Musk

lat. Moschus Moschiferus

Group: Animal Sources

Musk Moschus Moschiferus
Musk Moschus Moschiferus
Musk Moschus Moschiferus
Odor profile: Naturally the essence derived by the perineal glands of the Tibetan musk deer, now endangered and protected. Synthetically replicated in a plethora of variations for fixation and warming fragrance compositions.

Musk is a whole class of fragrant substances used as base notes in perfumery. This wonderful animalistic note creates a groundwork on which the rest of the aromatic shades and nuances of the composition rest. Musk is the most commonly used raw material, present in almost all fragrant compositions. You can easily check this claim by using our search for notes. What makes it so indispensible in the perfume industry is its unique property to balance the composition and add a subtle touch of sensuality and warmth. It is also prized as a wonderful fixative, which reduces the evaporation rate and allows the original composition to last longer while keeping its true fragrance.


Musk
is a name that originally designated a strong-smelling brownish substance secreted by the male of the musk deer of the genus Moschus. Each of the adult male representatives of this animal species has a musk gland that lies in a sac positioned between the genitals and the umbilicus, and secretes powerful pheromones used to attract mates. It has been rumored since ancient times that wonderful musk odor works as an excellent aphrodisiac, and modern science has offered an explanation for this. Even though the debate on the existence of sex pheromones continues, there are scientists who believe that the smell of musk closely resembles the smell of testosterone, which may act as a pheromone in humans.

The term "musk" is often used to describe a wide range of musky substances, typically animalistic notes such as Civet, Castoreum, and Hyrax, or various synthetic musks, known as white musks, which are created in chemical laboratories. The original deer musk has been used and prized for thousands of years as one of the most precious raw materials in perfumery. This lovely animal is still found in the mountain forests of India, Pakistan, Tibet, China, Siberia and Mongolia, even though classified as threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). The musk deer populations could be driven out of existence because of the black-market price for the musk from their glands that reaches almost $45,000 per kilogram. This is one of the most expensive natural products in the world, even more valuable than gold—the all-time highest price of gold ever recorded is $1,913.50 per ounce (there are 0.0284 kilograms per ounce). What is really worrying is that only a few tens of grams can be extracted from a single animal and around 160 deer need to be killed for each kilogram of musk collected. It is possible to remove the gland without killing the animal but, unfortunately, this is hardly ever done.


Deer musk has been used since antiquity and some of the first references of its use in the perfume industry point to Arab and Byzantine perfume makers of the 6th century. It was generously used by the caliphs of Baghdad and highly regarded among the Arabs. This fragrant material was even added to mortared walls of mosques during their construction, to emanate the wonderful fragrance whenever it’s warmed by the sun. Al-Kindi, the famous Philosopher of the Arabs, who wrote hundreds of original treatises on a range of subjects, including perfumes, mentioned this ingredient in many of the perfume recipes, making it one of the mostly prized luxury goods imported from the East. However, musk was not used only for its olfactory features but also because of its curative properties. The Arab and Tibetan healers used it as a stimulant for male health; Ayurvedic practitioners used it in the treatment of cardiac, mental and neurological disorders, and it still holds as one of the most important ingredients in traditional Chinese medicine, being included in the recipes of more than 300 different medicines.
 

In perfumery, the term “musk” doesn’t always apply to a concrete perfume component, but rather designates the overall impression of the fragrant composition. Natural aroma of musk is very complex and usually described with so many contradictory attributes. It's description may range from sweet, creamy or powdery, to rich, leathery, spicy and even woodsy. Most typically, the musk note is described as an animalistic nuance, with a lively and oscillating, often contrasting nature. The typical musky smell develops from the natural musk tincture once the volatile parts have evaporated, allowing the sensual and warm “true musky” notes to come up to the surface.

Angelica archangelica

Until the late 19th century, natural musk was extensively used in the creation of perfumes before it became much too expensive and controversial. Luckily, there are some plants that share similar olflactory properties with musk, capable of producing musky-smelling macrocyclic lactone compounds.

Ambrette by Bob Richmond

Many of these plants, such as Garden Angelica (Angelica archangelica), Musk Flower (Mimulus moschatus) Abelmosk  or Ambrette seeds (Abelmoschus moschatus), are now widely used as a substitute for animal musks.

