Tangerine and mandarin are basically interchangeable:  their zestiness is instantly cheering - sweet, fruity, citrussy, with hints of neroli – and just what perfumers often look for to ‘lift’ the overture of a scent. Guerlain Elixir Charnel Chypre Fatal Aedes de Venustus Eau de Parfum Estée Lauder Private Collection This powerful oil can then be played with by perfumers, who use it as an ultra-feminine heart note. They’re both from the small white flowers that blossom on the bitter orange tree (Citrus aurantia) - which is much more fragrant than the orange tree which produces the fruit for eating. Thierry Mugler Angel, Pungent, lavender-like, aromatic:  nothing smells quite like rosemary. 19 Poudré Givenchy Very Irresistible ), Chanel Bois des Iles Comme des Garçons Sequoia Though top notes are responsible for the first impression, base notes last for hours on end. The blossom of the bitter orange tree (a.k.a. The name (who knew?) Cartier L’Heure Defendue VII What does it smell of, in a fragrance? Diptyque Odeyo Caudalie Zeste de Vigne And - we suspect – is used to give an aura of magic, dark mystery and allure to perfume, rather than for the perfume itself. Oddly enough, I find that my customers describe certain synthetic fragrances as ‘fresh and natural’. Same sweetness – but more subtle. Boucheron Bracelet Jaipur The scent actually comes from an aroma compound called coumarin: traditionally, tonka beans would be dried and cured in rum, producing small crystals of coumarin. But – just like a real cocktail (paper parasol optional), it adds a sense of summer to fragrances. Labdanum An aromatic gum from the rockrose bush. Karo-karounde (also sometimes written as karo-karunde) is considered to be an aphrodisiac and is used in the rituals of sexual magic, in the Congo! Lush Smell of Weather Turning Lorenzo Villoresi Patchouli L’Artisan Parfumeur Mimosa Pour Moi Various methods are used to extract and concentrate the fragrant parts of plant materials. The plant itself is found in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, areas of the US like Florida, and Australia. So while you may be familiar with lemon in Colognes and summer splashes, lemon’s actually present in many, many fragrances. Yves Saint Laurent Paris. So juicy, you can almost imagine this running down your chin:  sweet, slightly tart, and of late cherry’s become Miss Popularity in the perfume stakes, with the rise in pretty, girly fruity-florals. It’s extraordinary that a single plant can smell so different, depending on where it’s grown. (And around the time of the 16th Century, not a few men could apparently be found ripping out rosemary bushes to show that they, not their wives, were boss.). Keiko Mecheri Bois de Santal Gucci Gucci by Gucci Carolina Herrera 212 Myrrh gets its name from the Hebrew ‘murr’ or ‘maror’, which translates as ‘bitter’. Apparently, this got its name from the way it manages to smell like a combination of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg – sweet and dry, all at once. It’s seriously low-maintenance:  the name ‘rosemary’ comes from the Latin for ‘dew’ (ros) and ‘sea’ (marinus), because all it needs is the humidity of a sea breeze to flourish. Estée Lauder Sensuous If not, they travel further down the gut and are covered in ambergris:  a sticky, gelatinous material which dries to a lump with a resinous texture and then floats on the surface, ending up on beaches in places like South Africa, the East Indies, China, Japan, New Zealand – even Dorset. (They’re deeply alluring to slugs, as gardeners know.) There’s nothing light and airy about guaiac wood, that’s for sure. Bees love these intoxicating blooms:  when you taste ‘acacia honey’, this is the tree whose pollen the bees have dipped into. ‘Little darling’. Hugo Boss Femme L’Eau Fraiche With fruits so abundant in contemporary perfumery, it was inevitable that the sweet stickiness of dried fruits, too, would be make their way into some creations. Pepper, is metallic and spiky, sharp. It has inspired countless readers since its … Yves Saint Laurent Belle d’Opium, In the wrong hands, strawberry can smell sickly-sweet and synthetic. Raspberries quite often appear, nowadays, as part of a ‘red berry accord’ in fruity-, or fruity-floral scents. But indole can also be created synthetically, producing a crystal-like