Below is a selection of Frequently Asked Questions, as answered by perfume authority Frédéric Malle.
WHEN WILL I RECEIVE MY ORDER?
You can check the status of your most recent orders by visiting the Track My Order page HERE. This is the easiest and fastest way to get the most current information regarding your online orders. You can also keep up to date with your order via the Order Status page HERE.
If the tracking information for your package confirms delivery and you cannot locate the delivered package please ensure before contacting us that you -
1. Check with neighbours and family members.
2. Look around the delivery location.
3. Check for notice of attempted delivery.
How do I return my order?
If for any reason you are not completely happy with your Frederic Malle purchase, simply return the unused products and we will refund your account for the amount of the purchase.
To return your online order to us free of charge, please:
- 1. Print and complete our returns note which can be found here:
- 2. Re-package your items safely, including the completed returns note
- 3. Follow the instructions on www.yodel.co.uk to receive your returns label
Alternatively, you can carry out your own return using a courier of your choice, but please note that any postage costs obtained via independent return will not be reimbursed. RETURN ADDRESS: Estée Lauder Companies, Constellation House, 3 Kiteʼs Croft Business Park, Warsash Road, Fareham, Hants. PO14 4FL.
Products ordered online or in-store with a valid receipt can be returned up to 30 days following their purchase date.
For more information about returns and refunds, please click here.
If you’re still unsure about how to return your item, please click here to contact us. Please include your order number with all enquiries.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO RECEIVE A REFUND?
Please allow 14 working days from the date we receive your return for your refund to be processed.
CAN I EXCHANGE AN ITEM?
Unfortunately we do not offer exchanges. However, if you change your mind after receiving your order, you may return it and place a new order for the right item. Please note, the original product must be unused in order to get a refund.
CAN I CANCEL MY ORDER?
If you wish to cancel your order, you have 30 minutes after your order is confirmed to do so. However, as processing times can vary, please note that we cannot guarantee your order will be canceled when requested. In this case, you can return your unused item(s) for free - details of our returns process can be found here.
We advise you will need to contact us via one of the following:
- Phone - 0808 164 5862
Please ensure you have your purchase order number ready when contacting us.
I RECEIVED THE WRONG PRODUCT - CAN I RETURN IT?
We are sorry to hear you received the wrong product. Please contact us by clicking here and we will do our best to help you. Please include your order number with all enquiries.
I HAVE NOT RECEIVED MY FULL ORDER – WHAT SHOULD I DO?
We are sorry that your online order is not as expected. We’d like to help - click here to contact us. Please include your order number with all enquiries.
I RECEIVED A FAULTY PRODUCT - WHAT SHOULD I DO?
We are sorry to hear you received a damaged product. Please retain the box, packaging, and all contents, and contact us as soon as possible so we can remedy this for you. Please click here to contact us.
DO YOU RECOMMEND CHANGING PERFUME ACCORDING TO THE SEASONS?
I believe that perfumes are like clothes: some are warmer than others. It then becomes a matter of comfort, and common sense. You should follow your instinct. The amount of perfume one applies is also critical. It is uncomfortable to wear a heavy dose of a warm amber (like Musc Ravageur) on a hot summer day. But a hint of it might work. It might also work when the sun is down. Some fragrances like Carnal Flower, for instance, work in most climates. I don’t think that it is necessary to change fragrance if wearing such a perfume, providing that it does not feel uncomfortable. One might consider changing perfume every season if one is wearing a very fresh fragrance, a heavy Chypre, or a heavy Amber. Changing the amount that one is wearing might be the solution, should you want to stick to your signature fragrance.
MY NEW PARTNER DOESN’T LIKE THE PERFUME I HAVE BEEN WEARING FOR YEARS… SHOULD I OPT FOR A NEW SCENT?
There is no easy answer to this. It is very difficult to make a radical change to something that is so deeply reflective of someone’s personality. One should hope that your new partner is not opposed to your type of smell, but that he is just uncomfortable with a detail in your signature perfume. My advice is to take your time. Try to find something that pleases both of you; but you should not, under any circumstances, agree to wear something that you are not comfortable with.
