Fragrance industry uses, fragrance pyramid, made up of three different notes (no, not the musical notes) to create perfumes.
Also referred to as “Head notes”; this is the first whiff of smell you get when you open a perfume bottle, generally it is very strong. This makes the first impression of a perfume you are trying to buy but it lasts only for a short while, about 15 min. For manufacturers this is very important in selling their perfume. Citrus or ginger are commonly used for top notes.
Once the top note evaporates, the middle notes take over and they last for about 30 min. These are more subtle, but form the core of a perfume. Flowers such as rose or lavender are typically used for middle notes. They are also called as “Heart notes”.
These make their entrance as the middle notes are getting dissipated. Generally these can’t be perceived for about an hour after application, but they do last a long time. Some of the base notes, particularly based on animal scents last over 24 hours after initial application. These tend to evaporate more slowly hence they last longer.
Is there a difference between a perfume and cologne?
Yes, the key differentiating factor between a perfume and cologne is the amount of essential oils present in them. Perfumes are typically made of higher concentration of essential oils, whereas colognes have lower amount of essential oils.
Perfumes have between 15% to 30% of essential oils
Colognes have between 3% to 8% of essential oils