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  1. #1
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    Default How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Just curious, what are everyone's origin stories of becoming a fraghead?




    Mine is pretty simple and straightforward. One day during a class at school, a fellow student pulled out a bottle of Gucci Guilty and started spraying some on. This action made me realize that I didn't really have cologne. I mean, I had Axe, but that was a little crude, and I wanted something special. As Christmas was coming up, I decided to spend all the gift money I received on a cologne. I started going to Sephora and Macy's just to get an idea of what I wanted, and my obsession for the quest to find the perfect cologne slowly came to be. Like many who first enter the hobby, I initially thought that men should smell like blue aquatics and women like sugar and flowers. However, as I got more involved, checking out Luca Turin's perfumes guides, I realized that this was not the case.


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  2. #2
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    It has been on again, off again for me. So much of it has been driven by gifting. I got Brut, Stetson, and Chaps as gifts as a kid, during the '80s. I got a bottle of Fahrenheit in the late '90s, for myself in that case, but a few others as gifts into the 2000s - none of note. When I was obligated to buy gifts for French in-laws, around 2010, I started getting them perfume. Then I eventually decided to get some for myself, and made my way here to research options.

  3. #3
    hednic's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    For me, it was living and working in Paris in the 60s.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    A idea popped into my mind to start wearing fragrance I bought Quorum and wore that strictly for a good while then ventured into Nautica fragrances then I began blind buying and learning more about fragrances. Now I’m here after a few years of exploring and have found what fragrances I truly enjoy and still am on the hunt for more.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    From smelling my mother's signature Prince Machabelli Stradivari, for as long as I can remember; and then my third grade teacher's Weil Antilope.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    It started in my teenage years with Polo Sport, and after almost a 15 year hiatus, started up again with my discovery of Creed.

    EDIT, wow I mess that one up. Polo SPORT, not Blue.
    Last edited by tensor9; 29th June 2020 at 04:03 PM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I was a one fragrance only kind of guy and then decided that I wanted to have some variety.
    Follow Upcoming Sync Fridays For 2020 HERE:http://www.basenotes.net/threads/471...d-Fridays-2020

    Fragrance Reviews:http://www.basenotes.net/fragrancereviews/13373062

    Interested in Learning about Discontinued/Vaulted Creeds? Join Basenotes' Creed Group: http://www.basenotes.net/group.php?groupid=35
    Currently wearing: Bijan for Men by Bijan

  8. #8
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by hednic View Post
    For me, it was living and working in Paris in the 60s.
    Was this before teaching in academia?
    Follow Upcoming Sync Fridays For 2020 HERE:http://www.basenotes.net/threads/471...d-Fridays-2020

    Fragrance Reviews:http://www.basenotes.net/fragrancereviews/13373062

    Interested in Learning about Discontinued/Vaulted Creeds? Join Basenotes' Creed Group: http://www.basenotes.net/group.php?groupid=35
    Currently wearing: Bijan for Men by Bijan

  9. #9
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    From a young age I was always fascinated with the vials of samples I would find in the bathroom as a child in my parents house. Often times I would find myself mixing them together in a disposable bathroom cup, almost like a mock chemistry set.

    When I grew a little older, I always had a bottle, the earliest fragrances I can remember owning were Brut, Mambo and finally Curve. In my later high school and college years, it was Kenneth Cole Reaction.

    After college, I strayed away from fragrance, but I always had a bottle of reaction for special occasions.

    It wasn't until much later (35 years old) when I fell down the rabbit hole of traditional shaving that fragrance came back into my life in a serious way. I started using artisan soaps with scents mirroring famous fragrances and my curiosity grew. So then I started to branch out and found basenotes.com and fell down another rabbit hole.

  10. #10
    hednic's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by N.CAL Fragrance Reviewer View Post
    Was this before teaching in academia?
    No, during.
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
    Mean spirited, nasty, snide, sarcastic, hateful, and rude individuals on Basenotes don't warrant or deserve my or other Basenoters' acknowledgement or respect.

  11. #11
    Super Member ThVH's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by tensor9 View Post
    It started in my teenage years with Polo Blue, and after almost a 15 year hiatus, started up again with my discovery of Creed.
    Swap Polo Blue for CK One/Le Male, and here we go...

  12. #12

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Apart from a short allergic episode towards fragrances (and many scents in general) around the age of 6, was interested in and enjoyed fragrances for as long as being able to remember.

