Mystery Fragrance NYE 2016/7


Robert Herrmann


Hello. my name is Robert and I’m a fragaholic……

I started writing this in response to something that happened to me on New Year’s Eve day. I suspect it’s happened to all of us. I was working in my office (a.k.a. The perfumed desk from hell) and decided to finish off a sample vial that was sitting next to my right arm. I applied the perfume, and threw the vial in the trash can and BOOM! Suddenly I was facing seeing the old year out wearing something truly spectacular! But I had NO idea what the hell it was 😡 !!

Mystery Fragrance NYE 2016/7

Because as soon as I applied the remainder of the perfume I was Immediately surrounded by the most GORGEOUS scent, floral, animalic, deep, intense. Just stunning. My first thought was “Wait…. Do I have a bottle of this marvel? And if not, how fast can I order one???”

So I went searching through the trash (of course it was at the very bottom), found the vial only to realize to my horror that the vial was unmarked. U.N.M.A.R.K.E.D. !!!! wtf?? I LERRRRVE this perfume, I MUST own it, it might be my “precioussssss….”

I scoured my desk for a clue.
I searched UNDER the desk for a missing tag.
I sneezed my way through monumental dust bunnies.



I then started noticing the god-awful pile up of perfume on my desk. And on the table next to my easy chair. And the TWO full boxes of samples awaiting sniffing since 2014!!! Suddenly I realized that my rabbit hole was a “perfumeaggedon” waiting to happen. It was clearly out of control.


Now I know for a fact that Ikea and Target have a multitude of storage options available to me if I could just figure out which was best. More shelves? Possibly. A wine cooler for perfume bottles? Sounds a bit too intense. Chic and cunning little boxes to HIDE the mess? Oh, you mean like I already have? Le sigh….. Only time will tell, hopefully the next few weeks…. now if I could just start making that damned perfume spreadsheet I’ve been thinking of for the last few years….

My name is Robert and I am a fragoholic.

Are your samples like this?? Here’s where I take a stand. Let’s do a draw for yet ANOTHER mystery sample…….



Giveaway myprettypaints

Mystery Fragrance GIVEAWAY


This week we will have 1 winner who will receive:
1 x Mystery Fragrance from Robert’s collection
P&H Anywhere in the world


Open to everyone worldwide who follows AustralianPerfumeJunkies via eMail, WordPress, Bloglovin or RSS. Please leave how you follow in the comments to be eligible. I must be able to check that you follow so if you have an email address on your gravatar that’s different to your follow address then please email me so I know. Yes, you can start following to enter, in fact it’s encouraged.

You must tell me how you follow APJ


Please tell us some effective perfume and sample storage ideas, or a sample you tried recently that you swooned for


Entries Close Thursday 5th January 2017 10pm Australian EdsT and winners will be announced in a separate post.
Winners will be chosen by
The winners will have till Wednesday 11th January 2017 to get in touch (portia underscore turbo at yahoo dot com dot au) with their address or the prize will go to someone else.
No responsibility taken for lost or damaged goods in transit

91 comments on “Mystery Fragrance NYE 2016/7

  1. May says:

    Hi, I follow through email subscription. A sample I tried that I recently swooned over is Armani Prive Oud Royal. The full bottle is so expensive so I will never purchase it at full price.

  2. Anthea says:

    I store most of my vial and small spray samples in the acrylic lipstick holders you can get from Priceline and similar shops. I follow via email.

  3. Morrigan says:

    I hope you figure out what the mystery fragrance was!
    I keep most of my sample sprayers in a fancy Chinese medicine box (the kind with many small drawers) on my desk. There’s additional acrylic storage for these in my perfume cabinet, so that they’re all upright and less prone to leak and evaporate.
    The samples I have in vials (which I find much less prone to disappearing without warning) I have stored in tackle boxes.

    Most importantly of all I keep a thorough spreadsheet of all of my samples, their size, whether or not I’ve tested them and where they came from. I do need to get to work and add a section for *location* of each sample (Chinese box, acrylic organiser or tackle boxes), so that I’m not searching for hours each time I want to find something specific!

    Following by email. 🙂

  4. Miss Sue says:

    I recently subscribed through email after being directed to the site via perfume searches.
    I have a big drawer that slides open to reveal full bottles galore, decants and sample vials corralled in open boxes.My samples often stay in the bubble envelopes in which they are received from Luckyscent. Beware the sample that floods you with delight on first try…as you will be aware I’m sure, a second and third try may leave you wondering what the fuss was about. You certainly have many treasures to try but your storage looks accessible and like organised chaos to me.

