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

 

 

 


 

 

Oakmoss Perfumes

1.5021187653897
Epris Max Factor
1.5008589589418
Le Smoking DSH Perfumes
1.5005153753651
Mousse de Chêne - Oakmoss Outremer
1.5003435835767
Deep in Earth Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002290557178
Cordial (Holiday no.12) DSH Perfumes
1.5002290557178
Uncharted Crabtree & Evelyn
1.5001717917884
Riviera Palace L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.5001717917884
Crown of Gold Anglia Perfumery
1.5001717917884
Patchouli Durance en Provence
1.5001145278589
Art collection 202 Man M. Micallef
1.5001145278589
Sorrow Perfume Oil Possets Perfume
1.5001145278589
Cathode Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001145278589
Firefly DSH Perfumes
1.5000572639295
Vanesya Luxury Perfumes
1.5
Gymkana Jean Dessès
1.5
Bluegrass Moonshine
1.5
Clearwater Fulton & Roark
1.5
Caspian Angela Flanders
1.5
Lider Egoist Christine Lavoisier Parfums
1.5
Laberinto Fueguia 1833
1.5
Tuscan Antonio Rossini
1.5
Morozets Novaya Zarya
1.5
Ridzinieks (Rizhanin) Dzintars
1.4998854721411
Don Carlos Shirley May
1.4821681671534
Zombi Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4674686950123
Cuba City Las Vegas for Men Cuba Paris
1.4559193343068
Tramp Lush
1.4546022639295
Kamennyi Tsvetok Novaya Zarya
1.4377863196473
Jacarandá Fueguia 1833
1.4290291114356
The Forest Library of Flowers
1.4286855278589
Medusa Scent by the Sea
1.4286282639295
Ingenue Ava Luxe
1.428571
Acqua degli Speziali Derbe
1.428571
Want DSH Perfumes
1.4256735982363
Faberge Audace Brut Parfums Prestige
1.4233060557178
Memory & Desire No.1 DSH Perfumes
1.4212820557178
Epic Adventure Emper
1.4211675278589
Guillotine Parfums Sophiste
1.409091
Intimate Jasmine Neil Morris
1.4066863333333
Aventus Creed
1.4058542639295
Shipr Korolevskiy Novaya Zarya
1.4009162228712
Lapsang Su Chong Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.4004008475062
Vetiver Murdock London
1.4002863196473
Fascinator Hové Parfumeur, Ltd.
1.4002863196473
Nord du Nord WienerBlut
1.3846355454389
Very Sexy Platinum for Him Victoria`s Secret
1.3832653196473
To a Wild Rose Avon
1.3815041964725
Chique Yardley
1.3812990322396
Clubman Pinaud Clubman
1.3753435835767
Basque Suzy Larsen Perfumes
1.3751145278589
Lichen & Vetiver Voluspa
1.375
Splash Orange Amére Astier de Villatte
1.375
Agent XY LR
1.375
Manto di Rugiada Melograno Selvatico I Profumi di Firenze
1.375
Tribal Arte Profumi
1.3589754457424
Hedera helix Roxana Illuminated Perfume
1.3574865835767
Moss Portland General Store
1.3573147917884
Varon Dandy Parera
1.353888181813
Arboretum Le Prince Jardinier
1.3470535278589
АRТ Elegance ( ART Elegance) Dzintars
1.345777460402
Curzon Cologne Geo. F. Trumper
1.3423219589418
Muschio di Quercia (Oak Moss) La Via del Profumo
1.3416845014602
Feuille Verte Creed
1.3415775278589
Lace Fine Fragrances & Cosmetics
1.3371248876482
Acqua di Gio Giorgio Armani
1.3360244046842
Diamella Yves Rocher
1.3337911114356
Jil Sander Man II Jil Sander
1.3336193196473
Splendia Bvlgari
1.3336193196473
Naiad Bud Parfums
1.3335620557178
Daniel Hechter Sport Daniel Hechter
1.3335620557178
Twelfth Night (Holiday no.2) DSH Perfumes
1.3335047917884
Mokara Voluspa
1.3335047917884
Morass Teufels Kuche
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A & F 1892 Cobalt Abercrombie & Fitch
1.3334475278589
Maratons (Marathon) Dzintars
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15 The Fragrance Kitchen
1.3334475278589
Creation N° 09 Ulric de Varens
1.3333902639295
Volgere L`acqua Di Fiori
1.333333
Kremlyovsky Parade of Stars
1.333333
Red Gold Jivago
1.333333
Ghala Zayed Al Battash Concepts
1.333333
Avada Kedavra Art Deco Perfumes
1.333333
