Explaining The Fragrance Oil Triangle

Fragrance Oil Triangle


The layers of a fragrance oil consist of three parts, often referred to as the fragrance triangle (or fragrance pyramid). These three parts each have their own significance in the makeup of a fragrance oil. However, what are these parts? What role does each layer play in the overall fragrance composition ? Let’s explore the fragrance triangle to better understand.

The first part of the fragrance triangle are the top notes. The top notes provide that initial spark or burst of fragrance and provide the most impact. The top notes evaporate quickly making way for the middle notes of a fragrance to be realized. The top notes of a fragrance are usually comprised of citrus notes or light aromatic chemical esters.

The center of the triangle is commonly referred to as the heart of a fragrance or its middle or “heart” notes. Middle notes represent the scents truest nature and form the fragrance signature itself. The middle notes are evident for the life of the fragrance. Typical heart notes quite often contain spice notes, fruity notes and floral notes.

Then, we have the third level of the fragrance triangle, which is referred to as the “base” notes. The base notes support the top and middle notes and give the fragrance depth. These are the longest lasting notes of a fragrance and remain long after the top and middle notes have evaporated. Although they are the longest lasting in the fragrance triangle, they are designed to support the depth of the fragrance and not overpower it. Common base notes often include woods, musk, resins or vanillas.

Most of us don’t realize how much “science” is involved in a fragrance or how the different notes roles affect the finished fragrance. Understanding the fragrance triangle can help us all appreciate our favorite fragrances.


Dawn Turner, currently resides in a small town in central Wisconsin and is the proud mom of two. She is an expert in fragrance and owns Indigo Fragrance sells quality fragrance oils and supplies. Dawn, a self professed scent junkie, loves to travel with her husband, ride ATVs, listen to music and eat vast amounts of chocolate.


Please feel free to reprint this article with By Line and author profile in tact and all links live and clickable. Copyright is reserved by author.


Back to Articles