Stemming from the first hints of charm and attraction, to the moment hearts skip a beat and reveal more, to the lingering support you find within each other as time goes on, the multi-note fragrance experience seems to share an awful lot with falling in love.
Reaching us first, like the kind eyes or inviting smile you might initially set sight on, the top notes of a fragrance, (also called the head notes), form a first impression. This is the point when we decide if we want more. If the top notes are not attractive to you, personally, and fail to draw you in, you will probably walk away–similar to a first date without a sufficient “spark.”
However, if you feel that lusty spark and choose not to abandon your new love, your sense of smell will move on to enjoy the middle (or heart) notes of the fragrance. As its name implies, this is the heart and soul of the fragrance and expectantly the single best representative of the scent as a whole. For instance, if you’re checking out a fragrance with the label name Orchid Guava, chances are the aromatic blend of the heart note will contain sweet exotic fruit and blossoms of some sort.
Completely infatuated, you begin to get comfortable, spending more and more time in each other’s company. It’s no longer a matter of what time will tell but growing increasingly fond of the scent that lingers–now that all has been revealed. The base (or bottom) notes are the solid support of the fragrance that hold up the heart and head of the scent. Just as lasting love is not much of anything without unconditional, mutual support and encouragement, the fragrance could not exist without the base notes as its backbone.
This complex makeup of a single scent is often explained with a pyramid diagram, beginning with the top notes, moving down to a slightly expanded mid-region for the middle notes, and concluding with a wide base reserved for bottom notes in order to imitate the sequence in which scents emerge.
However, other experts use the metaphor of the body to explain the experience of a multifaceted fragrance, with the fleeting head notes inhaled first, moving on to the longer-lasting heart notes, and finishing with the lingering aromas of the sensual base notes.
Delicate citrus and floral scents tend to make up the top notes, while the middle notes generally emerge from hardier florals and plant parts such as stems and resins. Meanwhile, bottom notes which can last for over a day–and are arguably the most important–come from resilient aromas like that of musk, sandalwood, or vetiver. Returning to the example of Orchid Guava, you may find it surprising for a fruity-floral fragrance, but its base notes actually do contain some musk–along with vanilla orchid and berries–to help balance out the sweetness of the scent. Only so many words can be used in a fragrance’s label name, but it’s important to “note” that much more lies beneath with this complicated love triangle of aromas responsible for a single fragrance.
PR & Marketing Specialist