    Yet the actual moment is fully starting to be involved in this hobby and to enjoy wearing fragrances on a regular bases was, as mentioned on quite a few similar threads, between the ages of 14 and 16.
    Got my first serious fragrance as a present for my 14th birthday, namely Salvador Dali PH (after starting earlier that to get any possible infos about fragrances, including buying and reading more paperback books on the topic, exploring more samples in stores and even from magazines/fragrance catalogs), while the first fragrance bought from own money was either Chevignon Brand or Drakkar Noir around the age of 16.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by ThVH View Post
    Swap Polo Blue for CK One/Le Male, and here we go...
    On reading your quote, I realized a major typo in my post. Polo Sport i meant, haha.

  14. #14
    Super Member ThVH's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by tensor9 View Post
    On reading your quote, I realized a major typo in my post. Polo Sport i meant, haha.

  15. #15
    Super Member Wingie's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    A little over ten years ago I wanted to buy a new bottle of perfume but wanted to do some research online first, rather than just trying fragrances at the store. I found Basenotes, and as the Guide had just been published the year before, a lot of people were discussing it on the forums, so I bought a copy. That is when it all started.

  16. #16

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Early on we lived with my grandparents and they had a very fragrant house and garden—no commercial perfume that I recall other than rose talc (and I loved the smell of any kind of soap, perfumed or not), but lots of flowers, grass, fruit and vegetables outdoors. My aunt had a bottle of Shalimar cologne that I used to examine very intently but I didn't dare to open it. No idea where or when I first heard the word "perfume" but I knew I wanted some and as soon as I could combine my allowance and baby-sitting money guess where it went. First perfume was Elizabeth Arden Blue Grass, my signature scent for about a year before branching out.
    ​"It was foolish of her not to have bought a larger bottle."

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  17. #17
    Basenotes Member Aitchellsmell's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I think I was born adoring fragrance/smells. Until about the age of 10 my requests were always for perfume; so I was gifted Avon sachet fragrances or scented talc. From the age of about 11-15 I would go to the mall with my mum (we lived in the country so she had to drive me there) and douse myself with testers (much complaining from her on the ride home). I started wearing White Shoulders and Jovan Musk and a whole arsenal of drugstore standards in high school, once I had some $ of my own. Then...my fabulous Aunt gave me a bottle of Chanel No. 19 for my 19th birthday--which just added fuel to the fire--the fact that I could love something so much that I hadn't known existed set me on this path of sniffcovery! Going through life without a scent would be like going barefoot in winter: painful and incomprehensible.

  18. #18
    Dependent Beck's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I bought my first fragrance at around 13/14 yo. At this time I was already interested in perfumes. My aunt used to use perfumes every day and she didn’t care about genders. She would buy what she liked. I remember smelling her perfumes in her bathroom. But I probably was interested in perfumes much before this. Her sister (my other aunt) tells me that when I was a kid in the shopping malls she had hard times taking care of me cause I would follow any women I found was smelling good and she would miss me some times.
    Things got more serious around 17-18 yo when I was able to canalize more money to the hobby/passion and I started exploring more deeply this “underworld”.
    "True change is within; leave the outside as it is."
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    Currently wearing: Rochas Man by Rochas

  19. #19
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    My mother wore Emeraude.
    My father never wore anything.
    Both Grandmothers wore fragrance. One was an inexpensive LOV. The other was Chanel Bois des Iles.
    Grandfathers scented of Old Spice, English leather and Myrrh.
    Guerlain Shalimar was everywhere.
    This was all in the 60's. 1968 I was 10 and my prize possesion was Eau Sauvage.
    Scarcity is an illusion. Unlearn it.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Probably because of my dad.
    I remember we would go to the mall to this one perfume shop that sold his signature fragrance at the time, Santos de Cartier. And he'd regularly buy fragrances and give me the complimentary sample vials that came with it. I remember making a makeshift rack out of Legos to hold the vials. Because of this ritual of going with my dad to the perfume shop, him spending money on these stylish bottles, seeing it associated with being grown up, I thought cologne was awesome. It just felt very luxurious and cool.

    Drakkar Noir and Eternity for Men were the two that I actually remember him wearing, and to this day I'm fan's of those fragrances and own them.

    When I got into high school I started wearing Cool Water because that was the thing to do, but during this time I didn't actually enjoy wearing fragrances. It's just that, hey, everyone else is, and Snoop Dogg wears Cool Water so I'll wear that too. Once I got into college I was looking to smell good, but I just viewed fragrance as a means to an end. To smell appealing to women. I always pretty awkward with it, wearing Santos during the summer, and spraying it in a mist then walking through the mist, never actually spraying it on my skin.

