Patchouli

lat. Pogostemon cablin, family Lamiaceae

Group: WOODS AND MOSSES

Patchouli Pogostemon cablin, family Lamiaceae
Patchouli Pogostemon cablin, family Lamiaceae
Patchouli Pogostemon cablin, family Lamiaceae
Odor profile: An exotic bush that grows mainly in India, the leaves of which produce the essential oil of patchouli. Sweet, dark, with an earthy, woody edge, it is very popular in many blends, especially the contemporary woody floral musks. Synthetics and fractal extractions of the material also abound.

Patchouli is a wonderful green bushy herb of the mint family. It belongs to the genus Pogostemon and grows up to two or three feet in height. The herb is graced with delicate pinkish-white flowers and aromatic leaves that have been used for centuries in perfumery, due to their wonderful and strong scent. Patchouli is native to tropical regions of Asia, but it grows well in all warm to tropical climates. Nowadays, several varieties of the Pogostemon genus are cultivated allover Asia, West Africa and South America for their aromatic oil known as patchouli oil.

The name patchouli derives from the old Tamil words patchai, meaning "green", and ellai meaning "leaf". The origin of the name points out to the native land of this herb, stemming from the Dravidian language spoken mostly by Tamil people of the Indian subcontinent. The plant was brought to the Middle East along the silk route, and it was thanks to the famous conqueror Napoleon Bonaparte that patchouli reached Europe. Napoleon brought to France a couple of patchouli-scented cashmere shawls that he found in Egypt. The shawls were redolent of patchouli oil, which was used to repel insects and protect them from moths, but the origin of the scent was held as closely guarded secret. Wonderful patterns of the oriental fabrics have soon become easy to replicate, but sneaky European manufacturers were still forced to import the fragrant oil from the East. The secret was finally broken in 1837, when Francisco Manuel Blanco first described patchouli as Mentha cablin, revealing the secret of the mysterious oriental scent to the rest of the western world.

The world’s major craze for patchouli happened in the Europe and America during the 1960s and 1970s. This pungent scented oil that bears a strong reference to India was typically worn by the hippies, who were often associated with the Hare Krishna movement. Unfortunately, the hippies contributed to the bad reputation of patchouli oil because they were typically wearing very bad synthetic formulations. The association of patchouli with the hippie culture finally resulted in misperception of this raw material, and for most of us today, patchouli is just a synonym for too heady, too overwhelming and too common fragrance. Here is an example taken from the UrbanDictionary:

patchouli

  1. 1. A plant that smells like a Grateful Dead concert.
  2. 2. Not a shower, contrary to San Franciso's public policy on hygiene.
  3. 3. Slang term for Filty Filthy Hippie
"No hipppie, that's a bad hippie. Patchouli is not a shower!"

Of course, this example only illustrates another common fallacy and everyone who seriously wishes to explore the wonderful world of perfumery should remember that patchouli is the elementary unit of the entire class of perfumes – the chypre fragrances. The scent of patchouli is described as earthy and herbaceous with rich green heart and a woodsy base. The olfactory profile of patchouli oil, however, strongly depends on the cultivation techniques, time of the harvest, the process of drying and distillation techniques. The highest quality oil is obtained from only 3-4 top pairs of mature leaves, where the highest concentration of the purest oil is found. Proper drying is ensured by placing the cut stems and leaves on a dry surface and turning them over frequently to prevent rapid fermentation. When the process is complete, the leaves are stripped from the stems and placed in woven baskets to allow fermentation and release of their wonderful aroma. The final quality will also depend on the skill of the grower, who controls the level of fermentation by using his own nose. Only a small number of distilleries is specialized in production of this highly refined extract which finds its use in haute parfumerie.

Patchouli oil is obtained by steam distillation or CO2-extraction of the dried leaves. The oil has a rich, balsamic and herbaceous flavor with a minty-woody undertone. Patchouli absolute is a dark green liquid obtained by the solvent extraction of dried leaves. The absolute has a rich, pronouncedly sweet and herbaceous aroma with woody-balsamic undertone. They both blend perfectly with oriental bouquets, chypre and fougère-type fragrances, and powdery perfumes. Patchouli blends well with vetiver, which contains the same earthy olfactory profile, sandalwood, cedarwood, clove, lavender, rose, labdanum, and so on.

One of the most wonderful features of patchouli oil is that it becomes even better with aging. Freshly distilled oil may appear more green, tart and unmelodious in comparison to well aged oil that has a rich and full fruity-like nuance.

In the opus of L Artisan Parfumeur, there are two patchouli-dominated fragrances: the oriental fragrance for women Patchouli Patch, and oriental-woody men’s fragrance Voleur de Roses.

