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

1.5083362278569
Patchouli Absolu Tom Ford
1.5035506155687
Arthes Essential Patchouli Sumatra Jeanne Arthes
1.5033576473312
Patchouli Santa Maria Novella
1.502624368029
Zizanie Fragonard
1.5022384315542
Patchouly Indonesiano Farmacia SS. Annunziata
1.5018910887268
Brutus Orto Parisi
1.5018139014318
The Lover Gap
1.5016981204894
Patchouli Solinotes
1.5016209331944
Velvet Patchouli Dolce&Gabbana
1.5015437458994
Patchouli The Body Shop
1.501350777662
BOSS The Collection Cashmere & Patchouli Hugo Boss
1.5012349967195
A*Men Summer Flash Thierry Mugler
1.5009262475397
Patchouli Eau de Parfum Molinard
1.5007718729497
H&M Comme des Garcons
1.5006560920073
Tramp Lush
1.5006560920073
Stardust Oriflame
1.5006174983598
Herbessence Helena Rubinstein
1.5005789047123
Fashion Decree Woman Atkinsons
1.5004631237698
Patchouli Crabtree & Evelyn
1.5004631237698
Patchouli Arawak Ligne St. Barth
1.5004245301223
Patchouli Leaves Monotheme Fine Fragrances Venezia
1.5004245301223
Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.5003859364749
Blackbird Meshaz Natural Perfumes
1.5003473428274
Bodhi Sativa (Patchouli project no.1) DSH Perfumes
1.5003473428274
Live Joyously Philosophy
1.5003473428274
Anise Patchouli Compagnie de Provence
1.5003087491799
Dianoche Passion Daisy Fuentes
1.5002701555324
Patchouli C.O.Bigelow
1.5002701555324
Ravenous Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5002701555324
Patchouli Companhia da Terra
1.5002315618849
Mitti Arte Profumi
1.5001929682374
Patchouly Adopt` by Reserve Naturelle
1.5001929682374
Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.5001929682374
Patchouli Intense Eau de Parfum Molinard
1.5001929682374
Patchouli TerraNova
1.5001929682374
Cherie Hoity Toity
1.5001929682374
Patchouli Des Filles a la Vanille
1.5001929682374
Patchouly Teufels Kuche
1.5001929682374
Patchouly Pure Sin Teufels Kuche
1.5001929682374
Tunisian Patchouli Kuumba Made
1.5001543745899
Erdbeermund Teufels Kuche
1.5001543745899
Patchouli Molinard
1.5001157809425
No. IX Patchouli Rose Mad et Len
1.5001157809425
Patchouli Durance en Provence
1.5001157809425
Morass Teufels Kuche
1.500077187295
Patchouli Queen B
1.500077187295
Mix 13 Platinum J
1.500077187295
Depraved Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.500077187295
Patchouli Anglia Perfumery
1.500077187295
Patchouli Mercyful Almond Teufels Kuche
1.500077187295
Pomegranate Patchouli Voluspa
1.500077187295
Patchouli Rose Scent by the Sea
1.500077187295
Intense Patchouli La Maison de la Vanille
1.500077187295
Master JoJo Handsome London
1.500077187295
Black Patchouli Refan
1.500077187295
Power Instinct Airness
1.500077187295
Patchouli & Rose Suhad Perfumes
1.500077187295
Patchouly Incubus Teufels Kuche
1.500077187295
Bleu Magador Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5000385936475
Patchouli & Musc Blanc Accord Parfait
1.5000385936475
Patchouli Les Ecuadors
1.5000385936475
Patchouli Crisp Pear Teufels Kuche
1.5000385936475
Lonach Castle Forbes
1.5000385936475
Amour de Patchouli Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5000385936475
Demonic Slayer Teufels Kuche
1.5000385936475
Royal Brand Gold Bi-es
1.5000385936475
Maria Manhã de Sonho Jequiti
1.5000385936475
Ippi Patchouli Carrement Belle
1.5000385936475
Oriental Rose Vertus
1.5000385936475
Masquerade Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.5000385936475
