Beauty News

Heavenly Scents

Yves Dombrowsky has been a perfumer for 15 years. He’s responsible for the fragrances in beauty products like Trilogy, Antipodes and Huni. He also runs an Auckland perfume bar and gallery where he has created personalised fragrances for famous clients including Trelise Cooper and Michael Hill. I asked Yves to answer my questions about all things perfume.

What’s the best way to find your perfect signature scent?

When a person comes to me, I find the right direction for them using colour. If they’re drawn to pink, then they’re  likely to prefer floral fragrances; those who love green might be drawn to chypre; and lovers of the colour blue tend to like the blue notes. Then I’ll ask about their olfactory memories. Everyone has a favourite childhood smell, like the scent their mother wore or a particular flower that grew in their garden. I’ll also find out where they want to wake up on the holiday of a lifetime, the clothes they like to wear and what the interior of their home is like to build up a picture of their personality.

**What’s the best way to test a perfume?


First, spray it onto a strip of card to make sure you like it. Then put a little on your arm and wear it for a while. Everyone’s body chemistry is different and it will mix with the perfume. A good fragrance should be well-balanced. When you first smell it, you’ll get the top notes, then move to the middle and the base. But it should have almost the same smell all the way. You don’t want to finish with a musky or woody smell on your skin, for instance.

How long should a fragrance last on your skin?

It depends on the perfume. A citrus should last four to five hours, then you might want to reapply. An oriental such as Shalimar will last all day.

Should I wear on special scent or can I have lots?

You might want to change your perfume according to your mood, what’s happening in your life or even what you’re wearing. If you’re going out dressed in yellow, then you want to smell yellow – it can be done. There’s no reason why you can’t have eight to 10 fragrances.

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