Entertaining Statistics: 2020 Year Round-up

We all said probably everything that could be said about the year we just saw out of the door. So, I’ll go straight to the perfume-related numbers.

Since I haven’t done a statistics post in a long while, I’ll remind the basic terms I use.

My Definitions

I wear perfumes and test perfumes. Both refer to applying perfume to my skin and staying with the scent for a while, observing its development over hours of its life. But I realize that different people understand different things under these terms. So, I prepared a short infographic that would explain what I mean when I say “wear” or “test.”

Perfumes Wear vs. Test Infograph

One more term that requires definition is Occasion. The continuation from the time I apply perfume (including continuous re-application) until it completely disappears is counted as one occasion.

Most days I wear one perfume and test two. But, theoretically, for one day I could record two occasions of wearing perfumes or up to eight occasions of testing.

So, let’s see my 2020 in numbers (in parentheses is a comparison to 2019).

Perfumes I Wore

In 2020, I wore more different perfumes (210 vs 190) from more brands (96 vs. 91) on more occasions (367 vs 351). I still didn’t reach a 2018 level when I wore perfumes on 372 occasions, but still, on average

I wore one perfume every single day of the year!

Last year I realized that the most popular brands for each year keep repeating with minor variations of the brands’ positions on the chart and 1-2 different brands temporarily replacing one another. I’m showing my standard Top 10 Brands chart but mostly to keep the tradition. The only surprise there was Byredo: it’s the first time ever the brand made it into the Top 10. It happened because I paired Ouai Super Dry Shampoo x Byredo Mojave Ghost with the same perfume, which I wore from the sample trying to figure out if I wanted to get a bottle. I haven’t decided yet.

My Stats Year 2020: Top 10 Brands

As always, with the number of perfumes I wore, I didn’t repeat the same perfume too often (my most worn perfume was worn on 9 occasions only – less than once per month). And the trend I observed for the last several years continues: the top 2 most frequently worn perfumes were 2 of my all-time favorites, Lancôme Climat (9) and Ormonde Jayne Ta’if (8). And the third place went to the new addition to my collection – Masque Milano Love Kills (6). In two previous years that place was taken by Houbigant Quelques Fleurs Royal Collection Privee (2019) and Chanel Bois des Iles (2018).



Perfumes I Tested

Staying at home, I tested more perfumes than in a year before – 327 perfumes (vs. 272 in 2019) but from slightly fewer brands – 126 brands (vs. 128). I still haven’t got to the numbers from 2018 (380 perfumes from 139 brands). Since access to new perfumes was even more limited than usual, a big chunk of my testing was done on perfumes I tested previously but decided to revisit to get one final impression before passing them on someone else, finishing them (“thunking”) or binning them. Still,

In 2020, I tested 103 perfumes new to me

Undina’s Top 10 Perfumes in 2020

In 2020 I managed to improve the number of new releases that I tested (thank you to all my friends who shared some of these): I tested 22 perfumes released in 2020 (vs. 16 in 2019). And, unlike a year ago, I even managed to count 10 that I liked, which allows me to do this “top 10” list. And what was even more surprising, I didn’t dislike a single 2020 release that I tested. So, my subjective top 10 releases of 2020 (in the order of my preferences):

Puredistance Rubikona

DSH Perfumes L’Or{ris}

Tom Ford Rose Prick

Ormonde Jayne Tanger

Jo Malone Yuja

Parfums MDCI L’Aimee

Ormonde Jayne Byzance

Hiram Green Vivacious

Jo Malone Vetiver & Golden Vanilla

Ormonde Jayne Damask

In green, are perfumes I already have in my collection; in blue, are those that I consider buying. But after more testing of the rest, I might decide to get one of Ormonde Jayne’s perfumes as well.

Pictures of Rusty

Finally, an important number – a count of pictures of Rusty that I posted in 2020: 61, the highest number for the last 3 years (and this is not counting Instagram pictures that appear on the sidebar or the bottom of the blog!).

