Warning: Scents of Self is about to live up to its description of “satisfyingly sassy”.
A perfume blogger asked this question on Twitter last week. I suspect that the answer depends on what kind of person you are. Are you the kind of person who feels that there are too many books? Are there too many adorable puppies? There are a LOT of puppies, you guys.
What do we mean when we say “there are too many perfume bloggers”? Do we mean that the newer perfume blogs are of lower quality than the originals? Because that’s laughably untrue. We all know extremely talented newer perfume bloggers, and we all know older ones who have clearly lost their passion for perfume blogging. Here’s an ugly truth: in general, the longer you have been writing, the less you have left to say. (Exception: Stephen King. Homeboy is going to keep pumping out novels long after the last great Guerlain has been reformulated.)
Furthermore, even if each and every one of the newer perfume blogs were legitimately terrible, who cares? The internet is a pretty big place, y’all! If you don’t like something, you do not have to read it. If you want to pretend that there have been no new perfume bloggers since the Holy Trinity of Now Smell This, Perfume Posse, and Perfume Smellin’ Things, it is both possible and relatively easy to do so!
I hate to say it, but I suspect that many of the people who are unhappy about the influx of new perfume bloggers may feel threatened by them. Much like Zoolander’s rivalry with Hansel, they fear that they will be replaced by the hot new thing on the block.
This is a perfectly natural way to feel. However, it is the sort of thing that you really ought to keep to yourself. Our insecurities are our own problem. It’s not right to take them out on others. Or you could always just challenge the newer perfume bloggers to a walk-off. That worked out so well for Zoolander.
Just to be obnoxious, I tried to count exactly how many perfume bloggers there actually are. I did this by searching for the phrases “perfume blog” and “perfume blogger” on Google and Twitter. I did not include any blogs that were either primarily beauty blogs (in other words, mostly focused on cosmetics and only occasionally discussed perfume) or were run by someone affiliated with any perfume company. I included everything else, even perfume blogs that were not written in English or had less than five posts.
The number I arrived at was: 67. 67 perfume blogs. Even if I egregiously miscounted and the actual number is twice that, we are still talking barely over 100 perfume blogs. That is really not very many blogs, you guys. Can you imagine what life would be like if there were only 67 books (and four of them were Twilight)?
Personally, there will never be enough perfume blogs for me. How could greater diversity of thought ever be a bad thing? I mean, how many times can we hear “I love perfume because my mother sprayed on Chanel No. 5 and Arpège before she went out at night”? I don’t know about y’all, but I’m ready for some new blood. I want to hear from a woman who began perfume blogging when she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Or a woman who blogs about perfume from a cattle farm in southwest Virginia. You know what I think? I think that there are too damn few perfume blogs.
What are your thoughts on the number of perfume blogs? In the spirit of the post, please share any younger, lesser-known perfume blogs that you believe deserve more attention!
42 thoughts on “Are There Too Many Perfume Bloggers?”
Nope, there are NOT too many perfume blogs. And I am not qualified to judge which ones are good and which are not. Or which are well written and which are not. I only know I am happy when I find a link to a new one. And I read the ones I like and well… I don’t read the ones I find wordy or boring. But my opinion may differ from someone else’s. So the more perfume blogs the merrier. Just my humble opinion.
Well, your opinion happens to be one that I wholeheartedly agree with, so I say it’s not “humble” at all! 🙂
As far as I’m concerned, people are welcome to start perfume blogs if they want. Some will attract readers, some will fade away. I wouldn’t start one, as I have nothing of value to add to the conversation. I just like reading about and discussing perfume. There is no way I can keep up with all the blogs, even on a topic I love, so I just pay regular visits to my favorites (of which yours is becoming one!). I’m always in the market for a new favorite, however, and continue to check out new or unfamiliar blogs that I hear of. If I can relate to the writer’s “voice”, I stick around.
I am so flattered, Patty, thank you! I am still a very big reader of other perfume blogs, and like you, my main criteria is the writer’s voice. If I was purely interested in perfume news, I would just read press releases! Like you said, I just don’t see the harm in a plethora of perfume blogs. The good ones will flourish, and the bad ones will be gone before you know it!
LOVE THIS POST!
Like you, I don’t think there are too many perfume blogs, in fact I think they aren’t enough of them. A lot of the beauty blogs review perfume, but many (and by no means all) don’t have the knowledge or the passion for fragrance to really do their reviews justice.
There is oodles of room for diversity, and I think each of the blogs that I read have a real distinct personality that sets them apart from the crowd. Yes there are some perfume blogs that I don’t read, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want to see more out there, and more choice of content.
As you say, the internet is mahoosive, and there is room for more people to join the party!
