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by Meghana Biwalkar

Coco Chanel once said, ‘‘A perfume is the unseen, but unforgettable and ultimate fashion accessory”. True, it is alluring, mysterious and can create quite a stir. So, here’s all you need to know to make that substantial individual statement with your fragrance:

• Learn the difference: It’s important to understand the basic facts about fragrances, before you make your selection. Typically, fragrances are divided into three categories: Perfume, Eau de Parfum and Eau de Cologne/Toilette. These are differentiated on the basis of alcohol, water and essential oils contents. The top of the bar is the Perfume. It has the highest concentration of essential oils, which stands anywhere between 20 to 50 per cent. Next, is Eau de Parfum. It is lighter than Perfume and is considered to have a lingering effect. Last, we have the Eau de Toilette or Cologne, which has the least concentration, and is subtle in nature. One needs to add it on during the day to maintain a long-lasting effect.

• Wear it right: Never wait until last minute to wear your perfume. Put it on at least half an hour before you leave the house. This will give it enough time to blend with your skin oils, which will eventually create your unique fragrance. Also, don’t go overboard with the quantity. You don’t want to suffocate someone else by bathing down the bottle of perfume. Just dab small amount of perfume or spray a cloud of perfume and walk through it.

• Mind the clothes: If you are spraying over your clothes, please note that garments such as silks or synthetic can mix its own elements with the perfume. Also, the perfume tends to leave a stain on them. On the other hand, cottons and linens complement the perfumes really well.

• Reach for the pulse: Perfumes work best on your pulse points, where the blood flow is the strongest and the skin is the warmest. These include your wrist, back of the ear, nape of the neck, chest, inside the elbow and behind the knee. Did you know…that spraying perfume around your ankles allows the fragrance to float upwards over time! Of course, this will not work with closed shoes.

• Layer the fragrances: This will ensure a longer lasting effect. Layering could include using similar fragrances’ body lotion or powder. Also, when using a moisturiser, make sure that you use it over the perfume. This way the alcohol will remain closer to the skin, which will again have a longer effect.

Get ready to make the most of that unseen aura. And, before we conclude, here’s one last tip: When testing a perfume, don’t try more than three scents!


Using a deodorant may be a habit for you, but there are many who seem to be blissfully unaware of the negatives of bad body odor and positives of using a deodorant. If you are associated with such a person who suffers from bad body odor but does nothing about it, how do you tell them to take care? Here is some help:


If you aren’t close enough to speak to the person directly, seek help from one of his/her close associates and let him/her address the issue. The advice would be more acceptable for the person if it came from a friend.


If you are not comfortable about directly confronting the person, strike up a friendly chat on internet and convey the desired message without sounding rude or too serious. This will save both of you the embarrassment that a face to face conversation may cause.


If you share a sensitive relationship with the person in question, it is important that you convey the message in style. Gift the person a high-end Perfume/Eau de toilette or a Body Spray on his/her birthday and leave the rest to his/her imagination.


Anonymous mail or an anonymous note for the person where he/she is sure to find it is another way to tackle the situation. But if you are resorting to this trick, ensure that you don’t get caught otherwise you would be the person getting most embarrassed.


If you are close to the person, you could take the liberty of speaking directly but do remember to be respectful and understanding at all times when speaking about a matter as private as this.


It is not for nothing that the eyes are called the windows to a person’s soul. Eye contact creates a strong connection between two people and also creates an impression of sincerity and trustworthiness.
  • Look at a person when being introduced to him/he; maintain eye contact even while speaking. Eye contact with another person shows your interest in him/her. It also forces you to pay attention to what s/he is saying.
  • Make soft eye contact, i.e. look into the other person’s eyes and then shift your gaze to other parts of the person’s face occasionally.
  • While speaking with a group of people, look at one person for a few seconds and then shift your gaze to another.
  • Making eye contact does not mean that you try and stare a person down with an intense pupil-to-pupil gaze. Staring at a person is the quickest way of making him uncomfortable and putting him on the defensive.

    Speaking With a Neutral Accent

    The way you speak i.e. your voice modulation and accent affect the way people respond to you, what they think of you and also your job prospects. Here are ten tips to help you reduce a regional accent:

    1) Study the mouth movements of native speakers and try to mimic them.
    While watching television, observe the mouth movements of the speakers. Repeat what they are saying, imitating the intonation and rhythm of their speech.

    2) Slow down your speech, until you learn the correct intonation and rhythm of English.
    Native speakers will have a hard time understanding you if you speak too fast with the wrong modulation and rhythm. Don’t worry about your listener getting impatient with your slow dialogue – it is more important that everything you say is understood.

    3) Listen to the “music” of English.
    Don’t use the music of your native tongue when you are speaking English. Each language has its own way of “singing”.

    4) Use your dictionary.
    Familiarize yourself with the phonetic symbols used for different words in the dictionary and look up the correct pronunciation of words that are hard for you to say. This method helps in neutralizing an accent tremendously.

    5) Make a list of commonly used words that are difficult to pronounce.
    Ask a native speaker to pronounce them for you, record these words, listen to them and practice saying them.

    6) Buy books on tape.
    Listen and read at the same time. Record clips of your own voice reading some sections of the book. Compare the sound of your English with that of the speaker from the book on tape.

    7) Pronounce the ending of each word.
    Pay special attention to “s” and “ed” endings.

    8) Read aloud in English for fifteen to twenty minutes everyday.
    This will help you strengthen the mouth muscles that you use when you speak English. Research has shown that it takes about three months of daily practice to develop strong mouth muscles for speaking a new language.

    9) Record your own voice and listen for pronunciation mistakes.
    Many people hate to hear the sound of their voice and avoid having to listen to themselves speaking. However, this is a very important exercise because doing it will help you become conscious of the mistakes that you are making.

    10) Be patient.
    You can change the way you speak but it won’t happen overnight. People often expect instant results and give up too soon. You can change the way you sound if you are willing to put some effort into it.
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