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British Family Perfumers Since 1730

The Fougère Fragrance Family

August 13, 2019


The coolness of pine balsam and damp foliage, the air ripe with a pleasant, dewy petrichor; as summer begins to wane, step into the shade and discover the origins of the fougère fragrance family.

Meaning ‘fern’ in French, it is believed that the term ‘fougère’ originated in 1882 with the fragrance ‘Fougère Royale’ created by perfumer Paul Parquet for fragrance house Houbigant. Parquet never claimed that the fougère scent captured the actual smell of a fern, rather saying that, ‘if God gave ferns a scent, they would smell like Fougère Royale’ using his imagination to create a ‘fern-like’ accord by blending together the key notes of lavender, oakmoss and coumarin.

When we think of the scent a fern may give, the mind is cast to emerald carpeted forest floors; the coolness of pine balsam and damp foliage, the air ripe with a pleasant, dewy petrichor. We are eternally fascinated by perfumers ability to use scented ingredients to give a sense of temperature through their creations, and a fougère scent is the epitome of walking into a spot of woodland shade, away from the summer heat.

Cool and reserved, the fougère family is especially popular in fragrances for men. With its multifaceted nature, a variety of notes can be woven around the basic structure of the fougère accord to create an array of different variations. Many modern fougère perfumes have various citrus, herbaceous, green and floral notes included, the most common additions being vetiver and geranium, while bergamot is often present to add sharpness to the lavender top-note.

We currently have two fougère fragrances in the Floris collection, firstly, Santal Eau de Toilette, a woody fougère scent which combines the fougère accord of lavender with warm spices at the heart of the fragrance, with top notes of crisp bergamot and lemon zest. The second is our newest release, Vert Fougère Eau de Parfum, another woody fougère scent that is defined by a juxtaposition between dark green notes and smoky, velvety, woody scent accords, both fresh and warm in equal measure.

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