Quite a topic for a potential debate, the question over whether one should use a deodorant or perfume often arises in one’s head when we see the two products on shelves of stores. So, what is better? 

What is the difference between deo and perfume?

Deo or deodorant, as its name suggests, is supposed to get rid of any odour. Though body odour is natural and logically humans should probably be okay embracing it, but sometimes this smell can be too foul or stone for those around us to bear. Moreover, with the increase in the consumption of highly processed and chemically adulterated foods, our body odours have become worse. This led to the demand for a product that could minimise or even better, eliminate this body odour for us. 

Difference Between Deo And Perfume

Deodorants work on the bacteria whose presence and breakdown of our sweat components by them leads to the foul smell. Deos attack these bacteria and do not let them survive in our sweaty underarms and other crevices of our body. No bacterial actions mean, no body odour. 

A subcategory of deodorants are antiperspirants which do not let the body form sweat in the first place. Antiperspirants block the sweat glands, which leads to drier body surface and subsequently, no place for the bacteria to grow and carry out their activities which could lead to the foul smell. 

Perfumes, on the other hand, are mixtures of fragrant oils and other solvents which are meant to make the wearer radiate a pleasant smell. They are not meant to minimise or eliminate the foul smell at their root, but rather, perfumes cover them up with their stronger and much pleasant odours. 

However, most deodorants today have their own fragrances. They not only keep the body from smelling but also add a pleasant smell to their wearer.

Deodorant or perfume which is better?

Looking at the above-stated difference, most people would agree that deodorants are better. Firstly because deodorants are more scientific and address the root cause of the whole foul body odour problem; whereas a perfume is just adding a cover-up the smell. 

And secondly, because deodorants perform two functions – eliminating the natural body odour and at the same time, add a nicer smell to the person using it; whereas a perfume is performing just one function. In the worst-case scenario, a person’s strong natural body odour could mix with the already strong perfume and give him/her and others around an awful headache. But then there are ways you can naturally keep away the bad body odour

This debate isn’t this simple. If the question over deodorant or perfume which is better was this easy, we would neither have written about it nor would you be reading this. There are other conditions you can put the two products in and see that each of them is better than the other in some way or the other. 

Perfume vs Deodorant 

1. Price

Both the items are available in a variety of prices. You can find international brands, and even not-so-well-known domestic brands manufacturing and selling them. The difference in the prices depends on their quality, and the brand equity too. 

The one thing that can help evaluate which is better according to the price standard, is that the cheapest perfume available in any shop will always be more expensive than the cheapest deodorant; and the most expensive deodorant will be much cheaper than the most expensive perfume. 

So purely on the basis of their prices, a deodorant seems to be better than perfume.

2. Longevity

Those who disagreed with the above point probably did so on the grounds that a perfume bottle lasts longer than a deodorant bottle of the same volumes. We completely agree with this too. 

And moreover, if we apply the same amount of deodorant in one day and perfume on another day, we can clearly see a difference between deo and perfume on their longevity. The perfume will last for almost an entire day, whereas the deodorant starts wearing off within a couple of hours or a little more than that.

But this does not necessarily have to be a deal-breaker for some people if they need to smell good only for a couple of hours or so. For them, the deodorant wins because it serves their purpose and that too is available at a cheaper price. 

However, if your needs are to smell pleasant throughout the day, the perfume is the winner. We mean, if you really want you could possibly carry your deodorant in your bag and spray on every few hours, but that can be somewhat of a hassle. We would recommend a perfume would serve you much better here. 

Hence, purely on the basis of the longevity of the two items, the perfume is the winner. Here are some ways you can make your perfume last even longer

3. Associated image

The biggest difference between deo and perfume is the image that is associated with each of its users. The fragrances in scented deodorants are very distinct from perfume. This allows anyone to easily discern which one of the two you are wearing. 

A perfume has sophistication associated with it. Most of the older people wear perfumes and almost none of them use deodorants. Moreover, perfumes are a luxury product because of their high price point and the historic association with the upper class. To add to these, perfumes are worn when you know you are not going to sweat because you are aware that mixing of two strong smells is never a good idea. All these together make the perfume more of a sophisticated and more mature product. 

On the other hand, a deodorant is worn when you know you are going to sweat. There is no upper-class sophistication associated with sweating. A deo is meant to eliminate the body odour out of public decency; and honestly, is a utilitarian product that we can’t thank enough as a society. Deodorant is worn regularly and is not associated with special events or meetings, unlike the perfume.

In this category under the perfume vs deodorant debate, we won’t say one win over the other. Both are equally important and serve their individual purposes very well.

4. As a gift

Well here the winner is perfume and there is no way you can say that giving someone a deodorant as a gift is a good idea. 

“Here’s my gift to you because I want to give you something that has conventionally been seen as a good gift item because of its luxurious and sophisticated associations” vs “Here’s my gift to you because I think you smell bad and you could really use some help to get rid of that odour” – that should be an explanation enough. 

In conclusion, the perfume vs deodorant debate here is in favour of the perfume. But of course, you can continue this further by pointing out more difference between deo and perfume and shift the debate in favour of the deodorant too. The choice of deodorant or perfume which is better, will depend on each individual and their requirements and preferences.