Saturday Question: How Quickly Do You Open a New Bottle?

Following great tradition started by two wonderful bloggers, Birgit (Olfactoria’s Travels) and Portia (Australian Perfume Junkies), once a week I or one of the guest writers will keep the lights on in this virtual leaving room, but I hope that you, my friends and readers, will engage in conversation not only with me or the other host, but also with each other.

 

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

 

Saturday Question #17:

How Quickly Do You Open a New Bottle?

Are you someone who tears the shrink wrap off a new bottle in the car on the parking lot of a shopping mall or on your way from a post box? Do you get home and carefully unpack a new bottle, trying not to tear more than absolutely necessary from the said wrap? Or do you put a bottle aside for some time, while getting used to having it in your possession?

My Answer

I can rarely wait to finish completely a decant or even a sample of perfume I decided to add to my collection before buying a bottle. So, unless I buy perfume for a split, weeks or sometimes even months pass before I would finally open that bottle.

There is something extremely appealing to me in owning a pristine new bottle, knowing that I can take it out any time I want but postponing the moment until all other sources are either used up or passed onto one of my perfume friends.

My personal “best” is… 4 years, at least three of which I didn’t have perfume in question in any form but that “brand new” bottle. How did it happen? Vanessa (Bonkers about Perfume) shared with me a sample of Penhaligon’s Tralala (the link is to her post about this perfume, which not all of you have read – though, some have). I tried Tralala several times, liked it and was thinking about procuring a decant of it. And then I read that Penhaligon’s was discontinuing this perfume (that dreaded D-word!), and I came across it on their site’s sale. I bought it (it was a very good sale), put on the back of the shelf, told myself that I would do a post about it soon (I had a great idea for the story), and … I can’t say I completely forgot about it, but I kept moving out telling the story, then I wasn’t in the mood for it, then I had many other new and shiny things to be excited and write about…

When I finally opened it last week, I didn’t recognize Tralala at all. Of course, I didn’t know this perfume as well as I know perfumes I own and wear, but in my head I had some olfactory picture of it. Not even remotely close! First I thought (hoped?) that my bottle just went off – it would have been at least saving grace. But no: I tried it several times, and it doesn’t smell like spoiled perfume. But it smells neither how I remembered it nor how others describe it. So, I’m at a loss, and I’m not sure what I will do with it: I don’t like it enough to wear, but I would be hesitant to swap it (let alone sell) not being sure that it is still perfume it used to be. And because of that, I decided that since I won’t be telling any stories I planned for it, I’ll use it as a question (and a cautionary tale) for this Saturday Question post. Especially since the bottle is so cute and quirky.

 

Penhaligon's Tralala

 

How Quickly Do You Open a New Bottle?

 

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48 thoughts on “Saturday Question: How Quickly Do You Open a New Bottle?

  1. If it is a blind buy I open it right away. If I previously owned a decant I will open that bottle when I am in the mood to wear it again. If I am still using a decant I wait until I finish it and feel like wearing it again.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Enjoyed your Tralala story. I’m sure V would verify a sample for you so you can sell it. That is amazing packaging though.

    I am in the ‘open carefully when home’ camp. I don’t wait till I’ve finished a decant sadly.

    I have a feeling when Val finally gets her bottle of Le Lion today she’ll rip it open with her teeth in the post office haha.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you, Tara.

      I think that the bottle/packaging was partially the attraction of this buy. It’s so quirky! I’ll definitely engage V. in verifying the content of my bottle. Then later I will decide what to do with it.

      Like

  3. I open and inspect my bottles immediately nowadays, as I’ve had a couple of defective ones that needed to be exchanged. However if I’m still working on a decant, I will put the bottle back in the box and wait to start using it.

    Liked by 2 people

      • I just, for the first time ever, received a new bottle that to my shock was half gone when I opened it. Must have happened a while ago too as though the box is stained the scent wasn’t particularly strong when I opened the package. Thinking about this I realize I have an unopened bottle of Eau de Protection, and a bottle of Yatagan on the way that I had no intention of opening until I finished the current one. From now on I’m going to open them all!

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        • Is there anything you can do about it, or is it a loss that you’ll have to absorb?

          Now I need to think if I have any back-up bottles that I haven’t checked yet…

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          • I sent them an email with photos, still waiting for a reply. It was a cheapie, but very glorious (Histoire D’Amour Aubusson). I’m so impressed with it’s fresh, vintage, happy greenery that I’d be tempted to buy another one.