WHY DO YOU OFFER ONLY ONE CONCENTRATION PER PERFUME, UNLIKE MANY OTHER BRANDS? ARE YOUR PERFUMES EAUX DE TOILETTE OR EAUX DE PARFUM?
In the old days brands used to make several versions of the same perfume, using different concentrates. In the 80s, many brands started offering the same formulae in several concentrations. It was then obvious that there is an ideal concentration for each perfume. For this reason, we sell each perfume in the collection in its optimum concentration. The classifications (EDT, EDP, Extract, etc…) are not official, but they are supposed to indicate the concentration level of each fragrance and to the quality of the ingredients that are in their formulae. Lately, these classifications have often been used as a way of positioning fragrances, rather than as a way of describing their true nature, which can be confusing. Should I want to classify the perfumes of our collection, I would say that the quality of the raw materials that we use is always of the high quality often associated with perfume extracts. As far as concentration is concerned, I would say that: Cologne Bigarade, Angéliques sous la pluie and l’Eau d’Hiver are lighter than Eaux de Toilettes. Vétiver Extraordinaire, En Passant, Bigarade Concentrée and French Lover/Bois d’Orage are halfway between Eaux de Toilette and Eaux de Parfums. Musc Ravageur, Iris poudre, Noir Epices, Le Parfum de Thérèse, Lipstick Rose, Lys Méditerranée, Une Fleur de Cassie should be considered Eaux de Parfums. Une Rose and Carnal Flower, and Portrait of a Lady should be considered perfume extracts.
DO YOU DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN FEMININE AND MASCULINE SCENTS?
I believe that the lighter, more transparent fragrances, like Cologne Bigarade, or Angéliques sous la Pluie, are unisex. They are almost asexual, because their main purpose is to make one feel clean. In that sense, they are very much part of one’s grooming routine. The opposite type of perfume, such as warm Ambers, or Chypres - both very sensual - can be seen as a beautified rendition of the scent of warm skin. To me, this also makes them unisex. Figurative or floral fragrances (especially those containing white flowers) are considered feminine in the Western world. Finally, even though Fougère (another type of perfume) was created specifically for men, some women wear it, like they would wear a man’s watch or a man’s shirt.
WHAT IS HEADSPACE?
Headspace (also called living flowers by IFF), is a technique that allows us to analyze the evaporation from all things, and therefore to understand what the smell of the object in question is made of. The headspace technique provides us with data that tells us precisely how a scent is made. It lists the ingredients that evaporate from an object and their proportion. It was used for the first time in the 80s with breakthrough scents like Antonia’s flowers (which is based on a headspace analysis of freesia). We then used it in perfumes like Carnal Flower (which is partly based on a headspace analysis of tuberose). The most literal use of headspace in the industry is probably our collection of flower-scented candles, most of which are based on headspace analysis by IFF’s Dr. Braja Mookherjee.
WHAT IS A « CHYPRE »?
In 1917, Coty invented a new abstract accord called Le Chypre. The accord was based mostly on Oak moss, Patchouli, Vetiver, Labdanum, a few floral notes and Bergamot. This new accord inspired numerous new perfumes like Mitsouko, Femme, Bandit, Miss Dior, Eau Fraîche (Dior), Y etc… becoming a perfume category of its own.
HOW MANY PEOPLE INFLUENCE THE FINAL DRAFT OF A PERFUME?
Two: the perfumer and me.
WHERE SHOULD I SPRAY MY PERFUME?
People should spray perfume in whichever ways they choose. I’m not crazy about those affected gestures that some specialists are trying to impose.
I grew up wearing Eau de Colognes so I spray perfumes on my chest. I also like the idea of applying perfumes behind the neck. Aside from the intensely attractive nature of the gesture, the neck has the advantage of being near one’s hair, which is a fabulous natural diffuser.Most people, however, especially those who use very concentrated perfumes (like Extracts) wear them on their neck or under their wrist, which is also effective.
Finally, I don’t not recommend spraying perfumes on the back of one’s hands. Perfumes rarely smell their best there.
PERFUMES DON'T LAST ON ME. WHAT SHOULD I DO?