Exactly! Just because we don’t particularly care for a certain perfume blog, doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t have the right to exist! There are certain websites that, due to hateful or racist content, I genuinely wish could be taken down. But I can’t imagine feeling that way about a merely ho-hum or somewhat misinformed perfume blog.
I’m with Tommy: I LOVE THIS POST!
I’ll avoid the pitfall of being redundant, and leave it at that. Keep it up, Ari. You’re tops.
Thank you so much, Dee! It is an honor and a pleasure to have you as a reader!!
I don’t think there are too many perfume bloggers – I tried to count them once myself and think I found 80, but some of them may have gone quiet since, as it was a while ago!
People take up blogging for all sorts of reasons: some may simply consider it a public form of thinking out loud, while others may even prefer to keep their blogs private. And others again may wish to attract readers – anything from a handful (just to have a few sets of friendly ears to talk to) to a shedload, so they become attractive to advertisers, for example and can do that “monetising” thing. Hate the word, no problems with the concept! There is nothing wrong with any of these routes to blogging – in a recent post on this subject I said: “My answer to anyone thinking of starting a blog is *to feel the void and do it anyway*. Blog because you love to write – and if anyone reads your stuff it’s a bonus.”
I also made the point – or tried to – that if you take up blogging with a conscious wish to attract readers and stand out in the crowd (note that there is nothing wrong with a crowd, but it strikes me as a pretty big number of blogs if you were ever to attempt to read them all – I do my best to keep up with 10-15 or so! : – ) ), so IF that is your aim,
then it could be helpful to have some kind of angle or slant or “personal stamp”, so you stick in people’s minds. That could be anything that shines through your blog – from your personality or style or the subject matter you feature, not forgetting the pesky pets who post prematurely for you! : – )
The instances you cite above are perfect illustrations of what I am getting at: a woman with cattle – or a woman further north with chickens! – an artist, a lover of thrillers or demonology. There are loads of blogs out there which stick in my mind, all with their own slant of some kind, and many more permutations doubtless untapped. I would liken the blogosphere to the way TV has gone with lots of channels now – there is nothing wrong with lots of channels but if you ARE a TV channel AND you would like to be watched, it is harder to stand out in the schedules these days. In short, “if you want to get ahead, get a hook!” Or was it a hat? : – )
And if you are not actively aiming to attract readers and grow a following, then that is quite fine too – *you might just do so anyway*, but you don’t need to THINK of doing anything that might contribute to that outcome, so the above doesn’t apply.
Yours and the Candy Perfume Boy’s blogs are two examples of entertaining and distinctive voices that I have noticed in recent months, though I know you have been around for over 2 years – does that count as old or new?
And I wasn’t even aware that “many” people *are* unhappy about the number of perfume blogs. I think there may have been a bit of Chinese whispers and the odd crossed wire at work somewhere….
Speaking of new perfume blogs: Vanessa’s most recent articles should be required reading for anyone thinking of starting a perfume blog!!!
Thank you so much for your kind words about my writing having a distinctive voice- I have worked hard to develop it. This blog has been around for between 2 and 3 years now, which is why I felt that I was in an appropriate position to write this. I am older than some, newer than others.
I admit that I don’t know how many people are unhappy with the number of perfume blogs! The question was posed by perfume blogger Olfactorama on Twitter, and I wanted to do my best to answer it.
I really only read this blog & NST and honestly … I read this one more consistently. I had thought of starting a perfume blog, but I get lazy & bored way too easily to remain consistent in updating. If people want to start one up, more power to them. I don’t understand why anyone would complain unless they’re just being snotty about sharing their sandbox.
STAY THE HELL OUT OF MY SANDBOX
See at first I was thinking of spoiled children, but cats are even funnier. Excuse me while I scratch around in here for a moment. Because really what’s better than territorial cats?
this sub-thread rocks. lol
I didn’t realize that anyone within the community thought there were too many perfume blogs. Where have I been? I feel that we all have a niche within our niche.
And what defines a “young” perfume blog? A blog that is less than a year old? One that is 2 years old? I think there are many great ones out there regardless of age. I haven’t noticed any “geriatric” 😉 perfume blogs losing their voice? I read who I like -who entertains or educates me. It’s all about having fun and loving perfume.
It really should be all about fun in the end. Like I said, this is nobody’s job. Perfume blogging is a hobby, and the whole point of a hobby is to be an enjoyable, non-streesful activity.
I’m not sure where I would draw the young/geriatric line! Any blog over three years old seems “established” to me (I am not quite there yet myself!)
