Oakmoss

lat. K9ngdom Plantae, division Bryophyta
Other names: Mousse de Chene, treemoss

Group: Woods and Mosses

Oakmoss K9ngdom Plantae, division Bryophyta
Oakmoss K9ngdom Plantae, division Bryophyta
Oakmoss K9ngdom Plantae, division Bryophyta
Odor profile: An inky, bitter-smelling forest floor evocative, prized essence coming from the lichen that grows on oak trees in Europe (harvested in the Balkans). Nowadays severely restricted under skin sensitization concerns, it is nevertheless an essential part of chypre fragrances and fougère fragrances.

 


Oakmoss, also known as Evernia prunastri, is a species of lichen, a fungus found in mountainous temperate forests all around the Northern Hemisphere. As its name already suggests, oakmoss grows commonly on the branches and trunks of oak trees, even though it may also be found on other deciduous trees and conifers. This bushy lichen is very short, flat and has a strap-like thallus that somewhat resembles the shape of deer antlers. Oamkoss varies in color, being minty green or almost white when dry, or dark-olive green and even yellowish when wet.

Oakmoss is one of the most commonly used raw materials, especially in chypre and Fougère types of perfumes. Often used as a fixative, it not only improves the longevity of the composition but also lends a delicate forest-like, rich and earthy aroma to the fragrant composition, leaving a natural, damp and creamy soft trail. This raw material is usually commercially grown in South-Central Europe and exported to Grasse in France, where the majority of the perfumery houses are situated. Oakmoss absolutes and extracts, derived from the lichen, have a distinctively woody, sharp and very sensual aroma that combines very well with floral and green notes, and makes a great addition to oriental type fragrances. A special type of oakmoss which grows on pine trees has a slightly different, turpentine-like smell, which makes it highly valued among perfumers.

Oakmoss absolute can be obtained by solvent extraction or by using vacuum distillation. The one obtained by solvent extraction is dark green or even brown in color and has a strong, natural, earthy-mossy scent with a slight leather undertone. The process of vacuum distillation gives a pale yellow or green aromatic material with a very dry, earthy and bark-like flavor.
 

For many years, oakmoss has been known as a potent dermal sensitizer that should be used with extreme caution in order to prevent adverse dermatological reactions. However, it has become very controversial in recent times, since the IFRA, a body that regulates the guidelines for safe usage of fragrant chemicals and essential oils in perfumes, has listed oakmoss as a restricted ingredient. IFRA regulations state that oak moss extracts obtained from Evernia prunastri should not be used in consumer products if their quantity exceeds 0.1%. Moreover, if the formula already contains tree moss extracts, the levels of oakmoss and tree moss extracts should be reduced in such a way that the total amount of both extracts doesn't exceed 0.1%.

Because it is almost impossible to compose a classic chypre fragrance without a trail of natural moss, perfumers have been under a difficult challenge since 2001, trying to find a new extract that would be olfactively close to the original scent of oakmoss, and yet comply with the IFRA regulations. Following the new guidelines, many perfumery houses have reformulated their epic perfumes. Some of the many examples are Guerlain's Mitsouko and Parure, both using oakmoss as a base note. But, with a little help from modern science, Thierry Wasser, Guerlain's famous perfumer, has found his way to preserve the scent of original version and avoid changing the formulation dramatically.


Guerlain now uses oakmoss that doesn't have the specific molecule which is not allowed by IFRA regulations. Thanks to the modern chemistry, this new raw material is a 100% pure and natural extract that complies with the amendments of IFRA. Some other perfumers have substituted oakmoss with grassy notes of patchouli and vetiver, while others use a synthetic “mossy woods” note that reproduces the deep forest-like smell.

You can still feel the genuine “scent of the wet forest” in the creations of modern natural perfumers, who continure to use oakmoss absolute obtained by solvent extraction. Oakmoss is found in many iconic perfumes such as Paloma Picasso, in the floral-woody-green composition of Chanel #19, in Miss Dior by Dior, a chypre-floral fragrance for women, and Apercu by Houbigant. I should also mention Houbigant’s vintage Fougere Royale, with a top-note of lavender and base-notes of oakmoss and coumarin. The whole class of Fougère perfumes, consisting primarily of perfumes for men, is named in reference to this classic creation.

 


Author: Marina Milojević (Mary)
Fragrantica Writer, Translator & Editor

 

 

 


 

 