Rusty and Yellow Submarine

How was your perfume year? Do you have any numbers to share?


Images: My own; infograph created using Venngage


60 thoughts on “Entertaining Statistics: 2020 Year Round-up

  1. So good to get a 2020 stats posts I’m truly in awe of your perfume wear and testing. 103 new to you perfumes is an amazing figure. I’m start to wonder if I’m losing my mojo but staying in had a huge adverse effect on my sprtizing..

    Great to see Vivacious on your Top 10 list. Its a beauty.

    That pic of Rusty in his submarine (?) is the best. Here’s to uping the cat count in 2021.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I think I would have done even more testing and wearing had I been less busy at work and had I been healthier in the first half of the year. I’m less interested in finding new loves (I don’t have enough time to wear old ones), but I’m still very curious about new releases from the brands I like and sometimes even completely new brands catch my attention, which surprises me. But if not to expect wonders, just testing might be fun.

      I will try to figure out how to do more Rusty posts, both here and on IG: he’s a constant source of positive emotions for both me and my vSO, so I want to share it with others.

      Liked by 1 person

    • It was interesting to read your list: there are a couple of shared favorites, but the majority of perfumes you wore the most are not even on my radar. And even more interesting was to read your holiday menu :) I’d love to know your octopus salad recipe.


  2. To answer your question it’s been a wonderful perfume year. I’ve been exchanging back and forth with two dear friends and have enjoyed the discussions that have ensued beyond the subject of perfume. I’ve also been enjoying what I already have and no longer keep a to buy list.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Forgot to share some numbers….this year I spent weeks of daily wearing with certain fragrances…I wore Ganymede for two weeks and Must de Cartier for the entire month of November. Also gave a lot of skin time to 1957, Dune and Au Couer du Desert. And often after my daily four mile walks in the late spring and summer would douse myself in Fresh White Musk. Used half a bottle of Jovan White Musk in the summer.

      Liked by 4 people

      • Oh yes, Ganymede is an exceptional scent. It’s my most compliment getting perfume although I always feel it smells strange and distant and it’s absolutely not my favorite. It’s more like a social experiment to me :-D …and I went through a decant of 1957. I always liked your choices Brigitte.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m envious of your 4-mile walks! All I can regularly manage is about 6K steps-worth evening strolls. But I usually put on a new (for the day) perfume before going – so that I could experience at least some of my perfumes not just sitting in front of the computer screen.
        I’m curious: how does Tauer’s perfume behave on your skin? I put some on from a dab mini bottle more than 14 hours ago, and it’s still quite strong.


  3. I love seeing how your stats play out. And of course the more Rusty pictures the better! Every year when you post this I think I need to make my own database and never do, so I used my Instagram SOTD posts to calculate. My most worn individual perfume was Ormonde Woman – SJP Stash up there as well. My most worn houses In descending order were Nicolaï (26!), Sonoma Scent Studio, Tauer/Tauerville, Ormonde Jayne, DSH Perfumes, Chanel, Guerlain, Dame Perfumery, Goutal, and Chris Rusak. None of these surprised me based on the number of bottles/decants and samples I have from the above. I don’t track when I’m doing pure sampling (like multiple in a day) but do post samples as my SOTD when I’m giving them a full individual wear. (And I didn’t track if I wore a second perfume in a day, although I will do so this year as part of my yearlong project.). I posted 286 SOTDs on my Instagram in 2020. If I complete my project I will have at least 365 in 2021 – every one different!

    Liked by 3 people

    • We share many favorites (and OJ Woman and SJP Stash are among those). But surprisingly I’m almost not familiar with Nicolai line: I tested and liked a couple, but somehow I never came across the line at a B&M store, and I could never decide which samples to buy.

