Outside the Bottle

Solid Perfume, Lola Marc Jacobs

The fragrance counter offers almost as many choices as Starbucks. Perfumer Kilian Hennessy helps you decode it all.

Excerpts from a fragrance editorial by Sophia Panych, Outside the Bottle.

Solid Perfume - Fragrances

Pros: The waxy base holds scent for several hours and has the benefit of portability - this is the perfect size to slip into an evening bag.

Cons: The wax has a slight oily smell that can interfere with the actual fragrance; it can also leave a greasy residue.

We Like: Marc Jacobs Solid Perfume

Roller Ball - Fragrances

Pros: The diminutive size makes this ideal for travel (and for testing a fragrance before going for a full-size bottle).

Cons: Roller balls use a low concentration of perfume oil, so the scent lasts only an hour or so. Plus, the glass tubes can break.

We Like: Lancome Tresor Rollerball

Scented Cream - Fragrances

Pros: You get a scent you love and softer skin.

Cons: Certain fragrance ingredients change color or scent when put into a cream. These tweaks can sometimes make the lotion smell like a poor imitation of the original.

We Like: Balenciaga Paris Perfumed Body Cream

Scented Powder - Fragrances

Pros: It's luxurious - just like the act of dusting it along your décolletage, arms, and legs feels sensuous.

Cons: Powder rubs off, so the scent is likely to fade after a couple of hours. And applying it can be messy.

We Like: Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Fresh After Bath Powder

Hair Mist - Fragrances

Pros: This instantly freshens hair between shampoos. With little to no alcohol, it won't dry out strands; some are infused with silicones, which soften hair.

Cons: A hair mist plus a traditional perfume may result in olfactory overload.

We Like: Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Hair Mist

(Panych, Sophia. "Outside the Bottle." Allure Feb. 2011: 106.)

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