Ingredients in Perfume – Breaking Down Compositions One Scent at a Time
There are over 300 ingredients in perfume I’ve selected for this post. They make up fragrances as we know they today.
Ingredients of perfume are diverse and they range from organic compounds on synthetic budget-friendly and environmentally-friendly alternatives.
If you’re interested in these ingredients for perfume making, feel free to come back to this post as I’ll update the list as I encounter these aromas in perfumes.
Made from fermentative bacteria, it is a perfume ingredient which adds buttery-caramel flavor to the composition.
Also called French tuberose, the ingredient is used on its own or in combination with floral ingredients such as orange blossom and iris.
A type of aldehyde with greenness and muskiness.
Natural compounds which can be synthetized in artificial alternatives.
A warm note with heaviness with resinous character.
Used to tie ingredients, it adds longevity to perfumes. Today, the fixative is replaced by synthetic ambroxan.
It is am ambergris extract responsible for the aphrodisiac effects of the sperm whale digestive system sperm whale.
Essential oil derived from ambrette seeds.
Also called ambroxide, it’s an ingredient extracted from ambergris and it is used to isolate its odor.
A compound that has the smell of an odor.
A white woody note used as a cheap sandalwood alternative.
Aromatic herb perfume ingredient.
Balm of Gilead
Balm extract from terebinth trees.
Balsam of Peru
Sweet scent originating in El Salvador. It has an allergenic profile.
An Indian resin extract from trees. It’s also known under the name of myrrh.
The wax of bees.
Bitter almond ingredient from almonds.
Resin obtained from the bark of trees such as Styrax.
Fruity strawberries extract.
Solvent with an aromatic odor with a clear profile.
Fixative ingredient in perfumery.
Fixative mainly used in oriental fragrances.
Floral ingredient from cocoa.
A citrusy opening note, popular in summer perfumes.
Woody green smell with pine aroma.
Characterized by a weak floral aroma from German chamomile.
Floral green with aldehydic nuances, similar to Lily of the Valley.
Derived from algae, the ingredient is used in fragrances to offer a marine and aldehyde effect.
Synthetic compound made from alpha-pinene.
Camphor scent from Camphor laurel.
Earthy nutty scent with sweetness sourced from cardamom seeds.
Caraway scent from spearmint.
Musk indanone chemical fragrance ingredient.
A Castor beaver secretion with musk-leather heaviness.
The aromatic compound is extracted from anise or gardenia.
Sweet, spicy, and green, and powdery, is mainly made from cinnamaldehyde.
Lemon extract from lemon myrtle or lemongrass.
The zest from a lemon tree, used in perfume opening notes.
Lemon citrusy scent from lemongrass or rose.
Glandular secretion from African civet.
Civetone is its safe Civet synthetic alternative (Civet is linked to SARS in the US).
Bittersweet aroma with amber and hay nuances.
Vanilla-like aroma derived from tonka bean ingredients.
Organic compound cyclic ketone.
Synthetic musk used in perfumery.
Green water herb.
Rose ketone chemicals.
Low concentration rose synthetic perfume ingredient.
Persistent smell derived from musk deer caudal glands.
Ester naturally sourced from grapes or strawberries.
A type of alcohol usually made from corn starch.
Tarragon perfume ingredient.
Sweet solvent derived from wine.
Sweet scent with a medicinal influence.
Fruity ingredient derived from orange and pineapple.
Dried fruit scent with a caramelized sugary scent.
Clove profile made from cloves.
Complex green apple scent.
The ingredient emphasizes sweet floral accords.
Equalizes vapor pressure in perfume-making.
Blended natural or synthetic aroma oils.
A floral aroma called the Jasmine of India.
Aromatic gum resin specific to Arabia similar to myrrh.
Synthetic musk odor.
A type of resin with an atypical plant-based smell.
Gardenia (tiare) petals macerated in coconut oil. Sometimes called Monoi de Tahiti.
Rose-like scent. Rosy smell from geranium or lemon.
Fruity floral ingredient from roses.
A perfume made from edible ingredients such as honey and chocolate.
Synthetic grapefruit aroma.
Resin extracts from the South American Guaiac tree.
