I'm just warning you Jim, once you become a part of this site, you never stop. I was once looking for #3 like you, and now I'm seeking #35.
Anyway, it seems from the list that you are at a department store, which is still my stomping ground at times, but I have personally found a more relaxed atmosphere and varied selection at beauty stores like Sephora and Ulta (or anything if your area). I believe your best bet is just to read some reviews, continue to try new things when you're out, keep making notes of what you do/don't like, and take it from there. Even if you are given the most vivid idea of what something will smell like, nothing beats using your own nose - so smell everything! I can see you are already starting to get on a roll with a good varied selection. You have come to the best place, okay maybe the only place (but we would smash the competition!) to learn about fragrances, but a lot of us casually use fragrance-specific cant here in the forums that can initially look like a foreign language, so the directory is a good place to start online. I don't know how much you have gone through it, but it has been very functional and effective at directing me towards new smells through its reviews. If you read a negative review of something, don't let that distract you from checking it out anyways, because I have found people are more likely to write about something they don't like than something they do! If I see that a fragrance is sold at a local store but I haven't tried it yet, I will check it out here in the directory, then as I read the reviews I ask myself the following:
- Does anyone mention it smelling similar to something I like?
- How long does it last, and how strong is it?
- Do I already have something similar?
- Will this type of scent work in the climate I live in?
There are more things to consider, but this is a good way to learn since you can't hang out at the fragrance counter all day. When you are finally ready to buy, there are a number of quality websites that offer great prices compared to department stores and retail outlets, and these sites have been reliably serving this B-Notes community for years.
Whew, I'm glad I got through that! Last but not least, welcome to the boards.