Essences for Cologne

In perfumery terminology the word "Cologne" generally refers to the famous Eau de Cologne(Water of Cologne) created by Johann Maria Farina of Italy around 1709. Farina creation was mainly composed of citrus and herbal essential oils and according to his diary which were further diluted in alcohol and water to create a light, refreshing bouquet. In his own words-
"I have found a fragrance that reminds me of an Italian spring morning, of mountain daffodils and orange blossoms after the rain". The basic recipe which Farina created was soon followed with slight variations by many perfumers of that era.These highly diluted essences were composed mainly of the cold pressed oils of bergamot, orange and lemon and the distilled oils of rosemary, lavender, petitgrain and neroli. It is remembered that the vast range of natural aromatics that we now have access too was not available to perfumers working in the 17th and 18th century.
The following links will give more particulars regarding the History of Eau de Cologne…/…/cologne-and-its-eau.html…/old-recipes-for-eau-de-colo…
Cologne in a modern perfumery context is a generic terminology applied to fragrances that maintain the light, refreshing, zestful top-note centric scent mainly composed of essential oils derived from citrus fruits, herbs, conifers, grasses, leaf and the lighter resinous oils. All of these oils tend to have a relatively short aromatic life-span. A The term "Cologne" also refers to a high level of dilution-from 3%-8% in an ethanol base. 5% is a typical level of dilution for a cologne. Hence the high level of dilution along with essences that are top-note centric create an essence meant to transform the environment in which they appear in an instant and with a relatively short period of time dissipate into the atmosphere.
For both amateur and professional perfumers alike, colognes represent a wonderful world to explore. They are not expensive to create and variations of essences even with the same category
can give rise to delightful fragrances.
Here are some of the essences from which a perfumer can choose;

Citrus oils
Bergamot eo
Citron eo
Clementine eo
Combava peel eo
Grapefruit eo
Lemon eo
Lemon eo
Lemon essence eo
Lime eo
Lime essence eo
Mandarin(red, yellow, green) eo
Orange essence eo
Orange eo
Orange Bitter(green and red) eo
Orange Blood eo
Tangerine eo
Tangerine essence eo

Conifer oils
Cypress eo
Cypress, Alaska eo
Cypress, Blue eo
Fir Balsam eo
Fir Siberian eo
Fir Noble eo
Fir Douglas eo
Fir Silver eo
Hiba eo
Hinoki eo
Juniper berry eo
Pine Dwarf Mountain eo
Pine, Forest/Scotch eo
Pine Ponderosa eo
Pine Swiss Stone eo
Spruce Black eo
Templin eo
Terebinth eo

Herbal oils
Artemisia annua eo
Artemisia White Sage Brush eo
Basil, Holy eo
Basil, Lemon eo
Basil, Methly chavicol eo
Basil, Linalool eo
Bicchu eo
Cape chamomile eo
Chamomile, English/Roman eo
Chamomile, wild(Morocco) eo
Davana eo
Erigeron eo
Geranium eo
Hyssop eo
Khella eo
Lavender eo
Lavandin eo
Lemonbalm/Melissa eo
Marjoram, Sweet eo
Myrtle eo
Pennyroyal eo
Peppermint eo
Rosemary eo
Sage eo
Sage, Clary eo
Sage, Spanish eo
Spearmint eo

Resinous oils
Cistus eo
Elemi eo
Frankincense eo
Galbanum eo
Mastic eo
Opoponax eo
Palo Santo eo

Grass oils
African Blue Grass eo
Citronella eo
Gingergrass eo
Lemongrass eo
Palmarosa eo

Leaf oils
Bay Leaf, West Indies eo
Eucalyptus citriodora eo
Eucalyptus, Lemon Ironbark eo
Eucalyptus macarthurii eo
Laurel leaf eo
Petitgrain bigarade eo
Petitgrain combava eo
Petitgrain mandarin eo
Petitgrain lemon eo
Petitgrain sur Fleur eo
Rhododendron leaf eo

Flower oils
Cananga eo
Neroli eo
Ruh Kewda
Ylang eo
From the above mentioned oils(and this is by no means a complete one) one can embark on a joyful creative journey.
Not only can one create many unique top-note centric colognes but they can use the same concentrated essence as a top-note in more sophisticated perfumes with a ty pical middle and base note.