Yes, there’s the age of the blog – 3 years sounds like as good an arbitrary figure as any to choose! – and the time you discovered it. In the last year I discovered yours, Undina’s, Anotherperfumeblog, Tommy’s and the wonderful From Pyrgos. Yes, as you have said yourself, he is under the radar a bit and shouldn’t be. So all those blogs feel “new” to me, but of course may be nothing of the kind.
Going back to my TV analogy, keep Zelda on side (crucial but tricky given the modelling fee issue…), and you could be shaping up to be the Downton Abbey of perfume blogs! With less standing on ceremony, more jokes, and more modern telephony systems and sanitary fixtures.
I still haven’t gotten the chance to see Downtown Abbey! So I’m not quite sure- is this a compliment???
I have not seen Downton Abbey either, but it has captured the nation’s attention, certainly!
: – )
Oh, and yes, that was a compliment…!
In the context of spoken/written language— I think I’m getting much more used to the reading— although sometimes I get myself in a mess with the words, whatever they be…
But I still prefer reading blogs in English, primarily because I just only know A COUPLE of very good blogs about Perfume topic in spanish (there’s excellent blogs about other things, but not about perfume)… and second, because it’s challenging.
I don’t think there are too many perfume bloggers, but I must admit I can’t afford to pay the careful attention that all of them deserves: to read every worthwhile to say from them and to take enough time to leave enough thoughtful comments!!!!! I believe, its because English to me is still an alien language and although it’s more fluid each day, that’s why its more difficult to me.
But keep on writing!!! I have a well-meaning envy (an envy that provokes people to try to emulate someone who is more accomplished) of you all!
I don’t think I’ve seen anyone be too, too snarky to newbie perfume bloggers – but maybe I’m missing something. I do think that fresh blood is a good thing because sadly, as with any project in life, on the internet or otherwise, there is a burnout factor with blogging. A few of the blogs I started reading when I first started exploring perfumes no longer seem as vital as they perhaps once were… I can’t read more than around 15 perfume blogs given the hours I have in the day, but I try to spruce up my list from time to time to read new things and new perspectives.
The idea of Perfume Blogging Hipsters actually does make me giggle. Who really does have the right or the place to say that there are too many perfume blogs? By the same token too many cute kitties, too many musicians, too many kids of legumes, too many wineries, too many songs, too many surgeons, (forget perfume blogs) too many perfumes? In the wise, wise words of Gossip Girl’s Cyrus Rose, “Not enough!”
I can speak as to why I started my blog: I like perfume and I like to write. It’s been the first time in quite awhile that I have had the time to devote to a passion of mine that wasn’t really 100% tied with school.
Can it perhaps be said that I have a biased view on the perfume world due to my job at Lush? Well, maybe… (Although the amount of time I spend on perfume at my actual job, is honestly about 15%) I get zero compensation if I blog about Lush fragrances, and I think there are all of three people at my job that know about my blog. If someone believes that an issue, then I guess also because I studied clarinet performance in school – I have lost the right to talk about any other kind of music. I should just shut up and only play the clarinet.
Sorry – I’m cranky today – it’s the stomach bug. :-\
There are so many of us out there with distinct voices. Some days I’m in more of the mood for some bloggers writings over others; and some days I like yellow mustard and some days I like brown mustard. After all, isn’t variety the spice of life?
My final take: Don’t take it all so seriously. To me perfume is fun, whimsical, evocative and is something that’s supposed to enhance our lives. Take some time to smell the other blogger’s “roses”, enjoy, and tend to you own garden of personal thoughts. (Pretty sure that’s my fever making questionable analogies.)
Are there too many perfume blogs? No.
Are there too many cats on this blog? Yes. 🙂
If you are going to throw something at me, please let it be a bottle of vintage juice of one of the following: L’Heure Bleue, Mitsouko, Patou Pour Homme or Derby.
Have you tried spraying your cat with perfume, and if so, which one did it like?
Willread, in fairness it is mostly *the same cat*………. ; – ) ; – )
Ooh, you’re lucky the cat can’t get her paws on you!! And that I don’t have vintage bottles of any of those to throw!
I’ve never tried spraying the cat with perfume, although my housemate does accidentally hose her down with Febreze from time to time. Then she smells disturbingly like Cartier Baiser Vole.
I agree with you, too, Ari. I’ve read several direct comments dissing certain perfume bloggers or categories of bloggers lately, and to be honest I just don’t have time for those kinds of shenanigans. Like you, I read some of the comments as being a bit territorial. And as my grandma always said: It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.
Your grandma sounds like a terribly wise woman, Natalie! I used to think that all grandmas were automatically lovely, until I met the living incarnation of Emily Gilmore.
I don’t have a perfume blog – so it’s not like I am defending my own little territory when I say that yes, there are too many perfume blogs in the same way there are too many perfume launches.
