The Five Scented classics

By Jo Phillips

In perfumery, the two most used and probably considered the queen and grande Dames of the fragrance world are definitely Rose and Jasmine. These most regal of flowers rule the scent world. But what if we were so bold as to suggest there are five ingredients that could well be on this list? Find out more in The Five Scented classics Here.

So if we were pushed to create a top five what would they be? Yes Rose and Jasmine for sure, but then think Patchouli, Cedarwood and then Cashmeran. So why? And some may ask what are these?

Image by Joshua Woroniecki

Let’s start with

  • Cashmeran

From a scientific perspective, Cashmeran is a chemical compound used in fragrances. It was discovered by International Flavors and Fragrances (International Flavors & Fragrances is a company that produces flavours and fragrances) in the 1970s by John Hall and was seen as an important invention.

Its smell is quite complex with woody-musky notes alongside rich facets that are rich spicy, fruity, chypre, balsamic and vanilla. Its overall job if you like is to convey the soft sensuous feeling of cashmere.

  • Patchouli

Unlike Cashmeran this oil is extracted by a steam distillation process from the dried leaves of the patchouli plant an evergreen floral perennial herb native to Southeast Asia.

Patchouli is very misunderstood, probably because of its association with the hippie movement from the late 1960 to 1970s. Far too much was worn that was a bad quality, one that literally would stick in people’s throats.

But to give it its due this was not a great version of it. The true scent is not a dirty musky sickly scent but is musky, sweet, with a slightly spicy aroma, with multiple micro factes.

Patchouli oil, with its recognizable musky-earthy sweet, spicy aroma, and has most commonly used as a base note in perfumes because of its excellent fixative properties, meaning it keeps perfumes alive longer and fuller. On top of that ability, it also mixes perfectly with a plethora of other ingredients including vetiver, sandalwood, frankincense, bergamot, cedarwood, myrrh, jasmine, rose and citrus oils.

But to smell really good patchouli on its own is to have your pre-thinking smashed apart. Its cleaner brighter and deeper it loses some of the ‘dirty’ facets that cheaper ones have and it is quite beautiful and almost addictive.

  • Cedarwood

Another natural ingredient, Cedarwood is derived from the evergreen cedar tree, but unlike say Patchouli which is a distillation from the leaves, the entire cedar tree, makes up this scented oil. It is taken from the tree’s coniferous needles, leaves, bark and even the berries.

This soft style wood may well, as a simple smell, be very familiar to many. It is of course the wood used for pencils as well as it is used for also used in aromatherapy for its calming and balancing effects.

It has a fresh element with hints of resin it can be dry or warming dependent on where it comes from in the world. Also, think of balsamic undertones and a camphoraceous odour that works as an anchor in many ways when combined with floral and citrus-based notes.

We have already mentioned Rose and Jasmine. But there is no reason why would we shouldn’t give them both some space here.

The Rose as an ingredient can literally go from sweet to fresh and can be green or even honeyed.  Sometimes it has a powdery facet, sometimes woody or musky one and can even be a little lightly spiced and clove-like. Ultimately it is a silk-like feminine scent that has the longest of histories in scent use.

And Jasmine? Rich, sexy and luscious when at its best, its sweet fruit facets can also descend into a more animalistic note which gives it a gutsy yet musky sexiness. That is one reason that it is found in quite a few men’s fragrances as well as of course, in so many feminine perfumes.

So what do these two florals who reign supreme in perfumey have to do with the other three? What if you were able to take the world’s best ingredients and then put them in the hands of the best noses on th planet? This is exactly what perfumery brand Ostens did.

The company took these five core ingredients mentioned and created two options, utilising a single raw ingredient per scent. One, a vial of the actual oil in its best purest version literally to dust on your pulse points. Secondly, they asked the best perfumers to have massive fun creating a perfume that would be the very best essence of each ingredient including an extra one for patchouli making six EDP fragrances in total. The creatives include dignitaries such as Sophie Labbe and Dominique Ropion.

Their latest project is two bring two of these magnificent scents into home fragrance with the edition of candles; meet Illumination Rose and Illumination Jasmine. Both are presented in a mouth-blown scalloped glass, with a hand-poured wax blend that enables a perfect burn and the finest fragrance diffusion.

  • The Rose

From the valleys of Turkey, the harvesting of Rosa Damascena the ‘Queen of Flowers’ begins at dawn. The roses are kept in the shade until reaching the copper distillation stills. Once transformed, the rose oil contains a concentrate of all the fragrance components of thousands of fresh flowers.

Its voluptuous scent, both green and vibrant yet also jammy with notes of exotic and red fruits, will capture you in her spell.

  • The Jasmine

Before sunrise, the white, star-like blossoms of Egyptian Jasmine Grandiflorum are hand-picked from fields near the Nile Delta. The delicate flowers are laid in palm-branch boxes, allowing them to breathe on their journey to becoming our Jasmine Absolute.

This abstraction of thousands of petals has an unmistakable scent that builds from stem-like and alive, to dense, sensuous and warm and almost carnal.

To dicover the brand and its full offering please visit

If you enjoyed reading the Five Scented Classics then why not read Vroom Vroooom here

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