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According to an expert only 16% of people know how to store perfume correctly

Evoke.ie logo Evoke.ie 26/06/2022 Laura Bermingham

It's quite a shocking statistic, but according to one fragrance expert, only 16% of people know how to store perfume correctly so that it doesn't go off prematurely.

Scents are a pricey beauty buy and most of us have more than one, so could we be letting it expire simply by storing it in the wrong place?

To find out where we should be housing our favourite scents, we spoke with perfume expert Jonny Webber about the rights and wrongs of storage, and what he thinks we should be doing this summer.

Some of his tips might come as a surprise, but first, we asked him why so many people are getting it wrong and letting their expensive perfumes suffer at the same time.

Common Storage Solutions

Don't store a perfume on a window sill in direct sunlight/supplied © Provided by Evoke.ie Don't store a perfume on a window sill in direct sunlight/supplied

Jonny is the fragrance expert at PerfumeDirect.com and he tells EVOKE the statistics a perfume poll discovered the common storage solutions people use. He says that 'a massive 45% of people store their perfumes or aftershave on show in the bedroom and 39% in the bathroom, leaving only 16% of people actually storing their scents correctly.'

So, if not in the bedroom or bathroom where should your fragrances be I asked? He says, 'Exposing perfume to direct sunlight is a sure-fire way for perfumes to lose their original aroma. Exposure to both natural and artificial light breaks down a scent's makeup, which over time can cause it to discolour and its chemical composition to change, altering its smell.'

'Keeping perfume in a cupboard, drawer or wardrobe will keep exposure to light to a minimum and help to keep it in its original state for longer,' he adds. 'Alternatively, it can be kept on view but store it in its boxed packaging.'

Heat & Light

Do store perfume in your fridge/supplied © Provided by Evoke.ie Do store perfume in your fridge/supplied

So, if we take our precious scents out of the bathroom or bedroom, what advice has he got on how to store perfume to keep it in good condition?

'Similar to the effect of light on scented liquids, perfume doesn’t like going from hot to cold and vice versa, either,' he says. 'Temperature fluctuations can alter the physical properties of a perfume’s ingredients.'

'Keeping bottles of perfume at a consistent temperature of between 60 and 70 degrees is the best option,' he recommends. 'So pick a cool space that’s not prone to extreme temperature change to store your perfume – why not store it in the fridge.'

Expired Perfume

How to know if your perfume has gone off Pic: Shutterstock © Provided by Evoke.ie How to know if your perfume has gone off Pic: Shutterstock

So, how are we to know if our regular storage methods have already caused our favourite fragrances to go off? He says 'A perfume won’t begin to ‘age’ until it has been sprayed at least once. It’s the introduction of oxygen that begins the oxidation process – much like when foods are opened from airtight containers.'

He also recommends that we 'Keep bottles unopened until you’re ready to use them every day, or once opened and used make sure you keep the lid on the bottle to help to seal it. In general, your perfume likes to be used fairly quickly and not sat in the bottle. This is because half-empty bottles leave room for oxygen to break down the scent.'

And if they have begun to go off, this is what to look for. 'A perfume that has gone off will smell slightly sour – it may look a darker colour or more yellowish too,' he says. 'You may first start to notice this when you’re wearing – the smell might be off-putting and not quite right. A good tip is to spray a piece of paper or item of clothing before you wear it to check if the smell is as it should be.' Now you know how to store perfume, grab your Chanel, Marc Jacobs and Dior and give them some space in the fridge, they will last a lot longer that way.

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