The Complete Guide to Buying Fragrances Online: Everything to Know


Everyone has a specific fragrance that suits their personal style. Some people even switch their styles and fragrances depending on the season. If you love fragrances, you know how essential it is to choose the right one for you.

When you walk into a physical perfume store, there is always a sample bottle for you to test. If you like the scent, you can buy it and call it a day. Unfortunately, buying fragrances online isn’t as simple as that.

buying fragrances online

You don’t have the privilege of smelling the fragrance before buying it, and it’s quite easy to mess up and purchase the wrong one. Finding the right fragrance when shopping online is all about patience, learning a few fragrance vocabulary words, and doing your due diligence. This will save you thousands of dollars, your time, and a lot of frustration.

So how can you find a fragrance that fits your style, personality, and looks? Below is a comprehensive guide to help you understand everything about buying fragrances online:

Start by Learning Fragrance Vocabulary

One of the biggest challenges of online shopping is that you can’t smell the scent. And because this is the best way to test whether you like the fragrance or not, you will have to look for ways to compensate for the lack of smell. One of the easiest ways to do this is by learning more about the perfume industry and understanding the definitions of key terms.

The two most important terms to keep in mind are longevity and sillage. Longevity is used to define how long a perfume lasts on your body, while sillage refers to the scent’s pungency and reach. If you purchase a perfume with low sillage, it means that you will likely not smell it unless you are quite close to the wrist where you sprayed it.

On the other hand, a robust sillage means that the perfume is intense and should probably be worn outside the office. When buying fragrances online, you will likely come across these terms a lot in different fragrance reviews and descriptions.

Use these terms as your guide to finding the best fragrance option for you. Characteristically, you would want to purchase a fragrance with an average or appropriate sillage and positive longevity.

You should also check the different categories and notes that apply to perfumes. Notes describe the varying smells that comprise a fragrance. You will see most sellers describing a perfume as having middle, top, or base notes.

On the other hand, categories refer to the general ways fragrance lovers categorize perfumes. You may see fragrances categorized as floral while others are fruity. Ensure you choose something that best suits your personal style.

Understand Your Scent

Every person has a scent preference that reflects their personality and style. This is the perfume you find yourself buying time and again. After all, your fragrance appeals most to you when you’re wearing it.

While your fragrance may not be expensive, or the most exotic or popular in the market, it probably works best on you and boosts your confidence. But how can you know your scent? Below are simple steps to take when looking for your signature scent:

  • Start by trying a few different scents at a time
  • Always go for lighter scents first
  • Rebound with a fragrance to find out if you like it
  • Spray the fragrance on your arm and smell it every 20-30 minutes to find out if you still like it
  • Don’t be in a hurry to find the right scent and avoid beating yourself up over what you don’t like
  • Try to understand what the fragrances are made of
  • Check how the fragrance evolves with time
  • Understand why there are fragrances worth $40 while others are priced at $500

Finding your signature scent is essential as it serves as a personal scent memory for your loved ones and cherished friends. Unfortunately, the journey of finding the right scent for you may seem stressful and hectic. Buying or requesting free samples almost every day can seem daunting and time-consuming.

Fortunately, following the above tips will help you find the ideal scent for you. Perfume descriptions aren’t effective in helping you find your signature scent. You need to have a personal relationship with the perfume to consider it your go-to perfume.

Try Out Fragrance Samples

Do you know what fragrances you like? Whether you know what you like or this is your first time purchasing fragrances online, the best place to start is by trying out some samples. Fortunately, there are numerous vendors online who offer their clients free or cheap fragrance samples.

Such sites help perfume lovers try out different samples before purchasing, allowing them to avoid making a mistake during the actual purchase. Additionally, you can purchase or get free samples of any fragrance you can think of from the website.

You can also check different perfume brands’ websites, such as perfumeprice, to see if they offer free samples. Some companies often give their clients free perfume samples when you purchase directly from them. This allows you to determine whether you like the perfume or not without opening it.

Read Online Customer Reviews

If you want to know whether what you’re buying is what’s advertised, ensure you read online customer reviews. It’s the surest way to know whether you are buying what you want or not. Reviews represent the opinions and experiences of the customers before you, giving you a better idea of the product before purchasing.

You’re less likely to read online reviews and check for testimonials if you go to a physical store. But with an online purchase, the customer comments and reviews are right there for you to read and use to your advantage.

However, keep in mind that smells are subjective, and buying perfumes is different from buying other products online. You may have a different opinion from some of the reviewers online. However, don’t skip this step; it’s practical to read reviews and find out what customers are saying.

Through online reviews, customers share their experiences with the perfume’s smell, how long it lasts, and how well they wear it. This makes your fragrance purchase process easier and better.

