Fragrance choice dependent on mood, study shows

By Andrew McDougall

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Odor Olfaction

When it comes to fragrance purchase women are sidelining factors such as price or celebrity endorsement and will choose their scent based on how they feel, market analyst Mintel claims.

The study, carried out on US women, revealed that over half (54 percent) of female fragrance users state mood as the main motivator of fragrance choice.


Thirty one percent of fragrance users said their fragrance choice was based on whether they were going to work or partaking in a personal activity.

Fragrance habits depend upon age

“Women in the 18-44 age range are more prone to change their fragrance based on a number of different factors, while over 45s are more brand-loyal,”​ said Kat Fay, senior beauty analyst at Mintel.

The study claims over 45s are more likely to wear just one fragrance, or a signature scent, so they’re less likely to base their choice on their clothing or mood.

“This may be a result of these younger women juggling multiple activities and responsibilities with a busy work schedule. While they may deem a certain scent appropriate for the office, they might choose a more flirty scent for social functions,” ​Fay explained.

Other results showed 26 percent of users choose their fragrance based on the time of day, and 25 percent decide based on what they are wearing.

In-store samples are favorite purchase motivator

When it comes to the actual purchase of the fragrance, much like the choice, the motivations vary.

However, according to the report the clear winner is in-store samples with 69 percent of fragrance owners stating they are most likely to purchase a fragrance they have previously tested.

“Female consumers often say that a fragrance smells different on their skin than it does out of the bottle, so trying an in-store sample increases the likelihood that they’ll still be happy with their purchase once they get it home,”​ commented Fay.

Twenty six percent of owners cite a friend or family member’s recommendation as the impetus behind a new purchase.

“Women have to experience a scent to make sure it’s appropriate, as there aren’t many objective criteria they can use to test smell,”​ added Fay.

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