substance that smells of nothing so much as your great aunt’s mothballs, till it’s massively diluted. Pear’s so crisp and clean a note, you can almost hear it ‘crunch’. Clinique Happy Explore by brand shows a given perfume's ingredients and gives a list of other perfumes with similar notes. All types of petitgrain contain aroma compounds known as geraniol and linalool that are known to trigger sensitivity in some people, so are listed on perfume packaging. As a perfume ingredient, cannabis has been in the news recently as a controversial ingredient in actor Richard E. Grant’s debut scent. Preceding the berries come green-and-purple-tinged bell-shaped flowers which do offer up a delicate scent – but the sweet, subtly floral belladonna note used in fragrances is generally synthetic. Jo Malone London Pomegranate Noir Perfume ingredients include a blend of alcohol, oils, and other components such as industry staples bergamot, rose, sandalwood, vanilla, and ylang-ylang. Valentino Donna Acqua Burberry Brit Although ink-y notes can come from natural materials like oakmoss, it generally isn’t really ink that you’ll smell in a scent. Ancient texts and archaeological excavations show the use of perfumes in some of the earliest human civilizations. Personally, we prefer to wear our guaiac wood, for an air of mystery. Nice myth, though. Ralph Lauren Safari Britney Spears Fantasy And in a fragrance…? Mangifera indica originates in the Indian subcontinent, where it’s prized for its spiritual significance (and even now, it’s celebrated as the ‘royal fruit’);  today, there are over 1,000 species in the world. Unlike jasmine … Nina Ricci Premier Jour It gets its name from the Spanish word ‘vaina’ (meaning sheath or pod, and translates simply as ‘little pod’. Calvin Klein Escape Cartier Délices de Cartier Citral is lemons, while C11 gives a ‘cleanness’ to fragrance (it’s naturally present in coriander leaf oil). We love this quote about freesias that we first found on the perfume website Fragrantica, meanwhile. Clive Christian X for Women Revlon Charlie Silver. All FREE! Bottega Veneta Bottega Veneta (Especially now fruity-florals are so popular in our fragrance wardrobes:  blueberries work really well to enhance floral perfumes.) Closer to home, this annual (a member of the mint family) grows up to three ft./almost a metre high, and the oil’s derived from the paper-thin leaves leaves. Because violet petals are really reluctant to give up their scent naturally. But perfumers wouldn’t be without patchouli, for the richness that it gives to fragrances – and not just those heady Orientals:  patchouli makes its way into many chypre and powdery fragrances, swirling exotically alongside lavender, sandalwood, labdanum and bergamot, clove, clary sage, as well as vetiver. Guerlain Spirituelle Double Vanille Find it mostly in chypre and fougère creations. Taylor Swift Wonderstruck That ‘whoosh’ of uplifting zestiness is precisely why perfumers love to use it:  as a sweet, refreshing, sadly fleeting top note, very often in colognes but also in Oriental and fruity-floral scents. It’s the roots of this perennial plant – a flowering member of the valerian family – which are used in perfumery, as well as in natural medicine and in aromatherapy, to soothe stress and anxiety. 19 I’m not trying to justify the absurdly high prices we’ve seen in the niche market lately, but product pricing is more complex than people realize. Some flower just once a year, for a single night – a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it pleasure that happily can be captured in a bottle and enjoyed 24/7…, Dior Addict Halston Woman Amber In the same way that a touch of salt brings a caramel alive, saltiness can play against sweet notes like chocolate, praline and cream, as an almost show-stopping contrast. There are many different varieties of this Mediterranean shrub, but today it’s the flower tops of ‘Garden Thyme’ (a.k.a. ', Smell benzoin in: Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille, Read The Perfume Candy Boy's Guide to Vanilla, here. Related: Perfume Genius. Dainty little sweet-scented purple flowers. Bracing, uplifting and almost nose-tinglingly spicy, ginger pairs beautifully with vanilla, woody notes and citrus, as well as white flowers like jasmine and neroli. ', Bulgari Jasmin Noir (Don’t worry:  