  5. Jo Fryer says:

    I store my samples in a small antique dressmakers cabinet. It has little squares that are approximately 5cm x 5cm, but they are all on an inward slant so holds the vials slightly upright. I have some kind of order and I won’t wear a sample a second time until I’ve worn all in that square at least once.

    My most recent sample that I really fell for is Serge Lutens A la Nuit – I must get a fb.

    I follow via subscription and on Facebook 🙂

  6. Latai says:

    I got a sample of Comme Des Garcons play series: green and swoooooned. Mojito fresh green minty goodness! Getting a FB for sure!

  7. Jackie b says:

    Like most other fragohol…I mean collectors, I have lots of little boxes for samples. In fact I have a bit of an obsession with little boxes too.
    The smaller sample vials and the tiny shark teeth ones that Sultan Pasha sends go into a styrofoam plank to hold them upright.
    I follow by email.

  8. Gina says:

    I buy .38-caliber bullet boxes, label them by alphabet and store small vials there by house. Larger ones, I put in ziploc freezer bags with A, B, C, C, etc on them and store by house. Decants are in clear plastic tiered storage makeup holders. Full bottles are in a cabinet and a three-tiered cart. I have hundreds. Sickness. Fragholic. Admitted. Smell great!

    Follow on email and FB

  9. Jaybee says:

    Ha, perfumeaggedon! I swooned over a sample of Rahele I won recently on APJ. (Thank you Portia!) It’s a luxurious, woodsy, spicy beauty. Sadly, it doesn’t last long on me. *sob* Follow by email! 🙂

  10. Norbert F. says:

    I love these mystery giveaways btw, you never know what to expect and it is just so exciting 🙂
    A sample that I ve tried recently and I am swoon for has to be PHI Une Rose de Kandahar by Andy Tauer
    I follow via e-mail, good luck to everyone 🙂

    • Robert H. says:

      Norbert! PHI is a tryly magical scent, and every year is slightly different! Xoxo

      • Norbert F. says:

        Yes I know, because of the rarity of the Kandahar Rose and the new versions every year if I understand it correctly, btw I store all my fragrances in a cabinet, where its dark and room temperature, my samples are in a bag and its the hardest thing to find something I want to test out haha 😀

  11. Patty Pong says:

    I put the tiny vials in a compartmental plastic box from a craft store.
    I follow by e-mail. 🙂

  12. Sue Mills says:

    Hi Robert, and thanks for the opportunity. I follow by email.

    Now, here’s a storage option that I picked on the Fragrantica forums and was just telling a friend about today. Ammo boxes. I kid you not. Go to a gun store … I couldn’t believe there even was one in suburban Adelaide … and ask for ammo boxes. They allow your sample vials to stand upright and separated and the boxes have a lid so that you can keep them safe and sound.

    Can you imagine the look on the face of the woman at the shop when I explained why I wanted the boxes?

    I would love to win your mystery sample. But please, please, in case of love at first sniff, make sure it is labelled …

    Thanks again!

    • Robert H. says:

      Sue! As much as I WOULD love to label the sample, I don’t know what the hell it is!! (Although it might be either a Killian or an Estee Lauder) Xoxo

  13. Sue Mills says:

    Ah, Gina, you beat me to it! Cheers.

  14. rickyrebarco says:

    I follow via email of the APJ blog. I store my samples in tea boxes, the rectangular boxes with nice lids for storing individual packets of tea, perfect for sample storage. The larger decants are in my cabinets.

  15. Ellen M. says:

    I follow by email. I try to use shoe boxes with plastic bags labeled with marker for each house. The shoe boxes are divided alphabetically. That’s for the samples. It mostly works, only IF I put things away. Full bottles are on shelves in a closet. It is a hot mess. What was the mystery fragrance?

    • Robert H. says:

      Yup, Hot mess sums it up for me. I suspect the frag was Wit by DelRae, in one of those Scent Bar unlabelled vials WHICH DRIVE ME INSANE! 😂 xoxo

  16. Despina VENETI says:

    I enjoyed this post immensely 🙂
    Only recently I’ve started storing my perfume samples in a more organised and efficient way, using acrylic boxes found in a bead shop.
    My bottles remain proudly on the shelves of a piece of furniture solely dedicated to them.
    Thank you for the giveaway, I love surprises!
    Faithfull email, Facebook and Bloglovin follower

  17. Olivia says:

    This was great! I just found a beautiful wooden perfume sample holder on etsy – clearly made by someone who understands the struggle. As for my larger bottles, I’m still looking for solutions in the form of small furniture pieces. I follow by email. Thanks for the chance!

