What to do with old or unwanted fragrances – twindly beauty blog

What to do with old or unwanted fragrances - twindly beauty blog

The internet can be a treasure trove, but also a cesspit of misinformation. If you need some inspo for uses for unwanted fragrances, you’ve come to the right place: because I will also tell you what you absolutely, never, ever should do with old fragrances.

Shopping your stash is all fine and dandy until you realise one day that you can’t stand a fragrance anymore. Or, even worse – that it really doesn’t smell like it did before, because you’ve owned it for 10+ years. (Let me quickly stress that it’s important to store fragrances in cool, dark spaces – fragrances are delicate and temperamental little things.)

While I’m all for using what you already own, I’m not big on masochism – why use something you dislike? Life’s too short for that. I went and asked the internet what I should do with old fragrances, and here’s a little do’s and don’t’s list for you.

Uses for unwanted fragrances

Do: Gift or swap

If the fragrance in question is just not for you, why not trying to either swap with a friend or gifting it to someone who will appreciate it more?

Don’t: throw it in the trash

NO. Nononono. Also, don’t put it down the drain. Because all countries differ, contact your local waste facility or council. In Germany, fragrances don’t go into general waste, but has to be brought to a Wertstoffhof. Also, can I again stress that you shouldn’t pour it down the drain?!

Do: Try to layer it with another fragrance

If one of the notes grates on your senses, try to layer it with another fragrance. Layer a citrus heavy fragrance over one that’s too sweet, for example, or a woody one over one that you find too floral.

Don’t: use it as a disinfectant

Before you do, remember that different types of fragrance use different amounts of alcohol, different types of alcohol and that even disinfectants themselves need to have specific percentages of alcohol to properly disinfect.

what to do with unwanted perfume
Here’s what I do often: I spray that artificial sunflower with an old fragrance and place it in a vase in my room. I used Allure heavily in my 20s and 30s, and can’t stand it anymore.

Do: use as a room spray

While it does evaporate rather quickly, give the room a spritz to give it a subtle hint of fragrance.

Don’t: Spray on curtains or rugs or lampshades

Like Claire Fraser exclaims regularly in Outlander: Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ. Let’s look at how fragrances are made: mainly, you’ve got an alcohol base, into which essential oils, resins, and also dyes are added. All these may stain fabrics and other surfaces. If you don’t want oil stains in your curtains or carpets, stay away from this one. (If you did stain fabrics with perfume, here’s how to get rid of the stains.)

Do: spray it on dried or artificial flowers

IF you want to use a fragrance as a room scent, do spray it on dried or artificial flowers. I love to do this, and do it regularly with fragrances I don’t want to wear on my person anymore.

Don’t: scent your bodylotion, bath water etc.

Again, especially with older fragrances, do you really want to add years old essential oils to a lotion that’ll sink into your skin? Or comes into contact with rather delicate skin on your unmentionables in the case of bath water?! Also, if you’re still liking a scent so much you’d want to bathe in it – just wear the damn fragrance.

how to use up unwanted fragrances
This is my oldest perfume that my mum gave me when I was around 16. It actually has a place of honour in my stash, but I absolutely don’t use it on anything.

Do: scent your wardrobe and drawers

Spray a tissue or a good old-fashioned cotton handkerchief with a fragrance and put it into your drawers and wardrobe. Because, let’s face it, wardrobes and drawers CAN smell a bit musty, so yes: great option!

Also, to minimize the risk of buying a fragrance you actually don’t like that much, obviously either try them in person first or use a sample service like Essenza Nobile, Aus Liebe zum Duft, or Osswald NYC!

Please note that this post is not sponsored in any way. We buy products ourselves, with our own money, and don’t accept exchanging goods or money for reviews. We are completely independent, and our reviews reflect that.

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