The Nerdy Perfume Blog

How Has Your Perfume Collection Changed?

Current collection plus bonus shelfie.

Current collection plus bonus shelfie.

According to a piece I wrote for Perfume Posse called “How Balanced Is Your Perfume Wardrobe?”, my perfume collection consisted of 24 bottles as of June 2012. By the time I was packing up to move from Maryland to New York this October, that number had swelled to 34; 18 perfumes stand before me as I type this. (But only 17 will go on to become America’s Next Top Model.)

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2012 collection

Current collection. Lose ten perfumes in one month with this one weird trick!

Current collection. Lose ten perfumes in one month with this one weird trick!

Content-wise, my collection is a bit more personal now. I sold off most of the impulse purchases (TokyoMilks are so impulse purchase-priced, aren’t they?), and stored the vintage perfumes that I just wasn’t wearing on a regular basis. Every one of the remaining bottles is a perfume that I love and wear enough to justify its presence. As a result, I am proud to announce that my collection has gotten even more monotonous! In the Perfume Posse post, I calculated that 58% of my collection could be classified* as Orientals; that percentage is now 72%.

Do you have any regrets about how your collection has changed? I miss my bottle of Frederic Malle Lipstick Rose. I sold it because a man told me that it smelled like towels, but he was later arrested for nine counts of child pornography distribution, sooooo. Never trust a man who doesn’t like Lipstick Rose, ladies.

What are your upcoming plans for your perfume collection? Please share with us in the comments!

* Using the Michael Edwards Fragrances of the World classifications.

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31 Responses to “How Has Your Perfume Collection Changed?”

  1. klytaemnestra

    Towels? Really? Fret not, your Lipstick Rose went to the best of homes where it is adored at least once weekly–I seriously will wear it to bed b/c it reminds me of the lipsticks I wore when I was a teenager, so it has this great nostalgia factor for me, you know being the old hag I am of just shy of 30 or something.

    My perfume collection is upwards of probably 130 bottles these days–I really don’t want to count b/c then I’d have to tally up how much I’d spent collectively–and you’ll have to pry them from the clutches of my cold dead hands, but the most noticable shift in my perfume is I’ve really cut down considerably on the impulse buys, and it’s pretty neatly divided into incense or rose, sometimes both combined.

    I currently have no perfumes I’m vying after, so I imagine this incense/rose thing I’ve got going is probably going to remain fairly consistent. I seriously don’t have the time I once did to peruse perfume blogs, so the temptation is not there.

    Congrats on the surplus of orientals.

    Reply
  2. lucasai

    Oh, you’ve got 28 La Pausa and Apres L’Ondee, I love these two but Les Exclusives de Chanel are not sold in Poland (Germany is the closest) and Apres L’Ondee is probably impossible to get now online or so…
    Your collection looks nice.

    Reply
    • Ari

      Thank you so much, Lucas! What a shame the Les Exclusifs aren’t sold in Poland- they are one of the best bargains left in niche/luxury perfumery!

      Reply
      • lucasai

        I’m thinking about purchasing a bottle of 31 Rue Cambon with a help of my germany-based friend and then splitting it. Those smaller bottles look much better but I cannot aford it (75ml bottles cost as much as 1/2 of the cost of 200ml)

        Reply
  3. Charles G

    I am wondering how big I should let my perfume wardrobe grow; it’s at about 15 now, and I love collecting samples, and trying new scents, and all of that leads me to wanting to buy more and more… I keep asking myself, how many is enough? that is a difficult– and dangerous– question!

    Reply
    • Ari

      My ultra-professional opinion is that as long as you’re (mostly) staying within budget and love the things you buy, there’s no need to stop the fun yet! I think that most perfume lovers would agree that a 15 bottle collection has at least a little room to grow :)

      Almost everyone has at least one non-essential interest that they spend on; it might as well be perfume!

      Reply
  4. poodle

    My collection has grown. There are a few bottles I could get rid of. It’s hard to narrow down the bunch. It feels like I’m tossing aside a pet or something. Like, I bought this bottle and therefore I made a commitment to it and now I’m just going to give it away to the highest bidder? It’s sad but some do need to go. Storage space is at a premium. I’d really like to use up a lot of my samples actually. That’s my goal for this year. Try them, use them, or pass them on.

    Reply
    • Ari

      I think the Now Smell This freebie post is coming up this week! Maybe you would find it easier to rehome your perfume pets rather than bidding them away.

      Reply
  5. TF

    The Tokyomilks have been calling my. name but I always put them back in order to save up for something I really want. Thanks for strengthening my resolve!

    Reply
      • TF

        I can’t even remember their names, so I probably didn’t want them that badly. Right now, I would love to save up for a bottle of Hedonist or find the perfect Guerlain for me. But next up on the perfume agenda will be using some credit card rewards and coupon codes to con Sephora out of a bottle of Prada Candy. I am on a grad student budget after all!

        Reply
  6. Jennifer Counts

    TokyoMilks are impulse priced. And for that reason I own three of them that I hardly ever wear. But I go through periods where I neglect my bottles entirely because I get all like “SQUIRREL!!” and get distracted by shiny new samples. The sampling frenzy has abated for now, so I’m actually wearing the bottles I have. I made a list of the 30ml and up bottles that I own, and it’s around 20 or so (give or take since I’m going from memory and not home to look in the closet).

