Best Perfume Notes For A Job Interview


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Our sense of smell is extremely powerful, and most of us have experienced a time when a particular smell made us feel a certain way. We can use this to our advantage and choose a perfume with the most suitable notes for a job interview to give out a professional vibe.

What are the best perfume notes for a job interview? A discreet yet fresh fragrance comprising of citrus top notes, green mid notes, and woody/musk base notes is the best perfume for a job interview. This combination of notes can project a sense of professionalism, confidence and focus.

Next up is some examples of specific perfume notes will work best for your big day. We then finish up with some important interview related fragrance advice that you may not have considered.

What Perfume Notes Are Best For A Job Interview?

Time to get specific. When you are deciding which perfume to wear for an upcoming job interview, it’s vital to ensure you select a fragrance with the right notes. The correct combination of notes can make you both smell and feel more confident, professional, and any number of other positive characteristics.

I recommend a fragrance with notes comprising of citrus top notes, green mid notes, and woody/musk base notes to give the desired professional scent. Here is a full breakdown with examples.

1. Top Notes of Citrus

Here are 5 recommended ‘citrus’ top notes to consider. Citrus ensure a clean and crisp scent that does not overpower the senses. I feel these notes project a feeling of a person who is decisive and can keep a level head in most situations.

  • Bergamot
  • Orange
  • Lemon
  • Lime
  • Grapefruit

2. Mid Notes of Green

Here are 5 recommended ‘green’ notes to consider. Green notes can be associated with those who are more deliberate and put additional thought into their choices.

  • Sage
  • Mint
  • Thyme
  • Basil
  • Tea

3. Base Notes of Woody/Musk

Here are 5 recommended ‘base’ notes to consider. Woody and Musk notes give off a feeling of confidence and being at ease with ones self.

  • Amber
  • Musk
  • Cedar
  • Patchouli
  • Sandlewood

What Perfume Notes Should I Avoid For An Interview?

It’s one thing to know what perfume notes are best for a job interview, however knowing which notes to avoid like the plague is equally as important.

I would certainly steer away from wearing floral or sweet fragrances for any job interview. Firstly, if over applied they can be like an frontal assault on the sense of smell of anyone nearby. Secondly, they can perhaps come across as more fun and flirtatious rather than professional and serious.

So please, do not attend your interview wearing a strong floral or sweet perfume as you may not come up smelling of roses, or enjoy the sweet smell of success.

Is Smelling Good Important For A Job Interview

We all make judgements and decisions about others based on their smell. We may not even notice we are doing it as this is normally subconscious. Rest assured our sense of smell is still one of our most powerful yet hidden and less thought about senses.

This judgement about others is also true in business, the workplace and modern society in general (and interviews!). Many suggest we are attracted to people who smell a certain way, and that people who smell bad are less successful and less popular than their nicer smelling counterparts.

Taking this point to an extreme, if two people went for an interview and one smelt discreetly of a well chosen fragrance and the other had no perfume and hint of body odour, would one candidate be more likely to fill the position than the other?

Related Post: The Art Of Smelling Good: A Guide For Girls

What Are The Best Perfumes For A Job Interview?

Below are 10 interview friendly perfumes that I feel have the perfect balance of top, mid and base notes. None of these are overpowering, and all will project the right image of success. I have included a link to my full review post of these fragrances.

  1. Voyage d’Hermès by HERMÈS
  2. Mandarino Di Amalfi by Tom Ford
  3. Lime Basil & Mandarin Cologne by Jo Malone
  4. Aqua Allegoria Mandarine Basilic by Guerlain
  5. Acqua di Gioia by Giorgio Armani
  6. Versense by Versace
  7. Cologne Bigarade by Frederic Malle
  8. Ô de Lancôme by Lancôme
  9. Tea Menthe Citron by Laura Mercier
  10. Eau de Guerlain by Guerlain

Full Review: 10 Best Perfumes To Wear For A Job Interview

How Much Perfume Should I Apply?

Keep it simple. One spray behind each ear, and one spray on each wrist is perfect. It’s a case of ‘less is more’ or perhaps an even better phrase would be ‘less is enough’.

It is key that you don’t overdo it. You should only have a discreet amount of perfume applied as you will most likely be in a small room with your interviewer. Don’t turn up to your interview having bathed in your fragrance and emitting your scent like a defective nuclear reactor.

When Is Best to Apply Perfume For An Interview?

Ideally you would apply your chosen perfume and hour or so before your interview. You certainly don’t want to apply your scent in the lift on the way up then knock everyone’s socks off as soon as the lift doors slide open.

By allowing time for your fragrance to settle, the more initially intense top and mid notes can subside and settle, allowing the deeper more subtle base notes to be discreetly active but not over powering.

What Are The Benefits Of Wearing Perfume For An Interview?

There are a number of positive benefits of wearing perfume for a job interview such as increasing your confidence and boosting your overall positivity and well-being.

Additionally the right fragrance can subtly project to others that you have a number of valuable qualities such as being confident, professional, individual, social, positive and elegant.

These positive qualities can help in your interview, the workplace and in life overall.

Related Post: 18 Invisible Benefits Of Wearing Perfume

Should I Wear Perfume To An Interview?

should I wear perfume for a job interview

Most professional interviewers generally recommend that you should not wear perfume for a job interview. They suggest that there is always the possibility that the wrong fragrance could impact your chances of success should the person interviewing you seriously dislike your fragrance.

I would suggest it’s not so black and white and in reality depends on your precise situation. I have worn a discreet fragrance for every interview I have attended and have even received a compliment regarding my scent from the interviewer one more than one occasion.

If you have a number of great interviews lined up and feel that by applying a small amount of a certain fragrance will further boost your confidence and positivity then I am all for it. As long as you follow the guidelines contained in this post, your discreet fragrance will be most likely only be detectable by you.

However if this is the first interview you have had in months and you are completely desperate for the job, then just skip the perfume. Simply turning up freshly showered, deodorant applied, crisp clean clothes, minimum makeup and nicely styled hair will be more than acceptable.

What If I Don’t Get The Job Because Of My Perfume?

Perhaps it’s better to know this in advance, rather than get the job and begin working in an environment where your future colleagues are all so sensitive that should you dare to wear a perfume would cause them major distress and a complete emotional meltdown?

I am sure this comes as no surprise, but in life there are always risks. Yes, there is the possibility that your interviewer may hate your chosen scent with a passion as it reminds them of their ex-partner and their bitter and lengthy divorce.

If you are desperate for the job and feel wearing a perfume may affect your chances in a negative way then don’t wear a fragrance for the interview (or the rest of your working life!)

On the flip side, wearing the right perfume and the right amount could allow you stand out among a sea of other generic non-perfume wearing candidates.

Closing Thoughts

There are a number of things you should remember when going for an interview to increase your chances of success. Dressing smart, being shower fresh, well prepared, eye-contact and a good handshake are just a few of the all so important recommended interview tips.

You should consider going one step further and wear a perfume for a job interview if it feels the right thing to do. Considering the most successful candidates are usually the most memorable, can the right fragrance give you an invisible edge?

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