Sillage, derived from the French word ‘Sillage,’ refers to the lingering scent trail left in the air when someone wearing a fragrance leaves a room. It can be compared to the wake of a boat or the track of waves in water. The term “sillage” is pronounced as “see-Yahzh” and signifies that a person’s presence, accompanied by their signature scent, acts as a calling card and a sign of benign authority.
The magic of sillage occurs when the ratio of scent trail to volume is perfectly balanced, avoiding overwhelming the room with fragrance. It is considered one of the most powerful characteristics of a perfume, as fragrances with strong sillage generally have rich and alluring scent profiles that linger in the air.
What Affects Sillage?
Several factors can affect sillage. The type of perfume, weather conditions, and the individual’s mood can all influence the strength of sillage. Heavier scents typically have more noticeable sillage, while lighter scents have a softer sillage.
Testing sillage can be done by spraying the fragrance in a closed room and assessing if the scent lingers after a period of time. This can give an indication of the perfume’s sillage performance.
If you want to increase the sillage of a fragrance, there are a few tips you can follow. Moisturizing the skin before applying the perfume can help the scent last longer and project further. Avoid rubbing the fragrance into the skin, as this can break down the scent molecules. Instead, spray the fragrance on pulse points and consider applying it to clothing or accessories to help spread the scent.
Sillage vs. Projection
Sillage should not be confused with projection. Sillage is measured when the wearer is in motion, while projection is measured when the wearer is stationary. Projection refers to how far the scent radiates from the wearer’s body, while sillage refers to the lingering scent trail left behind.
Choosing Perfumes With High Sillage
To find perfumes high in sillage, you can look for descriptions that mention heady, bold, strong, or powerful scents; these are likely to have stronger sillage characteristics.. Fragrances composed specifically to have notable sillage often contain certain notes and compounds that contribute to creating a larger scent trail. Choosing an eau de parfum instead of an eau de toilette can also provide stronger sillage due to a higher concentration of fragrance oils.
Some examples of perfumes known for their strong sillage include Guerlain L’Heure Bleue, Lancôme Trésor, Christian Dior Poison, Bulgari Eau Parfumée au Thé Vert, and Christian Dior Eau Sauvage.