Category Archives: absolutes

Oct
28

Fragrance Oil Terminology

This entry was posted in absolutes, diffusion, distillation, dry down, essential oils, Fragrance Oils, fragrance terminology, fragrance terms, Natures Garden and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

chalkboard pic1The fragrance industry has a language of its own that is used to describe, quantify and qualify the processes, ingredients and sensations with regard to aroma.  These commonly used terms help perfumers, evaluators and clients exchange ideas.


ABSOLUTE
- A concentrated fragrance material derived from natural plant product, processed by means of enfleurage, alcohol extraction or steam distillation.

ACCORD- “Fantasy Accords” are based on natural aromas that cannot be extracted in true olfactive form.  The cumulative result of balancing ingredients to achieve an “original” effect is the “creation” aspect of perfumery .

ANOSMIA- Insensitive to odors. Specific anosmia is insensivity to a particular substance, such as musk.

AROMATIC- A fragrance with a strong aroma of herbs, spices or camphor.

BALANCE- Balance is the result of the perfect adjustment of odor strength of combined ingredients.

BITTER- An odor which causes a bitter taste on the taste buds when smelled.

BLEND- A mixture of natural and / or synthetic aromatic ingredients.

BLOOM- Good top note diffusion with middle notes becoming full and rich.

BODY- The heart and main part of the fragrance. The characteristic note when the most volatile top note components have lost their dominance and all of the middle components of the fragrance come into play.

BOUQUET- A harmonious blend of several single floral notes in a fragrance compound.

BOTTOM NOTE- Also called the base note or dry down of the fragrance. This note contains the fixatives of  the fragrance and imparts long lasting qualities.

CHEMICAL- Synthetic smelling, lacking the richness of naturals.

CLOYING- A term used to describe excessive sweetness in a fragrance.

COMPOUND- A mixture of aromatic ingredients that form a fragrance composition.

DIFFUSION- Also described as “throw” or “lift”, this term expresses the fragrance’s ability to radiate from  the bottle or from a finished product.

DISTILLATION- The process of purifying a volatile material by applying heat to turn it into vapor, then recovering the material to pure liquid by condensation which yields essential oil.

DRYDOWN / DRYOUT- Another term for bottom note.

EARTHY- The aroma of freshly turned soil.

ENFLEURAGE- The traditional method of separating the absolute aromatic material from the flowers by placing petals between layers of fat to which they impart their odor. The layering is repeated with fresh petals until the fat is rich in the flowers’ essential oils. The odor is then extracted from the fat with alcohol, after which the alcohol is distilled off, leaving the aromatic absolute.

ESSENTIAL OIL- An oil obtained from a variety of natural sources such as flowers, leaves, seeds, roots, bark or buds.

FIXATIVE- A material incorporated into a fragrance compound to retard volatilization of the fragrance or stabilize the fidelity of the fragrance character.

FLAT- A fragrance that is lacking distinction.

FRAGRANCE- A composition of various synthetic and natural aromatic materials that create a definite odor effect.

Oct
25

What Ingredients are in Fragrance Oils?

This entry was posted in absolutes, all natural, essential oils, fragrance notes, Fragrance Oils, fragrances, natural ingredients, Natures Garden, resins and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , on by .

fragrance bottleMost fragrances are a combination of many aromatic ingredients.  These ingredients are derived from nature or created by scientific methods. Natural Ingredients include essential oils, resins, and absolutes.

Natural Ingredients:

AROMATIC ESSENTIAL OILS are derived from plants using either distillation or cold pressing.  They are generally in liquid form.  An essential oil from one plant can vary in color, odor, and price depending on the crop from which the oil is derived.  Mother Nature rules here and variations between lots of the same oil must be assessed for suitability.  And, not all plants yield aromatic essential oils.

Examples of Aromatic Essential Oils are:  Orange Oil, Lavender Oil, Patchouli Oil, Cedar Wood Oil

RESINS are materials which are exuded from a plant when the other layer of the plant is cut.  They are dense and sticky and may solidify into a solid mass.  Heat may be required to melt some resins.   Resins are long lasting fragrance ingredients.   Examples:   Myrrh resin, Benzoin resin, Fir resin, Oakmoss resin, Copel Resin Tears.

ABSOLUTES are created by removing the aromatic components from plants which cannot yield essential oils.  Many plants are too fragile to be distilled; therefore the absolute is the form in which we capture the aromatic components of the plant.  The absolute is highly concentrated and somewhat viscous.  Now, the yield of absolute material per plant is exceptionally small, and the processing is very labor intensive.  As a result, absolutes are usually very expensive.

Examples:  Rose absolute, Orange flower absolute, Jasmine absolute, Narcisse absolute.

Manmade Ingredients include aromatic ingredients in liquid, crystalline, or powder form.  Commonly called chemicals, manmade fragrance ingredients produce a wide variety of aromatic sensations.  Some of these ingredients are also found in nature, but science can reproduce them synthetically.  The synthetic versions are generally less expensive, more consistent in odor and color and widely available.

Aromatic chemicals offer the perfumer a vast palette of materials to compliment natural ingredients.  They help control the cost of a fragrance and help ensure consistent quality.  Many aromatic chemicals can create intense, unusual or dramatic effects in a fragrance.  Most fragrances are a combination of the natural and synthetic ingredients.  The perfumer will choose materials based on odor, cost, and stability in the product being scented.
Examples of manmade aromatic materials:  citral, linalyl, acetate, phenyl, ethyl, vanillin.

These ingredients form Fragrance Oils.

Parts of a Fragrance Oilfragrance-oils

A fragrance oil is divided into 3 distinct parts.  The top note, the middle note, and the base note.  Each of these usually has an assortment of ingredients.

Top notes are the most volatile fragrance ingredients.  The top notes give the fragrance its initial burst and can provide impact in a finished product.  Top notes are the first to evaporate, leaving the middle notes of the fragrance to be explored.  Traditional top notes include citrus oil and light aromatic chemicals such as esters.

Middle notes are also called the fragrance heart.  They represent the true fragrance character.  The middle notes are longer lasting than the top notes.  These ingredients form the fragrance signature and are evident throughout most of the life of the fragrance.  Typical middle notes include floral, spice, and fruit tones.

Base Notes are also called the bottom notes or dry down.  Base notes are the longest lasting components of the fragrance.  These ingredients support the fragrance and give it depth.  Base notes remain long after the top and middle notes have evaporated.  Perfumists use base notes to anchor the volatile fragrance notes in a fragrance.  Commonly used materials for base notes are musk, vanilla, resins, and woods.