Portia’s Perfume Ennui

Hey there Looking Glassers,

Do you ever get so overwhelmed with all your fragrances that it just feels like too much. Suddenly you stop thinking how fabulous it all is and start thinking what a burden this enormous amount of fragrant consumerism has become? What to wear? How to store? Blah! Blah! Blah! and suddenly the whole schemozzle starts to feel like hard work.

Portia’s Perfume Ennui

This happens to me every so often. Sometimes it’s for no real reason at all. Other times there came be triggers. Maybe when things are or have gone askew in perfume land or on the scentbloggosphere. It can be when I’m suffering low level depression. Perfume ennui can hit especially hard when I let my desktop become overcrowded (pictured currently ^^^) or there are a large number of unpaid bills (laziness OR lack of funds). I find myself not wanting to come into my office/perfume room hardly at all. So I call it my Perfume Ennui.

Perfume Ennui can creep up slowly so I’m not even aware until the signs are TOO obvious to miss. It can also be like a brick wall, wide and high. The other way it shows itself is my general lack of enthusiasm for spritzing.

Today I’m asking if you all ever get Perfume Ennui? Do you do something to get over it? Does it rectify itself? How do you cope?

Also, just as an aside. Turbo trivia started a new venue last Thursday and this is the entrance to the bar it will be held in every Thursday. It’s about 1.5x life size and stopped me dead in my tracks when I first saw it. How freaking cool is that?

So, back to the topic at hand. How do you deal with Perfume Ennui?
Portia xx

61 thoughts on “Portia’s Perfume Ennui

  1. Nope. I don’t. Not at all. BUT I can well understand that it happens, especially if you have a massive collection. I have often wondered how you handle all that stuff, but I think of you as a collector, more than say someone like me., an elitist snotty perfume junkie. You know the way I work, if I don’t absolutely love it, or find it endlessly fascinating as a piece of creativity, I do not want it. I don’t keep anything I don’t like, let alone wear anything I don’t love. Hence the small collection. Nevertheless I would be so excited to look through your stash, in amongst all the vintage stuff, no interest, I know you have stuff I want! Hermès. Malle. Chanel Exclusifs!

    Could I get one of those posters of you? That is stunning. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, you have such a selective way of wearing fragrance Val. It’s so far removed from the way I do it. We are like two sides of the fragrance junkies coin. Same but totally different. It may be why we worked together so well for so many years.
      You are welcome to come here. we could get ALL THE BOXES out and go through them. It’s fun.

      OMG! Yeah! I want one too. Wonder if they’ll do me a couple.
      Portia xx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Portia, that framed poster of you is amazing!!!! Totally cool but wish I could have seen your face as you clocked it. Brilliant.

    I have perfume ennui big time since working from home. What helps is wearing old favourites and newer perfumes like the decant of Vivacious I wore again at the weekend.

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  3. 1.5 life size, that is freaking cool!
    Perfume ennui comes and goes, has been going on for quite a while now because lockdown stress. I just read somewhere that continued stress causes us to not enjoy what we usually do because mammalian brain unhappy when stressed.

    Vero has brought me back each time, I hope she will do that once more. And possibly Hiram should he bring out a new perfume. But I think once these endless stresses abate that will help the most (is this a proper English sentence?).

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Poster is amazing, so glad Turbo Trivia is back! I do get some ennui – usually short lived but I will open my closet and decide there’s nothing I want to wear. This year I’m pushing through for my perfume a day project; not every choice is successful (samples on Sunday’s, so those are risky, and Monday’s I wear minis, many of which were GWP so not always great either). But at least I’m wearing something. (Occasionally I use random.org to pick a row from my master spreadsheet – desperation times.). I do also have a couple of “no brainer” perfumes that I will love no matter what – choosing those on down days usually works!

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  5. Lately I have found my collection more overwhelming than delightful, and it seems I can’t find what I want. I am handling this by slowly picking older bottles that I haven’t worn in some time, spraying them for the day, and if they don’t bring me great joy I either list them on EBay or gift them to someone who I think would like them. If this is anything like past times, I eventually get over it.

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  6. Great poster of you, Portia! And framed beautifully as well, very classy :)

    As to perfume ennui, I experience it in a different form. My collection is quite small, I keep it as Val and only add fragrances that I love or that are different and entertaining enough.

    It worked out like this for years, I was enjoying what I had as well as researching and sniffing what else was out there. Perfect perfume bliss. What makes it more and more difficult though is that there is simply too much (so many new brands and releases) and that prices are becoming insane.

    Perfume is one of my most beloved hobbies. But if the last months have shown one thing, it is that perfume is not my only hobby and priority in life. So often, trying to get my hands on a 1.5 ml sample for 25 EUR of the latest hyped fragrance is not worth it. Even less if the scent does not smell interesting. (And sadly, many niche brands now tend to play it save or reformulated their scents.)

