The difference between Perfume, Cologne, Eau De Toilette, and more

This blog explains the different types of fragrances and why some last longer, are more expensive, and perform better.

In general, the term fragrance, coming from the word ?fragrant? itself, means ?a pleasant, sweet scent?. Therefore, any object associated with this word means anything that enhances the smell of another object to your/others? liking. Others use the term scent, for me this term can mean anything from the smell of cats to the smell of a Greek Goddess as I believe it can mean any particular smell. A lot of people prefer this word and likewise with perfume and cologne.

Growing up, I always thought perfumes were designed only for women and never even wondered why. I think the misconception still exists for many as some products out there who have ?for men? and ?for women? variants released would be labeled by manufacturers as eau de cologne/toilette and eau de parfum respectively. I believe this is one of the effects of modern marketing and nothing more. In fact, men can wear as much perfume as women can wear cologne. It does not inherently make them more attractive. But as long as these words are still understood in a conversion, it doesn?t really matter.

Rather, it is important that we understand some of these terms to be able to comprehend what these are for and how or when they are used. With that said, below I explain the 5 different types of fragrances.

1. Perfume

With more than 20% oil concentration, you are likely to still notice your fragrance working from morning to evening. Perfumes have the highest fragrance concentration and would last the longest among all other types: usually six to eight hours. But also, perfume or parfum will demand the highest price.

People with sensitive skin may do better with parfums as they have far less alcohol than other fragrance types and therefore are not as likely to dry out the skin.

2. Eau de Parfum

The next highest fragrance concentration would be eau de parfum (EDP) with oil concentration between 15 to 20%. On average, you can get a solid four to five hours of your fragrance working hard.

No matter what the occasion is, this fragrance type can be more reliable than others and is relatively less expensive than perfume.

3. Eau de Toilette

Eau de toilette (EDT) has a fragrance concentration of between 5% to 15%. It is cheaper than the EDP and is one of the most popular types of fragrance available. It will normally last two to three hours and is considered by some as daywear (while EDP is considered nightwear).

The term eau de toilette came from the French term ?faire sa toilette? which means getting ready. If you wear this on a daily basis, I would suggest that you have a small container where you can bring it with you most of the time.

4. Eau de Cologne

Eau de cologne (EDC) has a much lower fragrance concentration (about 2% to 4%) than the EDT with a high alcohol content, and therefore is cheaper than those above. It generally lasts for up to two hours.

EDCs mostly come in bigger bottles as more of these fragrances should be worn. Originally eau de cologne is referred to a traditional recipe that used herb and citrus notes with little anchoring with base notes.

5. Eau Fraiche

Eau fraiche is quite similar to EDC in that the scent will last for up to two hours. However, it has an even lower fragrance concentration of only 1% to 3%.

While eau fraiche has a low fragrance concentration, it does not contain a high amount of alcohol. Along with the fragrance, the remainder of eau fraiche is mostly water so this is also good for those with sensitive skin.

Beyond this list, there are even more different kinds of fragrances such as mists and aftershaves. Higher end fragrances can cost a significant amount of money so doing research beforehand will ensure that you get the type of fragrance you are looking for. Along with fragrance types there are also fragrance notes which determine the final scent. While you don?t need to be an expert, my advice is to know basic things like what I?ve shared to be able to find the right scent for you.