What is a Fougère Fragrance?

Fougère means ‘fern-like’ in French and describes one of the main fragrance families. Fragrance families are ‘parent groups’ of scents that have been categorised based on their scent. Generally, fougère scents are very clean and natural smelling and are characterised by a dry, grassy, hay-like dry down. With a scent that’s both woody and fresh, fougère perfumes are very versatile and can be worn on a wide variety of occasions and should definitely be part of a full fragrance wardrobe.

What does a Fougère Fragrance smell like?

fougere fragrances

Fougère is an olfactory family, much like the floral and the chypre categories. Just as many classic chypres represent a feminine strand of perfumery, the fougère traditionally is the basis of many popular masculine fragrances, that come in many guises. The first was Houbigant’s Fougère Royale, which sought to capture the scentless image of ferns in fragrant form. It’s a diverse genre that centres on the interplay of a citrus top note (usually bergamot), an aromatic heart of lavender, and a rosey note, (often embodied by the minty-fresh rosiness of geranium), dark, inky oakmoss, and coumarin, a warm, hay-like material found within tonka beans, first used in the aforementioned Fougère Royale. Together these materials form the backbone of the fougère – the most iconic of masculine fragrance styles.

What products do Fougère Fragrances work best in?

Fougère scents are making a resurgence as consumer demand for stronger, luxurious and more sensual scents take centre stage. Additionally, fougeres will always give an impression of naturality, calmness and in some cases a nostalgia to the past whilst becoming modernised with trending notes such as Leather to give a distinct element in perfume compositions.

These fragrances can work well for the following products:

  • Fine fragrances
  • Personal care products
  • Mens Cologne
  • Mens Personal Care and Moisturisers

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What are popular Fougère Perfumes?

Fougère Royale by Houbigant

Houbigant’s Fougère Royale was the fragrance that birthed the genre. Paul Parquet brought together bergamot, lavender, geranium, oakmoss and coumarin in perfect harmony to form an accord that would change the landscape of masculine perfumery forever. And whilst the original version of Fougère Royale was re-released in 2010 with a slightly different composition, it is still a brilliant example of a fougère fragrance.

sauvage Fragrance oil

Le Male by Jean Paul Gaultier

Le Male was a defining moment for the fougère. Playing up the soft, sweet, powdery and menthol facets of the fougère, Le Male feels both traditionally masculine yet also has unisex appeal with the addition of mint, lavender and sweet vanilla. A reinvention of this old-school perfumery category.

Christian Dior Sauvage

We have travelled a long way from 1882 and Fougère Royale, and it’s no surprise that the latest instalments in the fougere family – the fougère’s of today – have changed in full ‘evolution of man’ style. Fougères are fresher, more transparent and commonly feature an amberwood touch . Take Dior’s Sauvage for example – it has the bright, bergamot top note of a fougere and aromatic lavender, but it adds a spicy touch of pepper alongside a fresh, ambery, mineral element from ambroxan; this style of fougere is clean-cut, effortlessly cool and athletic.

Looking for a Fougère Fragrance to add to your product range?

Creating the right fragrance for your product can be complex. Carvansons help support and advise you on the latest fragrance trends. We help design and develop your unique fragrance that gives a unique identity to your product. Our experienced and dedicated team of fragrance experts can provide a bespoke and tailored service that supports your needs.

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About Carvansons

Carvansons is a world-leading creator and compounder of bulk fragrance oil. We create fragrances for the cosmetic, personal care, household and industrial manufacturing sectors. As a global fragrance manufacturer, we create high-quality fragrance oil compounds, aromas and perfumes with a worldwide presence.

We work with many different companies throughout the world, which include both household names and smaller, niche industries. We are a member of the International Fragrance Association (IFRA)  and comply with all fragrance regulations. Contact us for more information.

*Please note:  The perfumes and products mentioned within this article are purely examples of products that contain particular fragrance notes. These are for reference only. We do not receive any commission for affiliated links/advertising.