Fragrance Notes Explained - Top, Middle and Base Notes
Fragrance notes are essentially the different layers of scent that make up the fragrance in your handmade candle and reed diffusers. These scents are analysed into three distinct elements, known as the top, middle and base notes. The combination of these different notes working together in harmony create the beautiful fragrance of your candles or reed diffusers. The word 'Notes’ is used in the fragrance world based on its scent and staying power.
The Top Notes
The top notes of a fragrance are the scents that you will smell first and will last for between 5 to 15 minutes. They are also known as the opening or head notes for this reason. Top notes are the first impression of any fragrance and we all know that making a first impression is important! You will be aware of these top notes as soon as you light a new candle or open a diffuser. Top notes are lighter in smell and tend to be citrusy or soft florals.
Typical top notes fragrances include, citrus oils (orange, lemon, grapefruit), neroli, peppermint and eucalyptus.
The Middle Notes
The middle notes, also known as the heart notes, provide a balance between the top and base notes. The middle notes are at the heart of any fragrance and will be the most prominent aromas you will smell. They last longer than the top notes, 20 to 60 minutes and can make up to between 40-80% of the overall fragrance of your candle or diffuser.
Typical middle notes include geranium, rose, lemongrass, ylang ylang, lavender, coriander, nutmeg, neroli and jasmine.
The Base Notes
The base notes themselves can make up to between 10-25% of the overall fragrance and can last for hours! However, the base notes also blend with the middle notes to deepen the complexity of the fragrance. The base notes are associated with the dry-down period of the fragrance. Base notes are often rich and smooth, as well as being the longest lasting of the three notes.
Typical base notes include cedarwood, sandalwood, vanilla, amber, patchouli, oakmoss and musk.