The much-loved fragrance of citrus is used in over 25% of the composition of perfumes today. Citrus perfume notes offer refreshment and optimism in a scent, primarily providing the rich top notes to strike the wearer first in impact.
Working harmoniously with floral and fruity fragrances, citrus perfume notes balance any fragrance’s sweet and sour elements. Distinguished by a unique zesty freshness, citrus perfume notes are the ideal ingredient in a fragrance for the warmer summer months to brighten anyone’s day.
Some of the most popular citrus fragrances available include CKOne by Calvin Klein, O de Lancome by Lancome and Eau Sauvage by Dior.
This article explores an exotic selection of 15 of the most popular citrus perfume notes in detail.
Perfumes with citrus notes:
The fragrance bergamot is often referred to as the ‘prince of citrus.’ Others describe bergamot as the ‘fine flower’ of the citrus family. This elegant, light fragrance is used in perfumes and the most luxurious candles.
The bergamot aroma is refreshing, unique, and complex, with herbal and floral undertones. Bergamot, a predominantly sweet fragrance fused with aromatic traces of fruit, is often compared to lime fragrances.
Its scent is also slightly acidic and even bitter; only the zest of bergamot is used to create fine fragrances for this reason.
The striking fragrance neroli is referred to as a range of exciting names, including ‘orange oil,’ ‘orange flower water,’ ‘orange blossom water,’ and bitter orange oil.’ Neroli is surprising in its unique complexity of scent, blending honey blossom elements with bitter citrus and deep aromatic honey traces.
Neroli is one of the most popular floral oils to use in perfumery and is often used for aromatherapy purposes as a massage oil. Neroli is most often used as a top note in citrus-based fragrances.
3. Lemon Verbena
The colloquial name for the much-admired and costly lemon verbena fragrance is ‘lemon beebrush.’ This citrus scent offered by the lemon verbena can be observed within a heavy floral blend with an aromatic herbal twist.
The lemon verbena fragrance is characterized by a clean and fresh feel. The pure oil created by the verbena plant is usually yellow or green and produces a sharp citrus scent. Surprisingly, lemon verbena is not actually a citrus fruit but is instead an aromatic plant.
The cheerful scent of lemon is a vibrant, light fragrance reminiscent of summer. With unmistakable undertones of sweet and sour, lemon is one of the most popular citrus scents used in the perfume industry.
The dynamic and acidic qualities of the lemon fragrance make this a hugely uplifting fragrance. The aroma of lemon is also widely used for aromatherapy purposes and works to make the body and mind feel stimulated and energized. The scent of lemon is present in many perfumes and usually marries well with floral notes.
Yuzu is another highly complex fragrance derived from a small Japanese lemon and is observed to have fascinating healing properties. The sweet and fresh scent of yuzu is layered, as though created from a blend of different citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits.
Yuzu works harmoniously with a range of other citrus fragrances, such as orange zest and lemongrass. The unique aroma of yuzu is said to ease tension and create a relaxing atmosphere.
Yuzu is a popular perfume ingredient because the distinctive fragrance works to prolong the longevity of other citrus notes in a fragrance.
The complex citrus fragrance lemongrass has a range of curious names, including ‘fever grass,’ ‘tanglad,’ ‘silky heads,’ and ‘barbed wire grass.’ The fragrance of lemongrass is intense in aromatic qualities.
The lemongrass fragrance is sharp and fresh with an unexpected twist of ginger. The earthy undertones of lemongrass make this fragrance long-lasting and resounding in impact.
This well-balanced fragrance instills energy and positivity, making it a popular ingredient in summer fragrances. Furthermore, lemongrass often provides a top or middle note in fragrance production.
7. Blood Orange
The rich fragrance of blood orange is sweet and intoxicating with the unmistakable characteristics of an orange. The ‘blood’ in the name of this fragrance refers to the tart fruit of the Citrus sinensis orange, which grows in abundance in Italy.
The warm notes of the blood orange fragrance are warm and reminiscent of berries, complimenting other citrus fragrances, such as neroli and grapefruit.
