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View Poll Results: Does continuous sampling add or detract from your enjoyment of your existing full bottles of fragran

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  • Adds

    14 29.79%
  • Detracts

    11 23.40%
  • Neither

    22 46.81%
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  1. #1
    Dependent danieq's Avatar
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    Default A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I've been away from home for a bit now and have taken a number of fragrances with me from my collection in the form of small decants. I've noticed that there are a few of those I've brought that I've particularly gravitated towards. I've found it's helped me make a better decision as to what I really like or don't. So informally, I'm wondering whether you've made any observations as to whether continual sampling adds to or detracts from your enjoyment of your full bottles. For me, sometimes the samples end up becoming a bit distracting.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I believe you need to wear a scent 3 times before deciding if you actually like it or not..
    That is in most cases..
    I just sampled Neroli Portofino yesterday and realized I don't like it due to the fact it smells like Mugler's Cologne..
    But in most cases 3 is the magic number for me

  3. #3
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Quote Originally Posted by danieq View Post
    So informally, I'm wondering whether you've made any observations as to whether continual sampling adds to or detracts from your enjoyment of your full bottles. For me, sometimes the samples end up becoming a bit distracting.
    I have found that in my case, continual or intermittent sampling, which I hardly ever do, and if so, it's exclusively from unsolicited samples received with bottle purchases made online, or infrequently and casually in mall stores, seems to have no effect one way or the other on my enjoyment of my full bottles.

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    Last edited by hednic; 29th December 2013 at 04:10 AM.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Almost similar thoughts as Hednic - to me once I sample, it's either buy or no; repeated sampling will not change my mind.

  5. #5

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    For me, it detracts in the sense that when I'm sampling, I'm neglecting the full bottles that are in my collection. It wouldn't be a problem if I had a small collection, but at this point I'm already not wearing some stuff as much as I'd like.

    But since sampling stuff is really fun, a good solution to this is using paper test strips. I always keep them hand and this is how I do the majority of my sampling. Then, if it's something I really like, I'll sample it on skin later.

    But this year I really want to focus on enjoying what I have, and kind of keep my sampling limited to paper or maybe one or two skin tests a month.
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  6. #6
    Basenotes Junkie Trilby Lark's Avatar
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Danieq, this is such a good topic. I was an active sampler for a while and then noticed I wasn't wearing my FB fragrances as much. I discarded my fairly large sample collection and began to concentrate on my main collection. Now I limit sampling to about once a week. This has been much more satisfactory.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    A few moths ago, I was on a sampling binge and definitely neglected my wardrobe.

    It was disconcerting in the long run, because it prevented me from having that "contented feeling" one can only experience with familiarity. The constant need to experience new olfactive sensations also lead to a compulsion in itself, which indirectly influenced blind buys.

    Nowadays, I'll throw in a sample about once a week into my seasonal rotation, to mix the cards.

  8. #8

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Over the last few years I have accumulated a lot of samples. It certainly detracts from enjoying my collection.

    However, it is a necessary step in determining what I want to add next to my collection. I have it a goal of 2014 to slowly work through a lot of those samples so that I have more of my collection to focus on and less on the samples.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Sampling allows me to appreciate what I already have, given most samples I try aren't FB worthy. It also adds to the pleasure knowing when I do find something I like, my collection will grow with quality acquisitions.

  10. #10

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Sampling is very time-consuming for me (or maybe I'm just a bit slow discovering things about some) and can certainly be distracting from one's collection, but it often helps to avoid costly mistakes in the absence of accessible 'local' stores.

    Reading reviews can be helpful, but my nose certainly 'misses' some elements and is annoyed by others that another might find acceptable, so research is useful in making a decision about whether to sample.

    Plus, the sample can be passed to someone else to explore if a bottle is purchased.

    There are other pitfalls - samples may not always be representative of the current issue, depending on when/where they have been sourced.

    It's very rewarding when an interesting one turns up!

