The daisy-like chamomile isn’t one note, it’s two – because different varieties offer different nuances to a perfumer. (Confusing spellings, too: it can be spelled camomile, chamomile and camomile.) Wild chamomile, for instance, is herbal, sweet and fresh, more reminiscent of the tea we drink to calm ourselves or beckon sleep. The oil steam-distilled from German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) is more sweetly smoky, with hints of apples, working well as a base note. And Anthemis nobilis – Roman camomile, English camomile, ‘true camomile’, call it what you will – is sweet and heady, though also with an apple-iness.
Smell chamomile in: