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  1. #1

    Default How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    Last summer I got some free samples of cologne. When I tried one of them on my neck a few weeks ago, I ended up with a rash the next day from it.

    I think maybe that cologne might have gone bad?

    I think the samples might have been very old.

    Last summer I originally went in the morning to buy a bottle of Tommy for Men. The salesman promoted a "Tommy Summer Set" to me instead. I was very skeptical of this but he assured me multiple times that the Tommy Summer bottle was an identical fragrance to Tommy for Men and even sprayed the Tommy for Men tester on me and told me that is exactly what I was getting. It was ~10 bucks cheaper and came with a bodywash too, so I figured ok since he's sure, I'll buy it.

    Then when I got home and sprayed it, I knew it wasn't right. So I called the Tommy company and they told me the cologne is outsourced to Aramis. So I called Aramis and they told me that "if it has a different name, it's a different fragrance". They told me they thought the salesman was just trying to make a sale, and offered to refund the price I paid for what I bought if the store didn't. I was very impressed by Aramis because I didn't even have to argue with them about that at all, and it wasn't really their fault.

    I'm also curious to know if the salesman had a financial interest to hawk the Summer set instead of the more-expensive regular cologne? Wouldn't he get more money from the sale of the more-expensive one?

    Anyhow, I went back to the store that afternoon, and told the salesman everything that happened. He told me that he was just telling me what the people who present the cologne tell him to do: claiming that she said promote the Summer set to the customers because it's a better deal and an identical fragrance. He told me he didnt' mislead me on purpose, and he's glad I found out the truth because now they won't do that to other customers any more (not sure if I bought that line).

    He offered to give me a refund, but then he wanted to keep the money in the store so he was like "I still have the cologne you originally came for" and I was peeved at the ordeal so I said "Is that going to be cheaper?" in a somewhat angry way. That's when he knew he'd lose the sale, so he said: "It's about 10 dollars more, but we have a promotion, I can give you a Tommy duffel bag too." So I asked to see it and then he brought it to me and I bought the cologne from him since I was gonna buy it from the store down the street anyways but wouldn't have got a bag if I did that. He also gave me a bunch of free samples of other colognes, including the one that gave me a rash.

    The leather doohickey thingy that was attached to the zipper of the bag broke off after about a month. So I went back to the store trying to exchange the bag, and a different sales lady was there. She told me she didn't have any more of those bags, and they were a promotional item from Father's Day 2007 (I got my bag from the store in July or August 2008).

    Which brings me back to my original point...I realized that the bag must have been sitting there in their drawer for years just stagnating until they needed to use it for some upselling sales retention scheming.

    That's what got me thinking I wonder if they also do the same thing with samples of cologne?

    In any case, the point of this thread is: how to know when a cologne sample, or even a cologne bottle, has gone bad or not?

    And, how long is it from the time of manufacturing until cologne goes bad?

    By bad, I mean "harmful to the skin".

    Hope you all didn't mind my tangent there, LOL.
    Last edited by goodsmellingperson; 18th February 2009 at 06:12 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    Old things don't give you rashes, allergies do. You are probably allergic to some synthetic or natural chemical in the fragrance. Just because the fragrance is old, or even bad, it would not give you a rash based on that fact alone. It has to be something else and I would bet on allergies.

    I would find a reliable store that takes care of the tester bottles they have out, or a brand new tester bottle. You would have to do a side by side comparison to see what the differences are. If you know the scent well enough then you should be able to tell just from getting a whiff of something that has mutated. That is the only way I know.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    Thanks for the info.

    What causes mutations, if not age?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    Light and heat

  5. #5

    Default Re: How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    I'll add Oxygen and dead skin as well. Splash bottles and roll-ons get your tiny bits of skin in the bottle every time you use it. If you decide to take a long break from using it then the skin and constant exposure to oxygen by opening and closing the scent will mutate it. I've had it happen.

    (edit) - Oxygen will always get in the bottle, even with an atomizer, so don't go crazy over that little detail. Minimize things that will obviously harm your fragrance.
    Last edited by EnvYuS; 18th February 2009 at 10:24 PM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: How do you tell if cologne has gone bad or not?

    The sample that caused me to rash wasn't the kind that has a spraying head. It was the kind I had to unscrew, and then dab on my neck directly, with a stick that rests in the bottle and is attached to the cap. I had only ever opened it and used it that one time in order for the rash to occur the next day.

    Don't think it was light and heat that did it, at least not from my end. I kept it in a plastic bag in dark drawer that is rarely ever opened prior to using it.
    Last edited by goodsmellingperson; 19th February 2009 at 04:11 AM.

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