    It's only around the time I started to get nostalgic for those fragrances I noticed as a kid that I became an actual fragrance lover. I signed up on Basenotes around this time, and it's been a pretty fun hobby since then. I partially started getting into fragrance again to find my "signature," mostly for dating purposes too. But overtime I realized it's more enjoyable to just buy what I like and have a nice collection to grab from for whatever mood I'm in.

  21. #21
    Super Member ThVH's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh V. View Post
    Probably because of my dad.
    I remember we would go to the mall to this one perfume shop that sold his signature fragrance at the time, Santos de Cartier. And he'd regularly buy fragrances and give me the complimentary sample vials that came with it. I remember making a makeshift rack out of Legos to hold the vials. Because of this ritual of going with my dad to the perfume shop, him spending money on these stylish bottles, seeing it associated with being grown up, I thought cologne was awesome. It just felt very luxurious and cool.

    Drakkar Noir and Eternity for Men were the two that I actually remember him wearing, and to this day I'm fan's of those fragrances and own them.

    When I got into high school I started wearing Cool Water because that was the thing to do, but during this time I didn't actually enjoy wearing fragrances. It's just that, hey, everyone else is, and Snoop Dogg wears Cool Water so I'll wear that too. Once I got into college I was looking to smell good, but I just viewed fragrance as a means to an end. To smell appealing to women. I always pretty awkward with it, wearing Santos during the summer, and spraying it in a mist then walking through the mist, never actually spraying it on my skin.

    It's only around the time I started to get nostalgic for those fragrances I noticed as a kid that I became an actual fragrance lover. I signed up on Basenotes around this time, and it's been a pretty fun hobby since then. I partially started getting into fragrance again to find my "signature," mostly for dating purposes too. But overtime I realized it's more enjoyable to just buy what I like and have a nice collection to grab from for whatever mood I'm in.
    Thanks for your detailed story, this put a huge smile on my face... Especially the Lego!

  22. #22

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I have always been drawn to pleasant smells and as a teenager I
    wore several different scents (Anais Anais, Rive Gauche, Havoc, Aqua Manda etc.)
    However, it was going to spend a year in France in the mid 70's that
    really fired my passion for perfumes. I bought a very expensive (by my standards) vial of Casaque
    parfum by Jean d'Albret followed by bottles of Jicky and Mitsouko and I was hooked!

    Joining Basenotes and readingLuca Turin's book raised it to a whole new level.
    A woman without perfume is like a flower without a scent.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I probably got started because my dad always was always dressy for work and usually sported a scent. He was very white collar, but my early memories were of scents like BRITISH STERLING, OLD ENGLISH LEATHER and some others I can't remember. He found OLD SPICE too "old mannish." (which amuses me to no end). But he never wore any of the higher end 60s scents we consider to be classics like GUERLAIN VETIVER, HABIT ROUGE, EAU SAUVAGE. He probably would have thought those too pretentious.

    My first foray into scents was HAI KARATE that hooked me as a 13 year old with their dumb ass marketing campaign. IT WAS VILE. I almost got sent home from school for wearing it. Around age 18 or so, I discovered PIERRE CARDIN POUR MONSIEUR and I wore the crap out of it for years.

    I remember embracing POLO and GREY FLANNEL in the early 80s. Wore them a lot. Jeez they would POUND in muggy Detroit summer weather.

    When I moved to Los Angeles in 1984 it was kind of the beginning of my rotating frag journey. I'd buy a bottle at Bullocks (which turned into Macy's) Men's Cologne counter and when it ran out, buy something entirely new based on bottle look and suggestions from the gorgeous "wanna be an actress" woman who worked that counter. I wore tons of different stuff- JOOP, HAVANA, FARENHEIT, ROMEO GIGLI (a favorite- bought GIGLI a few times). I have a very clear memory of the EGOISTE commercial driving me crazy. I think the EGOISTE launch was when I first realized I was sort of "different" when it came to frags. I was pretty much standing in front of the doors waiting for them to open on the day it launched in LA. I had actually talked to someone in my company's New York office about picking it up and shipping it to me since it first arrived in NY stores.

    Early 90s, I have a distinct memory of a drop dead gorgeous model gushing about how much she loved ISSYE MIYAKE and that became my mainstay for a couple of years. (and in the 90s, women did love it). MIYAKE is probably my most ever purchased scent.

    But I think my introduction to GREEN IRISH TWEED at Nieman Marcus around 1995 or so really brought me out as a fraghead. Call me a shallow moron, but I somehow became fascinated with the brand. I was never "snooty" about buying them or owning them, just really liked the scents. I bought a few Creeds and that was the first time I had a selection of several scents. GIT, VETIVER, ROYAL ENGLISH LEATHER, ROYAL SCOTTISH LAVENDER, BOIS DU PORTUGAL. Many don't remember it, but BOIS DU PORTUGAL was a really big deal for a time and had a huge reputation in the early 90s as a "must have" favorite of all the oil rich Dallas dudes who called it "Boys do Portugal." There was no internet; you'd read stories about it in newspapers and such.

