4 Fundamental Differences Between Eau de Parfum and Perfume

perfume vs eau de parfumA fragrance is a fragrance, right? Well, not really. You’ve probably noticed when shopping for something that appeals to your nose, there are different fragrance types to choose from. This can make it difficult to determine which is right for you if you don’t know the difference between them.

For instance, you have eau de parfum and perfume. You know they are different, but what are those differences? How are they the same?

To answer this, it is best to look at them as cousins and, just like cousins, they have their similarities and differences that can influence your choice.

The good news is that you are going to get to learn about the fundamental differences between the two so that you can make a fragrance decision that works for you. There’s a good chance that you’re going to be very surprised at what sets them apart and how that influences your fragrance choice.

1. Differences In Concentration

The primary difference between eau de parfum and perfume is the concentration. Perfume is the most concentrated, which means it is usually 20% to 30% pure perfume extract. Basically, a single application is going to last up to an entire day, which is why you want to take it easy on how much you wear.

There are some perfumes that will contain as little as 15% perfume extract or as much as 40%. How much it contains depends on the type and brand.

Eau de parfum is second to perfume in that it contains between 15% and 20% perfume extract. This means it lasts up to 8 hours versus perfume’s up to 24 hours. It’s also not as oily as perfume, which has to do with the difference in concentration.

This oilier, thicker consistency of perfume is why it is mostly sold in stopper bottles rather than sprays. Spraying a perfume would also result in too much being put on at once. Eau de parfums can be found in spray bottles because they have a thinner consistency and a single spray can distribute the right amount.

2. Which One Costs More?

As for which of the two costs more, it’s probably a given that perfume is more expensive eau de parfumbecause of its concentration and how that contributes to its wear time. You can use less and get more mileage out of it, which can require re-application more than once within a 24 hour period.

Of course, there are many eau de parfums available that smell wonderful and, if 8 hours of fragrance is all you need, that might be exactly what you need. However, there is more to it than that, which you are going to learn.

3. Gender Specification

Perfume is typically associated with women’s fragrances, while cologne is used to identify masculine scents. Eau de parfum is genderless. That’s why you’ll see both feminine and masculine scents described as “eau de parfum.”

4. Is There a Difference In Quality?

This one is very tricky for the fact that eau de parfum doesn’t necessarily mean the fragrance is less than a perfume. There are some essential oils that you don’t want on you in large concentrations, so they aren’t included in perfumes like they are eau de parfums.

If you want a real musk or ambergris, you’re looking at a high cost for something that perfume in stopper bottleisn’t always very pleasant smelling in its pure form. An eau de parfum can be the answer to this because it can use less of something while also being more.

However, eau de parfums tend to have more alcohol and water in them, which means a lighter scent. Again, this can be a blessing in disguise when it comes to certain types of fragrances.

Choose What’s Right for You

All in all, what it comes down to is choosing what’s right for you. Perfumes can have specific qualities that you prefer, while an eau de parfum in a certain scent can be exactly what you need. Think about your preferences, apply that information in your search, and use what you learned here to make the right decision.


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