Ten things you probably don’t know about me:
- Desserts left in the fridge after bedtime are prey and should not be suffered to live until morning
- I almost never talk politics. The discourse has become either so superficial, angry or uncivil that it is usually not worth having. As soon as any political discussion starts to have angry words, I’m out. Reasoned, civil discourse where there is disagreement is a beautiful thing, and there is nothing that is more wonderful than having a great discussion with differing points of view and nobody shouts and we all learn something.
- I love pajamas, and I collect them. Every winter sees a new favorite few pairs that I stock up on. Robes run a close second, especially the ultra-luxurious ones that are either soft and cuddly beyond belief or velvet/satin perfection.
- Back in my misspent youth, I was one of “those girls” in high school, at least the last year of high school — bit of a snob, twit and slut. Probably more than a bit.
- I firmly believe that KU will win the Orange Bowl. My husband went to Virginia Tech, and while I didn’t go to KU, I’ve been a huge fan of their basketball program forever, so tonight will be intensely competitive in this house. Who knew I needed to be a fan of their football team? I promise not to revise this once I know the outcome (which is after I’m writing this but probably before it goes live tonight)
- I have read “Pride and Prejudice” once, but I have watched both the long Colin Firth miniseries and the shorter movie countless times — embarrassing numbers of countless times. I’ve been known to turn it on in my office, and the story provides background to my day.
- “The Poseidon Adventure” is one movie I cannot pass by when I am cruising by the channels – must.watch! Well, pretty much all disaster movies and all dancing movies fit this description.
- Hermes scarves, which I used to laugh at, are now my new obsession this last year. Who knew how cute an oversized cashmere/silk blue scarf with a design from India cunningly crafted into it could be. They are works of art that you hang around your neck.
- My husband really is the love of my life and my soulmate. Not just a little, but a lot. He fits me perfectly. I’ve known him for coming up on 20 years, and I still would not change one thing about him. Even his quirks that are irritating sometimes provide me endless enjoyment. He’s the only person I know that would read me a couple of chapters from Good Omens as a bedtime story when I ask.
- I’m a 100% parfum/extrait slut.
Which brings me to the point of our post for today. We get questions from time to time from readers, and you can always send those to ask at perfumeposse dot com. We love to get them, even when we scratch our heads or sigh over having to tell you that it’s just NOT possible to get Donna Karan Chaos anywhere but eBay. From time to time we get one that seems to fit a more general category that may be of interest to many people. This one is it, and this may be a new feature if we get enough questions!
Question: Would you consider the parfum/extrait to be the essential or preferred strength for snifffing? Or is it relatively the same for most perfumes with a shorter list of those whose extrait versions are superior or at least more interesting?
I think the answer to this is going to vary on the individual, but there are some general things you can probably believe. First, my bias is as a parfum/extrait slut. I usually prefer them because I believe most are a truer reflection of what the parfumer wanted them to smell like are the truest sniff of their vision. My belief is that this is probably more true of older parfums/extraits than the newer releases, many of which do not have a parfum/extrait associated with it.
Beyond that, this is what I know/believe/have experienced about parfum/extrait:
- Each individual’s skin chemistry and tastes will affect which you prefer.
- Caron extraits are far superior to any of the edts, except Coup de Fouet, which will appeal to some tastes more than Poivre, the extrait, which has something a little richer in the base that may not work for everyone.
- Guerlain and Chanel pure parfums are always the preferred sniff. They may not wind up being the one you like to wear, but trying them in that concentration lets you know exactly what they were intended to smell like.
- Hermes and Dior have great parfums. Parfum des Merveilles is almost a completely different scent than Eau de Merveilles. 24 Faubourg is just a marvel in the parfum. Why does JCE not seem to do parfums? The Dior EDTs of Diorrissimo, Miss Dior are great on their own, but in the parfum they make the air quiver.
- Estee Lauder tends to do pretty well with their parfums, at least the older ones, though they are not as olfactorily different as the lines mentioned above. While I like the parfum of their newest tuberose gardenia, it is really just a stronger version, not significantly different.
- Chanel EDPs are pretty darn great, but their EDTs generally suck. Well, maybe in comparison only. They just have a sharpish cast to them that gets modulated in the EDP and disappear in the parfum.
- If you love a scent, it may be worth it to at least try the parfum, especially in the main lines where you can go spritz them at Bergdorf Goodman or Neiman Marcus. I remember when March and I went into Bergdorf’s Guerlain boutique for the first time, and there were allllll those Guerlain pure parfums cluttering up the place, and you could spray and spray and spray. Yowsah, that was a slice.
- If you love a scent, but think it is missing something, it may be worth it to try the parfum.
- If you hate a scent, the parfum will likely do nothing to change your mind. The Carons are the exception to this. Have heard too many stories of people hating the edt and loving the parfum. Though many Caron edts are perfectly great and work for lots of people.
- Some of the parfums are not that spendy if you get them through a discount site.
- Some parfums are worth smelling, whether or not you are a fan of the line or hate them. Guerlain Mitsouko and Jicky, Chanel No. 5.
- Parfum strength doesn’t always equate to better
- If you love the edt/edp version, don’t feel compelled to get the parfum or try it if you are perfectly content with what you have. Spending more does not, alone, improve love.
- Parfum/extraits used to be overpriced, except in today’s costy niche world when a $125 quarter-ounce bottle of Mitsouko parfum looks like a bargain next to a $300 bottle of the latest.greatest.thing.that.isnt.as.great.as.the.price.tag.
- If you have parfum/extrait, don’t horde it – wear it, woman, you can’t take it with you! It’s like spending a fortune for nice china. Yeah, it may break, but it will break your heart when you look down from the Pearly Gates and see your kids fighting over it. Or in this case, someone picking up your treasured ounce of Acacosia extrait for $28.77 on eBay.
- YMMV. That can’t be said often enough. Chemistry and tastes and tolerances for parfum smell play a huge role in whether parfum is your best choice.
Okay, that’s my two cents. Which parfums/extraits do you find to be worth pursuing, and which do you think are not worth it?