Recently, a gracious leader asked me to dance. We got into close hold, and the connection was lovely. But, within 3 seconds in close hold, I had to walk away from the dance. He was wearing so much cologne that I could feel my throat swelling and eyes start to water.

So, after a few moment, I pulled away from the embrace and told him the problem that I was having. It felt terrible to leave the dance, but for my health, I had to.

As someone with a sensitive respiratory system, heavy scents can ruin a night for me. This is ironic, since I have a downright terrible sense of smell. I don’t get overpowered by scent; I simply stop being able to breathe property.

If I do continue to dance through a heavy scent, my eyes start to water and my nose starts to run. This isn’t fun for me – or my partner.

Smelling (too) good

A little bit of cologne or perfume can go a long way with your dance partners. But, using too much doesn’t make you smell good. It makes you smell like your cologne or perfume broke in your suitcase.

At a minimum, overpowering scents can be unpleasant. They can also transfer on to your partner – who may not want to smell like you for the night.

At its worst, it can cause allergic reactions and breathing difficulties for some partners – especially if you do a close-hold dance.

The allergy problem

Many of your partners may be able to ‘push through’ an overscented partner. But, some can’t. Allergies and sensitivities can force them to avoid dancing with you.

Very often, these people won’t tell you why they won’t dance with you. Telling someone they use too much cologne or perfume is often not the nicest interaction to have – especially if there’s no easy way for the person to remedy the problem.

So, if you find that people tend to shy away from you, consider if maybe you’re overdoing the cologne (or underdoing the deodorant).

Why you might be a bad judge

We’re generally terrible at telling when we are wearing too much perfume or cologne. Typically, a couple short bursts is enough to smell good.

If you wear perfume or cologne regularly, you may not be able to smell the scent on yourself. This is OK; it’s better to wear good deodorant and go lighter on the scent than to overdo it.

You can also ask friends if you put on scent too strongly.

Less Offensive Scents

Some scents present more problems than others. Generally speaking, the heavier or more artificial the perfume/cologne, the worse it is. But, what is intolerable varies greatly from person to person.

Even if you find a particular scent doesn’t bother you, exercise caution. It could really bother someone else.

A full article

Typically, the idea of too much cologne or perfume would be a subsection of a larger etiquette article. But, I’ve noticed this problem is on the rise – especially at big events.

Please: manage your scent habits. Your partners will be very, very thankful.