Monday, April 15, 2024

Everything You Need to Know About Fragrance Notes

Buying a new perfume is not as easy as it sounds. Sure, you can follow the trends or choose a scent based on the brand and bottle. But, when you try the perfume for the first time, this is when you truly know if it is the right fragrance for you.

So, how can you tell when you are buying one online? Well, the best thing you can do is examine the fragrance notes. This is going to give you an insight into what you can expect. Are you not sure what fragrance notes are? We have created a useful guide so you can get the low-down on fragrance notes. So, let’s get started.

What are Fragrance Notes?

First of all, let’s keep things simple and talk about what fragrance notes are. Simply, fragrance notes or perfume notes are the different layers of a scent. Together, the top, middle and base notes will create the fragrance you enjoy. Think about them as explaining the different ingredients that have been used in the bottle and a description of when you are going to recognise them.

Top Notes

First of all, let’s start with the top notes of a fragrance. These can also be referred to as head notes, as well as some calling them opening notes. Ultimately, they all refer to the same thing and these are the scents you are going to notice first in a perfume. So, these are the ingredients you recognise when you spray the perfume onto your skin. For example, Emporio Armani Diamonds is a surprising gourmand perfume that boasts lychee and raspberry top notes. This is something that is fun to wear and will instantly provide some sweetness.

The top notes are light. This means that they will fade and not last as long as others. Think about it as the first impression you get of a perfume. Namely, it is common for fruity ingredients to be used as the top notes, as well as citrus. This is because they are light and refreshing.

Middle Notes

Middle notes can also be referred to as heart notes. As the name suggests, these are the ingredients at the heart of a perfume. Namely, they are classed as the main ones and the ingredients you should pay attention to. In a women’s perfume, you can expect the middle notes to be floral. Middle notes can last for several hours.

Base Notes

Last but not least, there are the base notes of perfume. These are going to add some body to a fragrance and are considered important for the overall vibe of a scent. They deepen what you will experience with the heart notes. Just as the top notes are your first impression, base notes help to solidify a lasting impression. Some common base notes you will find include amber, musk and sandalwood.

What are Fragrance Families?

Something else that is important to understand when you are learning about fragrance notes is fragrance families. This is going to give you further insight into what you can expect from a perfume. Let’s take a closer look at some of the fragrance families you will want to be aware of.


Floral is a popular fragrance family with women. Indeed, it is going to mean that there are fresh and flowery notes included in the perfume. This can make you feel feminine, as well as be nice to wear during the spring and summer months. The top notes and middle notes can be light and delicate.


Men’s and women’s perfumes can be woody when it comes to the notes. Indeed, this means that you can expect a woodsy scent, which reminds you of being outdoors and in nature. Think about notes like cedarwood, vetiver and sandalwood. They are all very popular in woody perfume. Note that dry woods are going to have a warm and smoky element to them.


Of course, fruity perfumes are very popular. They are sweet and have recognisable notes, such as apple and raspberry. Often, these fragrances are described as fun and light, which means they can be refreshing and energising.


 A fragrance that is described as oriental can be an interesting one. It can contain a warm and spicy aroma, which is enjoyable to wear during the autumn and winter months of the year when it is colder. What’s more, it does have a warm element to it, which is why it is popular to wear them. There can be rich and luxurious notes available in an oriental perfume. This includes cardamom and vanilla.

What are the Different Fragrance Strengths?

Something else you will want to be aware of is the fragrance strength. Sometimes, this can affect the notes and the impression they leave. For example, Eau de Parfum has a fragrance oil per cent of 10 to 20. This means that it can last around eight hours, which allows the notes to develop fully. An Eau de toilette will be around 5 to 15 per cent, which will last less time. Then, when it comes to men, you have an Eau de Cologne, which has around 2 to 4 per cent fragrance oil. This is going to last the least amount of time on the skin, which could change the way notes develop.

Claire James
Claire James
Claire is an accounts manager at Fire Digital UK, an online publishing and content marketing company based in the North West.

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