      I’m glad you started your project on IG: I’m curious to see how it goes. And I’m joining you on Mondays :)

      Liked by 2 people

    • We have similar tastes, MMK, bit I don’t keep stats so I don’t know how those compare. Speaking of Stash, Portia had a great idea for using the oil that came in many Stash sets: put a few drops in the bath! I use bath oil a lot as I have very dry skin, so I tried that the other day with an unscented bath oil, and it was lovely.


  4. We have very different tastes, although to be fair, I may like the perfumes on your list, I just haven’t had a chance to smell them.

    The past few years my most worn perfume is a bottle I bought that year, as was again the case. I’ll often wear the same perfume several days in a row.

    1. Commes des Garcons Sticky Cake
    2. Amouage Opus X
    After that there’s a big step down in number of days worn
    3. Prada Infusion d’Iris
    4. Parfum d’Empire Tabac Tabou
    5. Chanel Misia
    6. L’Artisan Parfumeur Nuit de Tubereuse
    7. Paco Rabanne Calandre

    The most worn brands were L’Artisan Parfumeur, by far, followed by Malle, Prada and Chanel.

    Thanks for posting lots of pictures of Rusty last year!

    Liked by 3 people

      • First you should know it’s misnamed. I don’t know what I’d call it.
        It smells like sweet almond and rubber or plastic or something synthetic. A friend, who also likes almond, and I find it to be a comfort scent.
        I love the rubber note in Bulgari Black but not the amber and woods. Sticky Cake fills a niche in my collection that Black does not.
        I hope that helps!

        Liked by 2 people

      • It’s really wonderful! I tend to wear it a lot in the spring when it’s warm enough to spray on bare forearms. I love to smell it wafting around me! Also I associate the smell of Misia with the sense of freedom I feel no longer having to wear a coat!

        Liked by 2 people

    • It does seem that our tastes do not coincide: from your list, I love Infusion d’Iris, don’t like the tuberose one (I can’t do any tuberose), neither here nor there about Misia and don’t think I’ve ever tried the rest. But whenever I hear how much someone likes perfume I’m not familiar with, it always makes me curious about it. Your #1 and especially #2 (I am an Amouage fan, after all :) ) seem quite appealing.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t keep a database, but I’m in awe of those who do. I do know just from posting my SOTD on Fragrantica and what I wear most often that my most worn brands are Ormonde Jayne, Jo Malone, Guerlain most of all, Lancome, Serge Lutens, Keiko Mecheri and Prada. Guerlains that were worn the most were Spiriteuse Double Vanille, Neroli Outrenoir, French Kiss, Mon Guerlain, Mon Guerlain Intense and Nuit d’Amour. Maison Lancome Iris Dragees and Rose Parfait were worn fairly often as were Keiko Mecheri Attar de roses and KM Damascena. Ormonde Jayne scent worn the most was by far Ta’if, with Ormonde Woman and Vanille d’Iris also favorites.

    Serge Lutens favorite this year was Five O’Clock du Gigembre, followed by Chergui and Encens de Lavande. Pradas worn the most were Purple Rain and Cargo de Nuit. Jo Malone wearings included longtime love Ginger Biscuit, Nectarine Blossom & Honey, Vetiver & Golden Vanilla and Black Vetiver & Cafe (both new to my collection this year) and Blue Agave & Cacao. I grabbed Blue Agave & Cacao when JM re-issued it around Thanksgiving.

    I tested so many things I can’t even remember them all, but there were sample sets from Ramon Monegal, Montale, Jovoy, Widian Black, Penhaligon’s, Masque Milano and samples of Bois 1920 Centenario, Christian Provenzano, Teo Cabanel, and my favorite sample set, Jo Loves from the UK. Best discoveries from the sampling were Widian Black II (swoonworthy spicy vanilla), Penhaligon’s Elisabethan Rose, Penhaligon’s The Favourite, Christian Provenzano Iris Oriental and Dawn Spencer Hurwitz Vanilla and Coffee fragrances. Mmmm. I know many of you don’t like gourmands, but I do like some of them and DSH makes great coffee fragrances. Jo by Jo Loves and Pomelo were my favorite Jo Loves fragrances.

