How to Layer Scents Like a Perfumer

Remember your mom’s (and Grandma’s) signature scent? That one they always wore, almost without exception. There’s something comforting about it, and you have to admit: Their commitment was admirable.

But now more than ever, style is an ever-changing endeavor. Sticking to one look or scent can quickly go from classic to, well, a bit dated. And, to be honest, we all have more fun when what we wear reflects our mood. So why not have a scent wardrobe, too?

At Skylar Body, our scents are light and fresh enough for layering and wearing. To help you explore the possibilities, we put together some insider quick tips on how to mingle scents for a totally custom fragrance.

What exactly is scent layering?

Scent layering, or as we like to call it, “scent mingling,” allows you to create new scents that are as nuanced as your style — evolving according to your mood, the season, or the event you’re headed to that evening.

If that sounds intimidating, don’t worry. There are a few basics that can make it surprisingly simple.


Test first!

Before you start spritzing away, remember that this is an experiment, and sometimes experiments produce memorable, er, unusual results. To avoid getting stuck with those results all day, test every scent mixture on a piece of paper first. If it has potential and makes you smile, then try it on your skin. Pro tip: Spray each scent one after another without letting the base dry, as this creates the best blend.

Prep your skin.

Spray your scent just after you’ve gotten out of the shower and applied your lotion. Fragrance molecules are looking for something to bind to, so natural moisture helps each note ring true.

Remember that every fragrance counts.

It’s easy to think of fragrance, and fragrance layering, as limited to the perfume(s) you choose. But any scent that comes in contact with your body, including body wash and lotion, plays a role.

You also can opt to use an unscented body wash and lotion, or one that closely mirrors (or complements) your fragrance choice.


Similarly to music, a well-composed scent has several notes that create a chord, or “accord” in this case. This can include a base note and a top note, and may also include a mid or “heart” note.

Stick to this basic structure to make sure your scent is harmonious and, well, makes “scents.” (Promise we won’t use that more than once.)

Striking accord.

Certain notes are known to create a chord that’s very appealing, while others may make our noses wrinkle. Below are a few key hints on notes that work well together.

All about that base.

Your base note will be the “heaviest” of the scents you choose, and should be applied first. Base notes play a few important roles. As the foundation of your fragrance, they give it a warm richness. And when selected well, they can actually improve the staying power of the lighter scents they’re paired with and shape the way you experience those scents, too.

Try playing with how heavy you’d like your base note to be. One spray will create a lighter overall scent, while a two to one ratio for the base note will create a deeper fragrance.

Base notes are usually grounding and comforting. Think vanilla, sandalwood or musk to start. Within the Skylar collection, Arrow offers grounding notes of vanilla and rose, while Coral creates depth with a subtle infusion of sandalwood.

Brighten up with your top note.

In contrast to your base, which is grounded and alluring, your top note should have fresh, fruity, or water notes to balance out the base. Think light florals like Meadow and dewier, lighter scents like Isle as finishing touches that are versatile and largely season-agnostic.


Less is more.

You may hear of famous perfumers mixing three, four, or more scents. That can work well, especially with a finely-attuned nose. But to start, playing with two or three scents will create a distinctive bespoke fragrance you’ll love (and requires less product in the long run).

Transition throughout the day.

Once you’ve created a balanced day-to-day scent, freshen it up mid-day with a spritz of your top note or add a bit more musk in the evening before you go out. Remember, this is all about experimentation and having fun. What you like, and when, will evolve over time, just like any style should!


Arrow + Meadow

Mingling vanilla and rose with a lighter floral scent is pleasant, highly versatile, and doesn’t smell quite like anything else we’ve come across.

Arrow + Isle

Adding Isle’s dewy, citrus-y goodness to Arrow’s grounding notes creates a spectacularly mature, natural scent. The combination is refined, feminine, and light enough to wear anytime of day.

Isle + Meadow

The sheer luminescence of Isle followed by a hint of Meadow will remind you of a sweet summer night with notes of orange blossom transporting you to a serene place.

Arrow + Coral

Because Coral already has subtler versions of the rich, grounding notes found in Arrow, combining them creates a scent that is citrus-y but with greater depth and range. It flirts with the best of nature, giving you an exotic blend that balances deep and woody with bright and spring-timey.


Want to play?

Not quite sure which scents make the perfect layering pair? Try our Skylar Perfume Palette — all light enough to wear together or with your existing scent wardrobe — and start mingling. Even better and true to the word, invite your friends over for a night in of mixing and matching to customize scents that are sure to capture your tribe’s vibe.

Happy mingling!

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