Saturday Question: Have You Ever Regretted Giving Away Perfume?

Continuing the last week’s topic of having enough perfumes. Several people have mentioned that they were giving away, donating or selling perfumes they didn’t love any longer. It got me wondering…

Saturday Question on Undina's Looking Glass

Saturday Question #112:

Have You Ever Regretted Giving Away Perfume?

I know, I know, you all are generous people who enjoy other people’s joy from getting your gifts, so let’s stipulate that. But have you ever given away, sold, swapped or thrown any perfumes that later you regretted? If yes, what was that, did you do anything to rectify it, and has it influenced your later decisions to part with perfumes from your collection?

My Answer

I do not easily part with anything I own. It goes not only for perfumes but almost everything. I got used to things and prefer to keep them until they fall apart, stop working or spoil. So, while I do not mind sharing portions of my perfumes, letting go of a bottle is almost impossible for me.

I remember once “lending” a mini bottle of Organza by Givenchy to a co-worker who liked it. She loved it, and I didn’t like perfume enough to wear, so we agreed that she would use it up and return a bottle to me since I really liked the bottle and wanted to keep it.

Well… She left the company long before I remembered about that bottle. And I regretted giving it away because I thought that the bottle was so great. Many years later, I bought another mini bottle. Just to have it in my collection. But now I started thinking about paring down my wardrobe and maybe even downsizing my perfume collection. Nothing crazy, but maybe I will be able to give up something that I do not use any longer… Maybe.

Rusty and Givenchy Organza

Have You Ever Regretted Giving Away Perfume?

42 thoughts on “Saturday Question: Have You Ever Regretted Giving Away Perfume?

  1. I think my greater regret has been thunking hundreds of bottles over my five decades of perfume wearing. I’ve given away many bottles of fragrances that are now almost impossible to find ( too many to mention) but I try not to regret because the universe has a way of rewarding me for that with extraordinaryly kind and generous friends who send me unloved bottles of fragrances unknown to me and I fall in love with something unexpected.

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  2. I have regretted only a handful of bottles sold or given away. So I re-bought them. I gave away Pierre Guillaime’s Jasmagonda and just bought another bottle recently. I missed it! Same with Jo Malone’s Blue Agave & Cacao. Gave it to a friend who loved it and then realized I wanted it again so I bought a smaller bottle the second time. Ditto with Lutens’ Amber Sultan. Gave it away and then bought it again. What was I thinking giving that one away? Crazy, right? But that’s it for me. I have not regretted any other sales or donations. I find that if I have more than about 130 bottles of perfume I get overwhelmed, can’t manage the collection, feel stressed and have to sell or donate some to get the collection down to what is a manageable level for me. My goal is to have only fragrances that I truly love in my collection.

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    • There are perfumes I wouldn’t part with even if I were to stop wearing them. Ambre Sultan is one of such perfumes: it’s so iconic and reformulated since I got it, so I would have definitely regretted such a move.
      I will try to watch my usage more closely to figure out if there are any perfumes I don’t enjoy… And still I’m not sure I’d be able to let those go. But we’ll see.

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  3. My biggest regret is losing the bottle of Chanel No 5 EDC that was sent to me by a young man I met in France when I was 18. Lost it during our last move… I just swapped/gave away a few bottles and hoping I don’t regret it, timely question! For the most part, though, if I never wear something and it doesn’t have some particular sentimental value, I’d rather someone else love it than have it sit on my shelf gathering dust and going off. When I had my parents estate sale, I was really sad until a friend reminded me that they got many years of enjoyment out of their stuff, and I didn’t need to feel obligated to get more time from those things myself. I try to apply that to everything I have – if I have enjoyed it but no longer, or if I didn’t ever really love it, I should let it go.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes, one a bottle of Guerlain that is now to expensive to rebuy and reformulated and another one by an indie perfumer that I loved but someone else loved it. I let her have it thinking I could buy another bottle but the perfumer passed away.

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  5. DelRae Bois de Paradise was given to a perfume pal. I was only wearing it occasionally, but since then have found myself mentally reaching for it.

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  6. Yes, I have sold things that were rare/reformulated and then regretted it. I have rebought at great expense on one occasion. So now I only give away or sell things I am 100% sure I never want to smell again.

