Description and usage notes:
Very mild and delicate green floral odour with typical lily of the valley character and excellent fixative effect on many floral notes. Farnesol is one of the classic perfumery ingredients and is present in many flowers and herbs from orange flowers to thyme. Once reserved only for the most expensive fragrances it became more widely available in the 1960s when synthesis methods became more cost-effective.
Recommended usage levels are from traces to 10% of the concentrate. Tenacity is around 16 days on a smelling strip so it is a base note, but it has middle-note effects as well.
Arctander recommends it as “an excellent background note and blender in the delicate floral such as Muguet, Lilac, etc. or in the balsamic types, Oriental fragrances, Chypres etc. It combines the softest woody notes of Orris with the sweet and balsamic floral notes of Muguet, Rose, Magnolia, Acacia, etc. It blends excellently with Ylang Ylang, Cassie, Rose, Violet, Neroli, Cyclamen, etc. and it is an almost necessary ingredient in the so-called ‘Linden- blossom’ type fragrance.”
Calkin & Jellinek also recommend Farnesol as a blender in rose compounds (along with Nerolidol); in muguet compounds (along with Benzyl Benzoate) and, incidentally also give the detection threshold in air as 11 parts per billion.