Back in the day, buying fragrances and perfumes was a unique experience because as soon as you go into the perfumery, you’re lost in the world of hundred different scents. Even if you got there with the intention to buy a specific fragrance, your nose at least once screamed “oh what’s that?!”. It was a ritual, and shopping you’d remember for quite some time.
Today, times and ways of life changed this process, and the majority of people are buying perfumes online.
On one hand, that leaves them limited to discovering something new they didn’t even know exists, but on the other hand, it’s faster, and it often costs less.
The biggest downside of buying fragrances online is accepting the risk of getting a fake. This is ultimately dangerous especially if one decides to use that fake, as they are not tested on human skin, and can cause severe skin conditions.
That being said, in this post, we’re going to cover where to buy perfumes and fragrances online, which are the most trustworthy places, and which websites to avoid when buying fragrance, perfume, or cologne.
Before we dig into it, I would personally recommend that you always get your fragrance from a trustworthy local perfumery. The reason for this is that you have the unique opportunity to try the fragrance first, test it on your skin, see how it performs on you, and after figuring out do you actually like it, decide should you make the purchase.
Where To Buy Perfumes Online?
These are the most trustworthy places where you can buy perfumes and fragrances online — I tested all of them personally on multiple occasions and I can verify that you will always get an original bottle, and if you get lucky, you can often find a pretty good discount.
My personal choice for buying all fragrances online is FragranceNet.
FragranceNet offers what we all love – good deals and notably discounted prices. There are also many coupons always available and you get free shipping on every order above $100.
They are in the game since 1997 and along with fragrance brands, they work with 40,000 other beauty, makeup, haircare, skincare, and aromatherapy brands.
Orders typically take 4 – 15 business days and the tracking order is also available.
FragranceNet has been a trustworthy source for many happy customers over the years and it is one of the largest, legit online shops for the fragrance community.
With them, you can rest assured that you will get an original bottle of the perfume you’re after.
Here at FourthSense, we are a part of FragranceNet’s affiliate program — that means that if you buy any of the fragrances from our link, we get a small commission, at no additional charge to you. So if you want to support our website, getting your fragrance through our link would mean the world to us!
Besides FragranceNet, Amazon is also a great option if you want your fragrance legit and on time. This goes especially if you’re from the US and are a Prime member — some of the fragrances listed on their website can be at your doorstep within 24 hours.
What is great about Amazon is that in most cases you can find genuine customer reviews and actual photos as well so you can be sure that no scam will find your wallet.
I personally haven’t seen any scams when it comes to fake fragrances on the Amazon, but I will say, never say never.
You will find a link to Amazon on our fragrance reviews, but rest assured that those ones are 100% legit, as I personally investigated the product before sending anyone there.
In 90% of cases, genuine perfume houses open the seller profile and are selling their fragrances there, so in the end, besides shipping time, it makes no difference that you buy it from Amazon or from the actual official website of the brand.
Notino is one of the largest resellers of fragrances and cosmetics in Europe and they are more than worthy of your trust.
Besides offering a variety of perfumes and other beauty products as well, Notino is a great choice because of its fund policy – you have 90 days to refund your product if something is wrong with it.
They also have 24/7 great customer support and if you are based in Europe then you will be more than satisfied with its shipping time.
I have never had an issue with Notino’s products and their customer experience is always on point.
You are probably familiar with Sephora’s in-store encounter and their extravagant shops that bring customer experience to another level. However, they also offer amazing online opportunities when it comes to buying fragrances online.
What I like the most about Sephora is how they managed the user account which is highly personalized.
You can set up your beauty traits and get beauty advisor recommendations that turned out to be pretty helpful. They also offer a refund if the product was only “gently used”.
FragranceX is what I would call a lifesaver when it comes to fragrances. Whenever a brand discounts a specific scent, you are most likely going to find it on FragranceX.
FragranceX proved to be a trustworthy source over the years which can also be seen in their customer reviews. Personally, I’ve never experienced any issue with their fragrances and they always came in perfect condition.
Besides that, FragranceX also offers a loyalty program so if you stick with them, lots of great benefits are coming your way.
Shipping is also great and for every order above only $35 will be free for you and it will arrive in 2 – 5 business days.
Besides having great reviews and customer support, Scentbird also offers a mini preference quiz.
The quiz will only take you a minute and once you answer the questions about your fragrance preferences, you will get Scentbird recommendations on what you could potentially like!
The subscription package lets you choose from over 500 designer and niche fragrances; for 15 dollars a month you get one, 8ml spray (about a month’s worth of daily spritzing). You can change the frequency of your subscription if monthly is too often for you.
Also, for the first-month subscribers, you also get a free fragrance sample as well, which is quite cool.