Musk Flower by alexlomas


In 1888, the scientist Albert Baur was the first to discover an artificial musk. This was a completely accidental discovery that occurred while the scientist was experimenting with TNT explosives. After an attempt to produce a more effective form of trinitrotoluene, he suddenly noticed a very pleasant musky-like odor in the air and attributed it to, what was later named, nitro-musk. This was the first member of the family of synthetic musks, but it was banned from use due to its instability and potential toxicity. Later on, polycyclic musk and macrocyclic musk classes were developed, of which the first one is most commonly used in modern perfumery. Macrocylic musks are derived from plants and they most closely resemble the natural scent of musk, but their production is more costly. Another interesting fact about macrocylic musks is that around half of the population cannot detect their smell in a fragrant composition. For this reason, successful perfumers usually combine a variety of musks in the formula in order to truly convey the original idea behind the fragrance.
 

The use of natural musk was prohibited in 1979, when the musk deer was protected as an endangered species. Today, white musk note is one of the most commonly used in creation of perfumes, offering a more ethical approach and being less expensive than the natural musk. Some of the wonderful perfumes highlighting this note are Serge Lutens' Clair de Musc, Montale's White Musk, Il Profvmo's Musc Bleu, and Narciso Rodriguez For Her. Michael Boadi’s musky quartet from the Illuminum collection plays with the musk olfactory group in four different compositions and perfectly illustrates the broadness of this term: Cashemere Musk, Rajamusk , Piper Leather and Wild Berry Blossom.


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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Perfumes and Colognes With Musk

