Knowing Perfume – Be an Informed Perfume Shopper!

Knowing Perfume – Be an Informed Perfume Shopper!

Knowing perfume. What could there possibly be to know? There is fragrance, either pleasing or not. There is price, either affordable or not. There is purpose, such as making a personal statement or attracting men, or in the case of male cologne, attracting women. If it smells good, is affordable, and accomplishes its intended purpose, what else could possibly matter?

It is a scene repeated every day of every week. A young woman walks purposefully into the cosmetics department of a retail store with the full intention of purchasing the “latest and greatest” fragrance for herself or the man in her life. As she arrives expectantly at the perfume counter she is greeted by two unexpected obstacles. Both of these obstacles give a first rate impersonation of helpfulness and support, but the reality is that they only muddy the water for our enthusiastic shopper.

The first of these obstacles is the overwhelming display of dozens of exquisitely packaged perfume products all reaching out and screaming, “Buy Me! Buy Me!” More is not necessarily better. The second obstacle, perhaps more insidious than the first, is the accommodating sales person whose knowledge of perfume may be extensive and therefore valuable, but whose information filters often begin and end with those products that have the highest markups or commissions. And that is the problem with the concept of “latest and greatest.” It is subject to interpretation.

For those in need of “knowing perfume,” let’s begin with some basic facts. How many people need to know? It is a fact that 90% of women and 70% of men wear some type of fragrance either occasionally or everyday. How much perfume is that? During the time required to read this article an average of 30 bottles of perfume will have sold worldwide. How many brands of perfume does our potential shopper have to consider? In 2009 there were over 1200 choices available in the United States with 100 new brands being added each and every year. Daunting task? Not for the shopper well-versed in the subject of “knowing perfume.”

These many choices all fall into the three main categories of perfume: Eau de Perfume, Eau de Toillette, and Eau de Cologne. These three categories are indicative of the relative amount of alcohol, water and essential oils contained in each, with Eau de Perfume possessing the highest concentration of essential oils and therefore the longest lasting and most expensive. Eau de Toilette is a middle ground selection, and is the choice of many as a daily use alternative. Eau de Cologne, on the other hand, contains a much weaker concentration of oils and is therefore the preferred choice of men.

For more information about knowing perfume, there is KnowingPerfume.org, providing the little known facts about perfume, offering reviews and helpful information about current trends and popular brands. Even links to free perfume samples. Read, learn and become an expert at “knowing perfume.”

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