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

1.5133647798742
Eau de Miel L`Occitane en Provence
1.5115303983229
Mirror Mirror Collection - A Travers Le Miroir Thierry Mugler
1.5085604472397
Miel d`Oranger Yves Rocher
1.5065063333333
Armani Code for Women Giorgio Armani
1.5018343815514
O Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5014849755416
Dana O'Shee Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5005241090147
Pure Honey Philosophy
1.4768014605171
Honeycomb Library of Flowers
1.4564729979036
Honey and the Moon Tokyo Milk Parfumarie Curiosite
1.4551564605171
Gatsby Pacoma
1.4530044472397
Honeymania The Body Shop
1.4496960167715
Imari Mystique Avon
1.4288513570929
MAC Creations Hue: Naked Honey M∙A∙C
1.4284836484976
Aurora Acqua Micaelangelo
1.4213150545073
Iris Berben LR
1.4146550461216
A*Men Pure Havane Thierry Mugler
1.4127232187282
Chergui Serge Lutens
1.4122874689029
Lady Million Paco Rabanne
1.4121627903564
Le Parfum Elie Saab
1.4006114605171
Mio Bjao Parfumerie Generale
1.3999126484976
IKKS Baby IKKS
1.3976077631027
Que sais je? Jean Patou
1.3841390048917
Angel Thierry Mugler
1.3841145695318
Delivre Moi Libertin Louison Technique Indiscrete
1.3815634605171
Lelong Lucien Lelong
1.3768343815514
Sunset Boulevard Gale Hayman
1.3768343815514
Dragon's Milk Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.3760482180294
Fresh Fig Arran Aromatics
1.3750873515024
4elements Ramon Molvizar
1.371713498253
Fame Lady Gaga
1.3716802725367
Wildflower Honey CB I Hate Perfume
1.3673355520615
A*Men Thierry Mugler
1.3662807442348
Treselle Mystique Avon
1.365994490566
MAC Creations Hue: Africanimal M∙A∙C
1.364422163522
No. 08 L’Eau Baptiste IUNX
1.3643348120196
Arabian Prestige Original Arabian Oud
1.3608735150245
Miss Varens Fashion Ulric de Varens
1.3587822145353
Gucci by Gucci Gucci
1.3576671090147
BV Secret Bottega Verde
1.3555442893082
Honey I Washed the Kids Lush
1.3530698644305
Miel De Bois Serge Lutens
1.3495073473096
Botrytis Ginestet
1.3468213920335
Les Exclusifs de Chanel Beige Chanel
1.3427241551363
L'Instant de Guerlain Guerlain
1.340896706499
Miel & Citron (Honey & Lemon) L`Occitane en Provence
1.3365167987421
Miel & Citron Pailletee Shimmering L`Occitane en Provence
1.3342065150245
Rucher Fleuri Phoenicia Perfumes
1.3335950545073
Moroccan MOR
1.3334203515024
Roses Aftelier
1.3330625276031
Sensuous Estée Lauder
1.3328013927324
Honey Coconut Love & Toast
1.3229051146052
L’Abeille de Guerlain Guerlain
1.3227328120196
Party Queen Oriflame
1.3205241090147
Wild Ginger Chai Soivohle
1.3201147456324
Aqua Allegoria Flora Nymphea Guerlain
1.3186331236897
Sweet Oriental Dream Montale
1.3140744060098
Miele Rosa Il Profumi di Firenze
1.3138625730259
Immortelle de Corse L`Occitane en Provence
1.3119477239693
Back to Black By Kilian
1.3077793515024
Miro Night Fever Miro
1.307692
Rue Pergolese Gold Parfums Pergolese Paris
1.3063570845563
Dehn Al Oud Al-Rehab
1.3038426296296
Aromatic Blends: Orange Flower & Lychee Kiehl`s
1.3032523969252
Poison Dior
1.3022365317959
Cologne Pour Le Soir Maison Francis Kurkdjian
1.3012229210342
LOVANN Santi Burgas
1.3003787686932
El Attarine Serge Lutens
1.3000873515024
Hugs & Kisses Judith Williams
1.2942053515024
Velvet Rose Anglia Perfumery
1.2941500698812
Hermessence Ambre Narguile Hermes
1.2937858176101
BOSS The Collection Silk & Jasmine Hugo Boss
1.2904567253669
Mamluk Xerjoff
1.2890299566737
Asmar SoOud
1.2885218644305
Island Vanilla Pacifica
1.2877230845563
V Gloria Vanderbilt
1.286500163522
MCM Success Mode Creation Munich