    My perfume ennui is probably not as sad as yours but it means that I am now less active in the perfume community and that I turn more and more to (good) designer scents. There are some really nice ones out there that have always run under the radar and that are not only more affordable but just as much fun to research, hunt down and to wear!

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    • Hey Marie,
      Thank you.
      Oh yes! I love a designer scent myself and you might note there are a few on the desk right now, YSL, Hermès, Cartier, Cacharel, Kenzo and Boucheron. It definitely doesn’t have to be niche to be good.
      Portia xx

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  7. I and my small collection are new to this game so no ennui so far, but I definitely oscillate between itching to try something new and missing my comfy favorites when I’m over- or underwhelmed by samples.

    Great picture – the eyes and brows remind me of elements of Chinese opera!

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  8. Sometimes I think that too much of a good thing sets up boredom with all the choices we have. If we had three choices, it’d be quicker to decide. Or one could just use up one bottle and then blind pick another…I change every day, trying to wear by mood or where I’m going (no use to pick Lyric if I’m only going to market…).

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    • HA! To make my market hum drum more interesting sometimes I wear the MOST fabulous things like vintage Samsara extrait or some Opium. It really does add gloss to the banal.
      Proving you may not be able to polish a turd but you can roll it in glitter.
      Portia xx

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I go through this regularly now, since my collection is so huge. It gets oppressive and it becomes a chore to select and wear something. Plus my stress levels have been high for the last three years and I’m feeling emotionally depleted. Between sickness & death of pets, moving and pandemic, perfume just doesn’t feel as compelling as it once did, so I’m going easy on myself and not forcing it when I’m not in the mood. Eventually it comes back, but I’m quite sure that the mania part of this obsession is over and I will be more restrained and selective with my buying going forward. You can have too much of a good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You really have had a bunch of high stress events over the last three years TaraC. PLUS C19 and its attendant dramas. After such pivotal life and world changes of course perfume is going to seem frivolous and the shine will come off.
      Don’t worry. This too will pass.
      Portia xx

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  10. Hi Portia I love the poster too and would have loved to see your face!!
    As far as your magnificent collection goes…wow so freaking amazing but I can see it would be overwhelming. This ennui happens in life, work and relationships and will pass…put them all in cupboard , sell a few extras…and go into the deep recesses and try something new, or just keep a couple favourites on the desk. They are a great sight to behold and I felt like a kid sitting at your table trying out beautiful scents…who am I trying to kid! Giving advice….but it’s a good discussion to have xxx

    Hello Tara and Val 😘😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anna Maria,
      Funny. I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. I will clean the desk this afternoon and leave out 5 current faves. Next week I’ll go through and see what needs to be moved on.
      You know me so well and I always love to hear your advice.

      Still smiling remembering our day at the Trudon Store launch and Santa Maria Novella. We are so lucky to have each other.
      Portia xx

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  11. Usually I want to wear perfume. But I need time to choose “the right one” for the day/occasion – and since I often don’t have time because of my work (and I’m not leaving the house, so I don’t have to decide immediately and run), I postpone the choice until later… and then it’s time to eat, then I forget, then more work, time to go for a walk… and then I’m torn between wearing something and testing new perfumes (and which) – so sometimes I end up doing neither :)
    I need some system, but I don’t have time to come up with it.

    Loved the poster!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Great poster, P!!
    Yes, I experience ennui more and more these days. I’ve done perfume breaks and just enjoy the scent of a good soap, body lotion or essential oils.

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  13. Perfume ennui happens, especially after phases of madly hoarding fragrances and suddenly realizing the happiness doesn’t last long. Then I feel disappointed and cheated and I withdraw from perfume groups for a while. It’s probably a real addiction and one has to find a new meaning or purpose to feel happy again. In such periods I long for my safe fragrances and I avoid perfume shops and sites. Sometimes I even sell a bottle or two just to feel better.
    Luckily, I always return to my favourite hobby.
    Portia, your poster is WOW! I’ve always loved this luxurious wig.

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    • Yeah, I think any of us that have been in this hobby for a long stretch have gone through a little ennui, or a lot. Even writing this post has helped me come out of it.
      So many helpful ideas. My desk is now almost clear of bottles and stuff. I’ve left a few wintry faves out. Also I’ve put away a bunch of accumulated papers off my easy grab tray next to the desk. I’m hoping having the Serge, Neela, CHANEL and Dior close by will lift my game too.
      Portia xx

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  14. I am sometimes a bit uninspired, but I wear something nonetheless. Mostly I go with one of my favorite Chypres, because they are great in every season.

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  15. I get that feeling every so often, when I open my closet and am washed in waves of guilt for how much money I have spent, knowing there is no earthly way I can even make a dent before leaving this world. Then I spritz and it brings back the joy, my lifelong love affair with scent. Fragrance testing and buying is the only vice I have left and I feel entitled to it!

    It seems you are back in business, we are all so happy for you! And such a cool celebrity poster. Best of luck at the new venue!

