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  1. #31

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    There are hardly any cheap fragrances that do not smell dirt cheap and overly synthetic and harsh. Funnily enough, not a single one of these overpriced (price per ml), greatly hyped juices has wowed me.

  2. #32

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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by noirdrakkar View Post


    Can you name any adjective in the entire dictionary that doesn't require some degree of arbitration?
    Maybe not, but I was talking about those two, with regard to fragrances and the people here. The point was that this argument--and it's happened hundreds of times here--always goes nowhere because of it.
    Currently wearing: Mitsouko by Guerlain

  3. #33
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    I agree with "cheap fragrances are rarely the best". To me that statement is true a lot more than it's false. I think a better question would be at what price point do you except the quality to drastically change and are you willing to pay double for something that smells identical to something cheaper. When you ask that, then your back to the Cool Water vs GIT thread.
    Currently wearing: Aventus by Creed

  4. #34

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Interesting thread. I think it all comes down to whether one believes that an objective assessment of a fragrance's 'quality' can be made independently from whether one actually likes the fragrance or not. Certainly most buyers would like to think that when they spend more they get a higher quality product where there is greater attention to detail and less cost-cutting.

  5. #35
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    To the OP... there's certainly nothing wrong with an honest opinion.

    I find your concluding recommendation disagreeable and
    incorrect.jpg


    Granted, we each have our reasons why we enjoy this pastime as well as to why we frequent these forums. Like many, I suppose, I came looking to learn more about what I might like and why. Sure, I could have blindly attempted to sniff every scent out there to determine as much (seems your general rule(s) might apply if this is your chosen method). But, who the hell wants to do that?

    Resources, like BN, can serve to narrow the universe. Sifting through reviews and finding reviewers with similar experiences as mine have provided a much better compass than by simply discriminating upon price. It takes time. I credit this advice, made by others, with introducing me to so many good ones <$10/oz. These aren't merely exceptions to your general rule. They invalidate your general rule.

    Hey, but that's just my opinion.
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  6. #36
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    While maybe I personally *expect* more from a fragrance that sells at a relatively high price point, I personally have found little correlation of price and whether I will enjoy a scent or not. I also should mention I have found (and own) more than my fair share of relatively inexpensive fragrances that I would put up against others selling for many, many times their price points. In short, I respectfully disagree with your premise. "In many cases you get what you pay for..." And in many more, you don't.
    Current Top Favorites:
    1) Portrait of a Lady original formula (EdP Frédéric Malle)
    2) Giorgio for Men vintage/V.I.P. for Men (Giorgio Beverly Hills)
    3) Dia Man vintage edt (Amouage)
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    Anat Fritz Original Formula and Classical (Anat Fritz) - tie
    4) Lalfeorosa (O'driù) - tie

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    Les Nombres d'Or Vetyver (Mona di Orio)
    7) Captain vintage (Molyneux)
    8) Tzora (Anat Fritz)
    9) Javanese Patchouli (Zegna) - tie
    9) Monsieur de Givenchy vintage (Givenchy) - tie
    9) Coeur de Vetiver Sacré (L'Artisan) - tie
    9) X for Men (Clive Christian) - tie
    9) Patou pour Homme Privé (Jean Patou) - tie
    9) Oud Shamash (The Different Company) - tie

  7. #37

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Cheap cars are rarely the best. OMG!!! Stop the presses! I know I just totally blew your mind with that, but once you've gotten over the mind-altering shock that a Ford Fiesta isn't as good as a Porsche, let me know so I can follow up the thought.

    ...ready? OK!

    A Ford Fiesta is a better car for a parent to give their kid. There are many cheaper cars that are much better for specific uses or circumstances. Notice the part about specific uses? Without adding a qualifier, "Best" is misused.

    If you're thinking "I meant best in general" well... there's the problem. The very nature of that statement implies that any specific criteria can easily disprove such a generic statement.

    Hanae Mori, H.M. can be found for as little as $30 for 100ml. Crazy cheap considering the compliment factor. But hey, let's cut the price in half for my next item.

    Perry Ellis 360 Red. $15 and gets compliments like crazy.

    Bvlgari Black can be found for as little as $25 for a 2.5oz. It's silly that it's THAT cheap. It's excellent.

    Nautica Voyage. $19.95. I'd recommend it. As would Luca Turin.

    Dirty English. $19.95. I'd recommend it. As would Chandler Burr.

    The Body Shop, White Musk. So many very talented noses give this cheapie a big thumbs up. Katie Pukrick, for example.

