Monday Question – Do You Always Fall For The Same Perfume?

Do you tend to go for the same type of fragrance time and again?

Is your perfume closet filled with similar scents?

Are you a particular perfume type?

Orientals only? Green queen? Chypre champion? Floral fan or even  AldeHo?

Or do you like to branch out and diversify?

My Answer:

I used to be very particular in what I liked and my (then very small) collection was a testimony of my favorite category – ambery orientals.

But blogging put an end to being one-sided once and for all.

I learned to sniff outside the box and appreciate perfumes I was positive I hated previously. Not because I have to blog, of course, but because I grew curious.

My proclivity to explore a line in its entirety, led me to many different genres and types of scents and I found something to love (and there are still quite a few left to hate or ignore) in every category.

The perfumes I did a 180 on are numerous and they still prosper. 🙂

How about you?


About Olfactoria

I'm on a journey through the world of fragrance - come with me!
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69 Responses to Monday Question – Do You Always Fall For The Same Perfume?

  1. Guilty! I used to steer clear of perfume altogether because all I smelled were the samples in magazines – yuk. Now I have discovered niche and naturals I am hooked – and guilty again! I tend to go for woody, spicy, chypre and fougere scents, and avoid florals and gourmands – more of a masculine bent really. Come to think of it those were the scents I always liked when I was younger – Brut, Old Spice, Paco Rabanne, Gucci Pour Homme.
    I am coming round to gourmand a bit (Mandy Aftels ‘Fig’, wow!), but still need to find a floral I really like – although I adore the smell of flowers!
    If I could just afford to smell a bit more….

  2. civava says:

    I was only florientals before perfume mania hit me. Now I tend to explore the whole line if possible. That way I discovered some things I like, but would have never found them if I hadn’t had tried them. There are sometimes such pleasant surprises it would be so sad to miss. Of course there are some bad things too. But I forget them quite quickly. Fortunately ;-).

    • Olfactoria says:

      Exploring an entire line is so helpful in finding new and interesting scents, one would have dismissed otherwise. And being pleasantly surprised is the best feeling! 🙂

  3. andrea says:

    Before I discovered perfume land all mine were pretty much the same pleasing bland perfume that you can buy anywhere, once I discovered niche, a whole world opened up to me, I started out quite floral but my wardrobe was built up by trying to find something that was different to the other perfumes I already had.
    My problem was that my mind was not open to notes that I had convinced myself I hated in all forms, I had never liked oud till I found MdO, I had dismissed Amber until I found some gentler Ambers, I had never liked Tuberose until I found By Kilian.
    I have yet to find a leather or a lavender that I like but I know that eventually I will find the one for me as my mind is now open. 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      I was the same. I dismissed whole categories out of hand on some halfbaked idea that I didn’t like them. But we live and learn… 🙂
      Some great lavender ideas: Kilian A Taste of Heaven, Xerjoff Esquel, Vero Produmo Kiki, and the nicest leather ever is Guerlain Cuir Beluga (possibly for not really smelling like leather 😉 ).

      • andrea says:

        Yay, I have a taste of heaven as a sample, I have only quickly smelt it but was not obviously lavender, I will smell further tonight.
        Funny how so many of us have halfbaked ideas that we don’t like something before we have even tried it, my son tells me he does not like brussell sprouts but I have never seen him eat one.
        Thanks for the list, I will seek these out and try them, Nearest to leather that I liked was Bottega Veneta but again possibly for not smelling like leather, more suede. 🙂

    • Alnysie says:

      Ooh… Can I ask what are your gentler ambers?

    • Connie says:

      Caron Pour Un Homme smells a lot like the By Kilian (but tons cheaper). My favorite lavenders are the Hermessence Brin de Reglisse and PG’s DjHenne. Happy smelling!

  4. Tara says:

    As you know, I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately! I really tried to resist buying a FB of Bottega Veneta because I’m all set when it comes to modern chypres. I failed! It’s not terrible to have several perfumes of the same type – you know what you love. But I would like to have a nice diverse collection which gives me lots of different options. It’s also fun to discover new categories of fragrance and find one that’s for you. Plus I think I can better justify the purchase if I’m buying something I don’t already have 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      It is surely easier to justify filling a gap. 🙂
      But don’t beat yourself up for buying Bottega Veneta, it is beautiful and a positive bargain compared to others in that category.

  5. Lila says:

    I would say I am quite catholic in my tastes, but it depends on what mood I am in:
    Citrus or lavenders – such a great way to start any morning
    Orientals – sometimes for the evening, sometimes I just spend a lot of time sniffing out of the bottle or put them on a scarf.
    Chypre – most likely when I’m going out and have turned the glam on
    Florals – I keep returning to them, especially rose…
    Leather – Yes, yes, yes and I’m so glad you’ve written about Guerlain Cuir Beluga, another one I’ve yet to try…
    Green – Always steer clear of this category, just not me (with exception of Chanel No. 19)

  6. Alexandra says:

    I definitely do have a perfume type: I love oriental ambers and oriental vanillas (one day I will sniff Shalimar Ode a la Vanille), and the majority of my perfumes fall in this area. This really isn’t a problem at the moment, I love winter and will luxuriate in my warm snugly scents. However I am resolved to be more adventurous come the spring/summer, and as a relative newbie I am aware that my taste is changing almost daily (oudh can be wonderful – who knew?!). At the moment I appear to be developing a taste for violets, is there an oriental violet that could ease me into this more floral direction?

