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How to: Store your perfume so it doesn’t go off


Let’s face it – fragrances don’t come cheap, and there’s no bigger let down than reaching for that favourite bottle at the back of the shelf, only to discover it’s gone off. Never happened to you? Consider yourself lucky. Most fragrances only last between three and five years, and if you notice a discolouration (particularly if the liquid darkens), or an unpleasant smell, it’s expired, and it’s time to let it go.

Here’s what you can do to help prevent your scents from going off:

Store them in a cool and dark place
Heat and humidity can have an effect on some of the ingredients – such as essential oils – in your fragrance, which changes the actual scent. Keep them in a cupboard, or even the fridge, but avoid storing them in the bathroom as the steam from the shower can change their physical properties.

Keep the cap on
We know it’s easier to leave the cap off and just spray when you’re on the run, but this allows air to enter the container, which can oxidize the fragrance and change its smell.

Keep them away from the sun
Beautiful bottles are perfect for display on your dresser, but if the morning (or afternoon, for that matter), sun beams into the room and the bottles are exposed to it, some chemical changes are going to take place.

Don’t save your fresh scents for a rainy day
Citrus-based fragrances go off first, because they contain a high percentage of citrus oils, which are highly sensitive. These fresh notes also tend to evaporate faster than their floral and Oriental counterparts. So don’t store these for “one day” – rather use them now, and give your more resilient woody and floral scents a break.

Other articles you may be interested in:
Eight feminine scents on our wish list
Five fragrances that won’t break the bank
Fragrance bottles we adore
Fragrance myths
How to: Decant a fragrance


21 Responses

  1. I guess its true we learn everyday. Wow i did not know Perfume can expire as well.

  2. WOW perfume goes off! I never knew this, interesting article, thank you

  3. I’m a huge perfume aficionado and literally budget for months in order to buy a new scent I love. I have a special storage box inside my underwear drawer where I hide my scents from the elements.

  4. I didn’t even know perfume can go off. Good thing they stay in my cool wardrobe. Gucci will thank me

  5. Great article, especially because I want to start investing in high- end perfume.

  6. This article was very helpful, thank you. Can you do a review on Stella McCartney fragrances? Their my favourite and would love for people to be more aware of the brand as it is now more available and not as pricey in South Africa. I could only get it at Menlyn Mall in Woolworths or Stuttafords for R1800 for 50ml. Luckily I can now find it at any big Edgars store and the biggest bottle (100ml) is only R1400.

    1. I love the Stella Mc Cartney too Zanri, it lasts all day! but I get it much cheaper. Try rioperfumes.co.za or call me 0833785323 for store details

  7. I had noooo idea perfume goes off LOL okie so we learn something new everyday …atleast I have that one designated drawer for my perfume #blushing

  8. I was actually stunned to read this title, is it for real? does perfume really go off?

    that’s amazing, great article Anien

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