    Al Rehab Silver. Under $10. So many well respected noses rave about it.

    Those are just a few $30, $25, $20, $15 and even $10 scents off the top of my head. A quick use of the search function here will provide many threads about outstanding cheapies, where you'll find some of the most respected noses here on BN posting recommendations.

    It's foolish to tell someone on a budget that there aren't cheap scents that are excellent. There absolutely are bests in the bargains.

    Common sense says that you get what you pay for, and as a general rule, it's a relatively safe way to make an uneducated decision. Price and "best" are based on so many factors that have nothing to do with quality. Do a bit of homework and you'll find bests in all price points. Best, in this case, is meaningless since you've given no qualifier to explain the scale. Best for? Best at?

    Want compliments? You can spend less and get more.
    Want a great scent for work? You can spend less and do better.
    Want to please your own nose? Smell the scents, not the numbers on a tag.

    There are bests at all price points.
    "Follow your nose. It always knows." -- Toucan Sam

  8. #38
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Strong post LBI. +1

    There are a lot of quality ones at low price; not the BEST ones, but good quality ones.

    For casual wearers, they're really good. But for people looking to build a collection, save your money for until you smell more fragrances.

  9. #39

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by noirdrakkar View Post
    Strong post LBI. +1

    There are a lot of quality ones at low price; not the BEST ones, but good quality ones.

    For casual wearers, they're really good. But for people looking to build a collection, save your money for until you smell more fragrances.
    Where, in your original post, does it say best for building a collection? Are you talking about a collection of fragrances to wear, or do you mean a collection of fragrances to own as art pieces?

    Assuming one is building a collection of fragrances to wear, there absolutely are bests among the bargains.
    "Follow your nose. It always knows." -- Toucan Sam

  10. #40

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Nautica Voyage, Dirty English and HM (though I can see why some would like that one, at least it's quite original) all suck though, IMO, of course :-p They are part of the reason why I would think twice before blind buying Perry Ellis and Body Shop musk!

    I've become rather distrusting when it comes to hyped, cheap fragrances. People are too forgiving as they don't cost much, again IMO. Or, more sinister, they get hyped to hook youngsters on fragrance, in the safe knowledge they will need a fix of niche soon enough!
    Last edited by Rüssel; 10th January 2013 at 11:43 PM.

  11. #41

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    What it all boils down to is how well a scent resonates with you. If Pino Silvestre at $10 conjures up great memories of family vacations spent camping in the woods, it will be worth more to you than a $250 bottle of Invasion Barbare if you think it just smells like fancy shaving cream.

    There is no best and there is no better, at least not when it comes to how a scent will resonate with you. The herd think in the fragrance community is worse than it is with the average mainstream buyer. That is some funny irony.
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  12. #42

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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by SculptureOfSoul View Post
    What it all boils down to is how well a scent resonates with you. If Pino Silvestre at $10 conjures up great memories of family vacations spent camping in the woods, it will be worth more to you than a $250 bottle of Invasion Barbare if you think it just smells like fancy shaving cream.

    There is no best and there is no better, at least not when it comes to how a scent will resonate with you. The herd think in the fragrance community is worse than it is with the average mainstream buyer. That is some funny irony.
    Well said.
    Currently wearing: Mitsouko by Guerlain

  13. #43
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by Rüssel View Post
    Nautica Voyage, Dirty English and HM (though I can see why some would like that one, at least it's quite original) all suck though, IMO, of course :-p They are part of the reason why I would think twice before blind buying Perry Ellis and Body Shop musk!

    I've become rather distrusting when it comes to hyped, cheap fragrances. People are too forgiving as they don't cost much, again IMO. Or, more sinister, they get hyped to hook youngsters on fragrance, in the safe knowledge they will need a fix of niche soon enough!
    yeah.

    5 or 6 recommendable fragrances under $30

    20 or 30 recommendable ones from $50 to $100.

    thats my point

  14. #44

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by noirdrakkar View Post
    yeah.

    5 or 6 recommendable fragrances under $30

    20 or 30 recommendable ones from $50 to $100.

    thats my point
    That was only 5 or 6 that *I* mentioned off the top of my head, and I cited a few well respected noses. I also pointed out entire threads here where many more are mentioned. Many more. I'm not saying cheapies are better than full priced designers or niche. I'm just pointing out that it's silly to make blanket statements about price and quality because they're so easily proven faulty.

