Does high longevity & sillage equal overall enjoyment?

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
I ask this question because an off-the-cuff answer would be, yes! But after finally rating my wardrobe here, I came to a striking realization. Some fragrances I rated 5 star in longevity and sillage, did not garner a 5 star overall rating.... think one was even a 3. Likewise, some 2 and 3 star rated longevity and sillage had 5 star overall rating.

Performance of a fragrance carries so much discussion amongst the fragrance community, I figured it would impact my overall enjoyment quite heavily. Stronger = better, weaker = worse. Apparently, thats not the case...

Do you rate performance over scent?
 

lfc1892

Basenotes Junkie
Dec 12, 2021
Personally speaking, I can’t see the point in performance over scent. Why would I want to smell for longer of a scent I don’t really rate that highly?

Scent over all, then performance, then sillage. In fact, with sillage, sometimes, the less the better.
 

JBHoren

I *am* smiling
Apr 25, 2007
By me, longevity and/or sillage do not (necessarily) equal enjoyment. I find sillage to be the least important facet, with longevity of middling value (Disclaimer: I like to use a variety of fragrances during a given day — at least two, if not three — so longevity lasting more than 3-4 hours is a "minus"); overall, it's the aroma that counts.
 

lfc1892

Basenotes Junkie
Dec 12, 2021
By me, longevity and/or sillage do not (necessarily) equal enjoyment. I find sillage to be the least important facet, with longevity of middling value (Disclaimer: I like to use a variety of fragrances during a given day — at least two, if not three — so longevity lasting more than 3-4 hours is a "minus"); overall, it's the aroma that counts.
Really good point about about wearing a few scents throughout the day. I’ve really started leaning towards this fairly often. I’ve a nice little collection now nah love all the scents I have. But, it’s not easy to wear them often enough to enjoy them. So sometimes a scent that’s gone by the end of the work day is ideal. As then, depending on my mood, I’ll choose something else to suit.
 

Cook.bot

Flâneuse
Basenotes Plus
Jan 6, 2012
Do you rate performance over scent?

Nope. In fact, many of my most pleasurable fragrances are eaux de colognes that only last a couple of hours.

Personally, I think a lot of people who highly rate longevity and projection are thinking of it as a value proposition, getting the most performance bang for their buck.
 

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
i always found it odd that ppl would enjoy smelling of painter thinner as long as it lasted 12 + hours with nuclear fallout levels of projection.

Smell before all else for me
Yeah, sometimes if a fragrance sticks around too long, it can get a bit long in the tooth regardless.

However, I am left wanting more when I reach for a fleeting excellent smelling cologne.
 

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
Personally, I think a lot of people who highly rate longevity and projection are thinking of it as a value proposition, getting the most performance bang for their buck.
Yup, I'd agree with this. And I can understand why... but, as you mentioned, it's something else to find enjoyment in the subtle scents. Guess it's all part of the journey!
 

metanoia

Super Member
Oct 7, 2021
If something vanishes within one hour, that’s definitely going to annoy me. Otherwise if something lasts 8 or 4 or 24 hours- it’s not that important. I no longer work office jobs and don’t care if I can still smell my own perfume at lunch. I just go and put on something else or reapply etc
As for projection- that was never something I paid particular attention to. I like getting wafts of my own perfume when I move, occasionally. But that’s about it.
 

Alex F.

Super Member
Nov 29, 2019
(I'm a less-is-more kind of guy with a sensitive nose, and since I've switched to wearing fragrances on clothes only, I haven't had any longevity issues. I can't think of any perfume in my collection that I can't still detect the next day on the shirt I sprayed it on.)
I have a hard time rating longevity and sillage, because I don't know whether to take 5 stars to mean "very good" or "very strong". Usually I opt for the latter. For me the perfect sillage and longevity are moderate and balanced rather than strong. So when I give a fragrance a five star sillage, then that's often bad. It's similar for longevity. Some examples:
- In Eau Sauvage, everything is just right for me, but how can I rate the sillage and longevity with 5 stars?
- Bleu de Chanel can fill a room and lasts and lasts, 5 stars for longevity and sillage, but I can't stand it.
- I love the ambergris-like smell hidden in Molecule 02, but it's seriously overdosed and lasts for months (plural) on clothes, 5 stars all round. But after a while, even the most beautiful scent can become annoying. So I prefer to wear a strong dilution of Ambrox DL (which has that beautiful ambergris-note, but isn't as overpowering as Ambroxan) that I prepare myself.
 

lfc1892

Basenotes Junkie
Dec 12, 2021
Nope. In fact, many of my most pleasurable fragrances are eaux de colognes that only last a couple of hours.

Personally, I think a lot of people who highly rate longevity and projection are thinking of it as a value proposition, getting the most performance bang for their buck.
Yep. I’ve had the same discussion elsewhere before and many folk won’t buy a scent unless it lasts a good 12 hrs as it’s poor value otherwise.
 

