Perfumes from ancient Egypt to renaissance France were used by the wealthy. It was an indulgence afforded by the rich and splashed on by ladies with a tremendous amount of free time and excesses.
Perfumes are no longer just used to express a sensuous mood but to express a personality trait, like confident or sporty.
Not Just For The Rich
Why has this changed? You could write a book on the number of reasons why perfumes are no longer just for the elite. Essentially, extraction methods and the use of synthetic ingredients have made fragrance manufacturing processes faster and cheaper. From a socio-economic position, the types of jobs that men and women have are less labour intensive and they have much more free time and income - the rise of the middle class.
Function of Perfume
The function of perfume is also no longer to disguise poor odours but to express a person's mood or personality. During and after the industrial revolution, when perfumes were an aspirational but still attainable cosmetic item, men and women used to have a signature scent. These days, fragrances are so affordable that people have a perfume wardrobe with an entire collection of perfumes which they rotate, defining their mood or style for the day.
Old School Charm by Lalique Fragrances
Lalique is more commonly known as a premium glassworks company with a long legacy. They have translated this into their perfume bottles with premium fragrances to match. What's lost is now found.
New Scents Exist
Did you know that citrus scents and aquatic scents are a modern invention? Prior to the 1980s, these scents were not in existence as perfume extraction methods and synthetic scents (like the scent of the sea, which is totally made up), were not possible.
Scent Preferences Have Changed
The distinction between men's and women's perfumes were not as profound as they are today. Musk and woody dominant scents were as equally found in men's perfumes as in women's perfumes. And floral scents, which were very expensive to extract 150 years ago, were found in men's perfumes. It's only after WWII when certain scents were marketed towards certain genders more distinctly.