    Price fascinates me because so many factors go into it. I have to assume Bvlgari decided they could make more money on Black by slashing the price and selling in higher volume. Price does not always reflect quality. Often, it's a case of a house failing to find an audience for a fragrance. Again, that's often not a case of poor quality juice, but rather, poor marketing.

    Granted, there will always be garbage that's sold at low price points, but then again, we could all easily cite garbage sold at any price point. Certainly, there's more of it in the bargain bin. I'd never dispute that. But there are gems in there too. Not everyone has the time to do their homework to find the goods among the bads, so if you find it helpful to just ignore anything not priced highly enough, that's fine for you.
    "Follow your nose. It always knows." -- Toucan Sam

  15. #45
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by noirdrakkar View Post
    yeah.

    5 or 6 recommendable fragrances under $30

    20 or 30 recommendable ones from $50 to $100.

    thats my point

    No that's only 5 or 6 that YOU agree with or like and 20 to 30 in the other category that YOU ike

  16. #46

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    I both agree and disagree. I know this sounds hypocritical as I would rather save a little and get a more expensive fragrance as in my opinion they are better. However saying this I have had quite a few 'cheap' perfumes bought for me down the years for Christmas or birthday presents and they have been very nice.

    What’s interesting is I remember once receiving a perfume as a gift, I can't remember the name now, and I really liked it so once I had used the bottle I went online in search of a new one. I found it at Boots and it was around £20, I bought it and ever since I now know how much it costs it doesn’t quite smell the same and I am finding I don’t like it as much.

    This may seem very snobbish of me but I am in no way a snobbish person and am always buying none branded products and supermarkets own brands but when it comes to perfume with me there is a psychological connection with the price and the quality. This leads me to think that do we all buy designer fragrances because of this psychological connection? Has anybody else experienced this?

  17. #47

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by sbrooks1686 View Post
    What’s interesting is I remember once receiving a perfume as a gift, I can't remember the name now, and I really liked it so once I had used the bottle I went online in search of a new one. I found it at Boots and it was around £20, I bought it and ever since I now know how much it costs it doesn’t quite smell the same and I am finding I don’t like it as much.
    There could be a million factors explaining why you don't enjoy it as much as you used to. Maybe it's important to you to have something expensive. Maybe your tastes have evolved as you've sampled more and more scents.

    Quote Originally Posted by sbrooks1686 View Post
    This may seem very snobbish of me but I am in no way a snobbish person and am always buying none branded products and supermarkets own brands but when it comes to perfume with me there is a psychological connection with the price and the quality. This leads me to think that do we all buy designer fragrances because of this psychological connection? Has anybody else experienced this?
    Two thoughts:
    #1: "We" is a dangerous word, especially when combined with "all." We're all individually unique. Some people are brand loyal. Some think higher prices mean better quality. Some love the hunt for a bargain. Some want to fit in. Some love to stand out.

    #2: What you're describing is pretty common. I have an ex girlfriend who has excellent taste, but she's a snob (which has a lot to do with why we didn't date long). We're part of the same group of friends and we run into each other now and then. She always notices how I smell and comments on it. I usually only tell her what I'm wearing if it's expensive. I do this partly because it's fun to bug her (if she likes it, she'll want to know what it is) and partly because it's fun to see her go gaga over a $10 scent the same way she does for a $300 scent. If I fess up and say the scent she loves costs ten bucks (Zirh Ikon), she'll frown and feel like I tricked her. When we dated, she saw Aventus in my bathroom and raved. But she also raved about how I smelled when I wore Curve, though I didn't mention what it was. She liked the smell and assumed it was expensive because she knew I wore expensive scents. I do, but I wear some cheapies too.

    My snobbery isn't exactly snobbery, but it's kind of along the same lines: I won't buy designer best sellers. Aqua Di Gio. No way. Bleu. No way. They're excellent scents, but they're too common, which means the odds of being on a date and smelling like her ex or even her dad would be way too likely. That's especially true with AdG, which as I said is excellent, but I won't buy it. Curve, by comparison, is so past its heyday that nobody seems to wear it anymore. I've gotten tons of compliments on it, but never once did anyone realize I was wearing Curve. Aventus is popular in the niche world, but in the real world, it's rare. I live in a large U.S. city and there's only one shop that even sells it.

