Honey

Group: Animal Sources

Honey
Honey
Honey
Odor profile: sweet, edible, golden autumnal note which illuminates a composition relying on citruses and oriental notes and gives profusion to floral notes

The sweet golden liquid known as honey is one of the nature’s most miraculous products. Honey, the nature’s sweetener, is a syrupy delicacy made by bees. There are more than twenty thousand different species of bees, but just a couple of them are skillful enough to make honey.

Honey bees are making this sweet food using nectar from flowers, and a single pound of honey stands as a lifetime work of about three hundred bees. It is estimated that the bee colony needs to visit about two million flowers before it collects enough nectar to make a single pound of honey, and this is why honey bees never sleep! Instead, a standard crowd of a single beehive makes up to 400 pounds of honey each season!


Honey is partially digested food that bees store in the hive during the long months of winter, when plants and flowers aren't blooming and no nectar is available. Each worker honey bee can make only a 1/12th teaspoon of honey in its lifetime, and only two tablespoons of honey could provide enough energy for a honey bee to fly once around the world.
 

Of the more than 20,000 bee species in the world, about 2,000 are native to Mexico. However, the true honey bee (with its seven recognized species and a total of 44 subspecies) was brought to the New World by the Spanish conquistadors, in the early 16th century. The Native American tribes have named them "white man's flies," because flying swarms often indicated the proximity of the European settlers. But even long before Europeans, Mayan people harvested honey from nests of stingless bees native to tropical forests and used it as a sweetener, as an antibiotic and for production of honey wine.


The production of honey and its use have a very long history. It is believed that the practice of honey harvesting dates as far back to at least 15,000 years in past, as demonstrated by cave paintings in Valencia, Spain. However, honey was not always used only as food. Even the nature of its name suggests more powerful, sacral significance - “honey” originates from the ancient Hebrew word for “enchant.” In Hebrew tradition, honey is considered kosher, even though it is produced by non-kosher beings – flying insects. The rabbis of the Talmud discuss this question in detail and for us to understand it we have to remember that, in ancient Israel, beekeeping was developed much after Biblical times- some 3,000 years ago. The classic Biblical teachings mention wild bees for which it was not believed to produce honey but to simply carry the pure nectar of flowers to their hives, and store it as a sweet liquid gold. Today we know that honey bees actually do produce honey thanks to the special enzymes synthesized by the body of the insect. In this process, saccharides from plant nectar are transformed into honey through numerous cycles of regurgitation (expulsion of undigested material from the mouth) until it is partially digested.

In almost all sacred documents of both East and West, honey stands as a metaphor for all good things. The Promised Land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River – Canaan – is “a land flowing with milk and honey.” In many other cultures it represents the same symbol of sweet life and prosperity like in Jewish tradition, where it still keeps a special place as one of the symbols of Rosh Hashanah - the Jewish New Year. In Celtic mythology, a river of honey wine – mead – runs through paradise and the bees are the very messengers of gods. Mead plays a large part in countless Celtic traditions – as the conferrer of immortality, artistic inspiration and knowledge, it is used in the sacral rites, the grand ceremonies, as well as in everyday life. Mead is the gift of gods and the drink of kings, a magic brew that makes sovereigns immortal and levels them with deities if only they drink the “blood red wine” bestowed by the Fairy Queen.

This natural nutritive sweetener offers many substantial health benefits. Not only that it represents nature’s energy booster, but it also builds up our immune system and acts as a remedy for numerous ailments. Honey is great therapy for sore throat; it fights against bacteria, viruses and fungi, promotes good night sleep and helps with heavy hangovers caused by drinking too much alcohol. Phytonutrients found in honey are shown to possess cancer-preventing and anti-tumor properties, while experimental evidence indicates that it may improve blood sugar control and insulin sensitivity. In Islam, honey is recommended directly by Prophet Muhammad for healing purposes and because of its numerous medical favors. It is, in the same manner, considered as one of the five elixirs of immortality in Hinduism.

