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

1.5094697315647
Wild Musk Coty
1.506703751248
White Musk Tesori d`Oriente
1.506180763562
Clean Skin Clean
1.504611800504
Silver Musk Nasomatto
1.5041091749156
Clair de Musc Serge Lutens
1.5032805591214
Body Fantasies Signature Fresh White Musk Parfums de Coeur
1.5019493177388
L'Antimatiere Les Nez
1.5017115960633
Princess Musk Ajmal
1.5016165073931
Royall Muske Royall Fragrances
1.5016165073931
Black Musk Jovan
1.5014738743879
Lazy Sunday Morning Maison Martin Margiela
1.5014738743879
Musc Tonkin Parfum d`Empire
1.5012836970475
Fuel for Life Summer Diesel
1.5012361527124
Moschus Wild Love Sophie Nerval
1.5011410640422
Angel Face Ava Luxe
1.5011410640422
Ruehl No.925 Ruehl No.925
1.5010935197071
Define Next
1.501045975372
Fleur Poudree de Musc Les Nereides
1.5009984310369
Sula Stiletto Musk Susanne Lang
1.5009984310369
Summer Mania Eau Fraiche pour Femme Giorgio Armani
1.5009508867018
Lumberjack Werewolf Smell Bent
1.5009508867018
Pur desir de Lavande Yves Rocher
1.5009508867018
Body Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5009508867018
Felce Azzurra Paglieri
1.5009033423668
Clean Lather Clean
1.5008557980317
Egyptian Musk Ava Luxe
1.5008557980317
Sexy Sparkle Hot Berry Victoria`s Secret
1.5008082536966
Seductive Musk Oriflame
1.5008082536966
Pearl Musk Ava Luxe
1.5008082536966
Illusions Impulse
1.5007607093615
White Musk Al-Rehab
1.5007607093615
Lago del Desierto Fueguia 1833
1.5007131650264
Jasmine Musc Zara
1.5007131650264
De Tout Coeur Fragonard
1.5006656206913
Talc Douceur Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.5006180763562
Solinotes Musc Arno Sorel
1.5005705320211
Musk al Madinah Al-Rehab
1.5005705320211
Snow, Glass, Apple Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5005705320211
White Goldskin Ramon Molvizar
1.500522987686
Musk C.O.Bigelow
1.500522987686
Musk Bettina Barty
1.500522987686
Commando Smell Bent
1.5004754433509
Magic of the Orient - White Body Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5004754433509
Tea Rose Mesk Perfumer`s Workshop
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Air de Fio No 2 Pupa
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Musk Urbar Royal Crown
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$ D.S. & Durga
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BHPC Classic for men Air-Val International
1.5003803546807
LOMUSK Santi Burgas
1.5003328103456
Benetton White Night Man Benetton
1.5003328103456
Deer Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5003328103456
Clin D`oeil Porte Bonheur Bourjois
1.5003328103456
Les Bijoux Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5003328103456
Fae Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5003328103456
Gant Summer Gant
1.5002852660106
Huemul Fueguia 1833
1.5002852660106
Witchblade Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002852660106
Aoud Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5002377216755
Musk Mazzolari
1.5002377216755
Celine Sensual Summer Celine
1.5002377216755
Bien Loin d'ici Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002377216755
Bathsheba Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002377216755
Dragon's Musk Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002377216755
Vice Ajmal
1.5002377216755
Black Pearl Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002377216755
Musk Kaaba Arabian Oud
1.5002377216755
Eau de Frohliche No.2 Erik Kormann
1.5001901773404
Kabuki Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001901773404
Whoso List To Hunt Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001901773404
Kalgoorlie Bud Parfums
1.5001901773404
Sara Pezzini Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001901773404
Royal Dark Musk Arabian Oud
1.5001426330053
Flowerbomb Swarovski Edition Viktor&Rolf
1.5001426330053
Musk Al Haramain Perfumes
