Smaller sizes

Though the fragrance market has been challenged, there are areas that are resonating with consumers. Smaller sizes are becoming an increasingly important option today. What’s encouraging is that they are not just working in women’s scents or new fragrances…we are also seeing growth in smaller sizes for both women’s and men’s fragrances (one ounce and smaller) and classics, as well as new scents.

— Karen Grant of The NPD Group, quoted in Good Things Come In Small Packages at Happi.

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  1. pyramus says:

    I would buy even more than I currently do if I could get everything in 15-mL spray bottles. I have no use for 100 millilitres of something; I’ll never use it. And lots of niche scents are available only as 200-mL bottles, which is completely insane. I even have trouble these days justifying a 50-mL bottle: sometimes the availability of a 15, or even a 30, is what tips me over the edge into a purchase.

    • Daisy says:

      Pyramus–I agree in general–there are a few things that my greed insists that I hoard the whole 100ml —but most things 10 to 30ml is plenty. Which is why the google scent-split group is so amazing! Have you checked it out? It sounds like just the place for you.

      • rickbr says:

        Daisy, which group is this one at Google?
        I’ve been buying a lot of decants recently. They fit at my budget and in the space of my wardrobe. And, besides that you can finish with them , they very portable.

        • Daisy says:

          I make 10ml “travel size” decants of many of my FBs just for that portability factor—mornings aren’t my best or most organized time of the day and it’s nice to be able to grab a 10ml on the way out the door. I gave the email for the group below—and Robin hasn’t smacked me yet, so think about joining (it’s free, no obligation—but temptation abounds!)

          • rickbr says:

            Daisy, i’ve saw your comment and made my subscription. I hope they accept me :)
            I know that the decanting world is very tempting. I’ve received today my decant of el attarine (so lovely, an arabie with fruits instead of spices), and I’m still waiting ansiously for my decant of Spiritueuse Double Vanille.
            I think i’m becoming a decant ho rsrs

          • Daisy says:

            Ha! you’ll be in good company! The scent-splits group is loaded with decant hos.

      • meadowbliss says:

        Thanks for that link, Daisy. I have many FB’s collecting dust, and although I know there are sites for splits I’ve not heard of this one. Btw, It may be stunningly beautiful out and even pristine, but I’m way past that. Here in the mountains, in a very small town, cable doesn’t stand a chance, roads are impassable, and unless you are of the pioneer spirit, which I am, it can get to you. Thank goodness for Hulu!

    • Robin says:

      I’m very surprised at how few niche brands have caught on to smaller sizes, although a few have introduced them recently.

      • Joe says:

        I’m particularly glad that Parfumerie Generale has added 30ml bottles to the line. And of course, it’s awesome the PdN has always been ahead of this curve.

  2. meadowbliss says:

    I agree. I’d definitely be pulling out the wallet if I could buy 15 ml, too! My little vault is overflowing w insanity–FB and samples.
    Robin, I know you’re in a small town in PA, but I think you’re more towards Philly–isn’t the weather lovely? Time for cocoa and snuggling….I’m near Pittsburg, but it may as well be Alaska.

    • Daisy says:

      EEK! we must be neighbors— I live in Michi-laska.
      No school today :-)

      • boojum says:

        So unfair… our schools NEVER close. Ever.

        • Daisy says:

          Sorry Boo— wish I could share my snow-day with you. :-(

        • mals86 says:

          My kids have been out of school for NINE DAYS RUNNING. If they don’t finish each other off, I may have to do it, just to get a little peace!

          Or they could just go back to school for a couple of hours a day… we’re very mountain-rural, and the buses can’t make it down all the back roads — because, obviously, neither can the plows. So even though I can get to work, there’s no school…

          • Daisy says:

            couldn’t your basement need cleaning out? or maybe some closets? I find that sort of announcement usually produces a nice period of complete silence…..

          • Absolute Scentualist says:

            No school here on the western half of Michigan either, due to all that lovely lake effect snow. *shudder* It was definitely a comfort scent morning to get through today. SOTD = Laura Tonatto Plaisir in a very portable 8ml decant. It’s fantastic.

