Perfumes, be it eau de toilette (EDT) or eau de parfum (EDP), make an enduring impact and stay with us even after the person wearing it is not around us. Sometimes, they even connect us with the special one or evoke a memory. And, this is what makes selecting the perfumes a very personal choice. Thus, to get the right one, it is important to understand the difference between eau de toilette and eau de parfum.
So, for this purpose, we have curated the right concentration of pure perfume extract, so to say, so that the next time you go to pick a bottle, you have more knowledge about what’s in it.
Eau de toilette vs eau de parfum: What you need to know
What are eau de parfum and eau de toilette?
Is it the same thing? Is it the same quality? Do they have the same source? The air is looming low with a whiff of doubt regarding them. Well, the debate about eau de toilette vs eau de parfum is actually quite straightforward.
Eau de parfum concentration is on the higher end and generally has a range of 15 to 20 per cent of pure perfume oil, while the eau de toilette concentration has a lower fragrance concentration, ranging between 5 to 15 per cent. However, this range might vary for the same scent among different perfume houses.
Having said that, keep in mind that a higher fragrance concentration doesn’t always equal supreme quality. It simply denotes the oil concentration of the fragrance. Sometimes a sudden strong whiff of perfume can overwhelm the senses; on the other hand, an even lower fragrance concentration can go a long way.
Overall, in the EDT versus EDP challenge, the latter just has a higher fragrance oil level than the former.
Do eau de parfums and eau de toilettes smell the same?
Bluntly put, both eau de parfum and eau de toilette can have a similar scent if made with the same notes. But it won’t be the same, even if the two bottlings read the same fragrance.
Now, before you go off to google the specific meaning of notes, let us clarify. Notes are basically fragrance descriptors. It is essentially the first essence that we get after applying. Notes are divided into three categories— top note (for example, citrus and lavender), the first burst of smell you get immediately after applying a perfume; heart note (for example, cinnamon and jasmine) comes once the initial odour of the top note fades and a deeper fragrance comes out; and base note (for example, vanilla and musk) is the lingering smell that stays for long. Hence perfumers take special care to choose the right combination of notes to make the perfect evocative scent.
In the race of eau de toilette vs eau de parfum, EDP will have a higher concentration of smell which will make a single sniff quite a powerful one. The same variant of eau de toilette will give a milder and more subtle whiff.
The two perfume variations can be similar at a brief glance, but they cannot be dubbed to be from the same family, rather can be clubbed as part of an extended family entity.
What lasts longer, eau de toilette or eau de parfum?
With a higher concentration of perfume oil, it is obvious that eau de parfum has a richer feel and decadent scent. In fact, despite EDP fragrances containing more alcohol content and giving a strong spritz, they are better for sensitive skin. Once applied, EDP can last up to 12 hours.
On the contrary, an EDT fragrance generally lasts for two to three hours. The low-concentrated version of the scent makes it light with a shorter life.
Is an eau de toilette cheaper, than an eau de parfum?
The price of eau de toilettes and eau de parfums majorly depend on the fragrance oil concentration. Naturally, in the eau de toilette vs eau de parfum debate, EDP has a higher price range. Premium brands like Chanel, Givenchy and Diptyque offer premium eau de parfum collections for a niche segment of clients who wear these scents that set them apart from the crowd.
On the other hand, eau de toilette’s low oil concentration makes it more affordable for the masses, especially the youth. Also, due to the budget-friendly price, eau de toilette is an ideal gifting option for any intimate occasion.
How do I choose between an eau de toilette and an eau de parfum?
Honestly speaking, it completely depends on personal preference. How strong a fragrance you want, the lasting impression you want to leave behind and the concentration of the scent you like are some of the factors that could help you in choosing between eau de toilette and eau de parfum.
If you have a particular nose for some bold and heavy aromas, EDP fragrances shall be your liking, whereas those looking for a more subtle and nuanced scent will choose EDT.
Another factor that can come across as a major pointer in guiding you in the eau de toilette vs eau de parfum question is the budget you are looking at and the occasion.
For instance, if you are looking for a daytime office scent, EDT would be more suitable, while a night out or an evening party would require an EDP. Interestingly, EDT is derived from the French term ‘faire sa toilette’, which means to get ready.
How do I wear an eau de toilette or eau de parfum?
A decadent scent that not only overpowers your senses but also blocks the noses of everyone around you, you wouldn’t want that. This is where less is more mantra steps in.
A soft fragrance that smells good is the key to go. But while choosing the right bottle makes a huge difference, wearing it also requires some mindful effort. But before going there, make sure your scent is not expired, as that will directly hamper its quality and effect.
For either eau de toilette or eau de parfum, for a daytime event, both follow the same rule. Gently spray the fragrance on your pulse points, such as the neck and wrists. For a more glammed-up evening event, add an extra dose of oomph by spraying it in the air and walking through it or spraying a couple of shots in long hair. Also, try and avoid putting them on your clothes.
(Main image: Courtesy Laura Chouette/ @laurachouette/ Unsplash; Feature image: Courtesy Olen Sergieno/ @olenkasergieno/ Unsplash)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Answer: Eau de toilette has a lower fragrance oil concentration level as compared to eau de parfum. Hence the former has a milder and more subtle smell, while the latter gives off a string whiff.
Answer: Eau de parfum lasts longer than eau de toilette
Answer: Eau de parfum has a more heavy and strong smell as compared to eau de toilette.
Answer: Eau de toilette has a wide market, mainly due to its versatility and affordability. Being light and lowly concentrated, it is ideal for daytime work and casual brunch meets.
Answer: It’s the higher concentration of fragrance extract which makes eau de parfum more expensive than eau de toilette.
Answer: Generally, there are five types of perfumes: parfum, eau de parfum, eau de toilette, eau de cologne, and eau de fraiche.
Answer: Eau de toilette can be applied directly on pulse points, such as the neck or wrist; however, do not spray it on clothes.
Answer: People of any gender can apply any kind of fragrance they like. However, many times fragrances typically marketed for men are branded as eau de cologne but are mostly eau de toilette.
Answer: Some of the best perfumes for men include Chanel's Bleu de Chanel, Dior Sauvage, Ralph Lauren Polo Black and Calvin Klein Eternity for Men.
Answer: The lower concentration of fragrance oil makes eau de toilette cheaper than other fragrances.
Answer: If you are looking for a light and fresh fragrance to keep you going throughout the day, eau de toilette is the one that is worth buying.