1.5001426330053
Charlie White Musk Revlon
1.5001426330053
Tristan Pierre Cardin
1.5001426330053
Rajamusk Illuminum
1.5001426330053
Saltwater Portland General Store
1.5001426330053
Muschi Bianchi del Tibet Compagnia Delle Indie
1.5001426330053
Pavo Lily Lambert
1.5001426330053
Endymion Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5001426330053
Tentación de Rosas Victorio & Lucchino
1.5001426330053
Egyptian Musk Michelle Michini
1.5000950886702
Body Language House of Matriarch
1.5000950886702
Male Supreme Roberta Andrade
1.5000950886702
Superior White Musk Arabian Oud
1.5000950886702
Satyr Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
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Musc Refan
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♥ Invisible Musk Slumberhouse
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Taiga DayNa Decker
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Rose Nerolita Eau Jeune
1.5000950886702
АRТ Ekspresija (ART Expression) Dzintars
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CBMUSK CB I Hate Perfume
1.5000950886702
The Temptation Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000475443351
Lurid Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000475443351
Jasmin Musk Al-Rehab
1.5000475443351
Jacomo Oud for Men Jacomo
1.5000475443351
Victory Al-Rehab
1.5000475443351
Wondrous Musk Abdul Samad Al Qurashi
1.5000475443351
Bora Bora Exotic for Men Liz Claiborne
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Al Khulood Asgharali
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Miriam Ocariz Eau de Toilette Miriam Ocariz
1.5
Blu Light Fever Byblos
1.5
Gleam Johan B
1.5
Red Carpet Attitude Nicole Lola Mood Parfums
1.5
Spring Vetiver 40 Notes Perfume
1.5
XXV Red Musc Mad et Len
1.5
Amber Musk Shiara
1.5
1538 Rheims D.S. & Durga
1.5
I`m Fio Deep Coral Pupa
1.5
Shuhaiyah Syed Junaid Alam
1.5
Sultan Desire Queen B
1.5
Musk Al Sheikh Al-Rehab
1.5
Dragon's Heart Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4999524556649
Amour Mandarine Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.4999524556649
Musk Al Ghazal Al-Rehab
1.4999524556649
Sheer Musk Ava Luxe
1.4999524556649
Musc Elixir Precieux Dior
1.4999524556649
s.Oliver City Beach Woman s.Oliver
1.4999524556649
Dragon's Hide Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4999049113298
Paris CDG The Scent of Departure
1.4999049113298
Love Pulse Avon
1.4949854290401
Narciso Rodriguez For Her Narciso Rodriguez
1.4946931379737
Musk Jovan
1.4800854753958
Skin Musk Parfums de Coeur
1.4786394729235
Heaven Gap
1.4784511773404
Ladon Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4762850886702
Vanilla Musk Al-Rehab
1.4762375443351
Libertine Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4760080542005
Baby Grace Philosophy
1.4715075714354
Bois et Musc Serge Lutens
1.470832381781
Black Musk Jovan
1.4622036206913
Trish McEvoy 3 Snowdrop & Crystal Flowers Trish McEvoy
1.4597442660106
Sed Non Satiata Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4547351773404
Moattar Dhab Syed Junaid Alam
1.4546876330053
Amber Jalaine
1.4537597857177
Talco Delicato Il Profumi di Firenze
1.4531642315885
Narciso Rodriguez for Him Musk Narciso Rodriguez
1.4504754433509
Muschio (Musc) Santa Maria Novella
1.4486088103456
Hint of Musk Impulse
1.4453948867018
Crystal de Musc Comptoir Sud Pacifique
1.4449194433509
Seplasia Bruno Acampora
1.4445866330053
Ambre Chinoise Des Filles a la Vanille
1.4444915443351
Trish McEvoy 11 White Iris Trish McEvoy
1.4443964556649
Salome Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4417940763562
Stiletto Nicole Amy Fragrances
1.438543982789
Soft Musk Avon
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Lucid House of Matriarch
1.4301875073931
Vison Noir Robert Beaulieu
1.4296645197071
Yacht Man Metal Myrurgia

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