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  1. #1
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    Default Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I’m genuinely curious to know thoughts behind fragrance scalping especially with small batch artisanal perfumes. Are you someone who buys a fragrance even if you know you won’t wear it just so you can score big on the second hand market? If so how do you justify this and do you feel that what you’re doing is disingenuous or honest?

    To further discussion here, do you feel that once a bottle is yours it doesn’t matter what you choose to do with it even if it means other fragrance enthusiasts might miss out on a great perfume at a reasonable price?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by Castingshadows View Post
    Are you someone who buys a fragrance even if you know you won’t wear it just so you can score big on the second hand market?
    I would never ever think of doing this.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    No, I buy for myself and not to make a profit. Some fragrances I have more than I might need but I am comfortable knowing I have a back up stash of ones I enjoy and will always have them available to me.
    Currently wearing: Polo by Ralph Lauren

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by hednic View Post
    I would never ever think of doing this.
    Me neither which is why I have a hard time understanding why anyone in the community would do the same.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by speckmann0706 View Post
    No, I buy for myself and not to make a profit. Some fragrances I have more than I might need but I am comfortable knowing I have a back up stash of ones I enjoy and will always have them available to me.
    Likewise!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by hednic View Post
    I would never ever think of doing this.
    Nor would I. In fact, the first question struck me as quite surprising. Regarding the second question, of course whatever I buy belongs to me, and I can do what I like with it - which means either wearing it, or keeping it as a backup.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Never sold a fragrance and perhaps never will. But I wonder about ultra hypers in threads that sound a little too much to reel people in to purchase. Does anyone get that feeling at times?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonnette View Post
    Nor would I. In fact, the first question struck me as quite surprising. Regarding the second question, of course whatever I buy belongs to me, and I can do what I like with it - which means either wearing it, or keeping it as a backup.
    In the natural/artisanal/niche community scalpers within our own forum are buying fragrances for the sole purpose of reselling them. I’ve seen people in the past use the excuse “it’s my bottle I own it I can do whatever I want with it even if that means selling it for a 200% or more markup”.

    People are actively purchasing multiple bottles of limited release fragrances which is then causing a domino effect that leads back to the perfumers themselves getting put on blast. It’s a viscous cycle I haven’t really seen addressed so I’m hoping some of the member of basenotes who partake in this behavior could offer some insight into this practice.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I think the cold hard truth is most people here (outside of a few particularly head@$$ed members that like confrontation) would never brazenly admit to being a scalper even if they are, but with that said, there is scalping in every form of commerce whether it's a need or luxury. It's just that scalping is abhorred when done to essential commodities like food/water/medicine (despite already being institutionalized in some countries with real estate practices, private healthcare, et al), while being condoned in luxury or hobby-based markets with the laissez-faire dismissal. It's not the answer anyone wants to hear, but it's the most honest one.

    If you argue contrary-wise, you get bashed over the head with "it's a luxury/you don't need it so let the market decide/you gotta pay to play hombre/if you can't afford it find another hobby my dude" etc with comparisons to historically-expensive hobbies like boating or car collecting and then down the classist/establishmentarian political rabbit hole it goes from there. It's funny, because then you find out who the real pieces of work are who consider the value of their perfume investment as any indicator of personal quality, but I won't go there. I'm not targeting anyone specific either, so before anyone gets their knackers in a twist, I'm just making an observation based on interactions I've witnessed on these boards.

    Circling back, I can only speak for myself and you can choose to believe or dismiss me when I say I don't collect to later sell, but I also won't lie about having far more backups (collectively across all varieties owned) than I'll probably ever use in my remaining years alive. This means even though I only usually get a set amount of backup based on personal estimation of use, the prospect of selling them for many times more than I paid is an incentive to keep them longer if I find that estimation to be too generous, and only if I see the price rising on them significantly from when I bought them.

    A case example of passive/unintentional investment would be my stash of Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche Pour Homme (2003) in the tin can. I initially backed it up because it was the loveliest barbershop scent I had ever smelled and I wanted to make sure I had enough to see me into the next life, but my collection has increased in size and depth to the point I'll never likely use it, and seeing how much of a unicorn it is becoming especially since the whole line was axed, I may one day "release" a few units back into the wild and turn that windfall into new PC parts for a gaming PC upgrade, but that wasn't my intention when I got them.

    As for people who set up bots and deliberately mass-purchase a limited item until it's sold out with the intent to flip, (like what happens to the Nintendo Switch at present) denying the bulk of would-be customers of that item a fair price, they are the scum of the earth. People who do it with perfume are probably a little less heinous because in orders of magnitude, scalping perfume en masse has less overall impact on enjoying the hobby (there is only one Nintendo Switch supply chain, whilst there are endless varieties of perfume), but it's still exploitative, especially with artisanal perfumers who want to see their passion get into the hands of as many different people as possible, not the same 10 superfans who seek to control who gets to enjoy their favorite perfumer and who doesn't. Gatekeeping is the death of any hobby.