Learn About Fragrance Families

When looking for a great fragrance to match your personality and style, it’s essential to understand the different families and categories available. These fragrance families should guide you to the best fragrance for you. Below are the four most common perfume families on the market today:

1) Floral Perfumes

Floral scents are some of the most common fragrances on the market today. As the scent’s name suggests, these fragrances come from different types of flowers. And as such, it’s quite common for most women’s perfumes to fall under this category.

However, there are also numerous male perfumes in this category. There are also great-smelling unisex perfumes that fall under this category. Ensure you know what you’re looking for.

Things can become even more confusing when considering the different categories under the floral perfume family. Some of the subfamilies in this group include fruity, soft floral, and natural floral scents. The fruity scent is characterized by tropical and sweet scents such as peach, apple, and pear.

On the other hand, soft floral scents are sweet and soft like magnolia, while natural floral scents smell like naturally cut flowers such as lilies and roses.

2) Fresh Fragrance

A fresh fragrance has a bright and clean scent. The most common fragrances within this group include oceanic and citrus scents. These scents are designed to be long-lasting and robust.

It’s also quite common to see designers mixing spicy and crispy scents, especially when creating masculine fragrances to create a good balance between zesty and fresh fruit scents. The common subcategories within this fragrance family include green, freshly cut plants, aqua, aromatic, and citrus-tangy scents found in nature.

3) Woody Scents

Wood-based perfumes are often warm and ideal for the colder, more gloomy months. Because woody perfumes are often too warm, designers tone down the warmth with sweeter perfume notes such as citrus and fruity scents. Incorporating these two notes into one scent often changes the profile of the fragrance, making it much better.

Typically, wood-based fragrances are often strong and masculine, with classic undertones and hits of sophistication. Woody fragrances are divided into three different categories. These include dry wood, mossy, and natural wood tones.

4) Oriental Fragrances

The Oriental scent family is made up of spicy and exotic scents. Oriental perfumes are created from spices, herbs, and varying powdery resins. Typically, oriental scents are considered exotic and seductive, with their strong opulence supplemented by refined sweet tones to create a sensual and well-balanced tone.

This scent family can be broken down further and categorized into three groups. These groups include woody, traditional, and soft oriental scents. Traditional oriental scents are characterized by warm, sweet tones such as vanilla and cinnamon. On the other hand, soft oriental notes are warm, spicy, and intense, such as spicy incense, while woody oriental scents are earthy and strong, such as sandalwood and patchouli.

Take a Perfume Quiz

Every perfume in the market falls into a scent profile or family. If you already know your favorite fragrance family and tones, it will be easier to purchase your next fragrance. But if you don’t know what you like, you will likely be very confused looking online for the right fragrance.

But taking an online fragrance quiz can help you understand your fragrances. Major brands offer these quizzes on their websites to help clients get the right family scent. Take the quiz to help you narrow down your options.

The quizzes help you determine which fragrance family suits you best based on your likes, dislikes, and additional information such as when you plan to wear it. You may have tried a few perfumes in the past.

Use your experience to answer the quiz questions honestly. If a perfume seems too much in terms of price, smell, or concentration, don’t be scared to remove it from your list.

Do Your Research

When checking out different fragrance options, it all comes down to one thing; your research. It’s essential to do your homework on the different scents available to find one that you like. This means checking out your favorite online fragrance store and going through their fragrance selection.

Check the fragrance’s notes and find the right occasion to wear it. Also, check the number of reviews it has and the customer comments. You should also research more about the website to avoid buying from low-quality sellers.

Due diligence helps you determine whether the online fragrance vendor is legit and reputable. Do they offer better deals than other vendors? Go through the website, comparing fragrance prices.

If you are seeing a website with a significant price difference, it could be because they are selling knockoff perfumes. Always take lower prices with a pinch of salt.

For example, if a fragrance goes for $60 and an online store offers the same bottle for $25, you should take a step back to determine if their offer is genuine. Do your research and find out if they offer seasonal discounts or sell knockoff fragrances.

Ensure you check out other stores selling the same fragrance to confirm if the price is consistent.

Buying Fragrances Online Is an Easy Process

Are you looking to buy a new perfume to add to your collection? Is this your first time purchasing a fragrance? Buying fragrances online can be challenging and stressful, especially if you don’t know the type of scent you like.

The pressure is even greater with the many fragrance options on the market today. To avoid making a mistake and buying a fragrance you hate, ensure you follow the above tips. This guide will help you choose a fragrance you will love.

For more fashion and beauty tips, browse other articles on this website.

Tony Brian

Tony loves to write on technology, app/website reviews, business and internet marketing. He has been in the online industry for over 5 years. Tony is also good at web and graphic design.