The floral woody musky fragrance for women Nuits de Noho, by Bond No9, features patchouli in the top notes, while Lorenzo Villoresi’s unisex Patchouli offers straightforward interpretation of this herb, laid on a base of woodsy and musky notes. Let me also mention a vintage creation, Patchouli Pour Homme by Reminiscence. Launched in 1970, this fragrance features geranium, cedar and patchouli in the middle notes.

Among the oriental woody fragrances, I would single out two wonderful unisex scents: Montale’s Patchouli Leaves and Borneo 1834 by Serge Lutens. More refined, softer, and ultimately feminine interpretation of patchouli is offered in oriental vanilla fragrance for women - Angel by Thierry Mugler.

To embark on your own journey to discover more wonderful patchouli-based fragrances, use our search for notes.


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

 

 

 

 

 

 

Patchouli Perfumes

1.507942152679
Patchouli Absolu Tom Ford
1.5035166745693
Arthes Essential Patchouli Sumatra Jeanne Arthes
1.5032795953849
Patchouli Santa Maria Novella
1.5025683578315
Zizanie Fragonard
1.50213371266
Patchouly Indonesiano Farmacia SS. Annunziata
1.5018571202782
The Lover Gap
1.5017385806859
Patchouli Solinotes
1.5015015015015
Velvet Patchouli Dolce&Gabbana
1.5014619883041
Patchouli The Body Shop
1.5014224751067
Brutus Orto Parisi
1.5013434487119
BOSS The Collection Cashmere & Patchouli Hugo Boss
1.5012644223171
A*Men Summer Flash Thierry Mugler
1.5007902639482
H&M Comme des Garcons
1.5006717243559
Rock & Republic Eau de Toilette Spray for Women Rock & Republic
1.5006322111585
Herbessence Helena Rubinstein
1.5005926979611
Fashion Decree Woman Atkinsons
1.5004741583689
Patchouli Arawak Ligne St. Barth
1.5004346451715
Patchouli Leaves Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.5003951319741
Patchouli Crabtree & Evelyn
1.5003556187767
Anise Patchouli Compagnie de Provence
1.5003556187767
Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.5003161055793
Dianoche Passion Daisy Fuentes
1.5003161055793
Blackbird Meshaz Natural Perfumes
1.5002765923819
Bodhi Sativa (Patchouli project no.1) DSH Perfumes
1.5002765923819
Ravenous Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002765923819
Patchouli Companhia da Terra
1.5002765923819
Patchouli C.O.Bigelow
1.5002370791844
Mitti Arte Profumi
1.500197565987
Patchouli Des Filles a la Vanille
1.500197565987
Patchouly Pure Sin Teufels Kuche
1.500197565987
Patchouly Teufels Kuche
1.500197565987
Cherie Hoity Toity
1.500197565987
Patchouli TerraNova
1.500197565987
Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.5001580527896
Erdbeermund Teufels Kuche
1.5001580527896
Patchouly Adopt` by Reserve Naturelle
1.5001185395922
H The Exclusive Parfum Pour Homme Roja Dove
1.5001185395922
Patchouli Durance en Provence
1.5001185395922
Patchouli Molinard
1.5001185395922
Morass Teufels Kuche
1.5001185395922
IX Patchouli Rose Mad et Len
1.5000790263948
Black Patchouli Refan
1.5000790263948
Intense Patchouli La Maison de la Vanille
1.5000790263948
Pomegranate Patchouli Voluspa
1.5000790263948
Patchouly Incubus Teufels Kuche
1.5000790263948
Patchouli Mercyful Almond Teufels Kuche
1.5000790263948
Patchouli & Rose Suhad Perfumes
1.5000790263948
Mix 13 Platinum J
1.5000790263948
Depraved Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000790263948
Patchouli Anglia Perfumery
1.5000790263948
Patchouli Queen B
1.5000395131974
Lonach Castle Forbes
1.5000395131974
Masquerade Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000395131974
Maria Manhã de Sonho Jequiti
1.5000395131974
Patchouli Coconut Junky Teufels Kuche
1.5000395131974
Patchouli Crisp Pear Teufels Kuche
1.5000395131974
Demonic Slayer Teufels Kuche
1.5000395131974
Unholy Teufels Kuche
1.5
Scorpio Ajne
1.5
Blood Edition - Gothic Poison Teufels Kuche
1.5
Piccolo Amor Cerchi Nell’Acqua
1.5
Patchouli Spirit Of Musk Teufels Kuche
1.5
Lady Rebel Diamond Edition Mango
1.5
Unveiled Red Pearl
1.5
Patchouli Shadow Teufels Kuche
1.5
Wafa Attar Asgharali
1.5
Patchouli & Musc Blanc Accord Parfait
1.5
