Recklinghausen:

Ice coffee versus latte macchiatto, cold cucumber soup versus a stew. On hot summer days, people tend to choose not only lighter fare but also lighter fragrances.

“When it’s hot, a heavy fragrance is instinctively left on the shelf,” said Werner Hariegel, business manager of the German association of perfume stores in Recklinghausen in Ruhr area.

Perfume makers are reacting more decisively to the summertime “fragrance diet” and are offering lighter versions of their well-known perfumes or seasonal perfumes that are limited in their marketing.

“Single season fragrances are more common than they used to be,” said Martin Ruppmann of the association of cosmetic product vendors in Wiesbaden. This trend has developed because consumers handle fragrances differently than they did in the past. “Perfumes used to be worn only on special occasions. Today, fragrances accompany men and woman all day long, becoming a fashion accessory,” Hariegel said.

The current trend has been described as transparently floral, but not overblown by Marc vom Ende, a perfumer at the German producer Symrise in Holzminden. “For that certain something in a perfume, floral aromas are combined with naughty fruit tones such as mango or papaya,” said vom Ende. “Such fragrances are meant to incite a desire to nibble.”

The fashion house Escada in Munich has produced Pacific Paradise — a mix of lime, coconut, banana blooms and cotton candy — designed to lure customers to a beach party for the senses. Competitor Aigner is pushing an “erotic invitation for the senses”. The ladies version of Aigner Black Icedrops includes the scents of bergamot, pink grapefruit and exotic floral tones to beguile the senses. The men’s version has woody tones combined with the smell of fur and white moss.

Like the ingredients, the packaging also includes some consistency across the products. Pink is the colour of the season for the women. Like Escada and Carolina Herrera, pink is the colour of choice for the French maker Azzaro. Its Pink Tonic is packaged in pink. The fragrance, with pink grapefruit and red currant scents, is supposed to be youthful and feminine.

Another designer using pink as a sign of summer is Issey Miyake of Japan. His ladies’ fragrance for warm weather gives off the scent of roses, freesia and lily of the valley. A sprig of water mint adds a special freshness. Rosemary, coriander, musk and saffron liven up the men’s version.

On especially hot days, the designer recommends putting the spray in the refrigerator for a few hours and spraying it over the entire body if necessary.

Those who can’t get to the ocean do not have to be denied a little beach atmosphere. US designer Tommy Hilfiger and make-up expert Bobbie Brown have put iced lemon, fresh hey and water lily scents into the current version of the fragrances Tommy and Tommy Girl. Brown’s Beach Fragrance includes mandarin and jasmine to capture the cool breeze and rolling waves of the beach.