Fragrance Strength & Concentrations Explained – A Simple Guide

Enthusiasts, experts and lovers of fragrance will know this instinctively, but so many people who enjoy fragrances still get confused about some of the perfume jargon. And though a lot of technical information may not be relevant to the average user, we believe understanding perfume concentration is important in making a decision as to which perfume to buy. This is simply because the concentration of a scent has direct and significant implications to your experience and utility specifically the intensity of the scent and its longevity.

Let’s start at the beginning, the essence of a fragrance comes from the perfume oil, this is the concentrated version of a specific scent. So the more perfume oil used in a perfume the stronger it will smell and the longer it will stay with you.

Before we jump in, one disclaimer. Though this is an industry standard and the perfume industry is a very mature industry these concentration tags are merely labels and are not regulated by any central agencies. Which means that individual perfumers and brands can go away from the norm and don’t follow these. But with an understanding of this system in most cases and for all intents and purposes your understanding will be at par with most well informed perfume enthusiasts.

So Let’s jump in:

Eau Fraiche – 1-3%

Very light fragrance which traditionally uses between 1% to 3% perfume oil. Similar to the EDC Eau Fraiche fragrances last for up to 2 hours. While Eau Fraiche is a low concentration fragrance is containing less alcohol and a higher percentage of water.

Eau De Cologne or EDC – 2-4%

Similar to Eau Fraiche this is also a low concentration fragrance which generally uses between 2% – 4% perfume oil. An EDC fragrance will also last for about 2 hours and will need to be sprayed in higher volume than EDT’s. Originally Eau De Cologne’s referred to fresh recipes with herb and citrus top notes.

Eau De Toilette or EDT – 5-15%

Still the most popular concentration, though the Eau De Parfum is increasing in popularity and use, the Eau De Toilette still has a substantial lead especially within men fragrances. The balance of longevity and price make this a popular choice. Depending on the range and the notes, an EDT scent will last anywhere between 6-8 hours.

Eau De Parfum or EDP

Generally considered the 2nd most intense type of fragrance after Parfum. Eau De Parfum generally has about 15%-20% perfume oil. This gives you a scent that will last anywhere between 8-10 hours. Compared to its more intense sibling the EDP has a higher concentration of alcohol, it is considered better for sensitive skin. Along with Eau De Toilette, the Eau De Parfum is one of the highest used concentrations within the perfume industry.


Though broadly Parfums can have anywhere between 15% and 40% perfume oils, in most cases Parfum’s will have a concentration of perfume oils between 20% – 30%. Of all the different concentrations within this list, Parfum fragrances will last the longest anywhere between 10-14 hours. Traditionally this concentration will be more expensive than the others.

  We hope that this little guide will help you with your next perfume decision, to understand better you can browse through our listings and see for yourself. All our listings clearly mention concentrations.