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Pretending It’s Already Spring: how to layer floral notes in fragrance


Before spring has truly sprung, we’re excitedly looking for any hint of floral budding and blossom blooming in nature – and in the fragrances we want to wear at the moment. But sometimes the full-on floral scents we might adore a little bit later in the year don’t feel quite right for right now. So, how to transition a more winter-y feeling fragrance into something more seasonally appropriate?

Follow our guide to layering floral notes into a perfume that suddenly feels a little too stuffy


Why layer?

Layering fragrances used to be seen as a scent sin, but we’ve all gotten over ourselves a bit (well most of us have). You don’t have to do this to a perfume you already love on its own – why would you need to? – but there are brilliant ways of adding a brightness and fresher beauty to a perfume that perhaps now feels a bit too dark or cloying on your skin. Give it a go, because, as we always say: perfume isn’t a tattoo – if you don’t like it, you can wash it off!

You can either try layering over other fragrances you have in which the above notes dominate, with a single-fragranced ‘soliflore’ (one main note) fragrance oil or spray, or try layering the scent you don’t currently like so much over a differently perfumed body lotion or oil (see below or the added benefits of doing this…)



Florals need hydration!

Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise! Nothing makes fragrance disappear more quickly, or dive to the deeper base notes more rapidly, than dry skin. To prolong brighter top notes and floral heart notes in a scent, try using a floral-scented body lotion or oil to your fragrance. Aroma molecules evaporate far slower on well-hydrated skin.

Try also spraying a floral hair mist scent into your hair, too, so it wafts around you all day. Hair doesn’t heat up as much as skin, and will absorb the smell more deeply, to waft around you in a delightful floral breeze all day.



What order to layer in? 

(You definitely don’t need to layer ALL of these – unless you’re feeling particularly decadent, and why not? – but here’s a general guide on what order your chosen layering scent should come…)


Scented shower / bath gel

Matching body lotion / oil / balm (or a pick out one of the notes of your chosen scent to echo that in the body product)

Eau de Cologne

Eau de toilette

Eau de parfum


Perfume oil / attar

Fragranced hair mist (or simply spritz your scent into your hair, on to clothes (having patch-tested!)



Floral fragrances perfect for layering

The Merchant of Venice Accordi di Profumo fragrances have been designed to layer perfectly or to wear alone, if you prefer. The Neroli Marocco adds a stunning shot of sunshine floralcy to any scent, while the Rosa Turchia feels like spritzing a shower of freshly-picked rose petals into any fragrance.



[Both £65 for 30ml eau de parfum harveynichols.com]


The Edeniste Lifeboost Discovery Set has been created specifically as a kind of fragrant mood-altering toolkit to add on top of something else you’re wearing whenever you need it (which is an utterly genius idea, and comes backed by science having been developed with the aid of neuroscientists’ studies). Included within the set is a white floral, a floral musk, brighter, zing-ier florals and many other fragrant facets to change-up your perfume (and how you’re feeling!), and to be played with to your heart’s content.


[£32 for 6 x 2ml samples eau de parfum in our shop]


Another excellent way to test and hone your new found scent layering skills is by subscribing to the always seasonally-perfect perfumes chosen for the Seasonal Scents Subscription Boxes. And, of course, treating yourself to a Discovery Box to try all sorts of combinations – how many hundreds (or thousands?) of combos you could create by learning to layer, within each box we don’t pretend to know. But one thing we can say for sure: you’ll have a whole lot of fragrant fun!

Written by Suzy Nightingale


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