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  1. #1

    Default How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Background: I'm male and I work in a lab with a variety of genders. There is one lady there (she is married) who wears this astounding perfume. I have never smelled anything like that, ever. I'm in the US and this must be a scent from another part of the world because I have never even caught a waft of anything remotely like this while gliding through the fragrance sections of department stores, at church, work or any of the other places that you inevitably pick up "incidental" wafts of perfume. I really want to ask her what perfume she is wearing but I don't want to create awkwardness or have her feel like I am trying to make an advance or anything like that. I literally just want to know what the name of that perfume is. Tips on how to ask and keep it polite, casual and pressure-free?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    I would just say something along the lines of - you smell good. What (perfume) are you wearing? I think it's fairly casual to ask that question... personally I wouldn't try to make a big deal of it. If anything think of it as an ice breaker or something to start of a casual conversation. Should she be reluctant to respond then just leave at that.
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    I would just say "What perfume are you wearing? It smells great."
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  4. #4

    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Quote Originally Posted by N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer View Post
    I would just say something along the lines of - you smell good. What (perfume) are you wearing? I think it's fairly casual to ask that question... personally I wouldn't try to make a big deal of it. If anything think of it as an ice breaker or something to start of a casual conversation. Should she be reluctant to respond then just leave at that.
    Alright, simple enough. I think I was overthinking it...

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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Quote Originally Posted by N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer View Post
    I would just say something along the lines of - you smell good. What (perfume) are you wearing? I think it's fairly casual to ask that question... personally I wouldn't try to make a big deal of it. If anything think of it as an ice breaker or something to start of a casual conversation. Should she be reluctant to respond then just leave at that.
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Agree with my fellow BNers - just sk her! Say that you're a fragrance aficionado and have never smelled the beautiful perfume she's wearing...would she please tell you what it is?

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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Quote Originally Posted by eponymous View Post
    Alright, simple enough. I think I was overthinking it...
    Probably, but if you're worried about seeming too flirtatious, make yourself seem neutral by saying something like "I'd love to give my wife/girlfriend/sister a perfume that smells like what you wear. Would you mind telling me what it is?"

  8. #8
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    I would avoid "You smell good," personally, because that makes it about her rather than the fragrance, which is what could potentially make the conversation awkward/seem flirtatious. Instead, I'd keep it focused by saying, "That perfume smells good," and then asking about it. Would also second Cook.bot's suggestion of immediately bringing up that you'd like to get it as a gift for a significant other (if possible) or relative, just to make it extra clear that you're genuinely interested in the scent and not trying to hit on her.

  9. #9

    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Apart from an inoffensive yet also fairly direct, straightforward compliment, would also try to ask more indirectly as well.
    Possibly comparable (but not limited to) what she would choose/recommend as a present for someone with similar or at least somewhat comparable fragrance preferences
    Last edited by Ken_Russell; 7th January 2020 at 08:28 PM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    I would not be offended by "you always smell so good. What is your perfume?" nor would I interpret this as flirting, unless it was delivered in a flirting way.

  11. #11
    chad_721
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Robin-in-FL View Post
    I would not be offended by "you always smell so good. What is your perfume?" nor would I interpret this as flirting, unless it was delivered in a flirting way.
    + 1

  12. #12
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    Default Re: How to ask what perfume a coworker is wearing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cook.bot View Post
    Probably, but if you're worried about seeming too flirtatious, make yourself seem neutral by saying something like "I'd love to give my wife/girlfriend/sister a perfume that smells like what you wear. Would you mind telling me what it is?"
    Quote Originally Posted by eldenf View Post
    I would avoid "You smell good," personally, because that makes it about her rather than the fragrance, which is what could potentially make the conversation awkward/seem flirtatious. Instead, I'd keep it focused by saying, "That perfume smells good," and then asking about it. Would also second Cook.bot's suggestion of immediately bringing up that you'd like to get it as a gift for a significant other (if possible) or relative, just to make it extra clear that you're genuinely interested in the scent and not trying to hit on her.
    I agree with the above--I used to be a woman in a workplace, and in my younger and thinner (yet busty) years I dealt with flirtations. One such comment came from a surgical resident during rounds, completely out of the blue. My eyes widened and sought the eyes of my attending faculty. I never saw that surgical resident again.

    Key: Use "That perfume..." as opposed to "You" when telling a woman she smells good. "You smell good" is something I've heard most often in a passionate embrace. Never in my workplace. (Well, I didn't wear perfume or makeup in my workplace, but testosterone was very high and I am sensitive.)
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