Perfume: The scrubber

There are more than 400 perfumes introduced every year. This year it seems that every nose is busy creating groups of releases–Armani, Chanel, Perfume Generale all released more than one new fragrance at the same time. What’s a niche perfume freak to do? Try them all, natch.

images11.jpegBut as much as I love perfume, many of them are not for me. Anything with musk turns me into a complete armpit, and jasmine magnifies on me until I’m covered in a metallic white, sort of like aluminum siding.

So, what to do when you try on a scrubber and it needs to come off . . .right away? I’ve tried alcohol, I’ve tried makeup remover, but until last week, I found myself unable to pry off some of the skankiest smells in the world. And I’m old enough to remember the fear of walking through Saks and being surprised by the shout of “Red! Red!” spitzzzzzz. I smelled Red for a week.

So, to remove a scrubber: first, keep trials of scents limited to your hands and wrists. It lets you sniff often, but when you’ve tried on a scrubber, it is easier to remove from hands and wrists.

Cover the area in a lip balm like Chapstick or Blistick Use a tube type. In fact, buy them on sale and save them for scrubber-removal duty. Apply over entire scented area.pb17c-tn.jpg

Now, pour about 1/4 cup clothes washing detergent (Tide, Gain, All, but not Woolite) on a sponge or a washcloth. Wet your hands, wrists, lower arms in comfortably warm water and use the washcloth or sponge to work up a lather on all the affected areas. Don’t scrub hard, just lather up leisurely. Once the lather is on your arms, leave it there while you rinse the washcloth.

Now wash off the soap, making sure you get it all off. Rinse till the water runs clear. Pat dry. Apply a hand cream over the entire area. You should be scrubber-free and as soon as the cream is absorbed, ready for the next scent trial.

–Quinn McDonald is a niche perfume addict and certified creativity coach. At the moment, she is flirting with various scents from CB I Hate Perfume. See her work at