Shopping for perfume might at first seem like an easy task—you pick and choose based on what smells good, right? But in actual fact, there’s a lot more to consider when it comes to finding a new fragrance. From the silage of a perfume to its longevity, the time of year (or day) it’s best suited for, its top notes, heart notes, and base notes, and even the perfumer behind the fragrance, the world of perfume shopping is much more complex than you might think.
Indeed, there’s a whole host of fragrance jargon that you’ll probably want to get clued up with before you even start. For example, perfume experts will urge you to consider the silage (the trail or ‘wake’ that a perfume leaves behind you) or a fragrance, and also its longevity (how long it lingers on your skin). It’s also worth brushing up on your ‘fragrance families’ (for example, ‘floral‘, ‘aquatic’, and ‘woody‘), and as this is a good way to figure out which individual notes you’re most drawn to.
One of the key things to consider is the difference between eau de toilette and eau de parfum. Although this is something that’s usually labelled on the front of a perfume bottle, it’s something a lot of people miss entirely—and it makes a big difference to both the silage and longevity of your fragrance. With the help of fragrance expert and founder of Ellis Brooklyn, Bee Shapiro, we’ve answered all your questions about eau de toilettes versus eau de parfums.