66Day 6 – Synthetic aroma molecules

Natural extractions from plants like essential oils and absolute contain sometimes over 100 different aroma molecules, sometime making them mini perfumes within themselves. The natural smell of a Rose is perhaps one of the most complex made up of well over a hundred different “known” aroma molecules.

The other half of the perfumer’s toolkit is the world of synthetic aroma molecules. Singular molecules obtained by isolation from a natural material (like the molecule Eugenol isolated from Clove), or by chemical reaction in the laboratory creating something not found in plants. Since the turn of the last century the number of both natural and synthetic materials used in perfume has grown exponentially. There are now many more synthetics than there are naturals.  Synthetics are often less expensive and more stable, and this is couple of reasons why they make up most of the perfumes we buy today.

Jean Claude Ellena, a “nose” I admire, puts it this way. “How many times have I heard someone say:’Your perfumes only have flowers and natural products in them, don’t they, nothing artificial?’ A question to which I invariably reply that I use just as many artificial products as natural ones, and that without artificial products I would not be able to create perfumes. It was the chemistry of perfume that allowed the artisans of perfumery, towards the end of the nineteenth century, to become artists by freeing themselves from the constraints of nature.”

So onward to the aroma molecules….

We begin with again a thorough discussion and smelling of each aroma molecule.
LINAYL ACETATE fresher than Linalool, tea, spicy bergamot, VANILLIN characteristic vanilla smell, soft, warm, powdery so pervasive today in best sellers like ANGEL with its overdose of vanilla. ABROXAN made by Fermenich, one of the few major aroma synthetic producers. It is fresh and ambery warm like natural cistus labdanum. CINNAMIC Alcohol
spicy cinnamon, almond, a middle note that always warms in formulation and a must in a lilac and lily of the valley reconstitution (two flowers , out of many, you cannot extract the essence out of). ANETHOL which is strong aniseed/star anise and warm. GALAXOLIDE created by IFF, another of those huge companies with it’s magical musk. Strong and rich and not so animalic and wonderfully floral. PHENYL ETHYL ALCOHOL (PEA for short in the biz) which is amazingly rosy, green, honey like, peony, lily of the valley, lilac. LINALOOL which is warm Citrus, lemony and is a mojor constituent of  Bergamot along with Linalyl Acetate. EUGENOL isolate from clove. BENZYL Acetate fruity(pear, apple, banana), CEDRYL ACETATE a summary of cedar wood, incense like, perhaps a little smoky. MENTHOL CRYSTAL minty, fresh, cooling, toothpaste aspect. CITRAL (isolate)
more citric, lemon verbena, sweet and Aldehyde C10 with its citrus lift that can boost, floral or citrus found in Chanel 5, Miss Dior. Onto Iso-Amyl Acetate that is fruity and banana like. TERPENYL ACETATE, aromatic and fresh, bergamot like, close to Lynalyl acetate. VETIVERYL ACETATE (isolate) a wonderful replacer that is a summary of vetiver
use in Chypre, Fougere, eau de cologne. METHY ANTHRANILATE giving a nice honysuckle, orangey lift after maceration. ANISIC ALDEHYDE an anise / almond , warm balsam, which will warm and last. PHENYLACETIC ALDEHYDE amazingly green floral, honey suckle.

We break work for a small discussion of the top five European perfumes sold this year. Women’s are J’adore by Dior,  Lavie est Belle by Lancome, La Petite robe noir by Guerlain, Coco by Chanel and, if you can believe it, Angel by Theiry Mugler. For the men’s perfumes it is  One Million by Paco Rebanne, Homme by Dior, Le Male by J.P. Gaultier, Bleu by Chanel,  and  Terre d’Hermes by Jean Claude Ellena.

We break for lunch.

After lunch we start with comparisons to see if we can find which is which; Linalyl Acetate and Linalool, Cedryl Acetate and Vetiveryl Acetate, Anethol and Anisic Aldehyde.

We move on to more learning of individual malecules. ALDEHYDE C14 (Peach) which is found in overdose in Tresor by Lancome. HELIOTROPIN a base that can be used as a part to reconstitute Lilac. AMYL SALICYLATE used in men’s Fougere ( a fresh soapy addition). ISOEUGENOL spicy, warmer that eugenol, woody and close to carnation. TERPINEOL which must be used to reconstitute lilac. Used a lot in household products and dry out to a chlorine. MUSK T which is a fine musk, soft and dry. HEXYLCINNAMIC ALDEHYDE
jasmine, fresh, green. CALONE (Pfizer) which is very popular because of its fresh amber, ozone, and marine aspects. GERANIOL beautiful rose, lemony and fresh. CIS-3-HEXENYL ACETATE that has a green cut grass, green apple aspect that is like mowing the lawn on a summer day.
A few more like HYDROXY CITRONELLAL Floral Warm, Rosey, Muguet, a must for Lily of the Valley reconstitution. Used in Diorissimo by DIOR, ALDEHYDE C16 (Strawberry)
fermented Strawberry, marmalade on the smelling strip. EVERNYL  oakmoss replacer, with warm cedarwood aspects and a good fixative. Wonderful for Chypre and Fougere to fix. COUMARINE; a replacement for the Tonka Bean absolute and DIHYDROMYRCENOL which is a synthetic bergamot, citrusy, found in overdoes in Drakkar Noir by Guy Laroche.

End of the day… nose very tired. :o)

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