Why is perfume so expensive?

As it has happened to us, we are sure it has happened to you – 

You know… Those moments when you brush past a stranger on the street or you kiss the cheek of a new acquaintance goodbye only to be left with the subtle yet tantalizing fragrance of their perfume. It is a lasting scent, one that intrigues your senses and has you feeling washed in the person’s presence even though they are gone. 

Moments like this are kind of a magical experience. They leave you mystified and often ignite you in a quest for your own perfume or cologne to do just the same — leave an impression. However, once you start looking at all of the options available to you, you notice that most quality perfumes are three to four times more expensive than non-designer brands. 

When we first got into the perfume game we too wondered, “But why? There has to be some solid reasons why some perfumes cost so much more than others…” And, guess what. There are! 

Most people chalk the perfume “price jump” up to the ingredients — but the secret is… premium ingredients is not the reason why luxury brand perfumes are  so expensive. 

Let’s break it down. 

First let’s get one thing straight. When it comes to perfume, the ingredients used are indeed what matters the most. To achieve an ever-coveted or divine scent, one that causes the reaction we mentioned above, the manufacturers of the perfume can not skimp on quality ingredients. In fact, in truth… without quality ingredients perfumes will not last as long and they will not smell as nice. So, naturally, quality perfumes will cost more than cheaply made perfumes. 

“This is a trend which we see all across the world of perfume. The more high-end a perfume happens to be, the higher the quality of ingredients. Even the synthetic scents which have been created in a lab are likely to be more expensive and of a higher quality than those which go into another brand.”

When a scent is made with expert skill and with top quality flowers, spices, musks, etc. — you can tell the difference in aroma and staying power. Speaking of that, it is important to note where most premium quality fragrance manufacturers are located and why this is a mark of a wonderful perfume.   

Where perfume ingredients come from is a great way to tell the quality of a perfume. 

“The finest — and most expensive — perfumes are made of absolute oils, which come from certain types of flowers.”

Growing conditions for the flowers and herbs used in creating oils must be perfect, while the ones who handle the process of creating the oils must be highly skilled and knowledgeable in their trade. That is why many of the world’s best brands as well as Dossier only source fragrances from places like the world’s perfume capital Grasse, France. 

“Since the 17th century, the old medieval city, which began dabbling in fragrance in order to mask the unpleasant odour of its leather goods industry, has been considered the perfume capital of the world. Its highly prized May roses and jasmine are bottled up in the iconic Chanel No 5. Other luxury fragrances houses like Dior, Hermès and Louis Vuitton also source their ingredients from Grasse, while major fragrance companies like Robertet and IFF, who are behind some of the world’s most memorable scents, also call Grasse their home.”

But, truth be told, where quality ingredients are sorted does not affect the price of a well made perfume either! 

Are you shocked? We thought you might be. Yes, the quality of what goes into making the perfume causes price differences YES, but it is not exactly why a certain bottle is more expensive than say a bottle from Dossier which only costs $29. After all, our juices come from the same place as many luxury perfume manufacturers!  

Actually, the liquid in a bottle of a premium perfume typically costs less than $2! 

So, where does the over $100 price tag of luxury perfumes come from? Well, it’s simple and not so simple. It comes from a few things: 

  • Retailer Markups
  • Fancy packaging and bottles
  • Expensive marketing
  • Celebrity brand representatives
  • Advertising 

All of the above cost brands tons of money. Let’s take a look at the Boadicea The Victorious “Blue Sapphire-Pure” bottle with a price tag of over $800 with ingredients that… cost no more than $3-4! 

And, that is just the packaging. Now throw in ads and celebrity endorsements — consumers are paying for the brand to make a name and not for what is actually on the inside of the bottle.  

“Celebrities tend to make between 5 and 10 percent of sales for licensing their name to a scent on top of an upfront payment of $3 million plus. With sales in the hundreds of millions for some of these fragrances—you do the math. Bottles of perfume and cologne typically sell for between $60 and $100, and the cost of making them is usually about 25 percent of retail—so the return is enormous.”

This is something we thinks is outrageous. Increasing prices to stand out and to make a name or to sell more bottles is the reason why many consumers stay away from perfumes they love. 

Paying for the bottle and for marketing isn’t part of the Dossier brand ethos. 

At Dossier, we source only high-quality ingredients from France and manufacture our perfumes just the same way as many luxury brands. We also work hard to ensure similar iconic scents and long-lasting aromas that will turn heads when you walk down the street or meet someone new. 

However, there are a few things that we do not do in order to keep our prices at a comfortable $29. Here to make sure our customers get to actually enjoy the perfume, we cut unnecessary costs.  

  • No retailers
  • Direct to consumers selling
  • Minimalist bottle
  • No fancy packaging
  • No icons
  • No cinema ads

Dossier is simply PURE, TOP QUALITY, GOOD FRAGRANCE that stays true to perfume tradition and is made with YOU — the consumer — in mind. 

Offering a variety of scents developed to portray similar notes as your favorite expensive luxury brand perfumes, we hope to offer you a more friendly price tag without the compromise of quality or delightful aroma. Yes, you can enjoy the luxury of perfume without paying insane prices. 

To enjoy, shop Dossier’s selection of premium perfumes now.


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