The reflex perfume habit you need to get out of STAT

Avoid rubbing perfume on your wrists at all costs!

Woman in a towel spraying perfume on her wrist/ in a pink template
(Image credit: Getty Images/ GlobalStock)

While spritzing your best perfumes on your wrists before rubbing them together is perhaps one of the most well-known methods of applying fragrances, here's why experts say you should actually avoid rubbing perfume on your wrists.

From spraying perfume on wet skin to the viral Vaseline trick, there are actually a ton of ways to boost the longevity of your favorite vanilla perfumes and oud fragrances. That being said, if you're still committing this age-old scent faux pas, you might find that none of the above actually help to boost your dwindling perfume notes.

It's safe to say we're all guilty of spraying our perfumes on our wrists and quickly rubbing them together to spread the dreamy aroma and hasten the absorption—but here's why it's actually detrimental...

Why should you avoid rubbing perfume on your wrists?

Hands up if you rub your wrists together after applying your perfumes? Oh don't worry, our hands are all the way up with you on that one—but according to the experts, the rubbing motion and heat actually break down the delicate balance of notes.

While your wrists are the perfect place for your perfumes, being pulse points and all, Natalia Ortiz, Chief Commerical Officer at The Fragrance Shop says: "Rubbing your wrists together breaks down the chemicals and causes top notes to break down faster.

Instead, Ortiz says to, "either spray [your perfume] and leave to absorb into the skin, or gently dab onto your skin for further accuracy," adding, "you should also avoid shaking the perfume bottle as this can allow air to saturate and infuse your fragrance, which can also alter its chemical makeup and shorten its lifespan." Good to know.

Vicken Arslanian, Re-Founder of perfume brand Commodity also adds: "after spraying the fragrance once or twice directly on your pulse points, resist the urge to rub it in.

"Rubbing your wrists together produces heat, which will break up the scent’s composition. This will cause the fragrance’s top notes—what we call first notes at Commodity since they’re detected first—to fade much quicker than intended, changing the overall scent."

We know, it's like muscle memory at this point, but you might find that even this small change makes a big difference to your scent lasting all day. 

And if you're looking to give your oud or floral perfumes an even bigger boost, why not try applying your perfume straight after your shower (or bath), once you've dried off your skin. This way, you can allow it to absorb into your skin before pulling on your clothes—so you're less tempted to rub and hurry the process.

Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team, where she covers everything from entertainment to fashion and beauty, as well as TikTok trends for Woman&Home, after previously writing for My Imperfect Life and GoodTo. Interestingly though, Naomi actually has a background in design, having studied illustration at Plymouth University but lept into the media world in 2020, after always having a passion for writing and earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ.

Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.