            I love the one ounce option for fragrances I like but don’t love enough to burn through a 100ml bottle. I bought gift sets of Halle, Believe and Love’s Baby Soft all for half off after the holidays and spent what I’d normally spend on *one* department store frag and got all three. Small sizes are great not only for sampling/owning a frag, but can sometimes save me from buying an fb since testing them in person just isn’t an option here. CDG’s Daphne was tempting as an fb purchase… Until I tested it and discovered there’s definitely something in there that more than disagrees with me. Phew and money diverted elsewhere. Viva la teensie tiny bottle! I’ve still got a By Kilian set to get into, which is quite exciting as they were a company whose absence of smaller bottles just gnawed at me for months until these and the travel atomizers came along.

    • Robin says:

      It is absolutely stunningly beautiful outside. I hate snow though, I’d trade it in a second for mid-spring.

      • Evil Emma says:

        I’m in the DC area and it’s 3 days now that I have been out of the office due to weather. Daisy, what is this google scent splits you speak of?

        • Daisy says:

          Robin, I don’t know if it’s okay to provide the contact email here? Please remove if it’s not appropriate. Apologies in advance.

          [Ed note: removed link because site was being flooded. Sorry]

          Perfume addicts (like me) splitting up bottles of whatever strikes their fancy. It’s pretty cool.

          • Evil Emma says:

            Thank you!

          • Thanks, I signed up. :)

            The snow is just starting here, but all the schools were cancelled yesterday.

          • rickbr says:

            Daisy, thank you!!

          • poshnerd says:

            Thank you, Daisy!

          • Robin says:

            Sure, no problem.

          • Aleksandra says:

            I applied as well – I’ve been so sad looking at my 100mL bottles that I will never ever finish off. I hope I get approved! Daisy will be responsible for a big influx of applicants. :)

        • boojum says:

          Just be prepared to wait a few days…someone has to approve it, and that doesn’t always happen right away. I think it was about 3 days before I could get in.

          • rickbr says:

            Hi boojum! I think i was lucky, it looks that it was someone online at this time and approved my subscription. I hope i don’t find something so tempting there at this moment rsrs

      • Daisy says:

        oh yes, I was admiring the pristine beauty of the neigborhood this morning at 6:30—–while the CEO was snowblowing out the driveway. I plan to go outside….sometime mid-April….. ;-)

        • OperaFan says:

          Hi Daisy – I get angry too about that issue.
          My guess is that companies expect to make the same $$ profit off each item they sell, regardless of size. That’s why the smaller sizes have such inflated price tags. For example, if the 15ml cost $10 to produce and the 100ml cost $40, by $35 for the 15 and $65 for the 100, they’d be making the same profit over their cost.
          Guess that’s the incentive for buying the larger sizes…

          • OperaFan says:

            Oh Dear – This was meant to be a response to Daisy about being angry at the inflated pricing of the smaller sizes! Sorry… But, since I’m here – over here near the Jersey shore, we’re currently being hit by freezing rain waiting for the 2nd wave of noreaster to hit….

      • rickbr says:

        Robin, we can swap weather rs Here the weather is on the last days hot, sunny, bright, very, very warm :S I just want some cold days, i can’t stand hot weather anymore

    • kalynna says:

      I was complaining about our “cold” weather this morning… it’s 50 degrees and partly cloudy here…sorry guys, guess I should be thankful :)

      • Daisy says:

        LOL yeah! you better watch it!! hahaha it’s all about what you’re used to I guess…..I’m sitting here moaning about 10″ of snow in the last 24 hrs….and poor Boo would love to ONLY have 10″ of the white stuff. (she might smack me but she’d smack you harder! ) 50 degrees sounds kinda nice today….. ;-)

        • boojum says:

          Oh, we did get only 10″…but they closed your schools for THAT? I can understand it in very rural areas, or down south where it’s not common enough to put the $$ into plows, but you’re in MI!

