You need an degree in decision making to shop at this place

I don’t shop at Bath & Body Works regularly. In fact, the last time I was in there was last year around this time. I’m all for good smelling lotions, shower gel and candles. But walking into B&B is like the ultimate test in choices. Only people with Ph.D’s in “decision making” should be allowed in the store.

First, you have your “regular” B&B scents. You know, the everyday smells that are not seasonal like sunset glow, or warm vanilla sugar, etc. Since it is December, most of the store was “holiday/winter” scents – Winter Candy Apple, Tis the Season, Christmas Cookie, Hot Cocoa and Cream (but do I really want my arm to smell like hot cocoa?)

Then, there is what I call “categories” of scents.

Food smells like Spiced Apple, Twisted Peppermint and French Baguette. (Who knew you could smell like bread? And more importantly, why is that a thing?)

Drink smells like Gingerbread Latte, Black Cherry Merlot and Whiskey.

Nature smells like Forest, Ocean and Perfect Peony.

Then there’s “collections” like Dahlia, Gingham, and Into the Night, and scents like Confetti and Daydreams, Frosted Snowball and Dazzling Nights that don’t offer any indication of what they smell like without reading about them or smelling them in person (after removing your mask if the year is 2020 #WearAMask 😷 )

Five seconds of Google search revealed that on any given day, Bath & Body Works has 300-400 scents. And they release new fragrances every three to four weeks. What the what? How can there be that many? Don’t you just start repeating after the 317th scent?

Then there’s the design and packaging. Some scents seem more fun and whimsical, while others are provocative and sexy. Some designs are are shiny and sparkly like diamonds, while others have a floral design similar to what Maria made the von Trapp children out of her bedroom curtains.

So you’ve got to make a choice based on too many criteria: scent, design, regular or seasonal? Next let’s throw in your mood – do you want to be fun and quirky or more mature and provocative? Regular size or travel size? Do you want the body lotion or body cream? Room mist? Shower gel? Hand sanitizer? Lip gloss? Hand soap? Candles? Should you buy the gift set?

It’s enough to drive anyone mad with indecision.

Maybe it’s my age. Between personal, family and work choices – this GenXer has decision fatigue.

Related: When you try and smell a product in the store, there’s so many smells you can’t even tell what you are smelling! It’s like they need smelling booths or something – an airtight room where you can sniff without confusion, knowing that what you are smelling won’t be tainted or mixed with another scent.

While writing this, I see that Bath & Body Works has been around for about 30 years. That got me thinking – what happened to those original scents from the 1990s? The ones we splurged on while tight rolling our acid wash jeans? This Mashable post is a walk down memory lane with scents like Juniper Breeze, Cucumber Melon and Freesia. The good ol’ days.

Don’t get me wrong. I do like the products. Maybe I’ll prepare myself better for my next visit.

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