    I also tested many L’Eau d’Italie and ALTAIA fragrances this year and found some beauties there, including Fior Fiore (gorgeous jasmine) and Jardin du Poete (wonderful green herbal scent) by LEDI. It’s been a great year for wearing and testing fragrance!

    Liked by 3 people

    • And, this photo of Rusty is so cute. He’s such a beautiful boy in his yellow and white houndstooth box.

      Also, I forgot to ask, how did you get the new Silk Road samples to try from Ormonde Jayne. I tried to order them a number of times online and the website kept telling me they weren’t available to the US. I contacted an OJ rep online and they told me the same thing in November 2020.

      Liked by 1 person

    • We have a lot of favorites in common, from what I see on your list, though we don’t fully match: I have just a few favorite Guerlain perfumes, and those Lancôme perfumes were too sweet for me. But still, there are many that I also like.

      Your test list is also quite impressive!

      Answering your question about OJ, it has been available on the US site for a while, but I bought it from the UK site together with Ta’if back-up bottle last fall over email (they we’re having some sale on the large bottle, and since I was paying for shipping anyway, I bought the set as well – more expensive than it costs now from the US site :( ).

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love reading your statistics and how organized you are when it comes to wearing and testing your perfume.

    And wow, Byredo made it to your chart? It’s one of those brands that I have zero feelings for and I roll my eyes every time I see their new fragrance announcement. Simply. Too. Much.

    Interesting that you were able to test more when you were “locked down” and working at home.

    The number that I can share is “1” – it’s the number of new perfume that I bought in 2020. It was Amouage Love Mimosa that was split between you, Hajusuuri and me. (I’m not counting a few decants I purchased for testing and reviewing purposes) so yeah, I’ve been a good boy this year.

    Oh wait, there’s another number. “2” – the amount of bottles I finished in 2020. I emptied my bottles of Tauer PHI and Diptyque Eau des Sens.

    And after counting… I wrote 58 posts at Chemist in the Bottle in 2020 which is a poor and disgusting result compared to 111 in 2019… I guess covid, no fairs = no samples hit me hard.

    But I’m happy reading your summary and seeing Rusty! Scratch him behind his cute ear from uncle from Poland.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Actually, this is the forth Byredo perfume that I like. The other 3 are La Tulipe, Pulp and Bal d’Afrique. But I do dislike their bottles, that rather than buying expensive 50 ml bottle that I don’t need and will never use up, I bought decants of all these perfumes. Had the bottles be prettier, less expensive or at least smaller, I would have bought them. But for now I’m fine with decants, and I still haven’t decided about Mojave Ghost.

      Since I had several guest writers, I didn’t count how many posts I did, but if not to count Saturday Questions, I did even less than you. Your one post per week on average seem like a steady blogging ;)

      Your self-restraint when it comes to buying new perfumes seems admirable :)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Much respect for your meticulous recordkeeping and reporting! To what do you attribute the spectacular 2018 showing? 2020 and 2019 were no slouches!

    I tried to keep track of my SOTD but failed within a month (or really, by the time mid-February came around, I had to guess at a holey January.

    That said, I took an unscientific count via IG, knowing well that I took a break in June / July (5 weeks or so). Here are some stats:

    1) Top 3 houses (frequency) – Chanel (31), Guerlain (23) and Tauer (13). As expected, Chanel No.19 EDP took the top perfume worn at 12 times; I’m pretty sure I wore it at least 3 or 4 more times, I just did not post about it.

    2) I wore perfumes from indie houses 95 times! On the one hand, it was shocking. On the other hand, I did try to focus on the Indie houses. Besides Tauer, the other top houses were Chris Rusak (9), April Aromatics / Zoologist / Sonoma Scent Studio (tied, 7), St. Clair Scents (6) and Jorum Studio (5)

    3) I wore perfume from 63 houses. I don’t count sampling as wearing.

