EDT, Cologne, Body Mists And More: All You Need To Know About The Different Types of Perfumes

The most long-lasting or the most fragrant, here’s the ultimate guide to shopping for perfumes.

Published On Apr 27, 2022 | Updated On Mar 06, 2024


Your choice of fragrance can say a lot about your mood and personality. But when it comes to picking a fragrance, the top priority is often its ability to keep body odour at bay. We have innumerable fashion guides’ telling us about the latest trends to inform our styling decisions, but what about finding a scent that fits you just right? If you have been looking to answer this question, you have come to the right place! This guide will help you with everything you need to know about the different types of perfume and picking the right one for you.


The key difference between fragrances lies in the concentration of essential oils in their ‘perfume base’. The base can be oil, alcohol or water.


Alcohol-based perfumes are mixed with ethanol or denatured alcohol. These perfumes are the most common and sold by several well-known brands.

Oil-based perfumes are mixed with a carrier oil. Due to their thick formulation, they are marketed in small roll-on bottles instead of spray.

Water-based perfumes are the most difficult to create as water and oil do not mix. Less aromatic oils are used to make water-based fragrances and the perfume tends to be weaker.

It is the concentration of perfume oil that determines how long the perfume will last on your skin. Based on this, the different types of perfume are: 

Parfum (a.k.a. pure perfume) has the highest concentration of perfume oil at around 20-30 per cent. They can last up to 24 hours and are heavier and oilier. Being the most effective, they also tend to be the most expensive. It is highly recommended for people with sensitive skin as this blend contains the least alcohol content. 

Eau de Parfum (EDP) contains a concentration of 15-20 per cent and lasts for 6-8 hours. These perfumes have slightly more alcohol and water in the ingredients, but still make a good recommendation for people with sensitive skin. They are best suited for evenings and special occasions. 

Eau de Toilette (EDT) contains 5-15 per cent of fragrance concentration and lasts for 2-4 hours. This light formula comes in spray bottles and is the most popular type of fragrance. Available at reasonable prices, they are ideal as a day or work scent. These perfumes tend to dissipate quickly due to the high concentration of alcohol and less concentration of essential oils.

Eau de Cologne (EDC) has a lower concentration of 2-4 per cent and usually lasts for about an hour. It is the oldest kind of perfume and comes in large bottles as a lot of it is required for regular use. Cologne is a refreshing fragrance composition that is lighter on the skin and pocket. 

Eau Fraiche has the least perfume extract with an essential oil concentration of 1-3 per cent. Eau Fraiche means fresh water, and as the name suggests, its main ingredient is water. It lasts only up to an hour and is mostly used to freshen up. Body mists come under this category. Since it contains a low concentration of fragrance and is mostly water, they are also good for sensitive skin. 

Perfume Oils are a type of perfume with a pure oil base. There is no alcohol or water in these blends. They have an essential oil concentration of up to 20 per cent, while the carrier oil makes up the remainder of the blend. Jojoba oil is most commonly used as a carrier oil as it is odourless and colourless. 


Do not confuse a deodorant for a perfume. The key difference between a deo and perfume lies in the area of application. While perfume is applied to the body or clothing, a deodorant is applied to the underarms. Rather than covering up body odour, deodorants neutralise it, and in some cases, enhance your body’s natural scent. 


When you’re choosing a perfume for yourself, spritz it over your skin and smell it after 30 seconds. It is important to note the fragrance it produces when applied to your skin. Fragrances are personal so make sure to choose one that best defines you. Now that you know what each perfume means and how to choose one, go get your perfume! Happy shopping! 

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