My sister is one of those people who always smells good. When she stays with me, her fragrance lingers in the guest room after she's gone. She loves perfume and knows about top notes and middle notes and all the other stuff that makes it sound like she should be talking about music. (She's also pretty fluent in French, so maybe to her it's parfum.)
Me, not so much. My French is remedial, and my knowledge of perfume is worse. I'll occasionally give myself a spritz of the one fragrance I have in my closet, but only when I'm feeling fancy. As I found out this week, though, perfume is a really interesting and complicated subject.
The first known perfumes date back to ancient times. A 3,000-year-old cuneiform tablet identifies a woman named Tapputi as the first recorded perfume maker. Perfumes never really fell out of favor in the the Arab world, but in Europe, the Dark Ages were dark times for perfume. Credit the French for getting the ball rolling again during the time of Louis XV. Perfume apparently came in handy for masking body odors, but putting it in wine, as the French did, was perhaps a step too far.
Every perfume is comprised of one of more of the eight basic categories: oriental, spicy, woody, floral, aquatic, green, fruity, and citrus. The bright top notes of a scent evaporate after a few minutes. The middle or heart notes last from four to six hours. The base notes emerge an hour or so after application and tend to evaporate more slowly.
|Let me guess...citrus?|
After seven days, I don't think I'm on my way to developing a perfume obsession on par with my sister's, but I'm not at all opposed to calling this one a Take It.