    I voted 'neither'.
    Last edited by lpp; 29th December 2013 at 09:42 AM.

  11. #11

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I've switched over to the decant. For one its a way to get high dollar juice at a great price and the second reason is that I really need to spray the hell out of it and try it out in different weather. I can't get much from that little sample vial. That sample vial has made me some costly mistakes in buying perfumes that I like, but not love. After spending some months with my decants, I know for sure. Plus if you get a great splitter like palm beach, the bottle looks so good it may as well be the real deal. Amazing splitter.

  12. #12

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Good point, elevation!

  13. #13
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I voted neither, but Buysblind makes a valid point.

    Sometimes when sampling (especially compositions I find I dislike) I just want to scrub them off and put on something from my collection that I know I enjoy... So in effect there is an opportunity cost to extensive sampling. I balance that opportunity cost with the possible positive discovery of compositions that slip under the radar that sampling hundreds of new compositions yearly can reveal. For example, had I not sampled as extensively I would never have explored the relatively obscure Anat Fritz line that is now among my absolute favorites. I guess in the end it is a wash for me...
    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)
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    4) Les Nombres d'Or Vetyver (Mona di Orio) - tie
    4) Lalfeorosa (O'driù) - tie

    6) Anat Fritz Original Formula and Classical (Anat Fritz)
    7) Captain vintage (Molyneux)
    8) Tzora (Anat Fritz)

  14. #14

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    When I first started sampling I would do the same and scrub off the sample I didn't like, but would just put another one on right after. This would be my night routine. I was a total noob and wanted to try as much as possible. Now I just want to come home take a shower and douse myself in something I love. It's ridiculous the amount of samples I have and I've only been in this hobby for 2 years. I can only imagine the amount of samples the basenoters who have been in this for years have!

  15. #15
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I don't do it nearly as much as I used. I don't feel the need to constantly smell perfumes like I used to (been through that !), but I love sampling. It's a thing unto itself. It has nothing to do with full bottles. I find little samples from five, ten years ago and sometimes can't believe how good the fragrance is, as in the little sample reminded me how good it was. Hundreds of those things thrown in boxes. I could easily throw em all away, not into keeping a lot of clutter around, but I usually always keep samples. Never know what you might find. If you've sold a bottle then the sample can help remind you that you might want to buy another one. All kinds of variables, some great surprises.
    Last edited by pluran; 29th December 2013 at 09:53 AM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    In my opinion, it heightens and completes the joy of owning, purchasing and using full bottles.

  17. #17

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I enjoy sampling, and it makes my palette wider and my nose more sensitive; as a reward I go back to my collection with more experience to love them even more, or rarely change my opinion.
    We want a 'Niche' forum.

  18. #18

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I mainly use decants and samples, but I do find them distracting. I'm usually so keen to sample something new that I end up not using some of my favourite scents for long periods.

  19. #19

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darjeeling View Post
    I mainly use decants and samples, but I do find them distracting. I'm usually so keen to sample something new that I end up not using some of my favourite scents for long periods.
    And here lies the conundrum. I smell completely different everyday. Whether its full bottle, decant, or sample I'm always wearing something different. I'll stand in front of my dresser for a while just trying to make a decision. My new goal is to stick to just one fragrance and where it all week to really explore it.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Great topic... Have most definitely been neglecting my FB's over the past year... Seems everytime I walk into Neiman Marcus or Saks I walked out with two or three samples.

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  21. #21
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I voted neither because my FB collection is there and waiting at all times and I know that I like every bottle I own. In truth I have cut back on sampling a bit as I have built my collection, but I don't foresee never sampling anything ever again. There is always something interesting out there to try.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    My experience has been as some others have expressed. I get so keen to sample something new that I don't have the chance to wear what is in my collection. I'm interested in this idea of paper sampling. Do you use the paper samples found in stores, or make your own?

  23. #23

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Not too keen on samples - I never buy mine, so whatever came thru were all from dealers directly. Once tested & if it passes to my buy list, then I try to keep track of the sample to keep it with my FB for re-application (in most cases for edt's).

