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Aliénor Massenet

Fragrance Trends: The impact of the mineral

A solid, inorganic and crystallized substance, minerals are derived from a natural geological process. In perfume- making, minerality is a subjective concept because there is no mineral family strictly speaking. With wet and salty facets, mineral notes give perfumers a new way of expressing freshness in their creations. Perfumer Alienor Massenet explains why these notes are so interesting.

Which ingredients from a perfumer’s palette may be used to give a mineral facet to a fragrance?

Mainly ozonic notes, such as Calone for example, with an aqueous and slightly aniseed-scented, marine aroma, suggestive of the seaside, rocks and iodized air. In addition, a perfumer may also use cashmeran for its salty facet, as well as amber notes and fucus absolute which evoke, respectively, bitumen and stone. Menthol is also ideal for recreating icy freshness in a fragrance.

What is the difference between mineral notes and citrus notes?

Although both bring freshness, citrus notes, which are often found in top notes, disappear very rapidly after a few minutes. Mineral notes have the advantage of being longer-lasting, extending their freshness into a fragrance’s heart and drydown notes.

Masculine or feminine ?

Although mineral notes are more frequently found in fragrances for men, they are an interesting choice for women’s compositions. Obviously, here they are used in smaller quantities. If I create a floral fragrance for example, the flower will be dominant, of course, and the mineral note will allow me to add a specific accent and slight twist, giving the scent a certain unique quality.

Symrise raw material with a mineral effect

Although the perfumer’s palette has greatly expanded thanks to a wide variety of synthetic scents that bring mineral notes, the Symrise Fine Fragrance division boasts exclusive raw materials which allow perfumers working in the composition firm to create original and fully unique olfactory partitions.

Belanis ®

A combination of white flowers and jasmine with aniseed facets that accentuates hints of licorice, saffron, basil and opoponax to give a fragrance a light Tuscany freshness.

Symmarine ®

Utterly fresh, Symmarine® adds body to drydown notes while enhancing their diffusion. Intensely wet natural qualities with cold and metallic facets and a light natural ozonic touch.


One of the most successful captives to date that brings to life the forgotten note of ambergris. An incredible dry woody note with unique and contrasting mineral facet.

Aliénor Massenet
Symrise Perfumer

© 2019 - Brazil Beauty News -

about Aliénor Massenet

Aliénor Massenet grew up in a family of artists – her aunt was a painter – and scientists of French and Hungarian origins. Smells have always been part of her life. “I used my smell more than my other senses. It was my main point of reference.” At 12, she liked smelling everything she came across and even had fun guessing the perfumes worn by people on her way to school – like daily challenges. So, one day, when a friend of her mother’s told her about the perfumer’s trade, it sounded obvious. At 17, she worked at Firmenich for a month as a trainee, which confirmed her vocation. However, she decided to please her parents and studied Art History first. Meanwhile, from 1990 to 1992, she attended a part-time perfuming course offered by Monique Schlinger (Cinquième Sens).

After a two-year part-time job at Florasynth, she joined IFF in NYC in 1995 for a six-month internship, during which she assisted Sophia Grojsman and Carlos Benhaïm. This experience eventually lasted six years – enough time for her to live her American dream, enhance her technique and, even better, work on her first major project: Intuition for Men by Estée Lauder, co-signed with Pierre Wargnye. Then, she went back to IFF, this time in Paris, where she worked for 12 years, in particular on the iconic Drakkar Noir fragrance by Guy Laroche, with Pierre Wargnye.

Aliénor joined Symrise in January 2016 as a senior perfumer.

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