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  1. #1

    Default Fragrance notes confusion

    Hello,
    I am fairly new to perfumery. I started a few years ago in aromatherapy and thought I had all the notes down but since I have started in perfumery I have noticed that a lot of the fragrances that I thought were top notes are actually middle notes and vice versa. For example I always thought all florals were middle notes but now I am getting conflicting info about rose, jasmine and lavender. I learned these were middle notes and now I see them listed as top notes. I can understand Lavender but rose and jasmine are confusing me. I am also confused about clove, nutmeg and cinnamon. I have seen them all listed as top middle and base. I have so many charts from different websites and they are all different so I am so very confused. Please help!!

    Sincerely

    Caprittarius

  2. #2
    Basenotes Plus

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    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    Hi & welcome, caprittarius

    We'll just move this over to our DIY section as it will probably be answered better over there.

    Thanks.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    OOOH! Caprittarius, another So Cal fumehead!

    Might I assume that you are referring to all natural extractions of these products?

    If you are, then you would need to know that one can re-make / re-stack / re-directed the same/similar aroma chemicals as what is found in the naturals into a reconstructed accord of the natural, so that they smell as you want to place them, as top, or middle, or even bottom notes.

    What city are you in?

    PK
    Menifee, CA
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  4. #4

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    I don't understand the confusion about Top, Middle and Back notes. A chemical that you can smell for few minutes (up to an hour) is a Top note. A chemical that you can smell for several hours is a Middle note. A chemical that you can smell for several days, or longer, is a Base note.
    Last edited by David Ruskin; 19th June 2014 at 09:29 AM.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    Quote Originally Posted by pkiler View Post
    OOOH! Caprittarius, another So Cal fumehead!

    Might I assume that you are referring to all natural extractions of these products?

    If you are, then you would need to know that one can re-make / re-stack / re-directed the same/similar aroma chemicals as what is found in the naturals into a reconstructed accord of the natural, so that they smell as you want to place them, as top, or middle, or even bottom notes.

    What city are you in?

    PK
    Menifee, CA
    High Desert Lucerne Valley

  6. #6

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    Yeah, I always knew that which is why I was so confused when I found these charts that didn't jive. I will just stick with what I always knew and not let all these other sites confuse me....which isn't hard to do these days.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    That is what I was thinking actually. I like that!!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    High Desert Lucerne Valley - not SO far away, especially if you come down into the smog on occasion... 90 miles for you. If you'd like to come visit sometime... :-)

    PK
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  9. #9

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    Materials may sit at different levels of the pyramid (top, middle, base) depending on what else is in the blend, but it also comes down to volatility. High volatility will usually mean it's higher up or at the top. Also, the stacking I've seen in regards to commercial perfumes (on review sites for instance) doesn't always reflect on how the natural material would behave - or sometimes I can't even smell what they've listed. Hope that helps.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    I also struggle with this from time to time.
    Could it be that the confusion is more about the mixing up of note related words and material related terms?

    Like: 3 different aromachemicals/oils may be considered as smelling like lemons, but they have different volatility. And unfortunately one of them is called lemon EO thus causing confusion around the concept `lemon`.

    Or: nerol will always be a citrus top note, but that doesnt mean there arent citrus base notes.

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  11. #11

    Default Re: Fragrance notes confusion

    There is a vast difference between what a Perfumer means and what a Marketing man means by these terms. The fragrance triangles given in the advertisements to describe fragrances often have nothing to do with the actual contents of those fragrances. Thomash is quite correct; a "Lemon" smell could appear as a Top, Middle or (rarely) a Base note. Different "Lemon" smelling chemicals will be Top, Middle or Base notes. And as an aside, Lemon EO is not a single chemical, but very many chemicals each having its own volatility.

    To repeat what I wrote above, a Top note lasts for a maximum of an hour, a Middle Note, for several hours, a Base for days, or longer. It is that simple.

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