If you’re looking for a new fragrance, you may be confused about the difference between perfume and cologne. While some people use both terms interchangeably, they aren’t actually the same thing.

There are a lot of misconceptions about both types of fragrance, so here, we take a look at the similarities and differences between the two so that you can be better informed and make the right choice for you.

The Basics

The primary distinction between perfume and cologne is how much essential oil is used in each. When compared with perfume, there are fewer essential oils in cologne. That results in cologne having a less potent, shorter-lasting, milder scent than perfume.

What Should I Know About Cologne?

Cologne, or Eau de Cologne, is a term used to describe a traditional blend of citrus notes and herbs. It’s usually less costly when compared to other kinds of perfume. The reason for this is that it contains less perfume essence.

Typically, its percentage is only around 2-4%.  Cologne also comes in larger bottles as extra liquid is needed due to the fact that the aroma only lingers for a couple of hours.

What Should I Know About Perfume?

There are different kinds of perfumes with varying perfume concentrations, and these impact the overall price.

Parfum is the scent that has the maximum concentration of fragrance. Sometimes called “pure perfume” or “extrait de parfum”, it has a maximum fragrance concentration and is capable of lasting for as long as six or eight hours.

The typical perfume essence concentration in the average bottle will be between 15-30%. Parfum is sold in a stopper bottle rather than in a spray format as has an oilier, thicker viscosity when compared with other fragrances.

More frequently used, eau de parfum is a popular scent type. Worn for everyday activities and occasions, it is usually more affordable when compared with parfum. It comes in spray bottles and can be sprayed onto the clothes and hair to create a lasting, pleasant aroma.

What Is Eau De Toilette?

Eau de toilette is a very popular kind of perfume thanks to its affordability. Taking its name from the French “faire sa toilette”, meaning “to get ready”, these scents are typically simpler and lighter when compared with Eau de Parfum.

What Is Eau Fraiche?

There is one other fragrance type that you should know about – eau fraiche. This is the very lightest perfume type, with a refined, understated, and gentle aroma. As it has an extremely low perfume concentration it’s very affordable and can be used every day. Although it doesn’t quite have the same powerful impact as other types of perfume, it creates a pleasant aroma. Now that you know the differences between eau de cologne, parfum, and the other types of fragrance, you’ll have the information that you need to choose the right scents for you. If you’re looking for a long-lasting, powerful fragrance, parfum is the ideal choice, but if you’re seeking a lighter, short-lived scent, cologne could be the perfect option.