    Discovered Basenotes in 2009 and that just f-ing tore the lid off Pandora's box. Plus finding out I drove past the Scent Bar EVERYDAY on the way to work was too bizarre. I'd see it everyday and thought it was some sort of scented candle store. That first trip in there was like HOLY SH*T!

    DOMENICO CARACENI 1913 was the first scent I purchased after joining Basenotes.

    Now I sit here retired with appx 100 scents, about 80 of which I'd love to wear tomorrow....
    Currently Loving:

    Bois du Portugal
    Invasion Barbare
    Le 3e Homme
    Ormande Jayne Man
    New York Intense
    Patchouli Intense
    Naxos
    Ombre Leather
    Clubman/Canoe/Wild Country/Azzaro Pour Homme

  24. #24
    Super Member Sultan al Hindi's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Wearing attars and alcohol free oils are part of my cultural and spiritual tradition that goes back a thousand years or so.

    My father never wore much fragrance (he is English) but my mother and her father (from an Islamic arabic/indian cultural background) did, and were the ones who lit the fire to get me exploring great perfumery!
    Last edited by Sultan al Hindi; 3rd July 2020 at 07:50 AM.

  25. #25

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I realised it helped with the mating rituals

  26. #26

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    It was intermittent at first . I loved both Aramis Havana and Escada on my brother ( I was 16 or 17 then) He would let me borrow them from time to time , then came Jacomo which was gifted to me by my in laws after our engagement . I had a brief period of time in the mid 1990s when I was very interested in oils . My first niche was Creed Himalaya ( around the year 2003) . My collection did not grow beyond 100 bottles though till after 2014
    Current top choices:
    1- Portrait of A Lady
    2- Guerlain Derby
    3- 40 knots by Xerjoff
    4- Bond 9 New York Oud
    5- Mamluk by Xerjoff
    6- Coromandel by Chanel
    7- Back to Black , by Kilian
    8- Chanel 19
    9- Dior Oud Isphahn
    10- Richwood by Xerjoff

  27. #27
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    Both sides of the family wore fragrance.
    My mother's best friend sold Avon, so there was always plenty of that lying around.
    I really got sucked into the fragrance whirlwind when I got a temporary holiday part-time job @ Filene's, and was assigned to fragrances. It snowballed from there.

  28. #28

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    It’s been everpresent in my life. Most of the people I knew wore fragrances throughout my childhood so my interest started on a very good footing.
    Currently wearing: Vetiver by Guerlain

  29. #29
    Dependent Danny Mitchell's Avatar
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    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    My dad and older brother always had cologne in the bathroom cabinet. My mom got me a kids Avon cologne. Buckaroo, I think? That was the start of my love for fragrances. My mom's best friend worked for Avon so we always had porcelain busts and race cars laying around, lol. I would occasionally sniff my dad's Brut, Chaps, and English Leather. Chaps was my favorite. At some point in my adolescence, I was Christmas gifted a bottle of IRON cologne....anyone remember that one?
    "Ducks eat for free at Subway."

  30. #30

    Default Re: How Did You Become A Fragrance Lover?

    I've always been interested in smells; I distinctly remember certain shampoos (B&B green apple!) and flowers (purple honeysuckle) in the garden from my childhood. Whenever I could get my hands on a miniature or sample I would treasure them, but my family was not a fragrance wearing bunch at all. I started wearing fragrance in my early teens, in the form of body sprays and gifted (partial) bottles from aunts, but got serious after reading a biography of Gabriele Chanel. The whole story (myth, bunch of lies probably, as Gabriele was far from a reliable source) around No. 5 intrigued me and I decided (without ever having smelled it) I wanted to wear that fragrance. My parents gifted me a bottle when I turned 15 and I absolutely loved it and wore it as my signature for decades. I also selected YSL Babydoll as my summer scent and never gave any other scent the time of day.

    Then my husband, who was wearing Acqua di Gio (which I like) and Cool Water (which I hate) for no apparent reason, needed a new perfume (well, I wanted him to get one I loved, and he wasn't against it) and one day while stuck at an airport we sampled the entire men's section of the duty free shop. He selected Terre D'Hermes, and I decided to look it up online to see what notes it had. I came across basenotes and fell down the rabbit hole fast. I started sampling classics and niche scents shortly after and here we are.




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