Just What Is the Difference Between Perfume, Eau de Parfum, Eau de Toilette, Cologne, and Testers?
Shopping for fragrance can be confusing at best, or overwhelming at worst. Not only are there top notes, middle notes, and bottom notes, but whole classes of scents. What’s more, once you’ve decided on a scent, another decision must be made: perfume, eau de parfum, eau de toilette or cologne?
Fragrances are available in perfume, eau de parfum, eau de toilette, or cologne form. The main differentiating factor of these is the concentration of aromatic compounds in a solvent – that is, how much fragrance is in the formula’s composition. The more actual perfume concentrate it contains, the longer the scent will last on your skin, and the more expensive the product. Following is a breakdown of these categories.
Perfume, also referred to as perfume extract, is the most concentrated formulation, and is usually the most expensive. It contains 15-30% aromatic compounds. Due to its high amount of aromatic compounds, it also tends to last the longest when applied to the skin. It is usually sold in small bottles of 1 ounce or less.
Eau de Parfum
Eau de parfum, also called eau de perfume, is the next most concentrated formula, and one of the most popular purchases. It consists of 10-15% aromatic compounds.
Eau de Toilette
Eau de toilette is also a popular choice, and is less expensive than the perfume or parfum formulations, although its scent will not last as long when applied to the skin. Eau de toilette contains 5-20% aromatic compounds.
Cologne, or Eau de Cologne
Eau de Cologne originated in Cologne, Germany. Today, it is a generic term that defines a class of scented formulations by its typical concentration of about 2-5%. Cologne products are available for either men or women, and are sometimes mistaken for aftershave, which is actually a formula containing moisturizer, an antiseptic agent, and perfume. In addition, aftershave can be a gel, lotion, or liquid.
Testers are even more discounted than the fancy boxed versions and are great if you don't have a need for the fancy box. Testers are 100% authentic, fresh and completely full just like the original fragrance, however they are meant for the counter in a department store. Testers often come in a plain white box but sometimes they do not have a cap or a box. The savings on the packaging means you save even more!
For any perfume concentration, be sure to keep the bottle tightly sealed and stored in a cool, dry place away from windows or direct sunlight or heat sources to maximize its shelf life. For best results, store opened bottles inside their boxes. Fragrances usually last three years from the date they were manufactured.
How to Pick a Fragrance For Every Season
Each season has its own feelings and emotions, and with them go different scents. While springtime is a time of rebirth, with flower blossoms and warming light, the summer season is warm and filled with flowers and green plants. Fall is more saturated, with deeper colors and scents of musk and patchouli. Winter’s cold whiteness is reflected in scents of citrus, vanilla and spice. Here are some helpful tips for choosing a fragrance for each of the four seasons.
Spring is a time of new beginnings, with the ground beginning to warm, and flower blossoms and tree buds beginning to form. Suddenly, the earth is green again, and colors begin to appear in outdoor gardens. For springtime, choose a fragrance that reflects this new awakening and feelings of joy, such as those that include notes of lily of the valley, peonies and violets.
During the long, warm days of summer, many people find themselves spending more time outdoors, celebrating holidays or just spending time with family. Choose a summer fragrance that mimics the happy, sweet, and sexy feelings of the summertime. Scents that contain sweet summer florals, such as roses and orange blossoms, mixed with fresh fruit scents like raspberry and peach can be a delightful summer fragrance. In addition, a tropical fragrance with notes of honeysuckle, island flowers, and sea salt can also be a pleasant reminder of sun-soaked days spent on the beach or vacation.
As the leaves begin to change colors and fall from the trees, the landscape turns deeper and more saturated with colors of deep reds, oranges, and browns. Fall is the time for deep, saturated and seductive fragrances, such as those containing spicy and musky notes. Look for a fragrance that contains hints of sandalwood, musk, amber, and jasmine.
Citrus and other fruity scents reflect the winter season and the holidays it brings, such as Christmas and Passover. Select a fragrance that is reminiscent of these holiday scents, such as pomegranate and vanilla bean, lemon, or orange. Spicy scents can be overpowering during the warm months but bring a warmth to the crisp winter air. Try a scent with notes of spicy cinnamon or cardamom. As the seasons change, select a fragrance that accompanies each one’s attributes.
As the seasons change, select a fragrance that accompanies each one’s attributes.
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