The One Thing I Do Before Guests Come Over

Whenever friends stop by, I always do the same thing…

Scent is so important. When it comes to my home, I try my best to make it smell nice. But I have a dog and a next-door neighbor whose lone hobby seems to be perpetually cooking spaghetti bolognese. No matter how many candles or eucalyptus branches I buy, it smells like an apartment building — a hybrid scent that’s somewhere between chicken soup and Lysol, and seems neither clean nor appetizing.

That’s why, when guests are coming over, I’ll spritz a bit of perfume — my signature fragrance — into the air just before they arrive. It’s more effective than room spray, and a little goes a long way. The best thing is, it doesn’t make my home smell like I’ve tried, it just makes it smell like me.

“WHY does it smell so good in here?” says everyone. At which point, I shrug and say, “Oh, it’s just my normal perfume.”

(Random tip: Lately, I’ve taken to using hair perfume, which is like a brilliant, one-third-the-price version of the regular stuff. You can use it the same way you would any fragrance, and it won’t dry out hair. As you go about your life, little puffs of scent waft up from your hair, like a gift that keeps on giving.)

Do you have any rituals for when guests come over? Do you have any favorite scents right now? Let us know!

P.S. My life in perfume and a perfume smell test.

(Photo of Caroline’s apartment by Tory Williams.)