What popular perfume didn't live up to the hype for you?

I’m not sure that there really is one. I don’t know that I’ve come across a perfume that feels like it’s just a really poor quality scent so much as I didn’t love the notes. I’m too much of a perfume novice to weigh in here, I think.

— Christine


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Swoozy Avatar

Scent is so personal! I really do not like MFK Baccarat Rouge 540 – but then again, it has few of the notes I tend to like. I wanted to try it to see what the hype was about and glad I didn’t buy a full bottle!

true.m Avatar

YSL Black Opium – I remember smelling it in store and loving it and bought a bottle months later. It’s okay, but very harsh on my skin I think. Im not super well versed in perfume, but the pink pepper note is so harsh and never goes away on me!! Even after dry down. I can smell the sweet vanilla/coffee if I try hard enough but it’s so overwhelmed by something so sharp and it burns my nose. I still like it and it seems to be everyone else’s favorite out of all my perfumes, so I will wear it often, just wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for.

Fey Avatar

I can think of three scenarios: a) the perfume is advertised with quickly-dissipating top notes, and wearers find the description inaccurate, b) poor longevity, and c) poor blending or ingredients lending to a synthetic or unpleasant smell. For scenario a, I think of Juliette Has A Gun’s Lili Fantasy (which disappointed bubblegum lovers) and Pear Inc. For scenario b, I think of Pinrose spray fragrances. They run 50-90 usd but most don’t last more than an hour. Scenario c is more personal – cherry notes are finicky and can read medicinal or synthetic. (Tom Ford Lost Cherry is divisive; Escada’s perfumes).

Genevieve Avatar

I guess it’s about how a perfume reacts to your own personal chemisty. Lots of the cheaper, celebrity scents come across as too sweet or artificial to me. Like Nancy above, the Maison By the Fireplace has been the most disappointing perfume I have smelt (and sprayed on me) lately.

Aquie Avatar

I don’t deem anything by Creed or MFK worthy of a full bottle or the price point. I also wasn’t impressed with Delina and Delina Exclusif. My favorite houses is Tizana Terenzi, BDK, and Narciso Rodriguez ☺️

brendacr1 Avatar

What I find most disappointing is that you pay a pretty penny for this beautiful fragrance and then it only lasts an hour or so, that’s how I feel about all of my Jo Malone fragrances, I do rub a un-fragranced moisturizer on my skin before using them and sometimes I will put a little vaseline on my wrists in hopes that it will hang on to the fragrance a little longer. Then I spray it in my hair so I can smell it a little longer as well.

Z Avatar

I’ve sampled Jo Malone fragrances in stores and at counters only to have them be eaten up by my skin in literal minutes. Even the associates are taken aback by what those turn in to on my skin and how short-lived they are.

I apply perfume to the hairline at the nape of my neck, behind my ears, and really just as much on the underneath of my hair as possible – it’s the only place that truly holds scent long after it disappears from my wrists.

Also lightly spritzing scarves and jackets are a good idea if your skin eats perfume too. Fabric tends to hold scent really well and with very little “morphing.”

Fiona Avatar

Juliette Has A Gun’s Not A Perfume smells cheap and not particularly pleasant on me. It’s supposed to be different on everyone so I guess I’m just one of the people it doesn’t work for.
On the other hand, Maison Margiela’s By The Fireplace, which others have said doesn’t work for them, smells wonderful on me. One of my favourites.

Z Avatar

Juliette Has a Gun Not a Perfume smells so bad on me too. Like, I’ve sprayed it on my skin while shopping with others and it’ll sink in to theirs and smell so natural like it’s a part of their being. Me? lol. It’s so sharp and cheap and loud and cloying that it spends the whole time fighting with my skin and never smells good once, much less natural.

Z Avatar

I don’t like most popular perfumes. I find them loud, clunky, cloying, “samey”, and unsophisticated – but they’re popular for a reason so….. I like By the Fireplace because it’s a super dry sweet unisex perfume. It’s not my favorite, but it’s the most popular perfume in my collection that I actually like and enjoy.

I learned as a teen that what’s popular almost certainly will not work out with either my aesthetic or body chemistry. As a teen Ralph Lauren fragrances were super popular and I remember liking the way Romance smelled on some of the women and girls around me, but when I tried it on my skin it went rank, sharp, and bird-poop. Men’s cologne wore a lot better on me then and still does to this day.

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