Choice is always a good thing, but when I feel overwhelmend by the number of meaningless things to smell/read I just turn to the trustworthy houses/voices…and it is a pity, in a certain sense.
As you say, I can decide not to read, and that’s what I often do.
Sometimes, I make a trip through the ever-expanding perfume blogosphere and discover new interesting voices or laugh out loud at some bloggers, at their attemps to get on the map, at the mediocre reviews.
What makes me positively snarky is the attititude of the nouveau critics: chypre becomes a subjective adjective (citrus+moss = chypre???No, my dear), definitions and stories bounce from one blog to another without anyone actually double-checking.
Just as I am not obliged to read, people are not obliged to write either.
An army of perfume lovers might run their blog, but if they are not able to write, to do their homework, to accept criticism, they’ve chosen the wrong hobby IMO.
Crochet is so exciting. 😛
Crochet is way beyond me! I bought a “crochet your own cat toys” set and it is so far beyond me that I can’t even handle it.
I do not feel that the number of perfume blogs is quite as bad as the excess of perfume launches, especially because new perfume blogs are not as wasteful and harmful to the environment! But I certainly understand your viewpoint, and perfume blogs absolutely need to be able to take criticism. It is unfortunate that, thanks to the anonymity provided by the internet, the criticism is often less constructive and more “this blog sux i hate u ok bai”!
First, Sir Tom’s use of the word “mahoosive” deserves major props. People, THAT is a writer. 😉
Second, I concur with the general theme: too much? No comprende.
When it comes to something like product reviews (that is essentially what most perfume blog posts are) I welcome more-More-MORE. How could it be detrimental to have more opinions to read, to better inform you? Plus, true perfumistas just love reading about The Juice.
I have to say that I’ve never really heard anyone complain about too much information being available before! I very much doubt that this happens among technology blogs, for example.
In information & viewpoint sharing, just as in any natural ecosystem, diversity is beautiful.
A very interesting topic and I concur with you, Ari particularly in your response to Zazie (“I do not feel that the number of perfume blogs is quite as bad as the excess of perfume launches, especially because new perfume blogs are not as wasteful and harmful to the environment”) – the internet is a large place and we can choose what to read and what to ignore…so why would there ever be too much?
Each perfume blogger has their own voice, so we simply choose the ones that we identify most with (whether that stays the same or changes from day to day.) I’m always part of ‘the more, the merrier’ school of thought when it comes to sharing opinions.
Funny, these days I’m thinking about starting one myself, but I am not convinced.
Had done my required reading though (Vanessa’s article), so I guess I’m on my way 🙂
I’ve seen a lot of snarky comments lately about perfume bloggers, and I wonder whether it’s some kind of backwash from all the recent brouhaha over fashion bloggers and their so-called “impartiality”, complete with kickbacks, swag and being paid for personal appearances. A total moot point in this case, since most of the blogs I read and love are not ‘monetized’.
Do I think there are too many? No, since I dare say the internet is big enough for all of us. The ones I read and love to read are the ones that communicate a personal passion, and evoke something of the unique personality behind it.
Back in the day, I only started my own as an outlet for my girlie sensibilities, since I was buried in (fictional) testosterone at the time, and it was a bit…much. 😉 I never in my wildest dreams expected it to take off at all, but it did, I did, and who knows what possibilities may happen?
Since then, I’m floored not only that I even have readers to begin with, but that I’ve been so incredibly lucky to find so many friends among my fellow bloggers that have made so many things possible – new discoveries, new blogs and new connections. My life has changed forever because of it – and for the better! 🙂
But best of all – is never running out of reading material on one very favorite subject! Ari – that means YOU, too! ❤
It’s kind of a weird thing. If you go to a Sniffapalooza and ask at lunch how many people in the room blog, more than half? raise their hand. But I don’t know or can’t find the perfume blogs of almost any of them. A small handful of the bloggers at Sniffa are surprisingly humorless people, refusing to share seats and scrabbling for samples. Are there too many of those people in the world? Surely even two is too many.
But most perfume bloggers aren’t like that, of course, at Sniffa or anywhere else. They aren’t trying to get rich or famous fast with perfume blogging. I’ve been reading perfume blogs for four? years and I’m just starting to get a handle on many of them outside of NST and the Posse. And in a given day, I run out of things to read before I’d like to. So I’d say no, there aren’t enough perfume blogs in the world.
Also, you are adorable and there cannot be too many pictures of your cat. Or Bobble-Head Kirk holding mascara.
I donot agree with you if you have interest and knowledge about perfumes and fragrances and you think hat you can give your reader a great stuff, which interesting and also make them able to choice better than why not.
When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is
added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any way you
can remove people from that service? Cheers!
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