110 Scent Bar
1.333333
3rd Eiger Ajne
1.333333
No. 6 Luna + Azul Crow
1.333333
Shanghai Mod.1 Parfum Bar
1.3294460146596
Cuba Green Cuba Paris
1.329016187253
Mitsouko Eau de Toilette Guerlain
1.3264229175399
Bottega Veneta Bottega Veneta
1.3196498768253
Eau de Monsieur Annick Goutal
1.3188691671534
Precious One Angela Flanders
1.3158462639295
Rose Vert DSH Perfumes
1.315789
Chypre 2010 YanFroloff Perfumer
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Style Lentheric
1.3146146238905
London for Men Burberry
1.3115109117563
Cristalle Eau de Toilette Chanel
1.3104595278589
Charming Angel Christine Darvin
1.3101543489664
BOSS The Collection Cotton & Verbena Hugo Boss
1.3057277917884
Secret No. 1 Nordic EDP Raunsborg
1.3044052639295
La Collection du Joaillier Boucheron
1.3002290557178
The Wendol Blackbird
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Rayon Vert Artemisia Natural Perfume
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Bayan Mulak Sigilli
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CoolBleu - Cool Blues Ajne
1.2999427360705
Aqua Lumiere Novaya Zarya
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Devil's Night Cap Lush
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Mexx Spring is Now Man Mexx
1.2949841554143
Lace Yardley
1.2945188475062
Banded Sea Snake Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.2941752639295
Linden & Dark Moss Voluspa
1.2916097360705
Casino Novaya Zarya
1.2896743573842
Terre d`Hermes Parfum Hermes
1.2895312639295
Favori de la Fortune Novaya Zarya
1.2876609736013
Age of Aquarius Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.2864427243314
Chyprissime Thierry Mugler
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Ed Hardy Skulls & Roses Limited Edition Christian Audigier
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Delirivm B&B Cosmetics
1.285714
Tibetan White Moss Cliven
1.2852194926416
Eucris Geo. F. Trumper
1.2834475278589
Zilite Dzintars
1.277778
Earthtones #4: Red Sky Neil Morris
1.277778
Mon Secret Pola
1.277409296169
Charlie Blue Revlon
1.2769544515833
Desir de Nature Yves Rocher
1.2764346392945
U Black Hombre Adolfo Dominguez
1.275862
Mon Roi Faberlic
1.2757602815095
Dakar Al-Rehab
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Au Delà Narcisse Bruno Fazzolari
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Eau Fraiche Christian Dior
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Madison Soiree Bond No 9
1.2737577507301
Cocktail B Never Too Busy To Be Beautiful
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Bottega Veneta Eau Legere Bottega Veneta
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Silvestre Victor
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Coca for Men Cofinluxe
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Speakeasy Moonshine
1.2728987917884
Josephine Angela Flanders
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Eau d'Ete Antonio Puig
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Osirius Therapeutate Parfums
1.272727
Levitation Platinum Cuarzo The Circle
1.272727
Da i Niet Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
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Rich Leather JoAnne Bassett
1.2694031260952
Paper & Cotton Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.2681211407547
Vu par Ted Lapidus Ted Lapidus
1.2676749178835
Champion Black Al-Rehab
1.2675335683445
Egoiste Platinum Chanel
1.2668960557178
Feromone pour homme (Pheromone for man ) La Via del Profumo
1.264706
Camera On Max Deville
1.2634443196473
Terra Firma Royal Apothic
1.2620511671534
Khaltath Al Haramain Perfumes
1.2608127360705
Moss Commodity

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