Perfume takes your everyday beauty routine and brings it to the next level. Without even realizing it, when people smell you, they’ll start associating you with luxury, class, and sophistication.

But beginning to wear perfume can be daunting. There are so many labels on perfume bottles that can be hard to understand.

How do you know how long they’ll last and what scent to try? This helpful guide to perfume types will get you started on your perfume wearing journey.


This classic perfume has the highest concentration of essential oil out of all the other perfume types. It has an oily texture and should be applied very sparingly, so as not to have an overpowering scent. The scent will last about 8 hours before you need to reapply it.

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Because of the high concentration, Parfum runs at a high cost and comes in a small bottle. But don’t worry. You aren’t being short-changed. These scents are so powerful that you’ll only need the smallest drop, and that little bottle will last a long time.

Eau de Parfum

This is a much more common concentration to find. It still has a strong scent and lasts long like Parfum, but you’re more likely to find your favorite brands of perfume at this concentration.

One application will last about four to five hours and should be applied sparingly, like Parfum. If you want the scent to last without overapplying it, you should apply it to your pulse points.

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Eau de Toilette

Eau de Toilette is a lighter concentration, which means you can get it for less than many other perfumes. You can have a designer perfume like Versace Eau de Toilette without feeling like you’re spending a fortune. 

You may need to reapply it because it lasts about two to three hours. But if you plan on mostly wearing your perfume for specific events, this is the best perfume for you. 

Eau de Cologne

This light concentration is meant to be applied to damp skin. The moisture locks in the pleasant scent a little longer, which makes it the perfect addition to your post-shower routine. On dry skin, Eau de Cologne will last about two hours. It also frequently comes in the form of aftershave.

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Eau Fraiche

If you like pretty fragrances, but feel easily overwhelmed, try an Eau Fraiche, which is an essential oil mixed with water. These are light scents that only last about an hour. This is also a great perfume if you prefer intense smelling types of perfume oils, but don’t want the intensity – just the scent.

The Fragrance Wheel

You can use a graphic wheel to better understand the types of scents that you prefer as a perfume wearer. Everyone likes something different, and your natural scent can even affect what perfumes smell best on you.

The scent families are floral, oriental, woody, and fresh. There are some overlaps in the kinds of scents and the families they belong to. For example, fruity perfume is considered both floral and fresh. If you like floral perfumes, you may like some oriental or fresh perfumes, but probably not woody ones. 

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This is a great way to narrow down options when trying new perfume scents.

Perfume Types for Every Perfume Wearer

By narrowing down how long you want your perfume to last and how strong you want it to be, you can start to determine the best perfume types for you. Then consider the scents you already like, and compare them on a fragrance wheel to find other scents you’ll like. Want more self-care tips? Check out the articles in our Lifestyle section for more!

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