Application Monday: Sprayed vs. dabbed

dabbed
It’s likely many ( most?) of us would agree that spraying fragrance is usually the way to go, but every once in a while I’ll stumble upon a scent in which a spritz is not where it’s at, but dabbed, baby, dabbed. And I have hit that point with an oldie but goodie that I’m re-discovering: Guerlain’s Spiritueuse Double Vanille.

I recently got another sample of it, and dabbed up a storm with it, as it was perfect on a chilly evening, so warm, cozy and boozy. I should have been happy with that, but nooo … when I spied a small decant of it, my fingers rushed ahead of my brain and applied a a hefty, full-on spritz. Whoa! Lovely in small doses, this beauty is a bit overwhelming sprayed (at least to my nose). The booziness really blooms on me and I feel like I’ve been soaked in a barrel of something or other, while doing a bit of tippling on the side. But a little while in, and it had receded to its more contained cozy self. Sheesh, when will I ever learn?

This happened with several other fragrance loves, including, most recently, MFK’s Ciel de Gum. After going through one sample vial, I snagged another one, and midway through that one, I decided to splurge and get a spray decant. I was hoping it would be fully true to my dab experience, except with a bit more oomph, but …

Just as Amouage’s Beloved sprayed seemed a little off-putting in its first spritz on me, so, too, did the Ciel de Gum. It lost a tad of its charm and its smoothness, replaced by something a bit more sharp and brash.

Thankfully, though, all of them it returned to their original loveliness fairly quickly.

With these pricey (and often hard to get) scents, I’m a pretty happy camper, knowing that I can make do with dab samples, enjoy to my heart’s content, and give my cringing wallet some relief.

So what about you — what scents do you wear that just seem to do better dabbed to the wrist and other pulse points?

28 Comments
Tara C November 15, 2016

SL Cuir Mauresque. I disliked it until I tried just dabbing it on, then it was able to open up and reveal its beauty to me.

GrandmaGaga November 14, 2016

I always wear Alien as a dabbed scent...I love to dab a bit on the top of my hand and fall asleep experiencing the other-worldly 'trip' that is Alien...

Maya November 14, 2016

What I do when even one spray is too much, is spray the hem of my jeans or pants or skirts. Then when I walk or sit down, the fragrance wafts up gently around me. I love the effect.

Marie / Witness of Sense November 14, 2016

I have this with Carnal Flower. Dabbed it's the most wonderful green flower, sprayed it is quite skanky and makes me feel that it wears me instead of the other way around. xx

Tatiana November 14, 2016

Amouage Lyric is one I prefer dabbed over spraying.

Gwenyth November 14, 2016

Well, then......I'm the one who is immoderate and unrestrained. I have yet to discover a perfume which I can only dab. Other than a few bottles which have no sprayer and therefore dabbing is the only means of application, I am a non-repentant sprayer. Even with my "splash" bottles, my dabs are probably very generous, indeed. My skin tends to absorb fragrance so I am completely unable to comprehend the notion that "a little dab will do ya". [grin]

Musette November 14, 2016

I'm pretty easygoing, either way, Though I will say that I prefer Amouage Jub25 dabbed - especially in extrait form. xoxoxoA

Eldarwen22 November 14, 2016

I love SDV sprayed and many of my other perfumes sprayed. Extrait sprayed is not a good idea. I had decanted Cuir de Russie extrait in a spray decant and I lived to regret that. The perfume that I have to decant to dab is Amouage Gold for women. That stuff is too potent and over the top for me to spray.

Sherri M. November 14, 2016

I agree with Vernona on the Fracas. MFK Absolue Pour Le Soir is very aggressive sprayed on, but just a dab of i is refined and elegant.

Vernona November 14, 2016

I prefer dabbing Fracas. Spraying it just kills me on some days. That's why I never got a bottle but enjoy the samples. SDV I can do just fine spraying. Also there are many scents I prefer sprayed rather than dabbed. For example, Iris de Nuit. So much better sprayed on, the lipsticky heart of the scent really shows when sprayed while dabbed it is more transparent and vegetal...

HeidiC November 14, 2016

I agree about the Ciel de GUM -- thanks for sending both spray and dab decants so I could try! I also feel the same way about Guerlain's Cuir Beluga -- sprayed, there's a booziness about the vanilla note, and it loses some of the snuggliness. But the big one for me is Chanel's Cuir de Russie -- it's way over the top on me if I spray it.

Claudia S November 14, 2016

I have AE Perfumer's Reserve. I have no choice but to dab. I always use a clean finger pad for every application!

Tiffanie November 14, 2016

Parfums DelRae Amoureuse is one scent I enjoy more when dabbed, so that it blooms into a narcotic veil of flowers and honey. Sprayed more than once, I feel like I've eaten too many bites of something wonderful, all the while knowing I will take another bite and another and then another because I can't stop myself.