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Geranium: Ingredient Guide, Info, Smell & More!

Geranium smells like rose, with a green floral twist, accompanied by lemony and peppery notes.

To round out this complex scent, there are also undertones of bergamot and peppermint that bring a hint of masculinity to the sweetness.

The geranium used most frequently to create perfumes comes from the Pelargonium Graveolens variety, closely followed by the Lemon Fancy variety.

There are over 280 species of geranium plants, and most of them are scented. Essential oils and perfumes are made from the leaves of scented varieties of the geranium plant.

The varieties are also frequently combined to create a smooth drydown that lingers on the skin, with a natural clean-smelling base note that carries the scent of soap.

What is Geranium?

Geranium, also known as Pelargonium, is a type of flowering plant that is part of a system with over 280 species. More than 200 of these varieties have scented leaves, and many have been used to create essential oil used in the high-quality perfume industry. 

Pelargonium was brought to Europe from its native South Africa in the 17th century, and it was first distilled into essential oil in France, a country well-known for its history of perfume-making.

Many people have since used geranium essential oil for a range of ailments, from stress and anxiety to fighting off basic bacterial infections.

Where Does the Scent of Geranium Come From?

Despite the eye-catching flowers of the pelargonium, the fragrance comes from the steaming and distillation of the leaf and the stalk.

If you have geranium in your garden, you could slightly brush your hand over its leaves and enjoy an example of its distinctive smell while enjoying the sight of a beautiful pale pink or white flower.

You can even make a post on social media about the experience.

What are the Most Used Types of Geranium?

Generally, the geraniums most often used to distill oils that then become scents are:

  • The Pelargonium Graveolens, also known as rose scent geranium or sweet-scented geranium, responsible for the smell of floral and aromatic hints that are generally so popular with fragrances.
  • The Lemon Fancy, the variety of geranium with a smell like citrus.

But, what does geranium smell like?

After leaving distinctive traces of its scents through history, the geranium smell continues to be popular in the present in fragrances with its scents of roses and the blend of sweet, floral, green, peppery, herbaceous, and earthy smells.

What Does Geranium Smell Like?

Geranium smells like a mix of scents with numerous layers. The distinct varieties have been used in combinations throughout the years and the smells have become instantly recognizable by perfume lovers.

The rose geranium smells like the rose that names it, but it isn’t only sweet.

The floral scent is made more complex by the accompanying green scent, and the aromatic note hints at deeper layers that smell like lavender, lemon, and mint.

Those with a keen nose will also be able to detect that the rose geranium smells slightly like chocolate, alongside the smell of lavender and roses.

Geraniums leave a full body of smells on the skin that can be enjoyed for hours.

The various combinations of geraniums can also carry an aroma of earthy bergamot, or even a more herbal touch.

If you would like to explore the geranium smell a bit more, you can try other varieties.

Some, like the pineapple-scented geranium, have a fresh fragrance that smells like the tropical fruit it’s named after.

Lemon isn’t the only smell that you can encounter in geranium. What the Prince of Orange variety lacks in orange flowers, it makes up for with its rich orangey smell.

What Scent Family is Geranium?

Geranium belongs to the floral olfactory family, along with rose.

Like the geranium, rose can be combined with lemony smells to create citrus floral scents, but rose is usually based on the power of the flower.

The geranium is classed as a flowery scent, even though its leaves are the origin of the smell.

This highlights the strength and variety of the geranium in providing such a rich olfactory experience.

What are the Benefits of Geranium?

Geranium essential oil has been used for centuries for its many health benefits. Here are some of the most popular ones:

  • Geranium essential oils have therapeutic qualities that help counter the effects of stress and anxiety.
  • They can also help a bit with the rough days caused by hormonal imbalances.
  • It’s great for the skin and helps slow the anti-aging process.
  • Geranium essential oil has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties.

Is Geranium Feminine or Masculine Scent?

Geranium is a great unisex smell that satisfies both feminine and masculine tastes.

The rose scent of geranium is given masculine notes by the aroma of lavender, chocolate, and lemons.

These notes make geranium a great scent to add to masculine perfumes, but they also feature frequently in unisex scents.

Through its smell, geranium offers a bit of resistance to the traditional masculine and feminine scents by joining the ranks of many other fragrances that suit all genders.

Best Perfumes with Geranium Notes

Some of the most representative houses in the world include geranium notes in their perfumes. Let’s take a look at some of them:

1. Versace Pour Homme by Versace

Geranium features in the middle notes of this fragrance, along with hyacinth, clary sage, and cedar. A perfect choice for summer with a clean and rich scent.

2. L’Eau d’Issey Pour Homme by Issey Miyake

Bourbon geranium can be found in the middle notes once more. This timeless fragrance makes the geranium notes unforgettable.

3. Geranium Odorata by Diptyque

This unisex fragrance has a masculine spicy opening and a lovely rosy finish in the drydown.

The Bottom Line

So, what does geranium smell like? We’ve discovered that this is a limitless scent that works beautifully in combinations of many notes.

It retains a sweet flowery scent that is deepened by the green scent of peppermint and lemon. Lavender and chocolate add to the complexity of this olfactory feast.

Geranium is a unisex scent that can be freely used by all genders, and it features prominently in some of the most iconic perfumes in the industry. Experiment with geranium, and remember to post about your experience!

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