  18. cookie queen says:

    I don’t keep 90% of samples I get. Those that make the grade I store in the small brightly coloured porcelain chest of drawers you may have noticed in my blog posts. What I don’t like I bin, what I like but don’t need I give away. I have very little perfume clutter around. Not hard since I don’t really like much enough to wear it. Great, if somewhat terrifying post Robert! DNEM. Hahahahaha. Bussis.

    • Robert H. says:

      Ugh. Right? The ones I don’t like go into a basket to be thrown in with bottles I sell, so it becomes someone elses problem! Xoxo

  19. Shiva-woman says:

    Beautiful elegant cookie/tea tins. That’s how I keep “most” of my samples organized. And I have a drawer in the fridge, and then my entire secretary with cubby holes and drawers to store samples in. Full bottles go into a large drawer in my captain’s bed. I completely comiserate with you on the mystery scent. Several samples from Posh Peasant got liquid on them. Three of them became mysteries, and one of them was the lost beloved, the most wonderful, precious, liquid love. I did everything I could to decipher the label. Alas. So, I know the feeling. It was a fantastic “perfect” incense. Of some kind. Thank you for the giveaway–I follow by email. May the new year ring in organization, if nothing else!
    Shiva-woman recently posted…Mystery Fragrance NYE 2016/7 + GIVEAWAYMy Profile

    • Robert H. says:

      Oh god SW, the struggle is SO real! Did you check your past orders with PP? Surely they keep track, and I suppose the website is still operational, yes?? Xoxo

  20. Sandra says:

    Thank you for the good laugh Robert! I know what you mean. I gave away most samples and many full bottles before I moved. After unpacking the boxes I need serious time to organise everything and am looking forward to reading what people do. DNEM. Sandra xo

    • Robert H. says:

      Thanks Sandra, I’m approaching the “give-away” point as we’re still thinking about a move to Palm Springs in the next two years or so. Xoxo

  21. Helena says:

    I follow by email. Thank you for the giveaway, Robert.
    I’m in need for some storage solution for the samples too…

  22. popintyanointy says:

    I’d love to throw my hat in the ring. I follow by emaiul.

  23. Claudia says:

    I tried Calling All Angels about 6 months ago and thought it was beautiful! Maybe someday I’ll get a FB. I follow by email. Thanks

  24. pats133 says:

    Hi Robert, i follow by email and bloglovin. Thank you for the giveaway. I got some cardboard sample holders from my lab in work and that is were i store all my 1 and 2ml samples (i separate them into terrible at the front working my way to FB worthy at the back). Bigger decants and full bottles are stored in a local dept store storage box. I dont have that much, so nothing ever has lost a label yet! 🙂

  25. Rajeeva Jayaratne says:

    i follow through email.

  26. Anita says:

    Hi Robert, I follow by email. This topic is very timely because I’ve just had a sample box “incident”. I recently organised my samples in an acrylic storage box (no lid, unfortunately). The cat did not approve of the location of said sample box, and shoved it off the shelf leaving my decants and samples in a scattered pile on the floor. Thankfully each individual sample was labelled though 😉

    There’s some good ideas here. @Sue Mills, those ammo boxes look great 🙂

  27. Skye Moore says:

    I store my samples in those cleaR acrylic lipstick holders and large bottles in empty Birchbox boxes . I follow you by getting an email once a day

  28. Joy De Shazo says:

    Great story, made me giggle n snort lol. Following via email

  29. Sebastian Aitken says:

    Hi Robert I follow APJ through the AFN Facebook group. Fishing tackle!! not that type of fishing tackle but a fishing tackle box to store samples. Not the most attractive box I must say but all those compartments and drawers would be extremely handy.

  30. Ingeborg says:

    Thank you for a good story!I hate the samples where there is no label on the vial, only the card. No additional ideas for storage,I need to get my samples sorted too. I tried Amyris Femme months ago and really liked it, but doubt I will buy a bottle.Right now I’m waiting for Zoologist samples, and they even have travel sprays so it’s a very accessible line.

    I follow via email.

  31. hotlanta linda says:

    I LOVE your writing – a good round of chuckles has ensued 🙂 I place samples in sealable plastic bags by vendor if we have plenty, and by category – as in niche, mainstream – ( low-end, high-end) if we have a bare few. They then go in those elegant gwp totes from cosmetics departments 🙂 We follow a la e-mail, blog, and FB.

    • Robert H. says:

      Thanks Linda! And thank god for those ziplocks (which are on coupon-sale at Costco right now) honestly don’t know how I’d live w/o them!

  32. Janine Dello says:

    Hi Robert, such a timely post, as I’m in the midst of ‘organising’ my stash. I love samples so much that I can’t even bring myself to throw out the ones that I don’t particularly like, so they are just thrown into a drawer. The ones that I love are put into a ‘wish list’ crystal dish. So, I am not a very organised person and am in awe of some of the innovative storage solutions. Thank you Sue Mills, great idea! I follow by email. Cheers and have a wonderfully perfumed 2017!