        • kalynna says:

          Lol, I grew up near DC, and they would close schools for the THREAT of snow.

  3. boojum says:

    Yay, they’re taking note! Now if all the rest would just jump on board…I’d be living in a cardboard box. :D Actually, I’d probably be better off, because I could buy if/when I wanted rather than having to grab the opportunity when a split comes up.

  4. rickbr says:

    What i don’t understand is why some brands, like Hermés, do 15ml of their fragrances as gifts, not for sale items. The 15ml version of kelly caleche is nice. I’ve already saw the 15ml version of the un jardin series, and it looks that they’ve made now 15ml versions of the eau des merveilles and elixir des merveilles.
    What i hope is that the brands do more 15ml versions, but that they don’t charge them as 30ml versions

    • Daisy says:

      that’s the gripe I have with the smaller sizes—the price per ml is usually shamefully inflated!!! Then I just get ANGRY!

      • OperaFan says:

        Oops! My reply got moved up 2 threads above. It’s following your response about leaving your house in April! Here’s what I said:
        “Hi Daisy – I get angry too about that issue.
        My guess is that companies expect to make the same $$ profit off each item they sell, regardless of size. That’s why the smaller sizes have such inflated price tags. For example, if the 15ml cost $10 to produce and the 100ml cost $40, by $35 for the 15 and $65 for the 100, they’d be making the same profit over their cost.
        Guess that’s the incentive for buying the larger sizes…”

        • Daisy says:

          I saw, and knew what you were talking about. As much as I’d love to buy (almost) everything in a 30ml—it KILLS me to pay so much more per ml than the large bottles—which is why I love splitting. I might not feel that way if I was very interested in the bottles. For the most part, I think bottles are nice but I’ll not pay extra for it—plain little atomizers are fine and dandy! The exception being the Amouage bottles…and I know that’s just the color (I freely admit to my spinelessness when it comes to Amouage bottles.)

          • boojum says:

            Hey, right there too…that’s why I did the Lyric split even though *gulp* I’d never done one before. Start big, right? :D

          • OperaFan says:

            Speaking of Amouage bottles – aren’t the new mini collection bottles tempting? (Evil of me to suggest, I know…)

          • Daisy says:

            Boo —yeah, scary one to “break yourself in” with…but you did a fabulous job! Everybody was pleased as punch to get some and you didn’t end up with a peptic ulcer or anything!
            Opera —-oh yes, they are beautiful and yes, you are EVIL to mention them ! ;-)

    • Robin says:

      Luckily though, the 15 ml Hermes often show up for sale at discounters or on eBay.

  5. Suzanne941 says:

    I finally tipped over the edge of madness when my dearest gifted me w/31 Rue Cambon for Xmas…and it’s 200 ml! I could bathe in the stuff! I love the smaller bottles. I’ll never use all that on top of all the other FBs I have. I had to see it to believe it.

    • Robin says:

      Really do think Chanel would sell way more of the Exclusives if they made them smaller. It’s crazy.

      • boojum says:

        But then they wouldn’t be exclusive!

        • Daisy says:

          yeah, then they’d just be Chanel Les Really Easy to Get and Use Up.

  6. Joe says:

    I like to think the execs and marketing geniuses have been reading perfume blogs like NST. :D

    • Robin says:

      Doubt it, but nice to think so!

  7. megank4 says:

    Definitely.
    Miniatures are not enough (and often don’t seem to smell the same as full size, for some strange reason). I guess 30 mL are okay, but their price is often so close to 50, why not get 50, and then only 10$ for 100 so I end up with 100 mL and only use about 25. Sigh.

    • Joe says:

      Hahaha… I can appreciate your way of thinking (it’s so SENSIBLE, obviously), but unless I’m selling some off, I really, REALLY try to avoid the temptation to go for 100ml.

      • Daisy says:

        See? that’s what I do….I’m SAVING money by buying the big bottle!!
        Megan understands…..

