Fragrances of the World ©

Fragrances of the World ©

Michael Edwards

Fragrance Families



Fragrances of the World, is a concept Michael Edwards has created which categorises perfumes within a fragrance family on the Fragrance Wheel below.

“Fragrance expert, author and erudite industry ambassador Michael Edwards has made many significant contributions to the fragrance industry over the past three decades.  From the Fragrances of the World guidebook (known as “The Fragrance Bible”) to the unique encyclopaedia online database, to the industry respected Fragrance Wheel – he offers such a wealthy source of information that the fragrance industry did not hesitate to recognise him twice with a highly prestigious FiFi award.” (

Each of the 14 fragrance families is placed within Floral, Oriental, Woody or Fresh Notes.

The fragrance families below have been adapted by Michael Edwards Fragrances of the World 2017.

Michael Edwards © 2017.

Floral Notes



Floral is the most common fragrance family used in perfumes. Like a fresh, sweet, bouquet of flowers of rose, gardenia, violet, lily of the valley, orange blossom, lilac, jasmine, tuberose, and ylang-ylang. Floral perfumes can be a single floral note to a range of heady bouquets.


Soft Floral
The Soft floral fragrance family, are floral notes which are given a soft, powdery note of vanilla, iris or musk. Aldehydes found naturally in citrus oils and rose, are added to create this affect and makes the florals more lively.



Oriental Notes

Floral Oriental


The Floral Oriental fragrance family notes are amazingly soft, spicy, orange flowers which pungent aldehydes are added to, to give it a scent of fruity, gentle oriental floral warmness.


Soft Oriental


The Soft Oriental fragrance family gets its name from adding amber and spices to the Floral family. This then gives Soft Oriental perfume a soft but spicy scent, which is not as strong as the Oriental fragrance family.




Oriental fragrances are amazingly warm, exotic, sensual, heavy, intense, dramatic and floral. This fragrance family includes vanilla, exotic flowers, amber and spices. It’s top notes are citrus with floral middle notes and base notes of vanilla, amber, wood, frankincense and myrrh.


Woody Oriental


The Woody Oriental fragrance family consists of sandalwood and patchouli with added flowers and spices. Just like Floral Orientals, the wood fragrance gives it emphasis and sophistication.


Woody Notes



The Wood fragrance family is one of experimentation with technology and synthetic materials. This is why it is different to the Mossy Woods fragrance families. Wood consists of rosewood, sandalwood, patchouli, pine, cedar, vetiver, and new sheer and exotic synthetic woods.


Mossy Woods


Mossy Woods consists of the chypre fragrance family with oakmoss and amber. All the wonderful things you can smell deep in a forest.


Dry Woods


Dry Woods are often called leather and/or tobacco. They are dry, burnt, animal, smokey scents to a mossy woods fragrance. Citrus as a top note to this fragrance family lightens up the darker middle and bottom notes and a green or floral notes intensifies the deep dry, burnt scents.


Fresh Notes



Aromatic, also known as the Fougere (fern in French) fragrance family, is a beautiful blend of geranium, oak moss, coumarin and lavender.  It is a combination of citrus, floral, oriental and woody families.  Aromatic compliments perfumes because it gives a freshness, energy, masculine but also sweet smelling scent for females.




The Citrus family is very fresh, light and clean. Citrus fruits are uses, such as lemon, grapefruit, lime, tangerine and orange, to name but a few. They are very popular as top notes because the fragrance does not last as long as the other fragrance families. But when you add herbs, floral, woods and spices, it gives a longer lasting, refreshing fragrance that gives the wearer a sense of cleanliness and re-freshness.


Water is the newest fragrance family because the perfume is of synthetic materials that smell of the sea breezes, rivers, streams, just-washed linen, fresh mountain air, waterfalls and the smell of the wet air after a thunderstorm.  Water is usually the top and middle notes of a perfume and brighten other fragrance families such as Woods, Florals and Orientals.



The Green fragrance family scents are the smells of our green outdoor environment such as, leaves, cut grass, fresh herbs, moss in a rainforest, meadows, etc. They are sharp, fresh and crisp with dominant notes of fir, pin, juniper and herbs.






The Fruit fragrance family is fresh and clean, smooth and warm, and invigorates the floral and green family perfumes. Fruits such as peach, berries, apricot, pineapple, pear and plum are added to the Floral family to give it a delicious scent.


Michael Edwards Fragrances of the World © 2017.