a journey of the senses by FLACONNEUR

How Fragrance Notes Work

The following is a breakdown of how different levels in perfumes are conceived by the human nose. This breakdown is referred to as notes. There are three set of notes in a fragrance and when these notes are combined, this create a scent accord. The notes unfold over time as the fragrance is exposed to air and evaporation. Your immediate impression would be called the top notes which then, as time elapses, lead you to the middle notes or sometimes referred to as heart notes. Finally the middle notes slowly move to the final stage of base notes. Keeping the idea of evaporation in the perfume process, this movement through the three note level is considered carefully during the creation of a perfume.

Top Notes: Perceived immediately after initial application. Top notes consist of small, light molecules that evaporate quickly. They form a person’s initial impression of a perfume. They are also referred to as head notes.

Middle Notes: These merge just prior to the dissipation of the top notes. The middle note blend from the “heart” or main body of a perfume and act to mask the often unpleasant initial impression of base notes, which become more pleasant with time. They are also referred to as heart notes.

Base Notes: These appears close to the departure of the middle notes. The base and middle notes together are the main theme of a perfume. Base notes bring depth and solidity to a perfume. Blends of this class of scents are typically rich and “deep” and are usually not perceived until 30 minutes after application.

The scents in the top and middle notes are influenced by the base notes, as well the scents of the base notes will be altered by the type of fragrance materials used as middle notes. Manufacturers of perfumes usually publish perfume notes to help you understand the basis behind the perfume.


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This entry was posted on November 10, 2011 by in Education.

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