Rollerball Monday: Hey, wasn’t that a movie?

rollerball Aya BluOn a recent retail expedition, I was kind of looking around, doing some investigative shopping; you know, before the holiday crush descends on us with a vengeance. And I noticed that there was a plethora of rollerballs out there.

I didn’t even begin to count the ones I saw, but I did look on the Internet, out of curiosity. On the Ulta site, there are 92 listed. On Nordstrom, around 50, taking into account gift set duplicates. And, drumroll please: No less than 374 on Sephora’s Web site. Whew — that’s a lot of rollerballs!

In my own personal collection, I only have a few. Mostly the cute little Tom Ford ones that Neiman Marcus gave out as GWPs years ago when the line was pretty new (Noir de Noir, Japon Noir, White Suede, etc.) and an Aerin Lauder Mediterranean Honeysuckle one. Also a couple of others that I can’t think of right now. Oh, wait — I do have one of Aya Blu, the Soft Surroundings scent that I tend to think of as Tom Ford Black Orchid Lite.

I really like this fragrance format: In the interest of more intimate sillage, non-spillage and portability, it’s hard to beat a rollerball. Especially for those powerhouse frags that tend to have way too much oomph when sprayed. The roll-on application makes it considerably less overwhelming and takes the scent down a notch or two in intensity. An added bonus: as they tend to be less spendy, they make great gifts or stocking stuffers without breaking the bank as much.

I know it might be hard to find your particular scent love in this format, so I was so glad to see that Surrender to Chance offers a 5 ml rollerball size on most of its sample offerings.

Are you a rollerball fan? If so, what are your faves?

  • teresa says:

    I like them in theory (small size, relatively inexpensive) but rarely reach for the ones I have…I like when a fragrance comes in the small size but as a “pen spray.”  I’m fearful of breakage, as one of the commenters said and I also expect they become contaminated , not with germs but with skin cells…yuck!

  • rosarita says:

    I’m ok with a rollerball, esp when it’s the cheapest version of something, but I’ve never understood the long skinny bottle design – it’s too fragile for something portable and it doesn’t usually fit in my purse makeup bag. If they were shorter and stout (ie stronger) they would be more desirable to me. I only have a couple, Kate Walsh Boyfriend being my favorite as that wears close to the skin anyway.

  • Jennifer S says:

    I like and own rollerballs. My nose is very sensitive so I prefer using these for stronger scents where I can control the amount applied. I have an Armani Si, a D&G Dolce Garden and one for Fracas off the top of my head and if I bought say, Replica By the Fireplace, it would most definitely be in rollerball form!

  • Dina C. says:

    I think I have two: L’Artisan La Chasse, which I bought at Sephora a few years ago, and Pacifica French Lilac, which I might have bought at Ulta. Since both are light florals that don’t last a long time on my skin, this method of application is disappointing. I much prefer a spray. 

  • wow!  the number of people on here who do not like rollerballs!  Add me to the list, alas.  I don’t like the ‘idea’, seems a bit like drinking out of a carton in the fridge (rather than decanting into a glass).  We’re all shedding like lima beans, every nanosecond of the day – I fully expect to see a nice collection of skin flakes at the bottom of that little bottle!



  • March says:

    Heh, I guess I’m with the rest of the folks….. in theory I like roller balls because it allows you to try a fragrance out.  In practice, they don’t give me the sillage I want, which is why I always get atomizers when given the chance.  I’m thinking, and I don’t think I have a single roller ball, which surprises me.

  • Shiva-woman says:

    Not a roller ball fan. I have a lot of Solstice Scents in this format and I pour them into 5 ml spritzer with perfumer’s alcohol.  I know.  The horror.  It works great. The scent is stronger, longer, more complex. Do. Not. Like. Rollerballs.

  • Portia Turbo says:

    Hey Ann,

    I’ve had some rollerballs. L’Artisan did a few some time ago and Atelier Cologne too. I do like having smaller amounts of perfumes, especially good for travelling. I’m mostly a spritzer though so if they are offering same size with a choice I’ll always pick the atomiser.Portia xx

  • MMKinPA says:

    I never reach for my rollerballs- but I don’t have any with those potent scents – I think I would use them for that type of scent.  For something average, I vastly prefer the travel sprays. Haven’t bought a rollerball in ages. 

  • Maggiecat says:

    I like the size, price, portability of roller balls but I’d prefer a spray in the same size.  Still, I own a number of them, so apparently it’s not a strong preference. ?

  • Gina T says:

    I don’t like rollerballs. I only buy them when another format is not offered in a small size. I prefer spray all day long. My most recent rollerball was a set by Kindred Spirits from Old Navy because I wanted to try some of the winter scents without buying a full bottle.