Due to the strength of the blood orange fragrance, it can be used sparingly in combination with other citrus fragrances for a strong, vibrant effect. Blood orange is the perfect fragrance injection for any summer party or event.
The warm and cheerful scent of orange is not only a popular, long-lasting and traditional scent, but it is also symbolic of innocence, fertility, and purity.
Orange is usually used as a top note in perfume and works well with other warm fragrances such as juniper, lavender, cedarwood, clove, and other citrus-based notes.
The sweet and distinctive fragrance of orange can be compared to mandarin and pomelo fragrances. The orange aroma is similar to neroli in terms of the honey elements in the scent but has deeper floral notes.
The fragrance of lime is a refreshing, lively scent with energizing and uplifting qualities and is a bold choice of scent. Lime is striking and sharp in a similar fashion to the scent of lemon but is sweeter and dryer in fragrance.
Due to the vibrancy and intensity of this citrus scent, lime is used as a top note in perfumes to energize the senses. Lime works best in combination with other citrus fragrances, as well as floral notes such as rose and lily.
Adding lime to a bouquet can provide an ingredient of clarity, enhancing the fullness of the flavor. Lime is definitely a perfect choice of citrus note for making an impact in fragrance.
The affectionate name of the clementine is a ‘Christmas mandarin,’ a juicy type of mandarin orange producing a sweet and crisp citrus scent. The sweetness found in a clementine fragrance is similar to that of tangerine but possesses more floral depth in flavor.
The aroma of clementine invokes a mood of joy and optimism and is symbolic of good luck and good fortune. The citrus note of clementine can be used in a fragrance to ‘lift’ the scent and bring lightness to any heavier notes.
The clementine fragrance works beautifully in cohesion with spiced scents such as nutmeg, clove, and cinnamon.
The lively and light fragrance of crisp citrus notes is highly popular with men and women and makes a perfect summer fragrance for any fragrance fan.
When used in combination with fragrance ingredients such as lime, orange, and neroli, the citruses create a sharp and intense aroma.
While lacking longevity, the initial impact of the citruses fragrance is high in impact due to the sharpness of the zingy tones of this fragrance. The rich, powerful scent of citruses is used to give a dry edge as a top note to fragrances.
The potent blend of sweet and sour is a defining characteristic in the kumquat fragrance, derived from the small citrus kumquat fruit native to South Asia. While predominantly offering a lemon scent, the kumquat also produces distinctive scents of floral fruit and pine.
Compared to the fragrance of orange, kumquat is deeper in complexity and layers. The aroma is extracted from the rind of the fruit and the white flowers to produce an intense scent.
13. Lemon Tree
Another name for the unique lemon tree fragrance is ‘lemonwood.’ This intriguing scent evokes the fragrance of floral lemon blossoms, merged with crushed green leaves, revolving around the prowess of the lemon tree.
The fragrance of the lemon tree is fresh and light, stirring thoughts of summer and the sea. This softer citrus scent is intended to smell like lemons fallen or plucked from the tree.
Unlike other citrus notes, the lemon tree fragrance is far more intense in aromatic qualities than offering sharpness and sweetness.
The rich and exotic fragrance of limetta is also known as ‘sweet limetta,’ ‘sweet lemon,’ ‘sweet lime,’ and ‘mousambi.’ Limetta has many similarities to the vibrancy of lime fragrance but is perhaps sweeter and more delicate in citrus qualities.
Limetta is described to possess the sweetness of pure honey without any trace of acidity. Interestingly, the limetta is one of the oldest cultivated varieties of lemon fruit. If used in abundance, limetta can produce hints of jasmine within the layers of its scent.
The word ‘citron’ is a French word simply meaning ‘lemon.’ The citrus fruit is derived from a cedar tree, mainly found in Mediterranean countries.
Citron is most often used as a top note within perfumes to allow the initially strong fragrance to fade into a more long-lasting scent. The stand-out feature of the aroma of citron is warmth, reminiscent of a tropical glow.
As well as being widely used in home fragrances and candles, the intense scent of citron has a powerful medicinal quality.