A perfumery scent characterized by a mellow jasmine smell.
Floral scent with sweetness and vanilla-like nuances.
Fruit essence flavor.
Aqueos products or floral waters.
Floral fruity profile made from apple and plum extract.
Chamomile essential oil.
Citrus and melon aroma.
Soapy scent also known as Lyral.
Urine and feces excreted from Cape hyra.
Synthetic perfume ingredient with a floral profile.
Low concentration roses ingredient.
Sweet floral iris.
Iso E Super
A woody amber with velvet undertones made chemically.
Fruity perfume ingredient of perfumes made from banana or pear extract.
Synthetic oil with sandalwood aroma.
Inhibits aldehyde oxidation.
A floral note found in men’s and women’s perfumes.
Spicy floral scent with fruitiness from jasmine or honeysuckle.
The main ingredient in amber perfumes with some resembled to ambergris.
Lily of the Valley
Lime blossom – linden
Citrusy scent extracted from orange or lemon.
Floral sweet scent with woodiness extracted from coriander, lavender, honeysuckle, or sweet basil.
Menthol mint scent from mentha extract.
Sweet solvent, normally used in nail polish.
Fruity grape extract.
Sweet scent with the fruit of the feijoa tree.
Fruity ingredient normally extracted from apple or pineapple.
Colorless solvent from organic compounds.
Colorless ingredient from pivalic acid.
Methyl propionate (propanoate)
Sweet ingredient with a fruity-rum aroma.
A gardenia scent with coconut oil additions.
Lily of the Water in France made with synthetic ingredients.
Organic compound in natural musk.
Deer musk gland extracts with an initial natural source which then turned towards synthetic alternatives.
Synthetic cologne ingredient that mimics natural musk.
Semi-synthetic ingredient from myrcia.
Sandalwood combined with champark or frangipani.
White flowers aroma dating back to the early days of perfumery.
Himalayan flower extract also called muskroot.
A sweet juicy fruity aroma.
Sweet rose flowery scent made from neroli and lemongrass.
Fresh bark aroma made from neroli, ginger, or jasmine.
Extracts from tree lichen with oriental opening and earthy drydown.
Fruity floral ingredient from mango or curcuma.
Fruity orange extract.
An oily extract from olives.
An iris plant extract
A flowering tree from China, with a mild apricot-like sweetness and juiciness.
Agarwood resin extract from the tree of Agar. It’s specific to oriental perfumes and it’s also very expensive to source.
Small bushy white-pink flower with mustiness, sweetness, and spiciness from Malaysia or India.
Aromatic or odorless African flower.
Fruity profile, extracted from pear and apricot.
Fruity sweet profile made from apples.
Perilla organic compound.
Double bound isomers.
Warm floral odor.
Fruity rose odor.
Flavoring agents similar to pennyroyal, peppermint and camphor.
Natural compound with red raspberries aroma.
Ambery natural compounds sourced from trees and plants.
Alcohol mixtures made from geranium or citronella.
A seductive rose petal extract with intense aroma made through distillation or other extractive methods. Various types of roses are used in perfumes.
Rose de Mai
Rose essential oil also called rose absolute.
Fruity, medicinal, glue-like Phenethyl alcohol from rum.
Candyshop perfume and food aroma.
Synthetic sandalwood aroma.
Soft and warm wood scent.
Fecal ingredient diluted in orange blossom.
Mint profile ingredient of perfumes extracted from wormwood or lilac.
Thyme perfume ingredient.
Vanilla base notes with cinnamon, almonds, and cloves originating in Brazilian trees.
A highly aromatic white flower ingredient.
Vanilla orchid seed pods extract high in sweetness and ever-growing price.
A type of fibrous grass with earthy-leather undertones which is mainly used as a base note either by itself or in a composition with other long-lasting accords.
Various scents depending on the species ranging from musky to sweet.
Savory herb often compared to cooking herbs.
Heavy sweet-floral scent used to add nuances to perfumes.
An interesting smell compared to combinations of grapefruit and orange.
Sandalwood oil (55%) + santalol.
Also called Olibanum
Balsam of Capaiba
Santal oil (20%).
Tincture of benzoin
West Indian bay