I have two things this morning: a mighty itch to buy a new perfume, and a whoooole lotta fragrance samples. Enough to last me more than a year, presuming a week’s worth of fragrance in each vial (which, in my experience, tends to be an underestimation).
Solution? Force myself to work through the fragrances I have in order to “earn” something new, and possibly pick up a few new favorites along the way.
I’ve made a cute li’l spreadsheet with all my samples; their top, middle, and base notes; and how much it would cost me to pick up even the smallest size available should I end up loving it. For each vial I use up entirely, I get $3 in fragrance “credits” (given that most travel size sprays are $30 for 10 ml, and each sample is in the vicinity of 1-2ml). For each vial I despise but declutter, I get $2. For each vial I use for the full length of the week but choose not to declutter, I get $1 (and another $2 when it’s finished weeks or months down the road).
Why these amounts? If I use a product up entirely, that’s free fragrance I’m not having to buy during that time. If I discover a fragrance I hate, the $2 will incentivize me not to needlessly hoard it. If I like something, but choose to keep it for later, I’m not going to reward my non-use the same way as I would one I use up entirely (but I still want credit for using a free fragrance for as long as I did).
Regardless, I can’t buy fragrance without credits, period–not from my monthly discretionary budget, not from gift money, not from cutting corners in other areas of the budget. (I can still receive them as gifts, obviously.)
Keeping notes in my spreadsheet about which fragrances were loves vs destashes–and which notes seemed to incline me in either direction–will hopefully train me to recognize notes that I do and don’t like (or that do and don’t play nicely with my personal skin chemistry). I’ve made some blind buys in the past based on how nice the fragrance sounded without taking into account my personal chemistry, so even if I don’t manage to find a new signature among the vials at least I’ll pick up some self-knowledge along the way. Huzzah.
Anyway, given that fragrance is such a deeply personal beauty item–what smells great on you might turn screechy and sour on me–Fragrance Friday will be less “review” and more “personal accountability check-in.” You’re welcome to join me if you’d like! Rules or no rules, I’d love to learn what fragrances you’re exploring each week and whether or not you like ’em.
I don’t have one to “review” today, since this is the beginning (and not a Friday), but at least I can pick out the fragrance I’ll be exploring. See you next week!
This week’s random draw: Elizabeth & James Nirvana Rose.