Forget the self-help section and cash-swindling life coaches, when it comes to getting ahead in life, it’s fragrance that’s your best friend.
From appearing more confident and successful, to improving your memory, to coming off as poll-toppingly attractive as the likes of Clooney, Pitt or Styles, all you need is a quick spritz. And if you don’t believe me, then believe hard-nosed science: here’s a selection of popular men’s fragrances containing life-enhancing notes that white-coated boffins are getting behind. Scrap ‘The Secret’; it’s all about The Scent.
Give Off The Sweet Smell Of Success With…
We’re all familiar with the strategy of faking it ’til you make it, but if you’re fresh out of chutzpah, then give yourself an olfactory pep talk with a scent containing the Holy Trinity of ‘success notes’: patchouli, black pepper and sandalwood.
A study by Creston’s Marketing Sciences Sensory Unit revealed that guys who wear these three notes – found in many men’s fragrances – come across as being more successful and accomplished than those wearing other fragrances, particularly those containing leather and cedarwood, which – contrary to lore – actually run the risk of calling you out as a bit of a loser.
Paco Rabanne 1 Million (funnily enough); Acca Kappa; Roja Parfums Enigma Pour Homme
Bag The Woman Of Your Dreams With…
Dior Eau Sauvage
Fragrance marketeers have long made out that scent is the ultimate weapon of mass seduction. And, for once in their lives, they might not actually be lying.
Researchers at Ruhr-Universität Bochum in Germany finally proved last year what perfumers had been claiming to be the case since the dawn of scent-peddling – that wearing a fragrance really can make you irresistible to women.
It’s all down to hedione (or methyl dihydrojasmonate to give it its proper name), one of the 900-plus molecular components of jasmine. Used for the very first time in Dior’s citrusy classic, Eau Sauvage, Bochum’s researchers discovered that hedione stimulates the area of a woman’s brain responsible for the release of sex hormones. Fitting, then, that the word hedione should come from the Greek word for pleasure.
Paco Rabanne Invictus; Calvin Klein CK One; Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gio
Ace That Important Exam With…
Bergamote 22 by Le Labo
Given that our sense of smell is connected to the same part of the brain that deals with memories, it’s no surprise that researchers at the University of Liverpool discovered that students who wore the same fragrance while sitting an exam, as they did while revising for it, had a much better recall for the facts.
Your fragrance may well be your ultimate data retrieval aid. If you fancy replicating the study exactly, try a fragrance featuring the note the researchers themselves used: bergamot. Relocating to Liverpool is optional, obviously.
Tom Ford Venetian Bergamot; Acqua di Parma Blu Mediterraneo Bergamotto di Calabria; Ermenegildo Zegna Acqua di Bergamotto
Keep It Up With…
Caron un Pour Homme
If you thought lavender was only good for laundry, think again: it could be a turn-up for your libido, too. How? Because according to a famous study by the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago, a whiff of lavender dramatically increases blood flow to the penis.
This legendary lavender-based fragrance from Caron (a favourite of Tom Ford himself) has been around since 1934, so there’s a lot to be said for lavender’s, erm, ‘staying power’.
Ferrari Pure Lavender; Creed Royal Scottish Lavender; Czech & Speake Oxford & Cambridge
Get People To Part With Their Cash With…
Czech & Speake No 88
Got some ways to go before smashing that sales target? Then break out the rose-based scent. (Along with the six-course tasting menu and enough cocktails to sink a Feadship.)
When researchers at Washington State University tested the effects of scents in the men’s section of a retail store, they discovered that, when the smell of Moroccan rose was pumped into the environment, not only did the men linger for longer, they bought twice as much, too.
Another study, by the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago, found that adding floral fragrances to casinos made customers gamble more. Which means you probably shouldn’t pack this one for a trip to Vegas.
Byredo Rose Noir; Paco Rabanne 1 Million; Frapin Nevermore
Up Your Fitness Game With…
Davidoff Cool Water
Peppermint – even when found in barely-there amounts, as it often is in fragrance – has been shown to trigger activity in the part of the brain responsible for arousal and alertness.
A study by the Jesuit University in West Virginia has shown that, because of this, it can improve both mental ability and athletic performance, as well as reduce your perceived level of fatigue. Fewer calories than an energy drink, too.
Thierry Mugler A*Men; Comme des Garcon Series 5 Sherbet Peppermint; Bleu de Chanel
Cheer Yourself Up With…
The Library Of Fragrance Grass Cologne
It’s a hard man indeed who doesn’t crack a smile at the unmistakable smell of freshly cut grass. And there’s science behind why we love it so much: when grass is cut, it releases green leaf volatiles, chemicals that give off the instantly recognisable ‘green’ odour.
According to research by The University of Queensland’s School of Biomedical Science, at least five of these volatiles boast stress-busting properties, which might explain our (almost instinctive) attraction to the smell. So next time you need an instant hit of happiness, just reach for some grass. The type tennis is played on that is.
Don’t fancy any of the fragrances above or simply don’t have the cash to splash on a new scent right now? Fear not, because a study conducted by Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina found that wearing a fragrance – any fragrance – automatically lifts our mood and gives us a little extra confidence.
“That’s because, anatomically, smell and emotions overlap in the brain, so smelling something nice automatically makes you feel better,” explains Susan Schiffman, the author of the study. No wonder Clinique called their best-selling men’s fragrance ‘Happy’.
How do you use your scents?
Share your secrets to success below.