When people like the way a product smells, they’re more prone to buy it. That’s why beauty companies are creating shampoos, conditioners and other hair care treatments that smell suspiciously like ritzy perfumes, reported the New York Times in a recent “Fashion & Style” section article.

According to the Times, beauty companies that create luxury hair-care brands in particular want an edge to differentiate and distinguish their products from the stuff available to consumers in drugstores and supermarkets. Now, shampoos, conditioners, hair oils, creams, lotions and the like may have woodsy bottom notes or musky top notes. At one time, these descriptions of scent were usually associated only with high-end fragrances.

In addition, years ago, hair cleansers and conditioners boasted more fruity scents, such as the apple or pear fragrances found in hair care lines such as Herbal Essences. But fruit-fragranced hair products no longer pack the marketing punch they once did. People want what they use on their hair to add to their status, say beauty marketing experts.

One product is a hair perfume meant to be sprayed on tresses. The “decadent-smelling” fragrance is part of a collection called Show Beauty that debuted last month at Bergdorf Goodman, a high-end department store in New York City. Then, there’s Black Orchid Luminous Hair Perfume, by designer Tom Ford, among other entrants in a heady field that includes Angel Perfuming Hair Mist by Thierry Mugler, Oribe’s Côte d’Azur Hair Refresher and Serge Normant’s Avah perfume for hair and skin.

Still, whether the trend will pass the smell test has yet to be seen. The olfactory sense is one of the body’s most sensitive and can influence our memories, affect our mood and even help us survive.

This means, companies who tamper with this magical chemistry will have to know exactly what they’re doing when they infuse hair care products with scent. “You want just a hint of something personal,” said Serge Normant. “The last thing you would want is to give people a headache.”

As we age, our sense of smell often weakens. Click here to read more.