    I think hype and funnelling are a bigger problem than actual scalping with most perfumes, because people with influence can literally change the way the wind blows by saying "X is a lost masterpiece" on their YouTube channel or Instagram, then cause a panic-buying frenzy that eBay sellers will capitalize on. They buy out the lower-priced listings and consolidating stock into the hands of a few high-priced sellers as the hype wave hits, then all passively collude with each other to maintain the price they set. The influencers then pose with their treasured unicorn bottles on their platforms and perpetuate the myth of greatness they pretty much fabricated with their sway. Granted, some brands like Gucci are just naturally sought-after so their products carry hype regardless of whether they're in production or not.

    I like to think collectors (not store owners etc) who actively scalp probably "invest" their earnings into perfume they may not otherwise be able to afford, and the flipping aspect helps justify the spending in the first place. Doing this helps them work their way up to the pricier niche or luxury releases (like Ensar Oud or Roja Dove) that they just couldn't rationally afford on whatever their income level is, so there is a positive spin on this, but the act of scalping itself does hurt accessibility to the hobby. I don't agree with it, but playing devil's advocate, I see the reasoning behind it.

    I guess in conclusion, doing anything that is more than taking a single item for yourself, whether to sell or buying backups on estimation of use, hurts accessibility because it affects the total supply especially with discontinued fragrances or limited production items, so scalp or not, none of us are free from "sin" here, are we? Ethics and collection hobbies are always forever at odds, so a gray area compromise is the best anyone can really do, and what I try to strive for. Long story short, I horde things like any other dragon but I try not to exploit anyone in the process, just keep away from my treasure, thanks
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  10. #10
    Missing Oakmoss

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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by Castingshadows View Post
    In the natural/artisanal/niche community scalpers within our own forum are buying fragrances for the sole purpose of reselling them. I’ve seen people in the past use the excuse “it’s my bottle I own it I can do whatever I want with it even if that means selling it for a 200% or more markup”.

    People are actively purchasing multiple bottles of limited release fragrances which is then causing a domino effect that leads back to the perfumers themselves getting put on blast. It’s a viscous cycle I haven’t really seen addressed so I’m hoping some of the member of basenotes who partake in this behavior could offer some insight into this practice.
    Wow, thanks for educating me. Technically, it's everyone's right to do whatever they wish with their bottles, and some sellers clearly approach sales strictly as business transactions, so the onus is on buyers to do their research.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Nope. I would make a purchase for the purpose of wearing it.
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    No. I've never purchased a fragrance that I didn't intend to wear for myself or give as a gift. I have sold some fragrances, but never intentionally turned a profit. I have given away many more than I have sold.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Definitely not. Wearing and enjoying is the deciding factor when making a purchase.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Never did and not likely, in fact hardly possible to even consider.
    Did not sell fragrances from the personal lineup on the second hand market and hardly participated in swaps, intending to wear and enjoy everything currently owned and to further purchase just for immediate personal wear, without any resell intentions or plans.
    Currently wearing: 1881 Amber by Cerruti

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    No way. Technically yes of course, something I purchase is mine to do with as I wish but just because I can doesn’t mean I should.
    "I felt something so intense, I could only express it in a perfume." - Jacques Guerlain
    Currently wearing: Sand & Sable by Coty

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I don't do it and won't support those that do.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I never pass up a good deal.
    Sometimes I’ll buy multiple fragrances with the intention of selling most of them to cover my cost or slightly profit.

    You’d be surprised how often people get out of the hobby and are eager to sell off their collection, or how some people come across a collection, or some just help the non-internet savvy sell their “junk” for a cut of the profits. Sometimes sales reps accumulate a massive supply of testers. I’ll happily buy everything worth owning that they have for sale knowing that I will be selling most of it off individually and potentially only keeping a bottle to two.

    Also, whenever I see an interesting fragrance for incredibly cheap, I’d rather opt to buy a bottle and re-sale it later at 90+% full for slight profit if I don’t love it, opposed to spending money on a small decant and never having experienced the joy of owning a full bottle.


    For me, buying and selling fragrances is part of the hobby.
    I really only need around 20-30 or so fragrances in my rotation and a few extras that I won’t use often but bring me great joy to have in my possession.
    I honestly enjoy selling fragrances as well.
    Currently wearing: Interlude Man by Amouage

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by PartySnake View Post
    I never pass up a good deal.
    Sometimes I’ll buy multiple fragrances with the intention of selling most of them to cover my cost or slightly profit.

    You’d be surprised how often people get out of the hobby and are eager to sell off their collection, or how some people come across a collection, or some just help the non-internet savvy sell their “junk” for a cut of the profits. Sometimes sales reps accumulate a massive supply of testers. I’ll happily buy everything worth owning that they have for sale knowing that I will be selling most of it off individually and potentially only keeping a bottle to two.

    Also, whenever I see an interesting fragrance for incredibly cheap, I’d rather opt to buy a bottle and re-sale it later at 90+% full for slight profit if I don’t love it, opposed to spending money on a small decant and never having experienced the joy of owning a full bottle.