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  7. OOOOHHHH! Interesting.
    Yeah, I bought a bunch of vintages a few years ago, many duplicates. Went absolutely bonkers. Gave most of them away for presents thinking the supply was endless. It wasn’t. A couple I would DEARLY love to still have.
    Another was some Guerlain stuff that was super cheap at the discounters that then became DCd. Thought I had an extra backup of a couple but didn’t.
    Ah well. Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda!
    Portia xx

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  8. I’m always happy to share the joy by giving samples or decants. I enjoy buying scent as a gift. I have sold many fragrances over the years. Some I’ve re bought.
    My biggest regret was selling the full presentation including the book of the Limited Edition Guerlainade. It was at a time when DH had gone part time to study & we were struggling to meet the bills. So I had a fragrance sale in the early days of eBay. Not only the Guerlainade but BaV EdC & pure perfume in a coffret, Coriandre & Charles of the Ritz!
    None have been replaced & paying the bills was more important at the time.
    DH never did get that degree

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      • We’re still married & all the bills got paid.
        I rarely wore the BaV & Coriandre. The Guerlainade was still sealed & the Charles of the Ritz I felt was too scarce to use. I was hoarding both. In the big scheme of things I made the right choice.
        I’ve never found Charles of the Ritz again though

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Yes, Agent Provocateur Strip, which I sold to a perfumista in the USA, but which got impounded by the Royal Mail before it left the country. And of course now it is long discontinued. I know there will also be instances of my regretting giving away perfume, but my mind has gone temporarily blank!, possibly to blot out the painful memory. ;)

    I used to have one of those little Organza minis. No idea what I did with it – maybe I gave that away too, hehe.

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    • I think I remember that time when you tried sending that hazardous package that your postal service had to bravely intercept :) I think, you are the only person I know IRL who suffered from perfume being found and confiscated.

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  10. I have a hard time giving away bottles. When I do (rarely), I either keep a decant for myself or just stop reading about what I have away. I really should cull.

    Someone at work left 2 minis in the small room before the ladies room. One was a Donna Karan (which someone absconded with) and the other one (not sure what it is but will look at some point) disappeared for a few days and is now back. I may just leave some bottles there as well and let people just take them.

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    • Yes, the woman’s washroom at work has been a fruitful drop off site for unwanted bottles, although I usually start with people in my area. Just found out that one temp is a perfumista so we might take an afternoon break to a local shop sometime. Training!

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    • I find it hilarious that one of the bottles has returned. Was it that bad? ;)

      It’s interesting that we are similar in that aspect of our hobby – not being willing to part with bottles.

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  11. Hmm… fortunately, no, as I’ve only donated a partial bottle of The Body Shop Red Musk and several samples. I always have a little apprehension that they will end up thrown away rather than being given or sold to someone.

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  12. I can’t say that I’ve ever given away a perfume, with the exception of purposely buying one as a gift. I do have a ton of samples though, and generally willing to put together a little sample set for a friend.

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    • I love buying perfumes as a gift! Though, it’s a special kind of a gift – either I know that the recipient liked that perfume or buy together or provide a sample in addition – to exchange for something else, if necessary.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. How appropriate! I was just thinking over the weekend how I shouldn’t have parted with my LPRN (La petite robe noire). But what is done is done.

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  14. I tend to give away some of the perfume, but keep the original bottle. I have given things away and regretted it-I’m way too materialistic. Plus no one really loves these things as much as I do.

    And, relating back to last weeks question: I just added a bottle of Dior Escale a Portofino-I love a good summer lemon cologne :)

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    • It is much easier for me to part with some perfume from the bottle than with the bottle itself :)
      I haven’t bought anything yet, but I’m considering…

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  15. One year, I felt I hadn’t planned enough Christmas gifts for my two daughters, so I wrapped up two fragrances I had not opened yet and gave those. Then, of course, 1) my daughters didn’t wear them; and 2) they turned out to have been discontinued and became very hard and expensive to find! I liked both of them very much, having tried them after giving them away. They were Balmain’s Ivoire (pre-reformulation) and Isabella Rossellini’s Manifesto. So I offered to swap with my daughters for something they would prefer; the unicorns returned to my cabinet; and we all ended up happy!

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    • Isabella Rossellini’s Manifesto! Be still my beating heart! I thunked 2 or 3 bottles when it was very affordable in Superdrug here in the UK. The last thunk didn’t get replaced, lots of new things to try. Then it was gone.
      Good that you were able to negotiate with your daughters for swaps that were mutually beneficial.

      Liked by 1 person

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