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
(I'm a less-is-more kind of guy with a sensitive nose, and since I've switched to wearing fragrances on clothes only, I haven't had any longevity issues. I can't think of any perfume in my collection that I can't still detect the next day on the shirt I sprayed it on.)
I have a hard time rating longevity and sillage, because I don't know whether to take 5 stars to mean "very good" or "very strong". Usually I opt for the latter. For me the perfect sillage and longevity are moderate and balanced rather than strong. So when I give a fragrance a five star sillage, then that's often bad. It's similar for longevity. Some examples:
- In Eau Sauvage, everything is just right for me, but how can I rate the sillage and longevity with 5 stars?
- Bleu de Chanel can fill a room and lasts and lasts, 5 stars for longevity and sillage, but I can't stand it.
- I love the ambergris-like smell hidden in Molecule 02, but it's seriously overdosed and lasts for months (plural) on clothes, 5 stars all round. But after a while, even the most beautiful scent can become annoying. So I prefer to wear a strong dilution of Ambrox DL (which has that beautiful ambergris-note, but isn't as overpowering as Ambroxan) that I prepare myself.
Excellent post!

I rated longevity and sillage on strength, not on quality. And I completely agree the perfect of those two consist of a nuanced balance… not full blast 💥. This needs rethinking 🤔
 

silverlifter

Basenotes Member
Jan 3, 2022
I shy away from fragrances that are described as having greater than moderate projection or silage. I wear them for me, not because I want people I work with to form an impression of me, positive or negative, based on fragrance.

Having said that, almost everything I have tried so far has lasted a full workday, and many longer. My wife, who has an overdeveloped sense of smell, will occasionally ask me to shower before bed to remove the scent.

So, no, how a fragrance smells is my primary concern. Most of them seem to last just fine, it's the more powerful ones I actively avoid.
 

StylinLA

Basenotes Dependent
Aug 9, 2009
I'm kind of in the middle on this. Longevity does count for me, but I do have to really like the scent.

In some cases, some scents blow me away so much I will overlook the longevity. Musk Cologne comes to mind for me. It doesn't wear very long, but is so good when it's there.
 

Zenwannabee

Super Member
Sep 15, 2009
I like longevity, but 4 hours is fine for me. I shy away from sillage monsters, as they’re hard to wear in an office environment. And as many of my favorite scents are barbershop EDCs or EDTs (or aftershaves), scent is the the most important thing for me.
 

AndyL

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Feb 2, 2022
Why are the people who prize performance over smell hiding?
Typically I really do not put much thought into how my fragrance is noticed by others. For some reason I'm always of the opinion that others will not like what Im wearing as much as I do. But that's not exclusive.

For an example (and there are others)... I know there are several that the Mrs. favorites. Yesterday I was wearing a sentimental one she bought me over a decade ago. Yeah, I wanted her to know what I was wearing... and she did and loved it.

But when rating the wardrobe, scent and scent alone, drove my overall star rating. That was my ah-ha moment.
 
Apr 8, 2021
Do you rate performance over scent?
Echoing others: No, of course not.
I just don't get people who ask for recommendations on "monster projection", "room-fillers", 12+ hours lasting scents, etc. without any notion as to how it should actually smell. (Not so much on here, perhaps, but def on the other forum).
Having said that, if I can't smell my beautiful perfume on myself after 5 minutes, that is annoying. So performance is just a "hygiene" factor. As long as it's adequate, it's fine.
 

lfc1892

Basenotes Junkie
Dec 12, 2021
Just Google “beast mode fragrance” and you’ll no doubt catch a ton of videos and lists of scents. It’s not about the scent, it’s about garnering compliments. Read somewhere the other day that a guy’s most complimented scent was his cheapest. CDNIM, which I think is an Aventus clone. Does it garner compliments because it’s a wonderful perfume, or because it’s designed to project like mad so more people actually get to smell it? Either way, beast mode means more people get to smell you and tell you you smell great. Which is fair enough of course, but not for everyone. Not for me.
 

Blizzard

Super Member
Jul 5, 2017
On most workdays, I leave for the office early in the morning and do not return until late evening. If the longevity of my fragrance is poor, it is a bit disappointing. For a variety of reasons, I do not want to deal with carrying a fragrance around with me to reapply. Therefore, while the scent itself is obviously the most important aspect of a fragrance, longevity is quite valuable to me. This is less so on non-workdays when I am in or close to my house.
 

Windblownhair

Basenotes Member
May 9, 2012
Not correlated for me, on the average day. Wearing a strong scent while eating or cooking makes the experiences confusing for me (the same way I have to wipe off lip gloss before eating because I don’t want it contributing to the flavor of the meal).

But it is nice on a busy day when I want to just go and know I’ll have an enjoyable scent all day long.
 

Beach Girl

Basenotes Dependent
Jun 28, 2012
The scent itself is of course very important. That said, I am not happy paying for a fragrance without longevity and projection. The best smelling perfume in the world is almost useless if it's barely detectable and if I cannot smell it after 30 minutes.
 

Cologniano

Super Member
Oct 28, 2012
I ask this question because an off-the-cuff answer would be, yes! But after finally rating my wardrobe here, I came to a striking realization. Some fragrances I rated 5 star in longevity and sillage, did not garner a 5 star overall rating.... think one was even a 3. Likewise, some 2 and 3 star rated longevity and sillage had 5 star overall rating.

Performance of a fragrance carries so much discussion amongst the fragrance community, I figured it would impact my overall enjoyment quite heavily. Stronger = better, weaker = worse. Apparently, thats not the case...

Do you rate performance over scent?
Interesting post. Personally, I prefer the scent over performance to an extent. Scent plays a big part especially if you’re a Basenotes person which I am. I’m good with 5-7 hours because I shower after work so it doesn’t really matter after that point. I prefer good development to the bottom notes where it’s warmer or woody and more gratifying pending on the scent.

Charlie
 
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