    The bottom line is this: it's all about your values. I value uniqueness and I value a bargain. That's why I own L'Air du Desert Marocain (it's pricey but nothing else smells like it) and I own Hanae Mori H.M. (it smells fantastic, fetches compliments like crazy from women, and only costs $30 for 100ml). I'll buy niche, designer or bargain bin so long as I like how it smells. My ex, on the other hand, values status symbols. She likes to smell attractive, but she also likes to say how expensive her perfume is. If it isn't pricey, she'll convince herself it isn't very good.

    Labels are a funny thing. Your couch has no label, so it just needs to look good, be durable and feel comfortable. Cars, on the other hand, have labels that are obvious. Perfumes have labels, but they're on the box, and nobody wears the box. You can't smell the label, so, in my opinion, the label is irrelevant. And you can't smell price either... so... why care?
    "Follow your nose. It always knows." -- Toucan Sam

  18. #48

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    florida water..$5 a bottle, blows most citrus florals out of the water....one of the best all around scents ever made
    14 sprays of DRAKKAR NOIR should do it

  19. #49
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    The OP's opinion makes a good platform for argument, but will not achieve any really useful conclusion. I mostly disagree with most of the points made, and believe that more exposure to more frags over more time would have modified the stated opinions a bit.

    I have all sorts of frags, price-wise, drusgstore, niche and designer, but was still thrilled just yesterday with my first wearing of Soul by Curve. I had a wonderful day appreciating how cheap, when done well, can be good. There will never be any accounting for taste, so it will be more useful to discuss frags in themselves, rather than the economics and statistics of various ranges/categories of frags in general.
    ointments and perfume delight the heart....

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  20. #50

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by lanky View Post
    florida water..$5 a bottle, blows most citrus florals out of the water....one of the best all around scents ever made
    I thought you were kidding until I looked it up! I used to live in Florida. The water there does NOT smell like that!

    ...is it really any good? I can't believe I'm going to say this, but, I might have to try it just for the sheer novelty! I'm glad nobody makes New Jersey Water.
    "Follow your nose. It always knows." -- Toucan Sam

  21. #51
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Fragrances are, to me, much like wines. I've collected fragrances for many years and worked with as well as studied wine for quite some time. I find that the advise on wine I read some years ago from a well known sommelier holds true for both wine and fragrance. Essentially the message was that something that tastes or smells good may not be well made, whereas something that is well made may not taste or smell good, so drink or wear what you enjoy and don't get wrapped up in price.
    I don't have a signature fragrance. My signature changes a little bit every day, why shouldn't my fragrance?
    Currently wearing: H.M. by Hanae Mori

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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by L'Homme Blanc Individuel View Post
    I'm glad nobody makes New Jersey Water.
    yes, our water IS terrible

  23. #53
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by L'Homme Blanc Individuel View Post
    I'm glad nobody makes New Jersey Water.
    LOL

  24. #54
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    I think first and foremost its important that someone should wear a fragrance that one enjoys.

    I do feel its important to respect that not everybody can afford some of these very expensive fragrances.

    What i would say though is that here in the UK, or from my experience, alot of men or there girlfriends/mothers tend to be attracted to the advertisments on the tv, and they would tend to buy them from places like Boots, or Debenhams, where the generic type of obvious brands are stocked. British people will understand exactly what i mean.

    They dont tend to venture outside the genre of Armanis, Pradas, D&G's and 1 Million type fragrances, because thats what they no, and if thats all they no or all that they think is available to them/exists and is the newest must have fragrance then they are entitled to enjoy those type of obvious fragrances as much as i love my Aventus.

    I feel theres both a quality factor in a more expensive scent, plus I also know that i can go to the shopping mall and I wont smell like everyone else, which is reassuring to me because I do want to be an individual.

  25. #55
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    The thread title is probably too simplistic, and the assumptions are not well supported. Consider these points:

    1. Preferences will always be subjective. There are good fragrances and bad ones but best? Arguable.

    2. Price is driven by economics, and more often than not is set at a level a market segment will bear for a given product. It has little bearing on the quality of ingredients nor on the artistry of the composition. Bond No.9 is a prime example (no offense intended to Bond fans but I can't think of other brands at the moment).

    3. Price affects the perceived 'quality' of a product. Likewise packaging & advertising. It's just human nature.

    4. While it's generally true the better fragrances tend to cost more these days, supply and demand are factors to consider. Well made vintage fragrances that appeal mostly to fragrance aficionados/collectors can still be found at bargain basement prices. Similarly for indie perfumes with limited marketing and distribution.