Unholy Teufels Kuche
1.5000385936475
Patchouli Coconut Junky Teufels Kuche
1.5
Argonaut STILLLIFE
1.5
Basha Khan Queen B
1.5
Patchouli Shadow Teufels Kuche
1.5
Blood Edition - Holy Vampire Teufels Kuche
1.5
Haraayer Reehat Al Atoor
1.5
Patchouli Spicy Cinnamon Teufels Kuche
1.5
Blood Edition - Gothic Poison Teufels Kuche
1.5
Patchouli Spirit Of Musk Teufels Kuche
1.5
Piccolo Amor Cerchi Nell’Acqua
1.5
Fragrance №10 Nikkos-Oskol Fragrance
1.5
MTV Man MTV Perfumes
1.5
Merci Intense Jequiti
1.5
Dark Patchouli Scent by the Sea
1.5
Black Magic Parfums Genty
1.5
Unveiled Red Pearl
1.5
Patchouli Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.5
Patchouli YanFroloff Perfumer
1.5
04 Forest Patchouli Fred Segal
1.5
Paris - Saint-Honore Stephanie de Bruijn - Parfum sur Mesure
1.5
Patchouli Passion Charme Essência
1.5
Patchouli Vintage The Merchant of Venice
1.5
Une Vie en Or pour Homme Frederic M
1.5
Lady Rebel Diamond Edition Mango
1.5
Patchouly Lavandula Teufels Kuche
1.5
Sexy Patchouli Harvey Prince
1.5
Flambee Dilis Parfum
1.5
Patchouli Saint Charles Shave
1.5
Patchouli Les Petits Plaisirs
1.5
Scorpio Ajne
1.4999614063525
Indigo Swing BillyXClub
1.4999614063525
Oui, mais il a aime Parfums et Senteurs du Pays Basque
1.4999614063525
Patchouli Love Ulric de Varens
1.499922812705
192 Light Refan
1.4998842190575
Burial Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4883453110648
Cristina Hilde Soliani
1.4759703333333
Coco Mademoiselle Chanel
1.4727237174173
Vintage Naturals 2009 Patchouli Demeter Fragrance
1.470588
Nue au Soleil Prada
1.4704340428004
Voleur de Roses L`Artisan Parfumeur
1.4699285618849
Musk Denim
1.4675160602447
ShanghaiJava Musc & Patchouli Crazylibellule and the Poppies
1.4617695618849
Rendezvous Night Urban Retreat
1.4615765936475
Kanion Classic Pollena Ewa
1.4584873745899
Wanton Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.458333
Tribal Arte Profumi
1.4546607809425
Mix 10 Platinum J
1.4545835936475
Patchouli Lost Dragon Teufels Kuche
1.454545
A.R.T. Etnic Eudora
1.4515437458994
Nightfall Patchouli Carolina Herrera
1.4448299364749
Mysterieuse? Vanille Patchouli Sephora
1.444521187295
Durrat Al Khaleej Reehat Al Atoor
1.444444
City Rain Neil Morris
1.4432815301223
Caoba Fueguia 1833
1.4415233428274
Patchouli Tendre Soupir Des Filles a la Vanille
1.4405017174173
Genuine Patchouli Melvita
1.4383104665972
Patchouli Jalaine
1.4375385936475
Black Shark Paris Elysees
1.4334873745899
Ambra e Iris Dr. Vranjes Firenze
1.4290341237698
Patchouli Murdock London
1.4288411555324
Jivago 7 Elements Jivago
1.4286867809425
Patchouli Woman Bjork and Berries
1.428648187295
100 E. Marinella
1.428648187295
Patchouly Compagnia Delle Indie
1.428648187295
Patchouli Man Bjork and Berries
1.428648187295
Road Trip West Third Brand
1.428648187295
Patchouli Rain Scent by the Sea
1.4286095936475
Patchouli Süßes Blut Teufels Kuche
1.428571
No.6 Patchouli Spice Angela Flanders
1.428571
Patchouli La Belle Italienne Des Filles a la Vanille
1.428571
Beloved Cologne Parfumee Prince Matchabelli
1.428571
Vintage Alan Bray
1.428571
Wafa Attar Asgharali
1.428571
Hetairae Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
1.4236944983598
Naeem Al Haramain Perfumes
1.4213231555324
DKNY Be Delicious Art Men Donna Karan
1.4210915936475
Rhythmus L`acqua Di Fiori
1.421053
Patchouli Lothantique
1.420509555324
Classic Patchouli Von Eusersdorff

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