Perfumery Terms

What is a Fixative in Perfumery?

A fixative is a base ingredient or blend that is utilized in perfumes to help the scent last longer on the skin. The name refers to “fixing” the aroma so it doesn’t dissipate too quickly. An essential oil in a blend can play the role of a fixative while contributing to the overall scent impression. Fragrance fixatives can also be safe synthetic materials that enhance both initial impression and increase longevity.

In an alcohol-based format like an EDP or EDT, a fixative material helps lower the evaporation rate of the alcohol which helps to hold the scent for a slower release.

Base notes of a fragrance can actually work as fixatives. Sandalwood, oakmoss, and vanilla bean are base note examples that serve as effective fixatives.

High molecular weight substances like Benzyl Benzoate and Triethyl Citrate are near odorless fixatives used in fine fragrance development as they are FDA approved and sustainable.

Whether a specialized synthetic material or an aromatic base note is chosen as a fixative, these materials, which ensure the smell of a perfume remains on the skin for a longer time after the initial application, are key to successful perfume development.

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The Growing Popularity of Unisex Fragrances

Identifying a fragrance as “unisex” is in reference to its targeted appeal to all genders. When it comes to “categorizing” a fragrance as unisex, or for no particular gender, it can be a very subjective evaluation. What connotes a unisex fragrance? What are the qualifications and/or deciding factors in the development process?

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Fragrance Longevity 101

We’ve all experienced or heard others proclaim “I love this perfume but it doesn’t last very long.” What qualifies as “long lasting” in a perfume? What contributes to a perfume's ability to be long lasting or have “wear longevity”? What is the average time a perfume should last on your skin? Fragrance longevity is essentially the length of time the olfactory presence stays detectable on the skin of the wearer. It’s not an easy straightforward time period for all perfumes.

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Why Gourmand Perfumes Are So Universally Appealing

Reference to the term gourmand primarily focuses on a connoisseur of food. A person who enjoys and appreciates good food, good wine and good company with which to enjoy it. So it seems very natural to attach this same appreciation to a gourmand fragrance in the perfume industry. The broad characteristic of a gourmand fragrance or perfume is that it smells edible.

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