1.2858013515024
English Lavander Caswell Massey
1.2788262180294
Amor America Paramela Natura
1.2787388665269
Sweet Tea Elizabeth W
1.2781563284416
Le Parfum Eau de Parfum Intense Elie Saab
1.2780400545073
Black Coffee Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.2762355150245
St Tropez Dispenser Apres Soleil Smell Bent
1.2754835373864
L'Eau D'Issey Absolue Issey Miyake
1.2732511090147
Majestic Boadicea the Victorious
1.2729890545073
Lamsa Arabian Oud
1.2728143515024
Butterfly Nectar DSH Perfumes
1.2692656785465
Oriental Lace Oscar de la Renta
1.2677152180294
Comme des Garcons Series 7 Sweet: Sticky Cake Comme des Garcons
1.2658658965758
One Man Show Ruby Edition Jacques Bogart
1.2654775450734
Intense Boadicea the Victorious
1.2635074060098
Evasion Digo de Havane L`Arc
1.2634853249476
Tabac Rouge Phaedon
1.2633327030049
Osmo Scents Palmerose Il Profvmo
1.2629885751223
Rumba Passion Ted Lapidus
1.2606566240391
Vohina Huitieme Art Parfums
1.2545480069881
Absolue Pour le Soir Maison Francis Kurkdjian
1.2532320055905
Luciano Soprani Luciano Soprani
1.2531211313767
Miel & Vanille (Honey & Vanilla) L`Occitane en Provence
1.252736847659
Relax Lollia
1.252358490566
Comandante Xerjoff
1.2522574961565
Realm Women Erox
1.250786163522
Noche Del Fuego Spadaro Luxury Fragrances
1.2506114605171
Armani Code Mirror Edition Giorgio Armani
1.2505241090147
No. 06 Le Cherche Midi
1.2503494060098
Linden Library of Flowers
1.2501747030049
Magnolia Santa Maria Novella
1.2501747030049
Aspens Drift Parfum de Terre
1.2466743081761
Patchouli Mazzolari
1.2455705296995
Sweet Honesty Avon
1.2426860545073
Revelation CB I Hate Perfume
1.2399451684137
Elie Saab Le Parfum Eau de Toilette Elie Saab
1.2389685150245
Pheromone for Men Marilyn Miglin
1.238095
Karolina Kurkova LR
1.2358319566737
Tonka Reminiscence
1.235294
Espoir - Hope Ajne
1.2342630600978
Pistachio Ganache Payard
1.2336824060098
Sienna DSH Perfumes
1.2325107686932
Lady Million Eau de Toilette Paco Rabanne
1.2324267386443
Ghost Deepest Night Ghost
1.2280745506639
L'Instant de Guerlain Eau de Noel Iris Millesime Guerlain
1.2272707631027
Prairie Nymph Smell Bent
1.2260686519916
Rose Barbare Guerlain
1.2257838721174
Oajan Parfums de Marly
1.2249538001398
Rare Pearls Avon
1.2239690300489
Magnolia Pourpre Maitre Parfumeur et Gantier
1.2227955331936
A La Nuit Serge Lutens
1.2223093515024
Field & Flowers Library of Flowers
1.221735174703
Golden Cattleya Olympic Orchids Artisan Perfumes
1.2189561460517
Sa Majeste la Rose Serge Lutens
1.2182473025856
Noora Swiss Arabian
1.217186338225
Oblique Rewind Givenchy
1.2149063773585
White Musk Libertine The Body Shop
1.2146354060098
Al Attar Al Thameen Al Bahy Rasasi
1.2145997120894
Poivre Piquant L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.2122957030049
Vacances Strange Invisible Perfumes
1.2118351935709
Violette Cherie Parfums Berdoues
1.211669048218
Hypnose Senses Lancome
1.2109627575122
Honey Velvet & Sweet Pea’s Purrfumery
1.2108754060098
Cumberland Ti Soivohle
1.2096718721174
Sensuous Eau de Toilette Estée Lauder
1.2096431614256
Quelques Fleurs Royale Houbigant
1.2087812103424
No. 25 Indochine Parfumerie Generale
1.2085867631027
Ambre Muscadin LM Parfums
1.2084151935709
Ozbek Rifat Ozbek
1.2074200013976
Lollipop Bling Honey Mariah Carey
1.2073337575122
Chic Ann Taylor
1.2064350293501
Animale Animale for Men Animale
1.2056805695318
To Bee Roxana Illuminated Perfume
1.2054774060098
Regina Farmacia SS. Annunziata
1.2043434360587
Cielo Olivina Napa Valley

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