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  16. There are a couple of things I might try when I feel I’m getting bored with perfume:
    – Give bottles to my friends. Their reaction will often reawaken my own interest.
    – Wear a perfume in circumstances in which I normally wouldn’t, e. g. I start wearing my favourite winter scents in summer or vice versa.
    – Just not wear any perfume at all for some time.
    – While not wearing perfume, make myself continually aware of all the smells surrounding me, whether pleasant or not, as I go about my day. Works particularly well in unfamiliar environments, for example when I’m on holiday.
    – Let my partner choose perfumes that I should wear for him.
    – Read about perfume-related topics.

    Usually, other things are much more important than perfume, and I find that my interest waxes and wanes time and again. It’s nothing I worry about too much.

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  17. Your poster is amazing! thank you for sharing it with us.

    And I feel exactly as you do-bit overwhelmed with my collection. Bit worried if I give some away, will I miss them? The only way for me is to share them with people I love, like my brother. If I know someone will appreciate it, I can share. I love sharing-it makes me happy.

    I do think it’s part of pandemic thinking-nothing seems quite right sometimes, and I think my own brain isn’t functioning. Also I ran into a planter thing in out parking lot-$4,000 worth of damage to my truck and this dismays me lol.

    Have a good evening,

    Carole

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    • Hey there Carole.
      Sharing is an excellent way to make everything seem brighter. I’m having a buddy over tonight and giving him a couple of bottles that just don’t suit me. I feel good about it already.
      BLODDY HELL! $4000 on a car bump is a shit. Sorry to read it.
      Portia xx

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  18. Perfume ennui? Not there and hope to never get there! I do get overwhelmed by my fragrance collection but it doesn’t take me long to decide what to wear.

    And I love love love the poster of you all glammed up!

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  19. What a gorgeous poster, Portia! And yes, I am currently suffering from a case of Perfume Ennui, complicated by allergies. A surfeit of perfume and too little time left in life to use all the alcohol based fragrance stored in every nook and cranny. There is more than enough around the place to require reclassifying my home and studio as storage space for hazardous materials. I will pull out of this ennui, but for the moment am just smelling the flowers.

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  20. Love the poster! I’m so pleased for you that you have this new venue, best of luck! I don’t really get perfume ennui, probably because I’ve been in this hobby for fewer years than several of you. Like many here, I have more than enough perfume to last me a lifetime, and I have a better idea of what I really like, so my purchases have slowed. Trying and blogging about fragrance has been a welcome distraction during the past year of remote work and pandemic lockdown. I also find that my annual “May Marathons” and those daily posts are a great way to reinvigorate my attention to fragrance. Once we finish our house repairs and my two daughters move out as planned by the end of the summer, I plan to reorganize my collection and I expect that will also rekindle interest in some fragrances I haven’t worn for a while.

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    • You are SO BUSY! Renovations and nest emptying OH! How are you coping with the changes? All on the back of C19 too! WOW! You really are tough.
      I’m loving the May Marathon this year. So many wonderful faves and new to me scents.
      Good luck with the reorganisation! That will be super fun.
      Portia xx

      Liked by 1 person

  21. I love your poster. Life is good there with things back to ‘normal’ (What’s normal anyway?) I don’t ever get the attacks of ennui, it’s more a case of being paralyzed by too much choice. But that paralysis lasts for only minutes. Then it’s spritz, spritz however many times and the job’s a good ‘un.

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  22. I’ve had a couple of perfume ennui attacks over the years. I usually go back to my all time loves and wear those for a while and that rekindles my love for fragrance. I agree with others that the current plethora of scented offerings is overwhelming at times.

    When things get too overwhelming, I sell or give away a few bottles that I found i did not really love and things settle down. I try to limit what I try to brands and perfumers with whom I am already familiar or recommendations from folks I know.
    I’m enjoying summery fragrances from my collection now, wearing diptyque’s Eau Rose EDT today with a layering of Prada’s Infusion de Rose, very fresh and garden green!

    LOVE the poster of your gorgeous self, Portia! Wish I could attend a trivia night in person!!

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  23. That is a freakin’ awesome poster!! As it should be!
    I think my perfume ennui stems from this dreadful pandemic fatigue.

    Lovely to be here & “see” everyone again 😘

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  24. That is one helluva poster – you must have been thrilled!

    I have suffered from perfume ennui quite a lot in recent years, having had the hobby for 13 years now. I get jolted out of the olfactory doldrums periodically by friends (Undina, Tara, Val and your good self!) putting stuff under my nose to try.

    The lack of enthusiasm doesn’t bother me, and I don’t feel as though I have to deal with it. I just wait for it to pass like a headache or a low mood. I still wear perfume maybe half the time, but as well as the ennui I have some ongoing health issues that have distracted me of late, also from blogging.

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    • Hey Vanessa,
      Thrilled is still to soft a word. Walking in and seeing yourself writ large is confronting in a good way. Especially when the poster is so gorgeous.
      YAY for us helping you through. BOO for health problems.
      Yes, a this too will pass attitude is probably the best.
      Portia xx

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