But, did you know that the honey itself is pretty much immortal? You could place honey anywhere and keep it for thousands of years and it will not spoil! In fact, honey that was found in King Tutankhamen’s tomb was still edible after more than 2,000 years it spent underneath the sands in the Valley of the Kings. Until now, the oldest remains of honey have been found in Eurasian country of Georgia, dating back to about 4,700 - 5,500 years ago, but bees have been producing honey for at least 150 million years.

Unfortunately, these are the hard times for honey bees. Back in 2006, the sudden and mysterious disappearance of honey bees was first recorded in the United States. Since then, the bees are continuing to disappear without trace, at an accelerating rate and all over the world. This frightening and unusual phenomenon is named Colony collapse disorder (CCD), and it doesn’t only affect our honey supplies but also endangers the agricultural crops worldwide, which are pollinated by bees. The exact cause of the syndrome is not yet understood, but scientific evidence from Europe suggests that modern use of pesticides somehow affects the nervous and immune system of the bees, causing them to vanish from the face of Earth. If the problem doesn’t get solved urgently we may be facing a large crisis in food production. I’m sure that you know that what we eat changes our health, our environment and our communities. So, if you want to help in this issue, remember that each time you eat you vote with your fork. Choose organically grown food and help shape a better, honeybee-friendly world. You could also grow a small organic garden in your backyard or plant some flowers around your house to provide beautiful, fragrant and natural habitat for many animal species.

In perfumery, the honey note is distinguished by its soft and balsamic sweet chords, ideal to underline and emphasize floral notes. The scent, as well as the taste of honey, depends on its sort: it can be predominantly woodsy, floral, herbal, or even tobacco-scented. This note used to introduce gourmand nuance in the composition, and it is typically created from beeswax combined with various other molecular ingredients that are usually found in organic honey.

For example, a perfumer may combine the scent of Black Locust flower for floral types, or use Pine Tree extract to achieve a honeydew honey note. The bee’s wax absolute is obtained from the honeycombs of European bee - Apis mellifera – and extracted with ethanol and the ethanol evaporated. In this process, the bee’s wax absolute retains some of the aromatic molecules of the waxy substance. Honey can also be solvent extracted to produce an absolute which is highly fragrant and typically used in perfumery to render golden-ambery notes.

The honey note is soothing and comforting; it beautifully equilibrates the composition and adds rich and warm backdrop for other ingredients. If you wish to explore the honey note, try to find it in the sweetness of Thierry Mugler’s Angel, which is a perfect example of the gourmand fragrance category. The Serge Lutens’s Miel de Bois opens with a sweet and radiant honey note, while Red Door by Elizabeth Arden, uses honey for the base to convey a message of opulence and luxury. You can enjoy the aroma of honey in Miel d`Oranger by Yves Rocher - a fragrance for women and its accompanying collection of body care products. Something similar can also be found in Miel & Vanille (Honey & Vanilla) line by L`Occitane en Provence. If you seek modern commercial editions with honey note, the Lollipop Bling Honey Perfume By Mariah Carey could be just what you need.

You could also use our search by notes to embark on your own quest for more great fragrances with honey.

 


Author: Marina Milojević (Mary)
Fragrantica Writer, Translator & Editor

 

 

 

 

 

 