  33. José Hernandez says:

    Hi. I follow APJ from eMail.

    My last great discovery was Penhaligon’s “The Tragedy of Lord George” that Portia sent me (I owe the translations for the FRAGRANTICA site in English, because my reviews are already on the site in Spanish).

    I keep my fragrances, decants and vials in a closed wooden closet, which is never exposed to clarity.

  34. Robert H. says:

    And guess which samples are on my desk since last month? Yup the new Penhaligon’s! One of these days……

  35. Julissa Loza-Josephson says:

    Hi Robert, I subscribe by email. I use pretty boxes from perfume sets to store all my samples. My favorite recent sample is Sweet Parmesan Violet. Just lovely!

    • Robert H. says:

      Hi Julissa! You gave me a wonderful idea! I have a few of those horgeous L’Artisan gift boxes from a few years ago…now if I can just remember where they might be…!

  36. Hikmat Sher Afridi says:

    Hi Robert, followed via email. I have a samples/decant & are placed in an organized manner but there are some decants without any name that I purchased from a facebook friend & some samples with names not visible. The sender cannot recognize them even when I inquired. The best samples that I have are from JoAnne Bassett & waiting in the mail from Dusita Parfums.
    Thanks for the generosity of mystery sample.
    Peshawar, Pakistan

  37. Neva says:

    Hi Robart and thanks for the great story. I keep the perfumes that I don’t wear this season in big boxes in my perfume drawer. The perfumes that are in rotation (I’m the type who divides perfumes into seasonal categories) are in the bathroom. The same I do with travel sprays, which I mostly use up in a week.
    Samples are tricky. I keep them on my working desk and spritz during the day just to test if they fit. If I don’t like it while wearing and respritzing the whole day I put them away in a smaller box and periodically give them to my friends when they come for a visit. Luckily so far I haven’t come across an unlabeled sample. It would probably drive me crazy not to know what it is, especially if I liked it.
    I follow APJ via email.

  38. Fazal says:

    I recently tried caron modern tabac b;ond sample and fell in love with it. I think one good way to organize perfumes is by brand. Even if you miss a label, now the brand can help you shorten the potential candidates. I follow APJ through email and FB.

    • Robert H. says:

      Hey Fazal, I haven’t found a Caron Tabac Blond that hasn’t knocked my socks off! Vintage, new, I love it all!

  39. JMR says:

    I store my samples by “occasion” in those plastic storage drawer things. I have so many that I never really think of wearing a specific one (if I do, it would be something from a full bottle in my collection); so I’ll have the drawers for ‘fresh/daytime,’ ‘dark/night,’ ‘abstract,’ “classic,’ etc.

    I follow via email.

  40. I follow you through WordPress I keep my samples in small baggies from previous shopping adventures and jewelry purchases. I make it a point to spend at least one day with each new sample. If it is something that catches my nose I will spend another day in the week with it. If I wasn’t moved by it, I put it for storage in a larger bag to sit. I may revisit them from time to time but generally I either make a purchase within a few weeks or I don’t a clear love/hate with me.

    I hope you figure out what the mystery sample was! I remember reading about your dilemma on FB. Too bad we don’t have smellavision because I’m pretty sure someone in the frag comm could have identified it for you!

  41. edith says:

    i follow by email

    the soultion is to give away every 5th sample until they fit in the box u have 😀 xox

  42. Laura C says:

    I have mine on a clear makeup lazy-susan and in a body shop gift box (the kind that ties with a ribbon). I also send out samples if I sell or ROAK a bottle of my perfume.

  43. lena says:

    I still haven’t worked out a particularly good system, so I’m looking forward to getting some inspiration from my fellow APJers in their responses!

    Thanks for the draw, Robert, and I hope your start to the year has been a good one. I follow by email.

  44. ems says:

    No suggestions unfortunately – I’m struggling with my own sample collection… But I recently tried CB I Hate Perfume’s Cedarwood Tea, and I’ve been wearing it constantly.

  45. Anna Maria says:

    You needed the perfume whisperer for sure that day! Thanks for the laugh it’s a great problem to have. I store my samples in little vintage sugar containers I get from vinnies or the salvos. I try to give all perfumes equal attention.. full bottles stay in their boxes at all times( I am not scary in real life)…I follow by email..

    • Robert H. says:

      Oh god Anna Maria!! You have made my day with “Vinnies and Salvos” laughing SO hard, and loving it! I’m so happy to get some new words!! Xoxo

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