    Thank you for your blog Olfactoria, I keep it as a treat for my morning coffee break.

  7. Juraj says:

    As we are getting older, throughout the years, I believe that we change our taste in perfumes. Our olfactory experience is changing, that is connected with our personality. My fragrance wardrobe is currently made of similar scents, yes 🙂 Answer is that I like to try occasionally something different, but what is most interesting, when i step into perfume shop, I always try perfumes which I have tried for 238972 times 😀 😀


    • Olfactoria says:

      It is so comforting to go for what is familiar, I know the feeling! 🙂

      P.S. Juraj, your website is automatically linked when one clicks on your name (as long as you provide it when commenting). If you add a separate link, your comment is often automatically flagged as spam by WordPress and I don’t see it immediately.

  8. vanessa says:

    When I got into this hobby four years ago I started out as a florientalgirl – indeed that remains my ID on Makeualley if anyone reading could help me out with my “albatross rehoming programme”! – but I have dabbled in most fragrance categories now. My heart still belongs to orientals, if you had to restrict me to one family, but I can enjoy so much more variety now. I haven’t yet come round to kitchen sink perfumes, mind – things that have waaay too much going on – really thick and opulent ambery, spicy, fruity, animalic, leather chypres, for example. Okay, I exaggerate, but you get the idea. I have recently done a 180 on Puredistance Antonia (I thought it too green and bitter initially, now I love its ambery-vanilla warmth) and Amouage Lyric (how could I ever have thought it just smelt of curry powder?), so never say never with me, I guess!

  9. lady jane grey says:

    Well, generally I’m a “resionous”, amber, or citrus type. In the past I respected Iris, but never wanted it – and then few months ago I suddenly just clicked with some Iris scents. So when I say I can’t stand white florals, or pink fruity/sugared gourmands it could be a timely limited thing…
    Incense is not mine either, but again, I respect it – I just don’t wear it (yet… – although, what’s with Dzonghka?!)

  10. Persolaise says:

    Hmm… I like to think that my collection showcases quite a wide variety of scents, but I suppose I’d have to acknowledge that, say, green scents aren’t especially well represented. But then, having said that, I love and often wear Herba Fresca.

    There also isn’t a huge amount of colognes and definitely not many gourmand-y concoctions, although I have nothing against these two per se. What do I tend to fall for? Anything unusual. Anything distinctive. Anything that’s capable of having a conversation without me throughout the course of a morning or an evening. I guess this translates into scents that tend to be heavy, rich and woody/oriental. But then this won’t come as a surprise to you 😉

  11. malsnano86 says:

    Oh, I think each person is drawn to a category or two – and there’s nothing wrong with that, really! In my youth, I was always disposed to like white florals and floral orientals, as well as very-floral chypres. Since getting interested in perfume for its own sake, I have explored at least three or four scents in all the categories I can think of, expanding my boundaries at least to some degree.

    I still don’t care much for resiny orientals, lavender at a certain concentration gives me stonking headaches, and bitter green chypres make me feel hunted. Citrus I tend to find boring, and cologne even more so. Dry woody scents and herbal scents don’t excite me. Incense I like, but not if it’s very dry. There are a few gourmands I enjoy, though I tend to consider them “just for fun” fragrances, something to wear at home with the shapeless cozy sweater and fluffy socks rather than serious scents. I’m still drawn to florals of all stripes: green, aldehydic, oriental, chypre, incense, woody, musky, white, mixed… If there’s a strong floral component, I’m probably happiest with that sort of thing.

    The one category that I absolutely will not wear is fougere. It feels like wearing men’s Y-front undies, and I’m simply not comfortable with that. You ladies who like wearing them, well – more power to you, and I’d be happy to smell you. I just can’t do it myself. I love florals on men, too. I always feel a little defensive about my preferences, which skew pretty girly from the perfumista standpoint. But everyone has their own preferences, and I don’t see a need to be ashamed of mine.

    • Olfactoria says:

      Of course not! No need to be ashamed and nothing wrong with preferring a particular category. As you say, we all have our preferences. And yours are lovely! 🙂

      • malsnano86 says:

        I don’t let my preferences stop me from sniffing something (though they do often stop me from *buying* certain samples!). I’m perfectly happy to say, Hey, that’s probably not going to be my thing, but let me give it an honest try anyway.

        Case in point: Dee’s darling Memoir. Should NOT be my type of scent at all… but I tried it nonetheless, and it fascinates me.

        • Olfactoria says:

          It is really interesting to imagine you in Memoir. From what I gleaned of your tastes from your writings, I guess that it is quite a departure. In any case, I love that you love it! 🙂

  12. deeHowe says:

    I’m a Category-Ho!