    5. A less talented nose can take the best ingredients and still produce duds while a gifted perfumer can turn cheap synthetics into wondrously wearable scents. Throw in interference from corporate suits, focus groups etc. and the picture gets even murkier.

  26. #56
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    The thread title is probably too simplistic, and the assumptions are not well supported. Consider these points:

    1. Preferences will always be subjective. There are good fragrances and bad ones but best? Arguable.

    2. Price is driven by economics, and more often than not is set at a level a market segment will bear for a given product. It has little bearing on the quality of ingredients nor on the artistry of the composition. Bond No.9 is a prime example (no offense intended to Bond fans but I can't think of other brands at the moment).

    3. Price affects the perceived 'quality' of a product. Likewise packaging & advertising. It's just human nature.

    4. While it's generally true the better fragrances tend to cost more these days, supply and demand are factors to consider. Well made vintage fragrances that appeal mostly to fragrance aficionados/collectors can still be found at bargain basement prices. Similarly for indie perfumes with limited marketing and distribution.

    5. A less talented nose can take the best ingredients and still produce duds while a gifted perfumer can turn cheap synthetics into wondrously wearable scents. Throw in interference from corporate suits, focus groups etc. and the picture gets even murkier.

  27. #57
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    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by noirdrakkar View Post
    Cacio articulated my point perfectly.



    Can you name any adjective in the entire dictionary that doesn't require some degree of arbitration?



    Thanks man! I feel like I was born to speak the unspoken.
    I sometimes feel like you were born to speak the unnecessary.

    (I wouldn't post this if I didn't think you could take it as the gentle dig that is meant)

  28. #58

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    Quote Originally Posted by L'Homme Blanc Individuel View Post
    I thought you were kidding until I looked it up! I used to live in Florida. The water there does NOT smell like that!

    ...is it really any good? I can't believe I'm going to say this, but, I might have to try it just for the sheer novelty! I'm glad nobody makes New Jersey Water.
    hands down best purchase i have ever made...you an apply it very liberal and not choke anyone else out...almost has a pepsi cola note in it...very refreshing
    14 sprays of DRAKKAR NOIR should do it

  29. #59

    Default Re: cheap fragrances are rarely the best

    [QUOTE=silentrich;2807843]I don't equate quality and price anymore. Designer and niche companies are going to price their product as they see fit. Just because they price it at $300 a bottle doesn't mean it smells better or is higher quality than an $80 bottle. Could be just the opposite and unless you can analyze all the chemicals in it and break down the amount spent on ingredients, it's really a moot point. I agree with you that there's not a lot of great fragrances at the low end of the price spectrum/QUOTE]

    Agree wit the above. When you pay for a very expensive perfume, you don't necessarily pay for quality ingredients or an amazing smell - you may pay for these, too, but in actual terms you will be paying for the 'name'/label, advertising, bottle design and so on. It's not much different to other items - say clothes: obviously, you cannot get quality clothes that are extremely cheap. You do pay for quality. But for top brands you don't only pay for quality - you pay for much more. Therefore, their quality may not be better than a non-designer (non-famous designer) range).


    I know some people who use very expensive perfumes and stink... often, the perfume is considered 'cool' but has an unpleasant smell or, otherwise, does not compliment their own skin chemistry. On the other hand, some mid-range niche perfumes are beautiful and can smell amazing.It is a matter of finding the right smell for you without being sacked into the commercial side of things. I do agree, however, that MOST cheap perfumes do not smell great.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Diamondflame View Post
    The thread title is probably too simplistic, and the assumptions are not well supported. Consider these points:

    1. Preferences will always be subjective. There are good fragrances and bad ones but best? Arguable.

    2. Price is driven by economics, and more often than not is set at a level a market segment will bear for a given product. It has little bearing on the quality of ingredients nor on the artistry of the composition. Bond No.9 is a prime example (no offense intended to Bond fans but I can't think of other brands at the moment).

    3. Price affects the perceived 'quality' of a product. Likewise packaging & advertising. It's just human nature.

    4. While it's generally true the better fragrances tend to cost more these days, supply and demand are factors to consider. Well made vintage fragrances that appeal mostly to fragrance aficionados/collectors can still be found at bargain basement prices. Similarly for indie perfumes with limited marketing and distribution.

    5. A less talented nose can take the best ingredients and still produce duds while a gifted perfumer can turn cheap synthetics into wondrously wearable scents. Throw in interference from corporate suits, focus groups etc. and the picture gets even murkier.
    Well said, Diamondflame.

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