Perfumes and Colognes With Oakmoss

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Epris Max Factor
1.5016350798959
Muschio Bianco L`Erbolario
1.5009661835749
Muschio L`Erbolario
1.5009661835749
Le Smoking DSH Perfumes
1.5008918617614
Khaltath Al Haramain Perfumes
1.5005945745076
Programme Homme Cologne Lancome
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Constellation Paloma Picasso
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Mousse de Chêne - Oakmoss Outremer
1.5002972872538
Zombi Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002229654404
Crown of Gold Anglia Perfumery
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Deep in Earth Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001486436269
Jazz Funeral Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001486436269
Firefly DSH Perfumes
1.5001486436269
Riviera Palace L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.5001486436269
Patchouli Durance en Provence
1.5000743218135
Cathode Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000743218135
Cordial (Holiday no.12) DSH Perfumes
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Want DSH Perfumes
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Purple Orchid Shirley May
1.5
Caspian Angela Flanders
1.4999256781865
Gymkana Jean Dessès
1.4999256781865
Don Carlos Shirley May
1.4438647342995
Clubman Pinaud Clubman
1.4306520107767
Oilily Classic Oilily
1.4287196436269
The Forest Library of Flowers
1.4284223563731
Amplexus Daniel Vaudd
1.4198365269417
Very Sexy Platinum for Him Victoria`s Secret
1.4175588617614
Champion Black Al-Rehab
1.409091
Intimate Jasmine Neil Morris
1.4002972872538
Vetiver Murdock London
1.3904497580825
Audace Brut Parfums Prestige
1.3858784708287
Lapsang Su Chong Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.3853582181345
Lasso Jean Patou
1.3751486436269
Mila Schön Uomo (Original) Mila Schön
1.375
Agent XY LR
1.375
Dragon Noir Dragon Parfums
1.3664602289112
Diamella Yves Rocher
1.3640076090673
Watt Blue Cofinluxe
1.3637846436269
Ed Hardy Skulls & Roses Limited Edition Christian Audigier
1.3623304214047
Mitsouko Eau de Toilette Guerlain
1.3594493333333
Acqua di Gio Giorgio Armani
1.3588524017094
Hedera helix Roxana Illuminated Perfume
1.3579231252323
Chique Yardley
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BOSS The Collection Cotton & Verbena Hugo Boss
1.3547172107023
Aventus Creed
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Feuille Verte Creed
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Linden & Dark Moss Voluspa
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Vu par Ted Lapidus Ted Lapidus
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Dakar Al-Rehab
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Memory & Desire No.1 DSH Perfumes
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Bottega Veneta Bottega Veneta
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Cristalle Eau de Toilette Chanel
1.3350424017094
Cuba Green Cuba Paris
1.3342248617614
Firdous Al Haramain Perfumes
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UNTITLED No. 1 by Yosh Han UNTITLED
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Colonia del Forte 1265 Profumi del Forte
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Jil Sander Man II Jil Sander
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Celui de Jean Dessès Jean Dessès
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Twelfth Night (Holiday no.2) DSH Perfumes
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Morass Teufels Kuche
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Infinitif Infinitif
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Secret No. 1 Nordic EDP Raunsborg
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Epic Adventure Emper
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Camera On Max Deville
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Red Gold Jivago
1.333333
3rd Eiger Ajne
1.3332586781865
No. 6 Luna + Azul Crow
1.3332586781865
Rose Hubris Ex Nihilo
1.3242199108138
London for Men Burberry
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Precious One Angela Flanders
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Rose Vert DSH Perfumes
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Jacarandá Fueguia 1833
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Lace Yardley
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Arboretum Le Prince Jardinier
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Moss Portland General Store
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MPH (Miles Per Hour) Washington Tremlett
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CoolBleu - Cool Blues Ajne
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Safary Night Shadow Parfums Louis Armand
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Angry Birds Red Bird Air-Val International
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Golden Autumn Prince Matchabelli
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Terre d`Hermes Parfum Hermes
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Patchouli Intense Nicolai Parfumeur Createur
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Plaisir d' Amour Libertin Louison Technique Indiscrete
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Autenthic Maroussia Slava Zaitsev
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Ferrari No 1 Ferrari
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Lace Fine Fragrances & Cosmetics
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Banded Sea Snake Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
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Vintage Tabarome Creed
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Eucris Geo. F. Trumper
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Egoiste Platinum Chanel
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Cuba Brown Cuba Paris
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U Black Hombre Adolfo Dominguez
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Desir de Nature Yves Rocher
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Root Library of Flowers
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Speakeasy Moonshine
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Wisdom No 26 Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
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Curzon Cologne Geo. F. Trumper
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Jade Yardley
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Ultraviolet Paco Rabanne
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Charlie Blue Revlon
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Eau de Monsieur Annick Goutal
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Bottega Veneta Eau Legere Bottega Veneta
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Naiad Bud Parfums
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Courant Helena Rubinstein
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La Panthere Cartier
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Antaeus Chanel
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La Collection Y Yves Saint Laurent
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1747 Galimard
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Embruns Keiko Mecheri
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Rich Leather JoAnne Bassett
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Age of Aquarius Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
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Driftwood Arran Aromatics
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Megumi Ayala Moriel
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Eau Fraiche Christian Dior
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Moss and Mint Body & Soul Nest
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CK One Calvin Klein
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Devil's Night Cap Lush
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Dune Christian Dior
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A Rather Novel Collection 5 O'Clock At Belvoir Castle by Stephen Nilsen Anthropologie
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Cocktail B Never Too Busy To Be Beautiful
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Eau du Soir 2010 Sisley
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Chique Milton Lloyd
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Lush Fig Nectar Bath and Body Works
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Agua de Colonia No.2 Oak Moss Musgo Real
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Pure Silk Mayfair
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7 Sinful Scents Lust Gendarme
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Green Velvet The Rising Phoenix Perfumery
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Terra Firma Royal Apothic
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Usain Ona Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
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Happiology Sunshower Illume
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X Series Flash Avon
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014 Purple Wood Ajmal
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Earthtones #4: Red Sky Neil Morris
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VO by Victor Ortiz Eclectic Collections
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Mokara Voluspa
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Chanel N°5 Chanel
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California Dana
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Ange ou Demon Givenchy
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Cool Water Davidoff
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Musk Denim
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Alliage Sport Spray Estée Lauder
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Invitation Jean Patou
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Meerschaum Soivohle
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Invisible Monster CB I Hate Perfume
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Paco Rabanne Paco Rabanne
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Paper & Cotton Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
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Enigma Dare to Dream Oriflame
1.239145976217
Chypre Novaya Zarya
1.2389868617614
Masculin Acier Bourjois
1.2380588836864
Omnia Crystalline Bvlgari

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