    For me, buying and selling fragrances is part of the hobby.
    I really only need around 20-30 or so fragrances in my rotation and a few extras that I won’t use often but bring me great joy to have in my possession.
    I honestly enjoy selling fragrances as well.

    Would you go out of your way to buy a limited edition 100 bottle fragrance with the sole purpose of up selling multiples bottles for double/triple the price? That’s the kind of behavior I’m ultimately bummed to see happen. I can understand selling decants for a slight markup to make your money back or selling a tester for profit. I understand there’s a huge grey area with this discussion and it’s nuanced boundaries can get blurred. But if you do fall into the category of someone who scalps a perfumers hard work for pure profit, I feel that’s pretty lame.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I would never buy a fragrance for the sole purpose of reselling for profit. But I have accumulated so many over the past year, I'm starting to think I need to get rid of some things. At one time, I would buy several copies of a baseball card, comic book, or rare action figure. I'm trying to decide which side I would fall on if someone did that with fragrances.

    When I see old dudes rummaging through the Hot Wheels bins or the Pokemon cards and baseball cards trying to feel for the insert cards through the wrapper.....it does piss me off. So I guess that answers my question, lol.
    "Ducks eat for free at Subway."
    Currently wearing: Polo by Ralph Lauren

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I buy only with the intent to wear (or for my wife to wear). Sometimes, something doesn’t work out and we resell it. But, scalp? I’d rather give bottles away than do that.

  21. #21
    Super Member PartySnake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by Castingshadows View Post
    Would you go out of your way to buy a limited edition 100 bottle fragrance with the sole purpose of up selling multiples bottles for double/triple the price? That’s the kind of behavior I’m ultimately bummed to see happen. I can understand selling decants for a slight markup to make your money back or selling a tester for profit. I understand there’s a huge grey area with this discussion and it’s nuanced boundaries can get blurred. But if you do fall into the category of someone who scalps a perfumers hard work for pure profit, I feel that’s pretty lame.
    If it's a brand new release I'd consider buying a few, If it's from someones collection and the fragrances are older and already worth considerable money I'd consider buying them all.
    Currently wearing: Interlude Man by Amouage

  22. #22
    Super Member FragSyndrome's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Quote Originally Posted by PartySnake View Post
    If it's a brand new release I'd consider buying a few, If it's from someones collection and the fragrances are older and already worth considerable money I'd consider buying them all.
    Thank you for your honesty. That’s the smart thing to do. Why pass on opportunities they lie right in front of you?
    Currently wearing: Musk Khabib by Bortnikoff

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Anyone who’s been with that giant ALD thread from the early days would have seen me waging a personal battle against what I perceive to be ‘profiteering’ on the back of artisanal perfumers’ effort. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. But if the buyer is a willing party who am I to argue?

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I haven't realized the profit for original 2015 Vintage Dior Sauvage EDT. It's really the only bottle I have in my Wardrobe waiting for someone to pay for it the warehousing
    Scarcity is an illusion. Unlearn it.
    Currently wearing: Équipage by Hermès

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    What an ugly phrase, fragrance-scalper!
    Is there a legal check on such activity-- in a capitalist society: absolutely no.
    Is there a moral check? Hmm.
    Does it leave a sour taste in the mouth: oui, absolument!

    But, in this economy, some may even say, whatever rocks your boat.
    However, I also believe, the choice is always in the hands of the buyer... for a perfume is only as good as what you're willing to pay for it.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I have a few backups as I buy for myself one I did sell as I thought I will never actually get around to using the backup bottle for a very long time. I sold it in a group to someone who was looking for it as it was discontinued and sold it for the same price I paid for it even though bottles went for higher.
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  27. #27

    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I wouldn't do this. I feel bad for blind buying VCA Tsar and finding out it's not for me. I bought it when it became a unicorn for $50 and it's like, "damn, I don't even like it, but someone else that IS a fan could've owned it."

  28. #28

    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    No, I have never done this. But like some above, I have been aware that some of my back-up acquisitions have been such that I will more likely sell them at some point for profit rather than manage to use them.

    I sometimes think about buying huge number of some fragrance that is fully available. For example current Aramis Havana is too good to be had 100 ml for some 20 euros. Would buying hundred bottles of this as an investment be morally suspect? I think not. After all, I take risk that the price never goes up. And the supply is not scarce, like with some niche.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    Naw. Never got into this hobby to try and beat people out of nickels and dimes.

    I periodically purge sell some of my collection and maybe in future I'll part with some stuff I can mark up so I never say never.

    But so far never "scalped" anything.
    Currently Loving:

    Bois du Portugal
    Invasion Barbare
    Le 3e Homme
    Ormande Jayne Man
    New York Intense
    Patchouli Intense
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    Currently wearing: XJ 1861 Naxos by Xerjoff

  30. #30

    Default Re: Are you a fragrance scalper?

    I never buy a Fragrance with the intention to sell . I know though I have more fragrances than I can wear and at some point I will either sell them or give to my kids who might sell them . What you are describing though is a common practice with other luxuary goods like shoes ( especially celebrity shoes) . I would not consider it immoral unless it affects necessities like toilet papers .
    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




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