    Of those 20 bottles, 6 were ones that I found at Ross, TJ Maxx or Marshall’s. While on occasion those finds are incredibly successful (L de Lolita Lempicka, which I love), mostly I have ended up with things that I like well enough but probably could have done without. And for the money I spent on them, I could have bought that bottle of Idole or something else expensive that I’ve been wanting for ages. So I’m now trying to be less impulsive and save my money for the really good stuff that I always think I can’t afford until I realize that I spent that much on other stuff, just not all at once. And if I get a good deal on said good stuff, so much the better.

    Reply
    • Ari

      Jennifer, I’m so jealous that you found the L de Lolita Lempicka- it seems impossible to find in the US these days.

      Reply
      • Jennifer Counts

        I was pretty proud of that one. :D I almost passed it up because the box was a torn up mess, but I’m glad I didn’t. The only real problem with it was that the sprayer was missing, but I was able to rig it up with a spray top I pried off an empty sample vial. It’s not perfect, but it’s usable.

        Reply
  7. Laurels

    It’ll be at least another two weeks before I can spend anything on perfume, but I’m still at the stage where I’m spending more on samples than on bottles. I have a bottle of SIP Musc Botanique that I’m hoping to swap eventually, so I’m hoping to figure out what I’d like to swap it for.

    Reply
    • Ari

      I’m sure you will find a willing swapper, since SIP seems pretty hard to find these days!

      Reply
  8. australianperfumejunkies

    Heya Ari, I think we snap on 7 bottles. Not bad.
    I am currently in cull mode. Already 60 bottles have left the house and there are more to go. I found frafgs in places I’d forgotten they were put and had bought new when there were unopened boxes. I will update you when I feel like I have a manageable collection.
    Portia x

    Reply
  9. Annina

    At one time, I had about 60 perfumes, which was way too much for me. I now try to hover between 30 and 40 bottles. I’m currently at 46….

    My tastes have certainly changed. I used to be a big tuberose/jasmine/floral fan. I have since sold off almost all of my very floral perfumes. Now I’m quite attached to galbanum, narcissus, iris, oakmoss, and hay.

    The most important discovery that I’ve made about my perfume taste is that I fall in love with perfumes that do not have a very prominent note. I prefer those in which you can only maybe get peeks and hints of notes. I like them abstract and complex.

    Reply
  10. behemot

    Nice idea to store vintage perfumes and keep them separately. I will have to do the some with my stuff…
    I see “Jerusalem” on your shelf.. My favorite cookbook :)

    Reply
  11. baconbiscuit212

    Two delicious sentences left me laughing so hard that I sprayed my laptop with wine (so classy, Daisy):

    “18 perfumes stand before me as I type this. (But only 17 will go on to become America‚Äôs Next Top Model.)”

    and

    “I sold it because a man told me that it smelled like towels, but he was later arrested for nine counts of child pornography distribution, sooooo.”

    Too, too funny!

    As for my perfume collection? Yes, it has changed: more bottles! :-)

    Reply
  12. Vanessa

    My collection keeps growing, however much I vow not to buy any more bottles and to sell some off and give some away. My favourite category is also orientals, especially ‘woody’ ones, though I haven’t done the maths lately. I wish I had about 30, more carefully chosen bottles rather than 70 odd, plus tons of decants. But as for which 30, obviously I couldn’t possibly tell you! ;)

    Reply
  13. Ron Slomowicz - Notable Scents

    I am at over 175 bottles and am in the process of selling stuff off. I am going back and writing reviews of every bottle and if it isnt something that I would rebuy, I am selling it. (Kind of like the Dave Ramsey approach – would you mortgage your house to buy stocks.)

    Reading you post has inspired me to kick start it even further – so watch for “for sale” posts from me next week.

    Love your blog.

    Reply
  14. unseencenser

    I love the questions you ask – I think about them for weeks after you post them, and never respond, of course, but it’s so enjoyable.

    My perfume collection has gotten a little more stable – I’m a little better at remembering what I have in any particular categpry and not going so crazy to buy other things in that category. (I held off too long on Un Crime Exotique, thinking milky chai would be covered by other things in the collection, most notably Jungle, but that’s another story.) I’m juuuuuust starting to learn to part with things – sold a bottle of Lush Rose Jam this week because I did not like it at ALL and it was a poor blind buy. I’m hoping to be braver about parting with things that are not my FAVORITE in that category.

    Certainly I’m doing better at enjoying what I have. But I still find I mostly wear what I’ve acquired in the last year, and forget about the older stuff, unless I try to shuffle it around.

    Reply
  15. Charlotte

    My perfume collection is amazing. I used to always get random body sprays but as I have gotten older, I finally appreciate spending money on a good perfume. I used to always buy fragrances from Creed and Joe Malone, but the smell on the tester paper is DEFINITELY different than the smell that stays on your body. I didn’t even manage to get halfway through those bottles before giving them away. I was then introduced to Bond No 9′s Scent of Peace and have been wearing it ever since. I actually only buy from Bond No 9 now because all of their bottles have the same shape with different art so it looks absolutely magnificent on my shelf. I’m so impressed with my collection that buying perfume is never an obstacle. I highly recommend it to anyone!

    Reply

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