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Parfum aux notes de cèdre et de vétiver de 30ml de face

Explore Fragrances in Three Steps.

Like a song, every perfume is built around notes that are divided into three distinct categories. Together, they form a fragrance pyramid that schematizes the evolution of the perfume over time. These three notes reveal the character, identity, depth and persistence of a perfume. Learn how to discover them.

Summary
Published February 29, 2024, by Sandrine, Scientific Editor — 3 min read

The Olfactory Pyramid in 3 Steps

When a perfume is applied, the scent develops. This evolution depends on the elements that make up the perfume. Depending on their persistence or fleetingness, the notes do not unfold in the same way. The fleetingness of these elements is a result of their molecular weight. Light molecules evaporate quickly, while heavier molecules tend to stay on the skin and clothing. This is why we can give a detailed analysis:

  1. Top notes:

    At the top of the pyramid are the top notes. They correspond to the most fleeting molecules, so they are the first to evaporate. They are often fresh and volatile notes, such as citrus (lemon, bergamot, orange, etc.). They thus form the first olfactory impression of a perfume. These volatile fragrances do not last more than an hour.

  2. Heart notes:

    In the second section of the pyramid are the heart notes. They correspond to floral, powdery or fruity notes. They determine the olfactory signature of a perfume and appear when the light elements have evaporated, spreading for a few hours.

  3. Base notes:

    The base notes are the last to unfold. They are woody, leather, musk or amber notes. The main ingredients in this category are amber, vanilla, fragrant woods or moss. They are more persistent and stay longer on the skin. This is due to the fact that some of them are historically based on molecules from the animal kingdom that allow them to permanently mark their territory, such as musk, which is extracted from the civet cat and is now replaced by a synthetic product. In a perfume, these notes correspond to the olfactory mark on a scarf, which can still be smelled after a few days. They therefore convey the idea of attachment and fidelity.

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