casual?”.

What are some examples of great fragrances for the summer

We surely can’t give you absolute recommendations when it comes to summer fragrances. It is best to pick out something that fits you perfectly.

Despite that, we’re going to point out a few that you might think to check out. These include:

  • Acqua di Parma Colonia
  • Tom Ford Neroli Portofino
  • L’eau d’Issey Pour Homme
  • Bvlgari Aqva
  • Paco Rabanne Invictus
  • Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream Daze
  • Creed Original Vetiver
  • Coach Dreams

Finding a perfect scent for the summer can be a bit difficult, but if you know exactly what to look out for (and what to avoid!), you can get yourself a scent that will become a seasonal mainstay.