we won’t test you.) In general, it’s a ‘fantasy’ or synthetic note you smell, rather than any essence from cocoa beans themselves – but it’s there for the sheer, pleasurable links with one of man’s (and especially woman’s) most indulgent foods…, Cartier Le Baiser du Dragon Instantly cooling and utterly refreshing, mint has been infused for centuries in various preparations to be taken as a herbal remedy for digestive complaints, to soothe inflamed skin and also to splash on as a tonic for the senses. If you ever come across a piece of the wood itself, it’s magical:  the scent can still be enjoyed, years after it was harvested. Just like a hessian sack of potatoes that’s been left at the back of your grandfather’s shed, when you peel back the drawstring and b-r-e-a-t-h-e, actually. And the rest, as they say, is history. ), and you might get whispers of a floral note, with fruity undertones – somewhere mid-way between a rose and a nectarine. The first is resinoid, which is perfect with lavender. Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire Serge Lutens Chergui Jo Malone London Lime, Basil & Mandarin Sensitising cinnamal, potential allergen. Byredo Rose Noir At Perfume.com, we sell the same women's perfume brands as department stores but at discounted prices, some at up to 70% off! Thierry Mugler Angel Ralph Lauren Safari So there’s some suggestion that datura, or angel’s trumpet, is used mostly for its mythical status rather than any unique aromatic qualities…. Lady Gaga Fame M.Micallef Ylang in Gold Frederic Malle Musc Ravageur A little bit birch tar-y, even tarmac-y. (Cashmeran™ is a trademarked ingredient from the perfumer supplier International Flavours and Fragrances, or IFF.) In Classic myth, the rose was linked both with the Greek goddess Aphrodite and her Roman counterpart, Venus. (Well, camphor and eucalyptus and even mint smell a little bit like rosemary - but most of us could still make out its distinctive ‘whoosh’ if blindfolded). Of course we’ll never know someone, somewhere along the way, got the idea that it would be a good idea to try this potent ingredient out in a perfume:  in its raw state, musk oil smells – well, a bit like poo...  And yet, and yet – at the same time, strangely intriguing…  A well-known German fragrance chemist, Phliip Kraft, brilliantly captures musk’s love-it-hate-it complexity. Estée Lauder Beautiful It also showed that “the most common problems” related to allergenic fragrances found in the study were due to the presence of linalool, benzyl alcohol and limonene – ingredients that, by law, had to be listed on labels when present above a certain threshold, under the Cosmetics Regulation (EC) No. The raw materials in the sweet family are popular today in gourmand fragrances. Guerlain Insolence Guerlain Myrre et Délires It has fruity undertones (peachy, pear-y, banana-y, apple-y), but complements white flowers wonderfully. It’s also grown in southern France and in Côte d'Ivoire for the essential oil (and in in southern Turkey for its marmalade…), Jo Malone London Oud and Bergamot Guerlain Mitsouko A well-known family of garden shrubs, syringe bursts into a froth of white flowers in late spring, filling the air with its jasmine-like sweetness – which is what perfumers capture, often alongside other white florals, but also in chypre creations. Creed Love in Black It’s pretty unusual to see quinces growing (although the Spanish do use it to make a paste, membrillo, which is served with cheese) – but they look half-way between a pear and an apple (to which it’s related). But nowadays, synthetic musks have widely replaced ambrette, on grounds of its priciness. It might be from birch tar (which has a leathery smokiness), or juniper, aldehydes or other synthetics, designed to give a skin-like scent. It pairs beautifully with rich flowery notes like jasmine, tuberose and rose. For centuries, aside from perfumery, the mimosa tree has been used for many different purposes from medicinal to ornamental. He echoes our comment above: 'You have to make your leather chord. Dark, sensuality cinnamon too. ) begin and end with its herby-green odour flesh be! Pumping out a heady, rich, green scent of punnets-ful of red. As well as countless contemporary ‘ gourmand ’ scents fix it perfectly and ’! 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