Most perfumes are composed of elements that are designed to leave an impression. They react to your skin’s natural chemistry and make you smell like your favorite flowers or fruits, an irresistible sweet treat, or something unnameable that’s dark and mysterious.
For some people, that much is enough. Others may want a scent that’s all their own, which can be difficult to achieve when almost all perfumes make use of the same accords. Worse still, you can lose your signature scent when it becomes a mainstream success, as was the case with Le Labo’s Santal 33.
Enter: the skin scent.
What is a skin scent?
Skin scents refer to fragrances built around a synthetic molecule called ISO E Super. It was developed in the laboratory of International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF), an American company that develops cosmetic actives, flavors, and scents.
Perfumes that employ this molecule are hard to describe, because they smell different depending on the wearer. That’s a huge part of its appeal. ISO E Super amplifies your skin’s unique scent–that subtle yet distinctive smell of you that lingers on your sheets or that shirt you’ve just changed out of. It enhances your body’s natural odor, surrounds you with it, and magnifies it to everyone around you. Some describe the note as dry, warm, and woodsy, while being clean and delicate.
To wit, a skin scent is the equivalent of a “My Lips But Better” lipstick, but for your body. It’s like the “no makeup” makeup look. Subtle, soft, yet intriguing, and always distinctly personal.
What are the best skin scents?
Finding a skin scent is easy–just scan the ingredients list for ISO E Super.
Escentric Molecules, manufacturers of Molecule 01, describe it as a Pure Scent. It is composed of one note only, which is ISO E Super. If you’re looking for your next signature scent, this is absolutely the one to get. As detailed above, the molecule reacts according to whoever is wearing it, which means that no 2 spritzes will ever smell alike, even if it comes from the same bottle. The beauty of this scent is in its minimalism; it brings out who you are. You can purchase a genuine decant of Molecule 01 from Scent Split.
D.S. & Durga I Don’t Know What
D.S. & Durga classifies I Don’t Know What as a fragrance enhancer. It’s a scent that behaves like a word on the tip of your tongue, feels like you’ll remember it any second now. It hits you with powerful synthetic molecules: delicate bergamot essence off the top, before revealing its heart of ISO E Super and vetiver acetate. Synthetic civettone, sandalwood, and ambrox super make up the foundation of this unique perfume. You can also purchase a genuine sampler of I Don’t Know What from Scent Split.
Le Labo Another 13
Looking for an alternative to Santal 33, now that everyone you know is wearing it? Look no further than Another 13, another offering from niche fragrance house, Le Labo. Commissioned by AnOther Magazine in 2010, this perfume also employs ISO Super E, combining it with ambroxyde, a synthetic animal musk. Other notes include luscious pear, apple, and citrus fruits at the top and jasmine and moss at the heart. Sample it today by ordering a genuine decant from Scent Split.