Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Perfumer's Palette - Heliotrope

Distintive , divinely exquisite heliotrope...the scent is derived from the flowers immediately after picking through maceration in oil ( historically , lard ) at a very low temperature , or traditionally through enfleurage . Each batch of blossoms is left in the oil or wax for 24 hours , then another batch introduced each day for one week . The oil/wax is then permeated with sufficient fragrance . There are over 80 species , but the heliotropum peruviatum is the species used in perfumery . Easily identifiable as the cherry pie note , it is both musky and sweet , related to borage , which has a cucumber - like aroma ..
Heliotrope is tropical , native to Peru , and was introduced into Europe about 1757 .
Synthetic heliotrope ( heliotropine ) was being produced over 1oo years ago ! As a by-product of camphor distillation , a large quantity of safrol is produced , and it is this from which synthetic heliotropine is derived . One source described it being derived from White Singapore pepper , piperine , then converted to potassium piperol using lime . It seems most fragrances today use the synthetic form .
Heliotrope fragrances :
Etro Heliotrope
Miller Harris Fleur Oriental
Serge Lutens Rahat Loukhoum
Guerlain Apres L'Ondee
Laura Mercier Marrons Glacees
Heliotrope does not seem to have any aromatherapeutic benefits , nor is it edible .
I love Miller Harris Fleur Oriental , but it can become too penetrating in the heat . Do you have a heliotrope fragrance ?


Olfacta said...

Barbara Bui, but as a bedtime (as in sleep) fragrance. I wore it during the day once, shopping for Halloween stuff. Somehow it just wasn't right for that on me, too sweet and heavy. It is all about heliotrope,vanilla and musk on me. But it's great for one of those at-home days.

Dixie said...

I've never smelled the flower, so I don't know how to distinguish it from others. I do love Apres L'Ondee, though!

dragon said...

Hi, Carol. I need to know any chemical analyse on ambergris