Perfume Raw Materials

Natural ingredients—flowers, grasses, spices, fruit, wood, roots, resins, balsams, leaves, gums, and animal secretions—as well as resources like alcohol, petrochemicals, coal, and coal tars are used in the manufacture of perfumes. Some plants, such as lily of the valley, do not produce oils naturally. In fact, only about 2,000 of the 250,000 known flowering plant species contain these essential oils. Therefore, synthetic chemicals must be used to re-create the smells of non-oily substances. Synthetics also create original scents not found in nature.

Some perfume ingredients are animal products. For example, castor comes from beavers, musk from male deer, and ambergris from the sperm whale. Animal substances are often used as fixatives that enable perfume to evaporate slowly and emit odors longer. Other fixatives include coal tar, mosses, resins, or synthetic chemicals. Alcohol and sometimes water are used to dilute ingredients in perfumes. It is the ratio of alcohol to scent that determines whether the perfume is "eau de toilette" (toilet water) or cologne.



Raw Materials

Amber

AMBER

smoky, leathery, woody, dry, deeps

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Anise

AROMATIC/HERBAL

black licorice, anised, sweet, spicy

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Benzoin

BALSAMIC

sweet, vanilla-like, warm, caramel

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Bergamot

CITRUS

fresh, lavender, floral, herbal, citrus,

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Black Pepper

SPICY

spicy, pungent, fresh, dry, woody,

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Cardamomr

SPICY

spicy, sweet, refreshing, lemony/citrus

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Carrot Seed

AROMATIC/HERBAL

fresh, woody, earthy, slightly sweet

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Cassis

FRUITY

black currant, very strong, green

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Cedarwood

WOODY

woody, mossy, balsamic

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Cinnamon

SPICY

fresh ground cinnamon, woody

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Cistus

AMBER

warm, woody, deep, herbaceous

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Clary Sage

AROMATIC/HERBAL

herbaceous, amber, floral, musky

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Clove

SPICY

warm, clove, spicy/sweet, woody

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Coconut

SWEET

Sweet, creamy, coconut, fatty

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Dewfruit

FRUITY

Exotic fruit, lychee, raspberry,

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Frankincense

AMBER

peppery, citrus, woody, balsamic

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Galbanum

GREEN

green, leaf-like, bitter, woody,

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geranium

FLORAL

fresh, green, herbal, rosy, sweet,

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Ginger

SPICY

warm, fresh, peppery, earthy,

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Guaiac wood

WOODY

balsamic, honeyed-sweet, smoky,

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Hay

AMBER

Rich sweet, freshly cut hay,

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jasmine

FLORAL

sweet, floral, intense, green top,

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Labdanum

AMBER

full-bodied, warm, amber-like, deep

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Lavender

AROMATIC/HERBAL

herbaceous, floral, soft, sweet, bit

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Lemon

CITRUS

fresh, acidic, tangy, zest, lemon

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Lilac

FLORAL

sweet, floral, powdery, almond,

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Linden Blossom

FLORAL

honeyed floral, sweet, fresh, green,

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Mandarin

CITRUS

sweet, juicy, candied fruit, tangy

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Myrrh

AMBER

subtle, warm, buttery, earthy,

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Neroli

FLORAL

soft, sweet, delicate white floral,

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Oakmoss

WOODY

Mossy, damp earth, smoky, leathery,

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Orange

CITRUS

Orange peel, fresh, sweet, tangy

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Orange flower

FLORAL

warm, rich and powerful, sweet,

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Osmanthus

FLORAL

honey, complex, fruity floral, apricot,

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patchouli

WOODY

earthy, musky, dry, green, mossy,

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Peach

FRUITY

peach, sweet, soft, elegant, creamy

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