            Today I got my backup Yatagan in the mail and will open it. Sad, I liked the idea of having it waiting, still in its cellophane. But this seems dangerous now!

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  4. If I own a decant, I try to finish it first or swap away the decant. Otherwise I will open the bottle when I need to. Sad story about the tralala, I have a big sample and think it’s a good one, but for cold weather only

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  5. Hey Undina,
    WOW! As usual my answer isn’t simple.
    There are bottles here I’ve had forever that remain unopened. Some incredibly special things too. Serge Lutens MKK and Meil de Bois export bottles that are more precious than hens teeth. Some CHANEL Les Exclusives EdTs and DIOR Prive bought with full intention of wearing but… Sometimes I buy the bottle while I still have 8ml in my decant, then never finish the decant.
    THEN there are times when I open it in the store I’m so excited or in the car after retrieving boxes from the Post Office.
    Sometimes it sits in its cellophane until someone wants to try it or I need to send a sample, then a whole new love affair commences. This happened recently with Parfum d’Empire Wazamba.
    Portia xx

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Coming out of hiding from commenting on blogs (other than NST) and from IG…I have never opened a perfume in the car but have opened some right away, others I’ve waited until I am ready to split (and I still have to answer your previous Saturday Question on splits) and some others I wait until whenever. Probably the only perfume I waited to open until I finished my decant was Rania J Ambre Loup. I have a bad habit of falling in love with decanted perfumes and purchasing a bottle the next time I can get it for less than full price and / or with a nice GWP or because a partial bottle became available, after which, I ignore the decant and start using the bottle because there is something very satisfying with spraying from a bottle. Oh, and my BUBs don’t get opened until I finish the previous bottle.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! It looks like we’re the opposite in that aspect: even after I open a new bottle, I usually keep decanting it. If the bottle is easily accessible, I spray from the bottle and take a decant with me to re-apply later. But if the bottle’s place is tucked away somewhere in the back, I keep using the decant :)
      It’s great to see you again (I ran to check IG because it sounded like you returned to there as well, but it was a wishful thinking :) ).

      Like

  7. I open pretty much right away, although not in the car! Exception – if I’m traveling I will kee bottles sealed until home. Usually if I have a decant it’s almost gone before I will commit to a bottle, often it will go into the giveaway box.

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    • I wait for a decant to be done with perfumes when I’m not sure. But if I know that I’ll get it, I start stalking it online until I can find a deal – and then I pounce, whether the decant is finished or not :)

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  8. Hm, must test my Tralala. It was discontinued surprisingly soon after release as far as I remember. I wondered if there was an unstable ingredient in the formula. I remember Birgit once having a problem with that in a Duchaufour creation… I’ll get back to you on how I perceive my bottle.
    Most bottles I open at home carefully. Unless, I know them well, or got them for back up. My Attrape Coeur, which a kind US parfumista got me as it got dc’ed has never been opened, not sure how many years that is 5 at least… at first I had a large decant from a friend, then I purchased an open bottle ( of Guet Apens, blue lantern bottle, but same juice) which I’m using from now.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I had exactly the same thought! I even found Birgit’s post about it when I was writing this one (BTW, it was one of the Monday Question posts). Interesting, how impressionable we were to remember this fact (and many other) all these years later.
      Please let me know what you think once you try your Tralala.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Tara beat me to it! I would be happy to verify a sample – if we can brave the ocean between us with it – as I still have some left of my own split with T and Asali. The bottle is awfully cute so you did well to resist opening it all this time! I truly couldn’t tell you how quickly I open a new bottle, but pretty instantaneously would be my guess. ;)

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    • I was thinking about you (especially after reading your saga with Guerlain perfume :) ). If my perfume mule ever travels back to the UK or for my next trip to London, whatever comes first :), I’ll employ your nose.

      Like

  10. Re new bottles, I rarely do in-store perfume purchases since there is no Nordie’s or Saks anywhere near me. I usually order perfumes through the mail and I open those babies within a day or two. I just got a small 1/2 oz. bottle of Lancome Jasmin Marzipane yesterday. I opened it this morning and I’m wearing it now.
    I generally order from Nordie’s, Saks, Luckyscent or Fragrancenet, places that allow returns and I open purchases quickly so I will know if something is ‘off’ right away. I did get one older Aqua Allegoria from fragrancenet that had gone off and I was able to return it since I opened it immediately. That’s probably a subject for another discussion- whether people buy from discounters and why or why not? That topic has gotten some impassioned replies on the Fragrantica board.

