The Headspace Approach

To answer the enquiry about the fragrance of muguet (lily of the valley), it would be most appropriate to use headspace analysis. Some natural materials, especially flowers and fruits, are often not available in sufficient quantity for even a laboratory extraction, while others yield an extract that does not reflect the fragrance of the flower. […]

The Traditional Approach

The traditional method of essential oil analysis is to extract the plant material by steam distillation or with solvent and then fractionally distil the oil or extract and isolate individual components by chromato­graphic techniques for subsequent identification by spectroscopic methods. At each step the odour of the fractions and isolates is assessed and those with […]


The analysis of natural products is a well-established part of the fragrance industry. Historically, essential oil analysis has provided the creative perfumer with the information required to reconstitute the characteristic odour of an oil at a lower cost and has led to the identification of the key components responsible for the odour. An essential oil […]

Natural Product Analysis in the. Fragrance Industry

ROBIN CLERY INTRODUCTION In this chapter we follow the analytical work that might be carried out on some natural products to answer a typical enquiry from creative perfumery. In the second section we explore the different analytical techniques used in the fragrance industry, concentrating on their application to natural product analysis and the way in […]


We have touched briefly on how reduced vapour pressures can lead to reduced rates of evaporation. This means that physicochemical proper­ties not only influence perfume volatility per se but also affect other aspects of fragrance behaviour, such as substantivity and retention. These terms are used within the industry to denote perfume longevity in use, usually […]


Mass alone is not the only determinant of volatility. Thus, benzalde — hyde has an RMM of 106, close to that of methyl butanoate, but its boiling point is substantially higher (by 76 °С). Other factors are evidently important, and it becomes useful to deal with the set of molecular properties which collectively contribute to […]


The term ‘volatility’ is usually taken to refer to the speed at which a material evaporates. It is not an exactly defined property, and no universally accepted standards are laid down within the scientific literature. As implied above, the ‘dry-down’ or evaporation behaviour of even an unsophisticated perfume on a simple solid substrate, such as […]

Volatility and Substantivity

KEITH D. PERRING PERFUME CREATION AND PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY The perception of a perfume depends, in the first place, upon the presence of odorant molecules in the air, and upon their nature and concentration. Most perfume starts off life as a liquid comprising a wide variety of molecules and of a known composition. In general, perfumers […]

Natural Ingredients

From a recent trend in product labelling and advertising in which ‘naturalness’ is extolled as a virtue, it may be concluded that natural materials are safer than synthetic ingredients. This is obviously a false conclusion, as reference to Table 10.1 shows a number of natural materials that are banned or restricted by IFRA. Both hemlock […]


In some instances, it is not the material as applied to the skin that causes the allergic reaction, but a combination of the material and exposure to sunlight. In the late 1970s, the cause of an unusual number of cases of dermatitis in people using a sunscreen preparation was traced to the presence of 6-methylcoumarin, […]