The history of perfume: Discover the story of the fragrance

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The history of perfume

 Although many are ignorant of the history of perfumes, we wear perfumes to please others, to make a good impression, to surround ourselves with a pleasant and lingering scent. Although perfumes have a long history, they did not always carry a hint of romance.

The sails are lilac, so fragrant, that the wind was sick with love with them,” Shakespeare wrote. It is said that Cleopatra received Mark Antony on a boat with scented sails after the assassination of Julius Caesar and became queen of Egypt. 

So the use of perfume is mainly associated with mystery, imagination and fantasy.

 In addition to the close connection with many Perfume myths and legends.

Mesopotamian perfume

What is the Origins of perfume?

Mesopotamian perfume

 The word perfume comes from the Latin phrase, “per” means “inclusive” and “fomos” means “smoke”. The French later called “perfume” the smells resulting from burning incense. In fact, the first form of perfume was incense, which was first made by the inhabitants of Mesopotamia about 4,000 years ago. This was the essence of the Mesopotamian perfume Ancient cultures burned a variety of resins and wood in their religious ceremonies.

Incense made its way to Egypt as an Ancient Egyptian perfume around 3000 BC but until the beginning of Egypt’s Golden Age, perfumes were only used in religious rituals. It became available to all Egyptians as priests gradually gave up their exclusive rights. Citizens took elaborate baths and soaked their skin in scented oils for pleasure.

What about the history of Greek and French fragrances?

The first liquid perfume of the ancient Greeks was made by the ancient Greeks.

But it was the development of distillation by the Arabs that made the perfume industry viable.

Perfumes enjoyed great success during the seventeenth century, especially in France. Cleanliness in those days was very intermittent and perfumes were used to hide unpleasant body odors.

So France has seen a lot of French perfume industr.

In England, perfumes were widely used during the reigns of Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I.

Indus Valley perfume

The history of perfume: what do you know about perfume notes?

Roman perfume

As with industry and art, perfumes were to undergo a profound change in the nineteenth century. Changing tastes and developing chemistry laid the foundations for modern perfumery.

At the turn of the century, the fragrance was usually derived from the fragrance of a single flower.

Today, perfumes are quite complex, consist of many natural and synthetic chemicals, often referred to as “notes” or “suggestions”. Chanel No5 was the first perfume created by applying modern chemical principles and the first perfume containing synthetics.


Eau de cologne, which is usually used by men, was invented by an Italian barber at the beginning of the XVIII century in the German city of Cologne. Hence the name Cologne, the French name of the city. The original name of this mixture was “Aqua Admirabilis” (wonderful water), and it was sold as a “miracle medicine”.

Napoleon praised the wonder water and was first sold as a perfume under the name 4711, the address of the first cologne water store in Cologne. It is still the oldest continuously produced Perfume families  in the world.

How are perfumes made?

1.A whiff of chemistry The first stage in perfume making is the extraction of essential oils from plants. While many methods can be used, distillation is the most common. Steam distillation is based on the principle that plant material placed in boiling water will release its essential oils, which then evaporate along with steam.

French perfume industry

2.Once the steam and oil are condensed, the oil will separate from the water and can be collected. Thousands of kilograms of flowers may be needed to get just one kilo of essential oil, which partly explains why the prices of many perfumes are so high.

Perfume making process

Scientists who experiment with different substances to come up with pleasant fragrances are called perfumes. Just as a good musician needs a good ear, a perfumer needs a good nose! Different companies have different procedures in choosing perfumes, or as they like to call them, “noses”, but in general, candidates remain interns for at least 6 years.

What about today's perfumes?

Today, both synthetic and natural ingredients are used in perfumery. Natural ingredients include extracts of flowers, leaves, roots and citrus.

Animal extracts derived from musk, whales or beaver are also used.

Chemists have become very adept at producing synthetic versions of many natural compounds, which greatly facilitates the perfume industry

Perfume notes

Perfumes today are classified according to the concentration of essential oils they contain. The most concentrated and, of course, the most expensive, form is called perfume. It is the strongest and longest-lasting fragrance and contains 20 to 50 percent perfume compounds by weight. Eau de Parfum is an alcoholic fragrance solution containing 10 to 15 percent perfume compounds and eau de toilette (or cologne), 3 to 8 percent.

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