Perfumes and Colognes With Honey

1.513178951332
Eau de Miel L`Occitane en Provence
1.5117669208322
Mirror Mirror Collection - A Travers Le Miroir Thierry Mugler
1.5088487244658
Miel d`Oranger Yves Rocher
1.5049543333333
Armani Code for Women Giorgio Armani
1.5014120304999
O Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5006589475666
Honeycomb Library of Flowers
1.5004706768333
Pure Honey Philosophy
1.5004706768333
Mio Bjao Parfumerie Generale
1.4743429475666
Miss Varens Fashion Ulric de Varens
1.4652499293985
Honey and the Moon Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.4550156768333
No. 08 L’Eau Baptiste IUNX
1.4531126110327
Honeymania The Body Shop
1.4510392792996
MAC Creations Hue: Naked Honey M∙A∙C
1.4494135366657
Imari Mystique Avon
1.4284768646333
Aurora Acqua Micaelangelo
1.4213354061
Iris Berben LR
1.4205795016474
Lady Million Paco Rabanne
1.4105971658665
Dana O'Shee Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4025805283818
Le Parfum Elie Saab
1.4018543673162
A*Men Pure Havane Thierry Mugler
1.3999058646333
IKKS Baby IKKS
1.395869331733
Que sais je? Jean Patou
1.3941330698484
Chergui Serge Lutens
1.3931924890332
Wildflower Honey CB I Hate Perfume
1.3850561733032
Angel Thierry Mugler
1.3840144890332
Delivre Moi Libertin Louison Technique Indiscrete
1.3814226768333
Lelong Lucien Lelong
1.3804769732656
Honey I Washed the Kids Lush
1.3768827073331
Sunset Boulevard Gale Hayman
1.3653304365998
Dragon's Milk Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.3643890829333
Arabian Prestige Original Arabian Oud
1.3641066768333
Sunshine & Pancakes 4160 Tuesdays
1.3625804012991
Treselle Mystique Avon
1.3596605585051
A*Men Thierry Mugler
1.3577078121999
BV Secret Bottega Verde
1.3574990033889
Gucci by Gucci Gucci
1.3564191606891
Fame Lady Gaga
1.3537162038972
Botrytis Ginestet
1.353137763532
Miel De Bois Serge Lutens
1.3466246768333
Rucher Fleuri Phoenicia Perfumes
1.344886235715
L'Instant de Guerlain Guerlain
1.3420375565283
Les Exclusifs de Chanel Beige Chanel
1.3414614890332
Oriental Lace Oscar de la Renta
1.3370001305658
Miel & Citron Pailletee Shimmering L`Occitane en Provence
1.3353457196649
Miel & Citron (Honey & Lemon) L`Occitane en Provence
1.3344626243999
Fresh Fig Arran Aromatics
1.3341802182999
Noche Del Fuego Spadaro Luxury Fragrances
1.3340860829333
Sweet Tea Elizabeth W
1.3338036768333
Wild Ginger Chai Soivohle
1.3336154061
Moroccan MOR
1.3334271353667
Cumberland Ti Soivohle
1.3334271353667
Roses Aftelier
1.3326769245976
Sweet Oriental Dream Montale
1.3288622367504
Sensuous Estée Lauder
1.3262399475666
Party Queen Oriflame
1.3260497549656
Cologne Pour Le Soir Maison Francis Kurkdjian
1.3260454393298
Aqua Allegoria Flora Nymphea Guerlain
1.3228202792996
L’Abeille de Guerlain Guerlain
1.3140074061
Miele Rosa Il Profumi di Firenze
1.3138178951332
Vohina Huitieme Art Parfums
1.3137840171326
El Attarine Serge Lutens
1.3131025890991
Honey Coconut Love & Toast
1.3127824061
Linden Library of Flowers
1.310675095265
Immortelle de Corse L`Occitane en Provence
1.3095305410901
Hermessence Ambre Narguile Hermes
1.3077861353667
Miro Night Fever Miro
1.3072768947567
Back to Black By Kilian
1.3060424365998
Dehn Al Oud Al-Rehab
1.3037654146663
Aromatic Blends: Orange Flower & Lychee Kiehl`s
1.3029405873106
Poison Dior
1.3029181963664
BOSS The Collection Silk & Jasmine Hugo Boss
1.3023533841664
MAC Creations Hue: Africanimal M∙A∙C
1.3011296243999
LOVANN Santi Burgas
1.3000941353667
Hugs & Kisses Judith Williams
1.2942121353667