        • Joe says:

          And while you’re buying ONE 100ml bottle, might as well buy at least one or two more, right? To SAVE MONEY on shipping… so you don’t have to order them separately in a couple weeks. Am I doing this correctly? :D

          • Daisy says:

            I see you’ve thoroughly read my instructional manual….

    • fluffypuppy says:

      I know! Or if I really like something, I get scared that it will be reformulated or discontinued–or if it’s already been discontinued I get scared it will become impossible to find. So I not only buy the biggest bottle I can, I buy a backup bottle and a backup-backup bottle. And then I end up with more than I could possibly use, even if I wore it, bathed in it, and brushed my teeth with it for the rest of my life!

  8. With all the travel restrictions you would think the fragrance industry would have jumped on this by now. But i think its a case of being challenged with meeting a trend without cutting off their noses so to speak. I think Fresh’s approach, launching a collection of their best sellers in 1 fl oz sizes, offers a nice medium. Nowadays people want value and they want it at a good price. A great smelling scent at a reasonable price and it fits in my gym bag or my carry-on, that’s value folks.

    • Robin says:

      Yes…I do think at Sephora esp. there’s been an explosion of travel sizes & roll-ons. But clearly many brands don’t want to hop on the bandwagon.

  9. GalileosDaughter says:

    LOVE smaller sizes. I absolutely am more willing to buy a fragrance if it comes in a smaller size (with a corresponding smaller price, of course). I prefer buying a smaller bottle for a lot of reasons: smaller price, portability, and the feeling that I might actually use it up, rather than having it go bad before I can go through it all.

    • Robin says:

      Yes — always nice to think you can use something up in your lifetime!

  10. jo says:

    boy o boy–would I love small sizes !!! I am spending my entire retirement fund on good-smellin’ things. somethin’s gotta stop me…..if anyone else found the address of that web-site, then, please send it to me. that way, my kids won’t have to support me when i get really really really old……….

    • Daisy says:

      Hi Jo, send me a quick email at Daisyloo82 at gmail dot com

  11. Tama says:

    My greedy-gut self tends to want the big bottles, and they do save money. But for the most part I would rather be able to buy a couple of smaller ones. I would definitely fork out for a collection of the Les Exclusifs in smaller sizes!

    Barney’s is having a freebie gift sample bag giveaway this week (Thu Fri Sat) with $175 fragrance/beauty purchase and I am such a sucker for that kind of thing! I am doing all kinds of math to see what to buy. lol
    I think Le Labo Rose 31 is in my very near future….

    • Robin says:

      thanks for the tip!

  12. Absolute Scentualist says:

    I love the Sephora roller ball sizes. I just snagged some Juicy Couture Couture Couture (it feels so ridiculous to write that out) and liked it quite a bit. Perhaps even enough to spring for more of the line. And the By Kilian set? If you add up all the perfume by the ounce, you’re getting a far better deal with the set than just buying *one* full size bottle of perfume since you’re not paying for that silly eccentric packaging. :)

    If I know I’ll go through a fling where I’ll be practically bathing in a perfume for a time, like Natori for instance, I’ll buy the large bottle, while some of my larger bottles are regularly used up every couple years i.e. Angel, Fracas and the like where the honeymoon phase has ended and we’ve just settled into a regular and comfortable fragrance/wearer relationship. But there’s lots of perfumes I’m happy to own in a smaller and less fancily packaged size to take them for a more dedicated test run where I can spritz rather than dab.

    • Robin says:

      I can’t think of anything on earth I wouldn’t rather have in 30 ml than 100.

      • Daisy says:

        clearly the Greed Center of your brain is malfunctioning…..and mine is overactive….

  13. Celestia says:

    Last year we were up to our ears in snow for the longest time. This year, when we are hosting the Olympics, there’s no snow. Sob!
    Last Xmas, Ralph Lauren put out 30 ml bottles of his men’s Polo line for $25 Can. This was genius because they made great stocking stuffers, let alone gifts, and kids could afford to buy them for ther dads! Besides, smaller bottles are so cute and they fit in your purse.

    • Robin says:

      You can have all my snow. Right now.

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