    If i don't buy FB's, they remain in my sample box pile & I use one or 2 every night b4 bed (1 spray) - random draw of sample...

    Quite interesting to read the varied responses to this thread...

  24. #24

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I only use sample for experimental purposes, i.e. knowing if I'd fancy a fb or not..lots of samples prevent me from buying scents which last nothing..

  25. #25
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Let's face it, we all sample when we get the chance. I usually do it in the morning before I've had a shower and chosen my scent for the day. But I'm self-employed, so I don't have to rush off anywhere. If it's something I'm really liking and want to wear for hours, that's different, I'll try it out for a whole day. If I might buy it, I think it needs to be worn at least 3 times. If I don't like the whole sample, why would I want a FB? I always make spray decants to take with me of my favorite scents. I couldn't live without reapplying during the day or while traveling.

  26. #26

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    my answer is YES! I have so many samples and decants that it became a real source of anxiety just trying to get through them all, especially when I was scared to test something out knowing that I might very well love it and then 'have' to go buy a bottle. Some samples I've avoided using for several years either because of the above reason (I thought I was going to love it -> spend money) or because it was an 'epic''/well-regarded scent and I wasn't sure if my nose was ready or mature enough appreciate it and I only had a few uses... sounds silly but all that has caused me some major avoidance issues. Or I wanted to 'test them properly' so if I have the slightest stuffy nose, unwashed skin, going somewhere important, etc then I avoided using them. And to the OP's question, that meant the samples/decants stood in the way of my just using something from my collection that I already knew I liked.

    and in another somewhat related way, I decided that I really should buy 10ml decants of everything before deciding on FB but in many cases as soon as I have the 10ml I'll use it 2-3 times and then just go buy the bottle and give away or sell the decant.


    As for solutions, one thing I've done is to wear my collection during the week, and then 2 days a week on weekends I'll sit down and either sniff 6-8 and read reviews, type out my thoughts, etc. Or just put on 6 at a time and sniff them all day and decide
    1. I'll either give them a full wearing during the week becuase they're nice, and decide on decant/bottle
    2. It's not something I'll wear but I want to keep it in my 'library' as a reference for an example of X note/accord/style, etc
    3. Don't like, never will, pass, and it gets tossed in a sample swap box to be mailed out at some point
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  27. #27

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    When I get a sample, I usually give it a single test just to see if it's appealing straight off. if I like it, I'll either use it that day or put it aside for a full dose at a later point. If I'm ambivalent about it, I'll leave it alone and maybe come back to it later. If I'm certain I don't like it, I'll set it aside to give away... or dump the contents. This in no way affects whether or not I enjoy my full bottles.

    Now if I was inundated with numerous samples on a regular basis, I could see getting preoccupied with trying them all, and end up not using my full bottles very often. But I don't get that many samples...

    Of course, each time you sample a new fragrance that you like, there's the matter of ranking it among the other fragrances you own. Does it displace any, or take a spot along side? I really don't want to end up with a huge batch of fragrances that I have to deal with for years to come, so I do try to keep 3 tiers -- top favorite, strongly like, and somewhat like. Top favorites I'll always keep. Strongly like may sometimes shift down to somewhat like. And in time, ones in somewhat like will drop off. I'm aiming to eventually have a maximum of 20 full bottle fragrances in my collection.

  28. #28

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    It actually helps from wasting money on blind-buys.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Master-Classter View Post
    my answer is YES! I have so many samples and decants that it became a real source of anxiety just trying to get through them all, especially when I was scared to test something out knowing that I might very well love it and then 'have' to go buy a bottle. Some samples I've avoided using for several years either because of the above reason (I thought I was going to love it -> spend money) or because it was an 'epic''/well-regarded scent and I wasn't sure if my nose was ready or mature enough appreciate it and I only had a few uses... sounds silly but all that has caused me some major avoidance issues. Or I wanted to 'test them properly' so if I have the slightest stuffy nose, unwashed skin, going somewhere important, etc then I avoided using them. And to the OP's question, that meant the samples/decants stood in the way of my just using something from my collection that I already knew I liked.

    and in another somewhat related way, I decided that I really should buy 10ml decants of everything before deciding on FB but in many cases as soon as I have the 10ml I'll use it 2-3 times and then just go buy the bottle and give away or sell the decant.


