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Difference between expensive and cheap perfumes?

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  • Difference between expensive and cheap perfumes?

    Couldn't find any information in here, so thought I'd post it here.

    Anyone knows the difference between cheap, relatively brandless perfume and expensive 'branded' perfume? This question was posed to me by one of my students, and I explained that companies such as Estee Lauder spend a lot of money on marketing & advertising, hence the costs are invariably added into the price. However, is there any difference in the composition of a 'branded' perfume vs a nameless one? Some cheap scents do last rather long too!

    Any advice/information given would be greatly appreciated!

  • #2
    The essential oils content could also be an issue here. Probably expensive perfumes uses more concentrated and oils of higher purity than cheaper ones. Natural and synthetic ingredients is another factor.


    • #3
      I don't know if it's purely psychological, but once you're used to expensive perfumes, cheaper ones just smell more "artificial". Synthetic notes and accords are used in expensive perfumes, but so skilfully created you couldn't tell. For instance, I used to adore TBS White Musk as a teenager, but I find it barely tolerable now.

      Another thing is the complexity of more expensive creations. Skilled perfumers possess true craftsmanship, and it shows.


      • #4
        Cheap ones as in brandless ones? They probably smell bad after a while.


        • #5
          Other than quality of ingredients used, I think cheap perfumes have a constant smell that fade away but for expensive perfumes, the scent comes in layers:

          Top note: The first impression that you get when you first spray the perfume on. Lasts for few minutes to half an hour (?)

          Middle note: The main body of the scent

          Base note: Scent that remains after most of the perfume has evaporated away. Often musky in nature.

          Correct me if I'm wrong...


          • #6
            no actually its like a buncha chemical stuff. like cheap perfumes are full of esters which are basically like fake scents ***. they just use chemicals to obtain that scent. like you knoe those durian and rose flavourings you use in cakes etc?
            and ex ones use like extracts of flowers and all, which is the real stuff. not chemical-ised

            (: so expensive ones are better. hope i helped.


            • #7

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              • #8
                I kind of agree with Saresha. There is just someting more special about branded perfumes (at least, to me there is ). And their quality tends to be better. Also, the more reputable brands would usually use better quality and more expensive ingredients and I think it shows.

                But of course, there are a few exceptions. I have a few cheap not-branded perfumes which smell good and last quite long


                • #9
                  well some of the most expensive perfume houses in the world eg. Chanel, Jean Patou and Guerlain, use true rose absolute and jasmine essence, as well as civet and musk etc, in their fragrances. So their fragrances may be more complex.

                  Not to say that most other perfumes smell inferior as there are some fantastic synthetic substitutes out there that closely capture the essence of a flower.
                  I think the really inexpensive stuff use really cheap synthetics that don't smell anywhere near as well as the expensive substitutes. They also tend to be rather linear, and boring. A good perfume is beautifully composed and surprisingly complex.

                  Whether it lasts well or not depends as much on skin chemistry as it's concentration. Don't make the mistake of thinking a parfum should necessarily be stronger than edt/edp- it should be softer and more rounded, it will last much longer but you may get less sillage as the higher alcohol content which allows the volatiles to waft isn't there. So best to wear edt on top of parfum to get the full effect.
                  Last edited by almathea; 13-12-2005, 01:48 PM.


                  • #10
                    cheapo perfumes have a really, really strong smell of alcohol. The cheaper it is, the more choking the smell cos alcohol content is higher.


                    • #11
                      I think the big brands other than advertising fees etc. They also spent a lot in doing their research. Most would have their in house perfume creators.
                      They uses better ingredients like *** the other ladies here suggest, essential oil.

                      I think those real cheapo one is a mimick of the expensive perfume. But the smell seems go bad in a short while.


                      • #12
                        Hm, it depends.... there are a lot of no-name-perfumes I've smelled in France or Belgium that have an awesome fragrance; but these are the only cheap scents I like, most you can get for low in a drug store, for example, mostly smell like alcohol or I get sick of their extremely sweet/flowery/whatever notes....


                        • #13
                          Ferrari red is perfect for me and i love Davidoff coolwater too
                          cheap perfumes make u smell like a drunkard after a while hehe


                          • #14
                            i feel that the cheaper EDT tends to be very low in the perfume extracts so it may not last as long as the high-ended brands.

                            Another note-worthy point is that the high-end brands tend to use more expensive or natural perfume essential oils thus it will also up the costs.

                            Marketing tools like advertisments, models, freebies and paid- writeups will add on to the price too.

                            but on the hindsight, the pricey fragrances tend to give you a more complex development on the skin as well as lesser chances of allergy or staining of your clothes. Its up to indiv. choice whether to invest in a pricey bottle or a variety of lower cost bottles and indulge in changing your scent to suit your mood...



                            • #15
                     have some good points beauticonnection.

                              But sometimes, all that really matters is how the fragrance smells like. It could be the most expensive perfume in the world but if it doesn't smell good, who cares?