Leather fragrance notes in perfumery have been around for thousands of years.

This ancient and much-loved scent is once again being reinvented. The last few years have seen a re-emergence of leather notes within fragrance creation, which looks set to continue into the new year and beyond.

So, let’s take a look at the history of Leather fragrance notes and why we think leather will continue to be a hot trend for 2022.

The History of Leather Fragrance

Leather glovesLeather fragrances are one of the most intriguing fragrances in perfumery. The link between leather and perfume dates back to 2000 BC. But the associated scent has more to do with the curing of the hide as opposed to the leather hide itself.

In Asia, perfumes were created by rubbing the leather with the leaves from kumquat tress. Whereas the Italians perfumed their leather products with essential oils.

Leather has been made in Italy for thousands of years and Naples is the home of the leather glove industry. At the end of the 15th century, the Marquis Pompéo Frangipani invented an almond-based fragrance to hide the strong smell of leather gloves. Thus was born the idea to perfume his gloves.

Historically, Leathers were steeped in urine to remove hair from the hide. Wildflowers were added to help mask the smell and make the leather goods smell more appealing.

What does a Leather Fragrance smell like?

Leathery notes can differ vastly from one another; ranging from smoky, woody and floral to tobacco scents. Perfumers today have a range of synthetic chemicals that are able to create a natural leather odour. Previously, these scents were based around birch tar oil which, whilst being powerful, had an overpowering phenolic tone of tar, charred wood and smoke.

When blended with different elements, however, leather can assume either a lighter, gentle and more delicate feminine guise or deeper, stronger, dominating masculine accent. This all depends upon how the scents are blended.

More recently perfumers have adopted the lighter fragrances notes of suede into their scents. Suede is the leather from the underside of the animal skin, giving it a soft surface. Warm woods, rich ambers and bittersweet almond notes are blended to create the sensation of softer suede. This synthetic note replicates the soft, pliable, sensuous feel of suede on the skin. As a result, it offers a softer and powderier element to the fragrance.

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What products does a Leather Fragrance work best in?

leather fragrances

Leather scents are making a resurgence as consumer demand for stronger, luxurious and more sensual scents take centre stage. Leather is a distinct element in perfume compositions, revealing itself as a silky and velvety facet.

These fragrances can work well for the following products:

  • Fine fragrances
  • Personal care products
  • Mens cologne
  • Mens personal care and moisturisers

 Some of our favourite leather perfumes include*:

Ombre Leather Parfum Tom Ford

Launched in 2021, this unisex fragrance has quickly become a favourite for many. This potent blend of violet leaf and cedar top notes, combined with heart notes of jasmine and base notes of leather, is often described as that “new car smell”.

Acqua Di Parma Leather

Leather by Acqua di Parma is a potent leather fragrance that features fresh citrus with a luxurious woody-leather base. Brazilian orange, lemon and raspberries and aromatic tones of petitgrain, rose, honeysuckle and thyme complement the base of leather, cedar and oud wood.

Byredo Bibliothèque

A spray of Byredo’s Bibliothèque instantly conjures images of leather-bound books arranged on shelves. Notes of peach and plum combine with leather in a rich and comforting scent for both men and women.

Ocean Leather Memo Paris

Another unisex leather fragrance, proving that leather scents aren’t just for the men. This fragrance is a heady brew of mandarin orange, basil and violet with base notes are vetiver, leather and nutmeg.

Thinking of adding a Leather Fragrance to your products?

A leather accord in a perfume creates a unique touch to any fragrance and evokes a wide range of experiences ranging from dark, deep leather to softer and velvety suede. Its unisex appeal is one of the key reasons we think this will continue to be a regularly requested fragrance note for 2022 and beyond.

What next?

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.

Contact us now.

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 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.