    As for solutions, one thing I've done is to wear my collection during the week, and then 2 days a week on weekends I'll sit down and either sniff 6-8 and read reviews, type out my thoughts, etc. Or just put on 6 at a time and sniff them all day and decide
    1. I'll either give them a full wearing during the week becuase they're nice, and decide on decant/bottle
    2. It's not something I'll wear but I want to keep it in my 'library' as a reference for an example of X note/accord/style, etc
    3. Don't like, never will, pass, and it gets tossed in a sample swap box to be mailed out at some point

    I can really relate to your post here Master-classter.

  30. #30

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    For me, it detracts from the enjoyment of the full bottles

  31. #31
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    l go through phases of trying to use up my samples, so yes, sometimes l neglect my bottles, but then l come back to them with renewed appreciation, & so l voted "neither".

    There are also times when, as with a wardrobe full of clothes, l look at my bottles & think; "l've got nothing to wear!" because nothing fits my mood at that particular moment. This is when samples come in handy, as l can grab something to wear that's not in my usual rotation, & therefore more interesting & different at that time.

    l can't imagine a time when l will ever be without samples. Trying something new on a regular basis is what keeps my interest alive.
    "What is this secret connection between the soul, and sea, clouds and perfumes? The soul itself appears to be sea, cloud and perfume..." - from Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis.

  32. #32
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    What an interesting thread, danieq; thanks for starting this.

    Most of my sampling has come by way of generous basenotes friends, and I've done my sampling spending one week with one friend's samples, another week with another's. I do draw a distinction between samples and decants. With hand decanted "care packages" I feel like I'm getting a self-portrait of this friend, who I've gotten to know through the internet and packages. Collections are as unique as people, as unique as handwriting, and I appreciate these glimpses into someone else's tastes. Likewise, I enjoy preparing sample passes to share my scent world, as well as preparing a mini-collection of decants for individuals.

    Samples strike me more as a chance to "play the field"; I can appreciate fragrances that are just "not me" at all without any commitment. In fact I wasn't quite joking when I once said that fragrance is the safest promiscuity; it allows for blowsy one-night stands sans aftermath. You sniff, you move on.

    I should also mention, I love the packaging; we are a creative bunch that believes in presentation.

    In addition to FBs, I have quite a few minis, which occupy an in-between space. Sometimes with a mini, I worry about running out; other times, they are a reminder—life is short, enjoy! I also enjoy the aesthetic experience of the mini bottles; they are just so winsome.

    So, Happy New Year one and all. Basenotes has been the most "real" of web experiences precisely because you can't email a scent. We touch one another across time zones. XXXOOO

    Update: I didn't quite answer the question, did I? No, doesn't detract. FBs are my daily wear, sampling is often an evening activity.
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  33. #33
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    For me it starts to detract if it goes on too long...too many days in a row of sampling.

    If it's just now and then, then it's like a bit of spice added to an already delicious food.


  34. #34
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    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    It seems from the answers given thus far that it adds in general except for when sampling becomes the only fragrance worn. Good lessons mates!

  35. #35

    Default Re: A poll -- Does sampling detract from FB enjoyment?

    I didn't understand the topic.

    But I find that sampling as an activity is virtually endless. You can spend a full year, 365 days, living on samples (for testing).
    I spent too much time sampling in 2012 as opposed to enjoying my FBs.
    So in 2013 & now 2014 I will only pursue samples this I'm reasonably sure I'll like (based on reviews from people who's perception of perfume like mine).

    But like anything in life, anything in excess yields unfavorable consequences.

    for swap/sale:





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