    4) Caturday posts – 22 (probably more)

    5) Posts that included an owl 🦉 – 29

    Liked by 2 people

    • I have to start from saying that I too enjoy your Instagram posts. You were my inspiration.

      Now, your counts are also impressive. Do you use hashtags to count? Or just do it visually?

      I tried to remember what has happened in 2018 that I tested that many perfumes – and I couldn’t. I’ll check my records to see what perfumes those were, it can remind me how it happened.


  8. I keep no records though this post does pull at Past Narth who would have enthusiastically done so. I would say my worn houses this year would be Penhalgions, Memo and Lush though pre-Covid EDLO was looking like a clear winner.

    I wonder though, if I actually kept records if I would discover I remember incorrectly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been doing this record keeping for so long that now I experience discomfort if I miss a day or two and can’t remember what it was :) But since I document everything, without looking into my database I usually don’t have any perception as to what results I’ll get when I do the calculations :) So, I don’t know – you might be completely off or totally on with your assumptions.


  9. I love your stats…but have no idea how you keep up with them. For me, I have become boring. I think in 2020 I bought 3 perfumes, but emptied about 6. I don’t know if it’s because we’re not going out, or that 2020 sucked, but each night at cocktail hour, I reach for my vintage Guerlains: Vol de Nuit, Chamade, Mitsouko and Chant d’Aromes. Nothing else makes me happy :) And please feel free to add more “Rusty” :). xoxoxo


  10. This was an interesting read which made me realize that I don’t have many perfumes from only one house. My method is: testing the complete range (so I only test houses that have not more than 10 perfumes) and then I buy the favourite one…or not at all, if I’m not impressed.
    I’ve bought 14 perfume bottles in 2020 and used up 2 – Bruno Fazzolari’s Unsettled and Heeley’s Hippie Rose (a full 100 ml bottle).
    It took me the whole year to get to appreciate Francesca Bianchi perfumes and now I think I’m there. I couldn’t find a single favorite among Imaginary Authors perfumes. I only bought one vintage perfume this year, actually a decant of Chanel 19.
    And yes, I always appreciate Rusty’s pictures :-)


    • Thank you Neva.

      I’m on the contrary tend to like multiple perfumes from the same brands. Partially it’s because I keep testing new perfumes from the brands that I already know and like hoping to get better ratio of tested to liked perfumes.

      I’m still almost ignorant about Francesca Bianchi perfumes. Maybe one day… Imaginary Authors and Zoologist are two brands that a lot of people on NST and other forums seem to like but both didn’t attract me by their esthetics or those 2-3 scents that I tried from them.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I am as astonished as I am impressed by your continuing meticulous y-o-y logging of perfumes worn and tested. 103 perfumes tested is phenomenal going. I doubt I have tested as many as 10 this year, haha, and I only know one of your Top 10, Rubikona. ;) I am definitely slipping off the edge of the scentosphere!

    Interesting how you remain loyal to more or less the same brands when it comes to day-to-day wearing. It just shows what a pull they exert despite the slew of newcomers on the scene.


    • If you think about it, it’s not that surprising that I wear same brands: since I wear my favorite perfumes that are already in my collection, I have a limited initial pool of brands. And with the ocean of new brands and new releases, I tend to pursue for testing mostly brands that I already like – so, the chances that the next new bottle will be from one of these brands are high :)

      I don’t think that your not testing new perfumes is fully regulated to you losing interest, but rather the fact that your access to anything to try these days is more limited than it used to be.


    • If you start now, you’ll miss just 2 weeks – out of which you still probably can remember at least half, if not more, maybe not in the right order, but that won’t affect your totals when you count everything.
      But I can remind you in December :)

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Pingback: A Gift Horse’s Mouth? – Undina's Looking Glass

  13. Pingback: Saturday Question: Do You Keep Any Perfume Records? (And My 2021 Year Round-up Entertaining Statistics) – Undina's Looking Glass

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