1.5121554157014
Wild Musk Coty
1.5090519090519
Clean Skin Clean
1.5067782067782
White Musk Tesori d`Oriente
1.504719004719
Silver Musk Nasomatto
1.5040326040326
Body Fantasies Signature Fresh White Musk Parfums de Coeur
1.5032175032175
Black Musk Jovan
1.5030459030459
Musc Tonkin Parfum d`Empire
1.5023595023595
L'Antimatiere Les Nez
1.5019305019305
Royall Muske Royall Fragrances
1.5019305019305
Lazy Sunday Morning Maison Martin Margiela
1.5018876018876
Princess Musk Ajmal
1.5015873015873
Black Musk Jovan
1.5015444015444
Over The Musk Thierry Mugler
1.5012012012012
Moschus Wild Love Sophie Nerval
1.5012012012012
Body Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5012012012012
Felce Azzurra Paglieri
1.5011583011583
Angel Face Ava Luxe
1.5011583011583
Ruehl No.925 Ruehl No.925
1.5011583011583
Fuel for Life Summer Diesel
1.5010725010725
Define Next
1.5010296010296
White Musk Al-Rehab
1.5010296010296
Fleur Poudree de Musc Les Nereides
1.5009438009438
Egyptian Musk Ava Luxe
1.5009438009438
Summer Mania Eau Fraiche pour Femme Giorgio Armani
1.5009438009438
Sula Stiletto Musk Susanne Lang
1.5008151008151
Clean Lather Clean
1.5008151008151
Sexy Sparkle Hot Berry Victoria`s Secret
1.5008151008151
Illusions Impulse
1.5007722007722
Musk al Madinah Al-Rehab
1.5007722007722
Commando Smell Bent
1.5007722007722
Muschio (Musc) Santa Maria Novella
1.5006864006864
Talc Douceur Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.5006435006435
Musc Solinotes
1.5006435006435
De Tout Coeur Fragonard
1.5006435006435
Pearl Musk Ava Luxe
1.5006435006435
Lago del Desierto Fueguia 1833
1.5006006006006
Deer Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5006006006006
Jasmine Musc Zara
1.5005577005577
Musk Bettina Barty
1.5005148005148
Magic of the Orient - White Body Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5005148005148
Tea Rose Mesk Perfumer`s Workshop
1.5005148005148
G7 Mixed Gap
1.5005148005148
Lilac Vegetal Pinaud Clubman
1.5005148005148
Snow, Glass, Apple Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5004719004719
Asalat Al Musk Arabian Oud
1.5004719004719
Vanilla Musk Al-Rehab
1.5004719004719
Musk C.O.Bigelow
1.500429000429
Aoud Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.500429000429
Air de Fio No 2 Pupa
1.500429000429
Musk Urbar Royal Crown
1.5003861003861
Musk Kaaba Arabian Oud
1.5003861003861
BHPC Classic for men Air-Val International
1.5003432003432
$ D.S. & Durga
1.5003432003432
Kabuki Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5003003003003
Benetton White Night Man Benetton
1.5003003003003
Gant Summer Gant
1.5003003003003
XX Very Nice Mexx
1.5002574002574
Musc Blanc Nejma
1.5002574002574
Huemul Fueguia 1833
1.5002574002574
Black Pearl Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002574002574
Les Bijoux Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002145002145
Dragon's Musk Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002145002145
Vice Ajmal
1.5002145002145
Royal Dark Musk Arabian Oud
1.5002145002145
Nike Fission Nike
1.5002145002145
Muschi Bianchi del Tibet Compagnia Delle Indie
1.5002145002145
Witchblade Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Endymion Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Whoso List To Hunt Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Satyr Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Sara Pezzini Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Kalgoorlie Bud Parfums
1.5001716001716
Dehn al Oudh Abiyad Afnan Perfumes
1.5001716001716
Egyptian Musk Michelle Michini
1.5001716001716
Bathsheba Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001716001716
Musk Al Aroosah Al-Rehab
1.5001716001716
Tentación de Rosas Victorio & Lucchino
1.5001716001716
CBMUSK CB I Hate Perfume
1.5001287001287
Old Spice Musk Shulton Company
1.5001287001287
Bien Loin d'ici Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001287001287
Saltwater Portland General Store
1.5001287001287
Dynamo Sapil
1.5001287001287
I Heart The Sun Pacsun
1.5001287001287
Musk Abiyad Afnan Perfumes
1.5001287001287
Al Khulood Asgharali
1.5001287001287
Charlie White Musk Revlon
1.5001287001287
Disclosure Adventure Sapil
1.5001287001287
Oud & Musc Cartier
1.5001287001287
Wujood Syed Junaid Alam
1.5001287001287
АRТ Ekspresija (ART Expression) Dzintars
1.5001287001287
Libertine Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001287001287
Pavo Lily Lambert
1.5001287001287
Jasmin Musk Al-Rehab
1.5001287001287
Tristan Pierre Cardin
1.5001287001287
Alf Zahra Al-Rehab
1.5000858000858
Musc Refan
1.5000858000858
Al Fairooz Asgharali
1.5000858000858
Ladon Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000858000858
Male Supreme Roberta Andrade
1.5000858000858
Oriental Musk Ava Luxe
1.5000858000858
XXV Red Musc Mad et Len
1.5000858000858
Jaathbia Collection White Musk Ajmal
1.5000858000858
Guapo Al-Rehab
1.5000858000858
Aperotos Eros Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000858000858
Taiga DayNa Decker
1.5000858000858
Superior White Musk Arabian Oud
1.5000858000858
♥ Invisible Musk Slumberhouse
1.5000858000858
Power Musk Oriflame
1.5000858000858
Rose Nerolita Eau Jeune
1.5000858000858
White Satin Fine Fragrances & Cosmetics
1.5000858000858
Bora Bora Exotic for Men Liz Claiborne
1.5000429000429
Pink Nancy Sapil
1.5000429000429
Blu Light Fever Byblos
1.5000429000429
Fawakeh Shirley May
1.5000429000429
Kalemat Musk Arabian Oud
1.5000429000429
Miriam Ocariz Eau de Toilette Miriam Ocariz
1.5000429000429
Evolution Musk DSH Perfumes
1.5000429000429
Varens Musc Ulric de Varens
1.5000429000429
Fetish: Toro Opus Oils
1.5000429000429
Anfas Al Musk Al-Rehab
1.5000429000429
Cashmere Musk Ava Luxe
1.5000429000429
Victory Al-Rehab
1.5000429000429
Musk Al Ghazal Al-Rehab
1.5000429000429
Dragon's Heart Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000429000429
The Temptation Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000429000429
Jade East Musk Regency Cosmetics
1.5000429000429
Lurid Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000429000429
Wondrous Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5000429000429
Amour Mandarine Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5
Emotion Essence Weil
1.5
I`m Fio Deep Coral Pupa
1.5
Amber Musk Shiara
1.5
Black Musk The Merchant of Venice
1.5
Sultan Desire Queen B
1.5
Dark Entity Aziza World Fragrances
1.5
Gleam Johan B
1.5
Montmartre Morph
1.5
Musk Al Sheikh Al-Rehab
1.5
Nude Moderne AetherArtsPerfume
1.5
Synthesized Lotus Root Malin+Goetz
1.5
Spring Vetiver 40 Notes Perfume
1.5
Red Carpet Attitude Nicole Lola Mood Parfums
1.5
Pink Musk Al-Jazeera Perfumes
1.5
Hinlay Orchide Lorelyane
1.5
Shuhaiyah Syed Junaid Alam
1.4999570999571
s.Oliver City Beach Woman s.Oliver
1.4999570999571
Antebellum West Third Brand
1.4999570999571
Dragon's Hide Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4999570999571
Fresh Musk Al-Jazeera Perfumes
1.4999570999571
Sheer Musk Ava Luxe

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