Patchouli Spicy Cinnamon Teufels Kuche
1.5
Blood Edition - Holy Vampire Teufels Kuche
1.5
Amour de Patchouli Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5
Colore Colore Pretty Bouquet Parfums Genty
1.5
Patchouli Saint Charles Shave
1.5
Argonaut STILLLIFE
1.5
Patchouly Lavandula Teufels Kuche
1.5
Basha Khan Queen B
1.5
Patchouli Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5
Une Vie en Or pour Homme Frederic M
1.5
Bleu Magador Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5
Patchouli Les Petits Plaisirs
1.5
Patchouli Vintage The Merchant of Venice
1.5
Sexy Patchouli Harvey Prince
1.4999604868026
Patchouli Love Ulric de Varens
1.4999604868026
Oui, mais il a aime Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.4999209736052
Cedar Woods Woods of Windsor
1.4999209736052
192 Light Refan
1.4998814604078
Burial Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4883581847637
Cristina Hilde Soliani
1.4751733333333
Coco Mademoiselle Chanel
1.4727356715663
Vintage Naturals 2009 Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.4699340791844
Musk Denim
1.4697778479532
Voleur de Roses L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.467536290343
ShanghaiJava Musc & Patchouli Crazylibellule and the Poppies
1.4617750791844
Rendezvous Night Urban Retreat
1.4584910527896
Wanton Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4546635395922
Mix 10 Platinum J
1.4545845131974
Patchouli Lost Dragon Teufels Kuche
1.4545845131974
Nuits de Noho Chandelier Bond No 9
1.4513434487119
Nightfall Patchouli Carolina Herrera
1.4448391319741
Mysterieuse? Vanille Patchouli Sephora
1.4445230263948
Durrat Al Khaleej Reehat Al Atoor
1.4444835131974
City Rain Neil Morris
1.4432916451715
Caoba Fueguia 1833
1.4415316187767
Patchouli Tendre Soupir Des Filles a la Vanille
1.4405136715663
Genuine Patchouli Melvita
1.4383297771456
Patchouli Jalaine
1.4334910527896
Ambra e Iris Dr. Vranjes Firenze
1.4290056451715
Patchouli Murdock London
1.4288475923819
Jivago 7 Elements Jivago
1.4286895395922
Patchouli Woman Bjork and Berries
1.4286500263948
Road Trip West Third Brand
1.4286500263948
Patchouly Compagnia Delle Indie
1.4286105131974
Patchouli Süßes Blut Teufels Kuche
1.428571
Patchouli Man Bjork and Berries
1.428571
No.6 Patchouli Spice Angela Flanders
1.428571
Vintage Alan Bray
1.428571
Hetairae Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4237487243559
Naeem Al Haramain Perfumes
1.4213295923819
DKNY Be Delicious Art Men Donna Karan
1.4210925131974
Rhythmus L`acqua Di Fiori
1.4167855395922
Agenda Eclectic Collections
1.4167460263948
55 Bois de Sycomore Mad et Len
1.4124295572941
Midnight Bakula The Body Shop
1.4120544898056
Thundra Profumum Roma
1.4120020791844
Aura of Patchouli Caswell Massey
1.4109798446341
Classic Patchouli Von Eusersdorff
1.4058890235499
Midnight Poison Christian Dior
1.4009483167378
Marrakech Patchouli E Ginger Tesori d`Oriente
1.4005926979611
KIORI KIÖRI
1.4003951319741
Cuba City Las Vegas for Men Cuba Paris
1.4002765923819
Musgo Real Classic Scent Claus Porto
1.400084146673
Rouge Nocturne Terry de Gunzburg
1.4000395131974
BHPC Colors for men Air-Val International
1.4000395131974
Patchouli Euphoric Teufels Kuche
1.4
Love Offence Estiara
1.4
Patchouli Lilith Teufels Kuche
1.3999604868026
Gold in Shadow Ana Hickmann
1.3999604868026
Patchouli New Romantic Teufels Kuche
1.3953284253201
Surreal Garden Avon
1.3943736451715
Vanille Des Filles a la Vanille
1.3939785131974
Jewel Rasasi
1.3932126187767
Patchouli Empire CB I Hate Perfume
1.3925547510669
Ice*Men Thierry Mugler
1.3894026715663
Vixen Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.3878477507508
Lovely Patchouli Krigler
1.3872792954007
Flowerbomb Viktor&Rolf
1.3864816628734
Loud for Him Tommy Hilfiger
1.386162565987
Anne Bonny Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.3846940263948
Patchouly La Vanille Noir Teufels Kuche
1.3841683314367
Les Heures de Cartier: L`Heure Defendue VII Cartier
1.3836448392603
Miss Dior Eau De Toilette Christian Dior

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