It is very common for people who have been wearing the same perfume for a long time to become desensitized to its smell. This might be your case.
Another reason why perfumes do not last on you could be that your skin is too dry. If that is the case, apply either a (truly) unscented body lotion, or one that matches your perfume. The latter is the most effective.
I would also suggest spraying your clothes, given that perfumes last longer on textiles than on skin. The only disadvantage of doing this is that it is difficult to switch from one perfume to another after the clothes have been permeated.
Finally, one must be careful not to apply generous amounts of very dark scents on white or pale colors. They might leave a light stain.
ARE FRAGRANCES CONTAINING 100% NATURAL INGREDIENTS THE BEST ONES?
Why should we only work with naturals when synthetics often allow us to be much more precise, or even give us access to smells that cannot be found in nature?
I give total freedom to the best perfumers in the industry, including the freedom to use extravagant quantities of the most precious naturals. But all of our perfumes contain synthetic raw materials. Without them, perfumers wouldn’t have been able to accomplish the level of artistry that they seek.
This question stems from a huge misunderstanding. Many people associate the word synthetic with the word cheap, and natural with the word quality. This is reinforced by people’s love of classics, which they believe to be made of natural scents, because they are old. These ideas, especially the latter, are false. No perfume is 100% natural.
All the best perfumers use synthetics and naturals regardless of their origins because naturals (absolutes, essences, CO2 extractions….), never smell exactly like nature. They are to flowers what strawberry jam is to strawberries: Delicious, but different. A lot is missing in them. One needs nature identicals (synthetic ingredients that imitate nature) to complete the picture.
This is why a perfume composed exclusively of natural products doesn’t smell like nature but rather like an old perfume, or at best like a simplistic perfume, and why, conversely, a very figurative perfume is full of synthetic raw materials.
I HEARD THAT IT IS NOT RECOMMENDED TO RUB A PERFUME ON ONE’S SKIN AFTER HAVING SPRAYED IT. IS THIS TRUE?
I don’t recommend doing so for two reasons: First, rubbing does not make the alcohol evaporate faster. All it does is mix the stuff that your skin has collected during the day with the perfume; second, the gesture spreads the perfume across both arms, preventing you from trying on another, should you wish to do so.
DO YOU MAKE PERSONAL APPEARANCES AT ANY OF THE STORES?
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WHY ARE YOUR HOME FRAGRANCES DIFFERENT FROM YOUR PERFUMES?
Perfumes merge with the skin and generate a sense of sex appeal. Neither of these characteristics apply to the sort of scent that you want in a house, which should be beautiful, chic and comfortable. One does not feel the same attraction to a home as one does to a man or a woman.
I HAVE JUST PURCHASED A PERFUME. SHOULD I STORE IT IN A REFRIGERATOR, LIKE AT YOUR BOUTIQUE?
At Editions de Parfums we keep our perfumes in a pristine state, so that they smell as they would in a perfume lab, exactly as they are meant to. That being said, our perfumes are very stable and are designed to be used and stored in a normal way. If you are intending to use your perfume normally, I do not recommend storing it in a fridge, unless you are planning on not using it for a very long period of time.
WHY DOES FRENCH LOVER / BOIS D’ORAGE HAVE TWO DIFFERENT NAMES?
The original name was French Lover. It shocked many people in the US, so we called it Bois d’ Orage for the US market only. I like both names, but it is likely that we'll only keep one name in the future.
DO YOU CREATE ANY PERFUMES MADE TO MEASURE?
I don’t believe that this idea of made to measure applies to our business. What I find more interesting is giving total freedom to the greatest perfumers in the industry, and allowing them to create their dream fragrances. That way, when people come to us to choose their signature scent, they are choosing from genuine masterpieces.
This concept of bespoke perfumes is quite recent. It was generated by people that do not possess a real culture of luxury. It is interesting to note that the most stylish people of the 20’s and 30’s had their own chefs, their own decorators, only wore couture, had cars made to measure by people like Etore Bugatti, had jewels made by René Boivin, yet bought ready made perfumes from designers like Guerlain.
I HAVE A QUESTION THAT WAS NOT ANSWERED HERE. HOW CAN I WRITE TO YOU?
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