They are a trustworthy online shop that you can’t go wrong with.
Ulta is a known legit reseller that has great customer reviews and offers an amazing loyalty program.
They will reward you with many little gifts if you are part of the Ulta community and as long as you pay with your credit card, you can return any product you don’t like even without a receipt.
Besides that, Ulta filters its fragrance offerings by scent types: spicy, floral, sweet, etc. I find it pretty useful for anyone who already knows their fragrance orientation.
Scent Beauty is one of the newest online shops but it proved to be extremely trustworthy so far.
Besides offering regular fragrances and celebrities’ or influencers’ perfumes, they also created their own Scent Beauty scents as well. Make sure to check them out!
One more benefit from Scent Beauty is that they sell natural brand essentials, so basically what you find in their catalog, you won’t find anywhere else.
Their product pages are nicely and precisely organized with helpful fragrance descriptions and attention to detail. Definitely worth your time.
Target is a shop with years of experience in selling all different kinds of products including fragrances as well. On their website, you can also find great deals and coupons.
In 2018 they opened their first store so if you live in Fort Smith or Texarkana you have probably purchased a bottle or two from them.
Luckyscent proved to be a trustworthy source that offers some great, extra benefits for their customers.
Their offering covers a wide range from the big-name mainstream options to smaller, niche companies including the home scents. And if samples are your thing, then you will be more than satisfied with Luckyscent’s extensive array.
Besides that, if you spend more than 150$ they will gift you some free samples as well. Helpful fact — they prepared a glossary that breaks down the most commonly used fragrance terms.
Depending on where you live and which shipping method you choose, the order will come in 1-12 business days. If you are in a hurry, there is a Next Day Air*.
Where NOT To Buy Fragrances Online
Even though there are many great and trustworthy sites, I, just like everybody else, had some bad experiences with certain stores. To stop you from setting your money on fire, here are the websites I do not recommend getting the fragrances from.
Disclaimer: I’m not advising you not to make the purchase with these websites — I’m sharing my personal experience and results of my research.
Wish, eBay & Etsy
Wish, eBay and Etsy aren’t necessarily convicted of selling fake fragrances, but as we all know, everyone can post anything on each of these platforms.
Even though Wish, eBay, and Etsy have strict policies and their vendors have to pass several procedures before publishing products, there are always people that manage to fly under the radar.
In addition to that, I seriously doubt any of those three actually have any specific procedures to prevent fake fragrances from being sold.
Because of that, I wouldn’t recommend purchasing fragrances from any of these websites, and if you decide to do so, do a deep research on the vendor’s past feedback and customer reviews.
If you take a look at Net-a-Porter reviews, you will notice that the majority of their customers had some issues with this company. The problems aren’t only related to the authenticity of their products, but to other business aspects as well.
Many customers are complaining about not getting their refund, receiving their products in a bad state, getting goods in plastic bags and their customer support is poor.
I haven’t purchased any item from them but according to their customers, many of them suspected that the products they ordered weren’t legit.
Because of that, I wouldn’t recommend Net-a-Porter as a trustworthy source since there are many other online stores that do their job better, treat their customers with respect, and sell 100% genuine fragrances.
Just like Net-a-Porter, Macy’s stores have pretty poor customers feedbacks, especially related to in-store customer experience.
Besides that, many people have had bad experiences when they bought a bottle of their chosen fragrance because they got fake, weaker versions of the original perfumes.
If Macy’s is your go-to store, I would recommend at least you stay away from the fragrances they are selling, as poor customer support, and not paying attention to shipping may result in bottles being broken in the transport, which again is the issue, as the refund and overall experience with them may not be something to brag about.
Conclusion — Should You Buy Perfumes Online & Why It Matters?
Besides the fact that paying for a fake fragrance is a complete waste of money, there are also medical reasons why you should think twice before you order your bottle from an unrecognized store.
Fake fragrances aren’t FDA approved and they are not tested on human skin so they can cause serious skin reactions and conditions.
I’ve personally been a loyal customer of FragranceNet and Amazon and I haven’t had any bad experience with the products or with their customer support. They deliver on time and have an excellent refund policy.
Besides them, FragranceX, Sephora, and other stores I mentioned above are safe options if you want to be sure that you are getting 100% legit bottles.
Do you have any bad or good experiences to share?
If so, please share in the comments section — I will include it in the post, and you will help many!
Vladan X is a founder of Fourth Sense and fragrance expert. He reviews only fragrances he owns personally, and his collection currently counts between 100 and 150 fragrances. Even though Vladan reviewed hundreds of perfumes he still didn’t find the one he would call “signature” fragrance. He’s still searching for that one, and in the meantime, he writes the best in-depth fragrance reviews internet has ever seen! You can read more about Vladan X here!