    I find it hard to believe that I entered perfumista-dom hating gourmands, since they now represent a hefty percentage in the cabinet… I especially love the odd-ball vanillas! And the spicy peppers, and savory curries 😉

    It was roses that brought me into the fold, but the amber-orientals that became my instant favorite, followed by greens, then all the merry rest of them 🙂 I feel like I have a scent to meet my every mood, and my so-called “signature” is a weird combo of oriental-green (Memoir). With a few more recent discoveries, I’ve learned that I love Chypre too (chewing my lip at the thought of a bottle of Unspoken EDP). I cannot imagine limiting myself to just one category!

  13. I definitely do go gaga for a good gourmand or a floral but I think my tastes are quite eclectic. I do like strength and presence from my fragrances though, that is definitely a recurring theme.

    Like you say, blogging puts and end to being one sided!

    • Olfactoria says:

      No Hermessences for you then… 😉

      I love how blogging opens new ways of appreciating perfume. You have to tackle them all, but you don’t have to love them all.

  14. Sugandaraja says:

    There’s a bit of a discrepency between ”what I think is good” and ”what I like to wear”. For example, I find Memoir Man a compelling scent, but I’d far rather wear ( the admittedly light-hearted and unoriginal ) Santa Maria Novella Magnolia any day.

    I’m a sucker for big white florals, primarily niche ones, but I slum, too. I must confess when it comes to new designer releases, I ‘d rather wear blousy stuff like Elie Saab or whatever the latest J’Adore flanker is called ( J’Adore S’more? ) than the gourmands ( Prada Candy made me gag ) or the robo-cedar freshies on the men’s side ( typically dreadful stuff with ”sport” in their name ).

    It’s quite hard for me to own too many tuberoses, though I think I’d be happy with the trio of Gandhara – Sarrasins – Love & Tears as my jasmine collection. I like chypres, but I rarely feel motivated to own a full bottle ( certain rose-laden things like L’Arte di Gucci aside ), and I find most fougeres too crass or too staid ( yes, I’m picky ). Woody, incense-heavy fragrances don’t get a lot of love from me in general, with the great big exception of File En Aiguilles being an all-time favorite scent.

    In short, it’s easy to win my heart with flowers ( even flowers mixed with other ingredients ), but very hard to win me over with other notes, especially if it’s a solo act ( like the numerous oud, patchouli, and vetiver ”soliflores” of recent years ).

  15. carla says:

    Yes, i have four different “rose ouds” and lots of decants of very much the same- dark roses….

  16. Lavanya says:

    I am sure there must be patterns but I can’t pick any particular category that I prefer..(Nowadays), I seem to gravitate toward rich and earthy/spicy perfumes..5/6 years ago, when I began my foray into perfume land I seemed to like perfumes which had a dominant white floral note, then after I opened my mind to roses because the husband loves roses (I still don’t love straight up roses- though I am kind of liking By Kilian’s Dangerous Liaisions), I started falling in love with dirty/earthy/spicy/oudhy roses. More recently I realized I love rich chypres. Now, there doesn’t seem to be any one category, more certain sensibilities that seem to ‘pull’ me..:).
    It is funny, because as long as I can remember I’ve been wanting to find a perfume that evokes tuberoses. After extensive searches there are only two tuberose soliflores that i love and I realize that I actually don’t really love a dominant tuberose note in perfume- like the kind in Beyond Love and most tuberose perfumes. I do love the note paired with ‘winter-greenish’ notes to highlight its cool aspect (as in Carnal Flower and Tubereuse Criminelle).

  17. Undina says:

    While I was still a “regular consumer” most of my perfumes were florals. In the last 18 months my tastes widened, I’ve added to my collection many oriental and woody perfumes.

    I think I do have a tendency to keep going for the hundredth version of my perfume version of a “little black dress” but I’m trying to fight that and be more “out of the box”.

  18. Joe says:

    My collection is so diverse, it’s not even funny. Which is to say, it’s so large that it’s actually scary. More in terms of the number of decants than full bottles, but still.

    I have favorite categories and favorite notes, but I also love the odd, the unusual, the complex, the perplexing. Some categories may be overrepresented (iris, woods, greens) and others not as well represented (aldehydes, fruity florals). Above all, I like to get my nose into anything and everything. It’s exciting.

  19. dremybluz says:

    My collection is diverse in that it has a little bit of everything though the majority of the collection is based on sweet, musky, oriental, vanilla, amber and floral. I also prefer fragrances that have plenty of punch. Unfortunately I have to admit that I am a great lover of Angel, Poison, and Tabu.
    I am always experimenting with layering fragrances. I found that by layering, I can add missing notes to certain perfumes that are on my not so favorite list. Be proud of what you like and what smells good on you–even if it isn’t the norm for most. In the end, make yourself happy with your perfume journeys.

  20. Joan says:

    I tend to wear very sweet, bold scents, featuring any note.

    I tend to gravitate towards the tuberose/jasmine variety, like Fracas and Joy. Sometimes I wear musty chypres like Mitsouko or Aromatics Elixir. I also like big leathers, like Patchouli 24 and Cuir Venenum.

    I also wear weird scents like Dzing! and Vanilia. Occasionally I’ll mix it up with a clean scent like White Linen. But generally, the more it stands out, the more likely I am to wear it.

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