Not to sound like a broken record player (although my boyfriend’s record player skips and spits some really great Betty Davis remixes), but I’ve grown to hate perfume.
I’m sure Marci will gladly accept any human Febreze that our wonderful PR friends want to send over; but if it’s sent to me, I’ll smile softly and politely pass it along, like when I’m handed the tip bucket for a band I didn’t even come to see at a bar that doesn’t even normally have bands.
I started wearing perfume when I was, like, seven. I had a yellowish bottle of a Belle-endorsed scent from the Disney store because she was a fucking lady and so was I. That perfume is actually one of my fondest scent memories -- inoffensive and light, with a frosted plastic yellow rose as a cap. It had a delicate, fruity smell appropriate for the undeveloped mind mush of a child who would haphazardly douse herself until damp rather than daintily apply to her pulse points.
By high school, my friends all smoked heavily, and would spray Ralph Lauren or Britney Spears or whatever directly onto their hands and bodies before heading home to their parents, as if the stench created an ignorance-inducing force field -- as if their folks were like, “Bless her heart, our daughter just loves that perfume!”
Women, men, really all humans need to understand that smell is inescapable.
We can choose not to look at something that we find distasteful. If we find something literally distasteful, we certainly don’t need to lick it. Even sound can be drowned out with a pair of headphones. But stench enters into our nostrils whether we like it or not.
Please, I beg of everyone reading this: If you must wear perfume, apply it sparingly! It’s not fair to those with sensitive olfactory glands to be constantly besieged with your preferred essence. (I swear I'll get to product recommendations, and, like, the point of this article eventually. You enjoy my rambling. Well, my mom enjoys my rambling.)
In college, I quit wearing perfume altogether. It was around the same time that I started skipping every sorority function possible (lol, yes, I was a southern sorority girl), eventually graduating a year early partly to escape the Brit/Cherie mushroom cloud that followed my "sisters" around.
Now, imagine being on a subway train with those same sorority girl interns crowded in with that patchouli-soaked nanny and the finance bros spritzed in the tennis player fragrance that comes in a gift set with a luxury jock strap. My sinuses can’t take it.
If none of this phases you, riddle me this: Do you want to bone your brother? Because, by disguising your true pheromone-laden musk, you’re messing with natural selection.
Studies show that your siblings and parents of the opposite sex not only have a distinct smell, but that it is repulsive. This was super enlightening for me to read because despite my brother always being unbelievably well groomed and clean, he always smells so terrible to me. And it’s a weird smell -- not body odor or nasty, but repulsive nonetheless. He has no problem getting chicks: I’m sure girls just bask in his natural aroma. Not me, though. **shudders**
Neither of us wears perfume or cologne, and both of us are wildly attractive people. Can you imagine what would happen if we showered ourselves in sin juice? Despite Janes’s genius idea of me testing out which perfume would make my brother want to bone me, I’m not going to go there. Eff you, Jane, and your sick, foul brain worms. You should be ashamed of yourself. [This is only the beginning, Annie. --Jane.]
So that’s right, you perfume-coated incestuous perverts: You all apparently want get down and dirty with your immediate family members.
In fact, as you’re in bed reading this on your iPhone, you could be boning your brother right this moment without even knowing it. What if you’re in some weird fraternal twin Parent Trap-type situation where you don't even realize that your boyfriend is brother?
Throw him off of you and start comparing childhood memories, pop a few Azo UTI relief pills to numb your emotions and induce the deepest sleep ever (seriously I don’t know how these are sold over the counter), and soak up your tears in the pillow-y outer layer of a warm kolache. That’s the best advice I can offer at this point. Godspeed.
For those on my team who’ll have no part in perfume, might I suggest a few of the best-smelling products that don’t come in oedipal-love-inducing, pheromone-killing spray bottles?
Let's go from left to right, like, you know, reading.
Pevonia's Skin Perfecting Toner smells way too good to be a retinol product, or even a toner for that matter. It's like liquid magnolias.
Nextly, I come from the same school of thought as the lovely Cat Marnell in that sunscreen smells freaking amazing. "It's like sunshine in a bottle." This one, Kate Somerville's Body Glow Sunscreen, has sparkles and mango butter, for us fancy betches.
The green bottle is a pump-and-huff by Kerastase. Its given name is Elixer Ultime Oléo-Complexe + Moringa Immortel, but I think that "pump-and-huff" has a better ring to it, no? It smells like baby oil, but for mature and discerning babies, like Aleph Millepied.
CND's Almond Milk Bath is a dead ringer for almond extract, which I used to violently inhale at the kitchen counter as my mom made pound cake.
Finally, we have another mom-related smell coming from Mario Badescu. The Vitamin "E" Body Lotion smells a lot like Esteé Lauder White Linen, which my mom wears, which is probably why I always think to call her after putting it on, which just results in me bitch-bitch-bitching for half an hour and acting like a total bitch while I'm at it. I really need to be nicer to my mom. Anyways, it smells dope.
So, like, what perfumes are you guys even using to attract your brothers? Any suggestions? You’re welcome to share in the comments; I guess we’ll go ahead and make this a subreddit-esque safe-haven for incest files.