Welcome back! Glad you enjoyed my last post on how to choose wellness boosting scented candles. And if you’re new to my blog my name is Halima –– [hat tip]! I am a writer, journalist and candle designer. I have an honors degree in Media Studies and Journalism from Hunter College in the Upper East Side of Manhattan. I have interned at Rolling Stone Magazine and contributed to various publications. Previously I was the Editorial Assistant of The Valley Chronicle. Now I am the Editor-in-Cheif of Aura Quotidian. If you’re reading this, I just want to take a moment to express my gratitude and excitement to have you on board 🙂 Thank you so much for joining. You are going to love what you discover here, promise!
Why? Well, I’ve had a keen fascination with our sense of smell, or olfaction for as long as I can recall. As a wee kid, my days were spent in the backyard tinkering with different plant specimens. I would bring them home and bottle them as perfumes and try making interesting smelling potions with my sister. My ardor for alchemy grew with me throughout the various stages of life. In my first year as an undergraduate student I co-founded an urban community garden boasting hundreds of diversities of herbs and flowers! Not long thereafter I started concocting scented candles in my college dorm room. I would churn various oils and waxes in my mighty cauldron that would dry to reveal candles I fawned over and sold at various flea markets like Brooklyn Night Bazaar and Artists & Fleas. And I’ll write about these topics with this very passion that I share with you coursing through my veins, so read on!
In this post, I’m going to discuss the shocking benefits of some of the most coveted and rare fragrance oils in the world. These ingredients are most commonly used in luxury perfumery. Though they’ve been cropping up more and more in the luxury candle and home fragrance markets. Their bewitching aromatic lure aside, these high-quality fragrances have rich histories and innumerable health benefits. Precisely why I wager that they become household/lifestyle essentials despite affordability! Tsk, tsk. In a perfect world we would all be bathing in oud and civet. For now, let’s revel in their opulent splendor, one steep spritz at a time.
Here are 3 rare fragrance oils and their astonishing health benefits:
Long before luxury perfume houses made it their staple, Oud, Agarwood or Aloeswood Oil was known as the “Wood of God” or “Scent of Nirvana.” Eulogized since ancient times, it’s rightfully earned numerous shoutouts in the earliest of religious scriptures. Prophet Mohammad used it to fumigate and promised that heaven would be teeming with its fragrant glory. Even the Buddha endorsed it as the go-to mental clarity and zen vessel. The Bhagavad Gita states that oud was Lord Krishna’s favorite scent. Withal, King Louis XIV had his regal garbs laundered with its essence! So what exactly are the benefits of this liquid royalty magnet? Brace yourself. Oud’s not only known to yield astounding mental clarity (see my last blog post to read about the scientific study that confirms the link between scent and performance), it’s also an aphrodisiac, diuretic, antimicrobial, carminative and anti-asthmatic. Next time you need to blow someone out of the water in a serious game of chess, or woo your future SO, you know what’s good for you!
Like oud, orris oil or orris root oil is extremely popular in perfumery. It’s derived from the rhizomes of Florentine Iris plant bulbs. An estimated 2,000 pounds of bulbs is required to produce roughly 4.5 pounds of its essential oil. As if that weren’t enough for your jaw to open ajar and hit the ground, the bulbs also must be properly aged for anywhere from 2 to 5 years to ensure a quality batch. It’s no wonder luxury perfume and skincare brands can’t get enough of this stuff! Aside from its complex fabrication, orris oil has been used throughout history to treat bronchitis, edema, and liver ailments and is sometimes still used as a traditional medicine. In esoteric practices, orris root has been pegged to heighten ones “divinatory” abilities and is used in magical rites and recipes. It’s also associated with the moon and the “Lunar Goddess” which purportedly makes it a strong aphrodisiac too! Well, I’m sold on fusing orris with my personal lunar rituals. How about you? (Source)
Ah, at last. Ambergris. Scientists refer to it as “floating gold.” It is singlehandedly one of the most expensive and rarest substances around. One paltry pound of this waxy thing can range form $1,000 to $5,000. PER POUND. In ancient Greece ambergris was used to cure digestive issues. In 9th and 12th centuries Middle East and Iberian Peninsula, it was lauded far and wide for its ability to cure sore throats and even mental “diseases,” paralysis and cardiac issues. It even saw its heyday during the Middle Ages. Used widely to treat neurological ailments in Great Britain! It’s magical. It’ mysterious. It’s ever so enticing. But what exactly is it? Gird up your loins. Ambergris is sperm whale vomit with traces of feces. You read correctly. The odds of this rather disturbing phenomena, where a sperm whale poops out its vomit, actually occurring is supremely rare. You’ll even find tons of articles on how to tell real ambergris from a knockoff. To discover lumps of it is SO scarce that it is easily on every upper echelon dweller’s wishlist. It’s no wonder that this luxurious waste matter is best used today in none other than high-end perfumery. I actually got to touch and smell real ambergris before. If only I had broken off a piece to enjoy with my daily supplements…just kidding!(Source)
And there you have it! Three of the rarest fragrance oils and their unusual and awesome benefits for your olfactory pleasure 😉
In my next blog post I will cover Tuberose Absolute and the highly controversial Musk and Civet. Stay tuned and thanks again!