    Finally,I tried Tralala a few months ago and absolutely hated it, so yours may not be ‘off’ at all. It smelled pretty funky to me and my sample was fresh. Have a great Saturday everyone!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s interesting about Tralala. But I’m still amazed because it wasn’t a blind buy for me. What did I like when I tested it?! :)

      Even though a couple of Nordstrom’s and one smaller NM are (ok, were :) ) easily accessible where I live, I rarely buy any perfumes there because they almost never have good discounts. But I do use them for testing.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. When I buy a new perfume I usually open the box the same day the perfume lands in my hands. Usually at a comfort of my home I would put on some jazz records that put me in a good mood and then as I tear off the celophane and open the box I feel even better.
    Considering that most of my bottles are being split I also use this occasion to take some photos of my new baby. Most bottles are transparent so once I’m done with decanting the perfume will never look the same on the photo when there’s only 50% of the perfume or less.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. Buying a perfume is a rare, but always heart-racing experience for me. I love the buzz, all the more powerful because it is so rare! I am waiting for Le Lion to arrive, there have been a few hiccups due to misinformation from the stupid post company. And it freaked me out so bad the other day I could not sleep. Yes, I get that worked up when I want something that bad. Double it when it is a blind buy like this. But wait, that has not answered the question.
    I will not open the package (when it comes!) until I get home. (It gets delivered to the shop.) I will not try the perfume until I want to wear it. Might take a day or two, it might not. One never knows. Hahahahahahahaha. A very apt question right now. xxxx

    Liked by 2 people

  13. As soon as possible, if it is a fb purchase. I’m like a kid in a candy store, even after all these years, and exhibit no self control when it comes to my fragrance hobby. However, when it comes to samples, I often toss them into a drawer until I’m in the mood to sit down and evaluate. This is a different situation in that if I purchase a scent, it is because I already love it. Samples are anyone’s guess and I hate being disappointed.

    Like

    • I used to be more like you with samples, but since now I usually get dab vials, I try to give them a first sniff as soon as I can – and then do testing in the upcoming days. But with wearing I can wait. Usually not as long as it was in this case, but long enough.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I don’t get much of a chance to buy full bottles anymore. So when I do get to buy one, I have to open it immediately. Good thing that I did when I bought a bottle of Les Annees 25 BIS. The spray mechanism wasn’t properly installed and I had a bit of a leaky bottle. The rubber rings around the sprayer was kind of off too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Were you able to get it replaced?

      The only time I had an issue with a new bottle was last year when I got a spoiled perfume from Perfumarie. I discovered it immediately, but couldn’t remedy the situation (my cautionary tale about it here.).

      Like

  15. I’ve never tried Tralala. When I’ve had a disconnect between my memory and the reality it’s usually been because I’ve smelled a great deal of similar/better things during that passage of time. What was original and lovey has been surpassed by better versions of the same idea. This is quite sad sometimes.

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  16. Great topic! I usually open the package right away, to make sure nothing’s damaged in transit. But sometimes I wait for…up to two years, while I finish whatever decant I have of said perfume. I live in an area where it’s impossible to just buy things-everything is shipped. So sometimes it’s nice to have something to look forward to. And I’ll always know when the day is right-someday when my spirits need a lift, or I need a break from the routine. Then I have something beautiful to enjoy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you haven’t yet, take a look at what Lucas described in his comment above as his opening ritual. I think, it’s a very nice approach. Though, as we read from other comments, when mailing is involved, it might be safer to do a check rather sooner than later.

      Like

      • I loved lucas’ approach-so elegant! And I like Scents Of Memory, on youtube-he has a whole ceremony, including a special knife for the cello :) I will open the shipping box right away, to make sure nothing leaked. After that I save the new fume, in its cello and box, until the day I need a pick me up-the perfume equivalent of in case of emergency break glass lol :)

        Like

  17. I usually open bottles at once when I get them, but in the comfort of my own home. I have had some trouble with a few boxes, so now I’m careful not to tear the box in any way. If I buy a bottle while on holiday or otherwise travelling, the bottle will either be used a lot during the holiday or stay unopened until I’m back home.

    Like

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