Fragrance Tips

Attar Vs Perfume

Attar Vs Perfume

Scents and aromatic fragrances play a vital role in our lives. They help to enhance our mood and memories due to the presence of unique olfactory aromas. The practice of perfumery existed during ancient times when people used herbs, spices, and flowers to make magical enchanting scents.

There are lots of fragrances with different aromatic ingredients available in the form of perfume, attar, and body mist.

Today, you will learn about two types of scents, which are attar and perfume. These are distinguished based on their compositions, types, projections, and costing.

Let’s Know About Attar Vs Perfume


Attar is also called “Ittar”. It is essential oils (this is also known as volatile oils which get evaporated easily) that are extracted from plants or other natural sources. It is a concentrated liquid without alcohol and synthetic components. Attar word is a Persian word that is derived from “itir” and the Arabic word “itr”.

Types of Attar

It is classified based on its effectiveness. It is given below:-

1. The classification is based on its effect on the body, which is warm and cool.

Warm:- Warm attar increases the body temperature, so it is preferred to use in the cold season. It comprises saffron, musk, and amber.

Cool:- In cool attar there is use of cool notes such as jasmine, mogra, rose, etc., which gives the cooling effect in the hot weather.

2. The classification is based on the sources or ingredients which are used in it.

Herbal – These are extracted from botanical sources like leaves, flowers, fruits, roots, stems, and spices. These ingredients are combined with many essential oils.

Floral – As its name suggests it is derived from specific flowers such as rose, jasmine, etc.

Animalic – It gives the aromatic smell of animal substance which is extracted from animals like musk and ambergris. These scents comprise pheromones which are used by men to attract females.


Perfume comprises a mixture of aromatic compounds or fragrant essential oils, solvents, water, fixatives, and alcohol. It gives a sweet and pleasant smell when put on the body.

Types of Perfume

There are four scent families which are given below:-

Floral notes – These are the most trendy family, which has floral (flowery) and sweet aromas. Like jasmine, rose, peonies, and lilies.

Fresh Notes – It has a strong, energizing, and warm scent. Fresh Notes are a citrus-based family that includes mandarin, bergamot, lemon as well as aquatic notes.

Woody Notes – Woody fragrances are mysterious, warm, and alluring scents that give the woody, sweet, and earthy smell. Like amber, sandalwood, cedarwood, and vetiver.

Oriental – Oriental belongs to a luxurious family of scents which is distinct from the above-mentioned family. Aftershave and perfume of this family are sensual and comprise vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom, jasmine, orange, and orchid.

Examples of Attar and Perfume

Attar: Musk Amber, Saffron, Sandalwood, Rose, Jasmine Attar etc.

Perfume: Jimmy Choo Illicit, Dolce, Burberry, Calvin Klein etc.

Apart from these, there are many more products of attar and perfume available in shops and stores which can be bought online or by visiting the stores.

Differences Between Attar and Perfume

Attars and perfumes are distinguished based on different aspects, such as:-

1. On the Basis of Compositions:-

Attar is an essential oil that are hydrophobic concentrated liquid. It is a plant-based natural oil that is derived from botanical sources like jasmine, rose, agarwood, lotus, and wintergreen. It is free from alcohol.

Whereas, perfumes are a mixture of natural ingredients such as plants, essential oils, and synthetic components like alcohol, solvent, fixatives, etc.

2. Eco-friendly or Not:

Attar is natural and biodegradable which is Eco-friendly to the environment whereas, in perfume, many synthetic chemicals are used which are derived from petroleum (petrochemicals). This manufacturing process causes environmental pollution.

3. Process of Manufacturing :

The process of making attar and perfume is different from each other.

As, the making of attar takes much time because it is done by a traditional method known as steam or hydro-distillation, in which liquids get separated based on their ability to get evaporated (volatilities). Sandalwood oil is used as a base for its preparation. During this process, all parts of the plant, for example, flowers, leaves, and roots get mixed to form an aromatic attar.

While the manufacturing of perfume takes less time than natural attar. These are synthetic which are made by using fragrant essential oils, alcohol, solvent (helps to dissolve critical liquid, gas, and solid), and fixatives (enhance the persistence of perfume’s fragrance).

4. Long-lasting Effect:

Attar comprises concentrated oils which give substantial fragrance. Oils are thick due to which it takes time to evaporate. It is intense and lasts for long.

Perfume contains alcohol which evaporates quickly, due to this the intensity of perfumes lasts for a short duration.

Both scents can be applied in pulse points like the wrist, neck, and below the ear to get the most effective result.

5. Forms & Projection :

Attar is a natural oil fragrance and only a few drops of it are sufficient for application. However, due to the presence of alcohol, perfumes come in the form of spray which makes them easy to apply.

The projection (the ability of the fragrance to show its essence from a distance)of perfumes is much better than attar.

6. Cost:

Original attars which are made from sandalwood are expensive because of the intensive process. Due to its high price, attars are not easily available in the market. Branded perfumes are costly, but budget-friendly perfumes can be availed.

Similarities in Attar & Perfume

Attar and perfume share some common similarities, such as:-

1. Both attar and perfume are used to hide the bad smell of the body and when sprayed over the body, it gives the feeling of pleasant aroma.

2. Wearing an attar and perfume gives self-confidence to the person by giving a pleasant fragrance.

3. Most people use perfume and attar due to its aromatic fragrance properties. The pleasant smell of these two will take you to another level of relaxing environment.

4. Aromatic ingredients and essential oils are used in both attar and perfumes.

Note:- People with sensitive skin can use attar because it is a natural aromatic oil, whereas perfumes are synthetic and can cause damage to the skin.


This blog is created to clear the confusion between perfume and attar. There is a wide range of aromatic products and most people get confused while taking any perfumery product. There is a lot of information provided above for attar and perfume.

With the help of this, you can choose whether you should go for perfume or attar because one is natural and the other is a synthetic form. I hope from this blog, you got to know the differences and similarities between an attar and perfume.

You can also read:

20 Best Arabian Perfume Brands

Perfume That Smells Like Soap

Top 10 Best Egyptian Musk Perfumes

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