Velvet Rose Anglia Perfumery
1.2874084365998
V Gloria Vanderbilt
1.2858081353667
English Lavander Caswell Massey
1.2847022487998
Intense Boadicea the Victorious
1.280924619599
Mamluk Xerjoff
1.2802824061
Revelation CB I Hate Perfume
1.2788134890332
Amor America Paramela Natura
1.2778721353667
Black Coffee Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.275748951332
Island Vanilla Pacifica
1.272727
Rue Pergolese Gold Ulric de Varens
1.272727
Butterfly Nectar DSH Perfumes
1.2720327158995
Realm Women Erox
1.2709907158995
Asmar SoOud
1.2677024890332
Comme des Garcons Series 7 Sweet: Sticky Cake Comme des Garcons
1.2635345414666
MCM Success Mode Creation Munich
1.2633462707333
Osmo Scents Palmerose Il Profvmo
1.2633462707333
Evasion Digo de Havane L`Arc
1.2611772429634
Absolue Pour le Soir Maison Francis Kurkdjian
1.2600739550974
Le Parfum Eau de Parfum Intense Elie Saab
1.2531064670997
Luciano Soprani Luciano Soprani
1.2507611915655
L'Eau D'Issey Absolue Issey Miyake
1.2506589475666
St Tropez Dispenser Apres Soleil Smell Bent
1.2506261915655
Tabac Rouge Phaedon
1.2503765414666
Gatsby Pacoma
1.2502824061
No. 06 Le Cherche Midi
1.2501882707333
Aspens Drift Solid Perfume
1.2497121000659
Golden Cattleya Olympic Orchids Artisan Perfumes
1.2477520390662
Relax Lollia
1.2462824098654
Miel & Vanille (Honey & Vanilla) L`Occitane en Provence
1.2457751963664
Noora Swiss Arabian
1.2438595500329
Rumba Passion Ted Lapidus
1.2423533841664
Ozbek Rifat Ozbek
1.2396413841664
One Man Show Ruby Edition Jacques Bogart
1.2392246243999
Pheromone for Men Marilyn Miglin
1.2384423012332
Comandante Xerjoff
1.238095
Karolina Kurkova LR
1.238095
Graham Cracker Demeter Fragrance
1.235294
Espoir - Hope Ajne
1.2350992268662
Tonka Reminiscence
1.234346143933
Pistachio Ganache Payard
1.2337095414666
Sienna DSH Perfumes
1.2332052049327
Patchouli Mazzolari
1.2330537367975
Sweet Honesty Avon
1.2327328512661
Ghost Deepest Night Ghost
1.2322825698955
Elie Saab Le Parfum Eau de Toilette Elie Saab
1.2321810304999
Miles Detaille
1.2303863488657
No. 25 Indochine Parfumerie Generale
1.2289475414666
Regina Farmacia SS. Annunziata
1.2282466634661
L'Instant de Guerlain Eau de Noel Iris Millesime Guerlain
1.226893331733
Prairie Nymph Smell Bent
1.2260925585993
Kalemat Arabian Oud
1.2243024232326
Lady Million Eau de Toilette Paco Rabanne
1.2242425890991
Pure Honey Kim Kardashian
1.2238223012332
Magnolia Pourpre Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier
1.2222829454956
Hypnose Senses Lancome
1.2206279036995
Sensuous Eau de Toilette Estée Lauder
1.2163569780665
Cielo Olivina Napa Valley
1.2160186586652
Rose Barbare Guerlain
1.2155579502965
Sa Majeste la Rose Serge Lutens
1.2155280123317
Quelques Fleurs Royale Houbigant
1.2145774259625
Rare Pearls Avon
1.2127852487998
Collection Extraordinaire Rose Velours Van Cleef & Arpels
1.2127331466629
A La Nuit Serge Lutens
1.2125738855314
Poivre Piquant L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.2124854746305
White Musk Libertine The Body Shop
1.2123092707333
Vacances Strange Invisible Perfumes
1.2121260609997
Violette Cherie Parfums Berdoues
1.211226213499
PG14 Iris Taizo Parfumerie Generale
1.2110206003954
Animale Animale for Men Animale
1.2109966768333
Honey Velvet & Sweet Pea’s Purrfumery
1.2097645195331
Oajan Parfums de Marly
1.2091641980608
Soir de Lune Sisley
1.2080557326556
Wish Chopard
1.2078132354326
Oblique Rewind Givenchy
1.2073676768333
Chic Ann Taylor
1.2059388937212
Prada (Amber) Prada

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