As the holiday’s approach gift giving starts to rise in a lot of minds. I don’t know about you, but I start thinking of my friends and family in categories. I tend to put headings on paper like Skincare, Sports and Cheese on pages and then put names under them so that can begin to group gifts. It isn’t a great way to think of people generally, but it makes shopping easier. The category of Perfume is always a tricky one. I actually have several family members who fall into that category.
I actually fall into that category. I love perfumes.
The issue is that all of us like different scent profiles. Something I like, may or may not be liked by the others on my list, so I have a few possibilities for scent based gifts, that will prove less problematic if you have scent loving people on your holiday lists.
- Discovery Sets
Discovery sets are a great way to learn about any perfume brand The sets provide you with a range of products from the bran in a low cost way so that you can actually try them out and see which one(s) are worth a full sized purchase. It also allows you to experiment with a brand you may not be all that familiar with. When gift giving it is a great way to give someone a range of scents without committing to one on their behalf. Since scent is such a personal thing, it gives them the options to choose the best one for themselves. And most discovery sets seem to come with a code that lets you put the cost of the perfume discovery set towards a full sized purchase, which is a little something extra. There are two Discovery Kits that I tried this year and would highly reccomend.
The first is from Kierin NYC. This discovery set costs $20 and you get a $20 code towards the purchase of a full sized purchase. With the Discovery Kit you get Four rather large samples and a 1ml travel sized bottle of their newest scent. I absolutely adored this kit when I tried it. A couple of the scents I could see more for others than myself, but I ended up purchasing the 10 am Flirt as a scent for my personal collection. Interestingly enough when I first read the descriptions I thought it would be a different scent i gravitated towards, but this is the one that ended up hooking me. And as an added bonus, not that fabulous scent isn’t enough, the bottles that their full sized perfumes come in are all made from recycled glass. So it is just a little extra benefit in an already great product.
The second discovery set I enjoyed this year was the Zents Samples Collection. This costs $22 and again comes with a discount code for a full sized purchase. It contains ten sample scents from their collection. I still haven’t made up my mind as to which one I want to purchase full sized, because there are just several that I really enjoyed. I’m having to narrow it down. Which the Zents products, these are Eau de Toilettes rather than perfumes. This makes them lighter in scent and the Zents scents tend to be ones that cling close to the skin to create a personal scent space rather than projecting out into the word around them. The scents tend to be more delicate in aroma. They are also designed to be layered together so if one of the samples is a little too sweet, you can add a bit from one that might be a little too heavy with spice you create your own blend. It is a really fun way to play around with scent. In addition. the scents in their Eau de Toilette collection are also featured in their bath and body products. There is some variation between products, but it is still the same basic profile. If you find a scent you enjoy, you can get it in a bath truffle, hand cream, soap and possibly even shampoo. Plus it is just fun to play around with.
- Perfume Subscriptions
There are a lot of perfume subscriptions out there. In general these feature a container of approximately 0.27 oz of product sent to you each month. The prices generally range from $10-$15 depending on the service. Some will send a one time refillable travel case others will send you a travel case each month. I’ve tried several of these services and my favorite one has to be Scent Box. It has a slightly lower cost than many of the others (by only a dollar or two), but it has a really wide selection. In addition each month comes with a case for the tube of perfume. I personally like this as even though the amount of perfume scent is supposed to be enough for a month, I sometimes have perfume left over tat the end of the month because I might be trying out another sample for a few days or skip a day or two wearing the scent. I find if I take the glass tube out of the case, It ends up rolling around in a drawer and getting lost. The cases I keep with my perfumes and reach for them more often. In addition Scent box gives you a monthly credit towards a purchase. Each month you get a subscription from the, they will give you a small credit (Scentbucks). You can put this towards the purchase of a full sized perfume, an extra sample size or something else from their website (candles, body products). It is an extra nice perk.
I have to admit one of my absolutely favorite reasons for recommending this subscription is the ease of exchange. I am a sucker for a good perfume description. But sometimes the scent that arrives, is not what I expected. If you get a scent you absolutely can’t stand you can send it back and they will send you a different one from your list of selections. They send you a return label and as long as you send it back within a certain time frame and with the majority of the product still inside, they will take it back no questions asked and simply send out a new scent. I find this gives me extra comfort in trying new scents that I may be on the fence about or to go for ones that might be just out of my comfort level.
Right now Scent Box has a discount on their gift subscriptions. A 3 month Gift is $35 (regular $44.95), a six month gift is $66.15 (regular $84.95) and a twelve month subscription is $124.55 (regular $159.95). There is also a discount on a regular subscription of you are purchasing it for yourself or someone in your household. They have two categories the Standard $14.95 per month and the Premium $19,95 per month. There are more items available in the premium category, but I have never had an issue with the standard selection. Right now you can get your first month of this subscription for 40% off.
Which is a good way to try it if you are looking for a little holiday treat for yourself. While they do have a scent of the month that they recommend to you each month, you can choose your own selections from their list of perfumes and build your own line up so that you can choose exactly what you are getting. I find this to be a fantastic way to try new scents, or to let someone you love who enjoys perfumes to try a wider array.
- And finally…
My final suggestion for those looking for gifts for scent loving friends and family is alas, only for those of you reading in the UK.I mention this because I know some of you are in the UK and shopping for the holidays and it might be a benefit. I checked with them (repeatedly actually) but they can’t ship internationally and at the moment don’t have any plans to look into doing so.
I know so sad, but for those of us not living in the UK, the blog and information on the site is well worth bookmarking for reading up on scent related issues, even if all we can do is drool over the boxes and kits we can’t order. Who are these taunting devils? It is the Perfume Society.
They not only have established collections such as the Molton Brown Scent Collection (one I am looking at ordering for myself from the Molton Brown Site in the near future) but they put together discovery boxes. These are like any other subscription boxes, except that they contain a multitude of perfume samples. The Time To Shine Discovery Box (which I believe is their newest) is $30 or $26 for members. It looks as though it contains 12 scent products some deluxe sample sizes and one of which looks like a hand cream. I actually purchased this as a gift for a cousin of mine who does live in the UK.
They didn’t have any problems with me buying it as long as it was shipping to a UK address. It was more expensive as I was paying in US currency and the price listed is in pounds (I just couldn’t find the key to type the pounds sign). As it is a gift (and in a different country) I clearly didn’t open it, but I know she’s gotten things from them before and loved them. Personally I have been following their blogs for quite a while and love the information presented. Often I can find the items they mention elsewhere but it is often where I hear about new perfume releases and other interesting tidbits. so even if you can’t order, it is a great site to check out.
I hope that for those of you looking for potential gifts for scent loving compatriots, this helps you out in your quest for the perfect gift. happy shopping.