salty perfume notes: 3 posts

Salt and Flowers

A Japanese friend once served me a cup of sakurayu, a salted cherry blossom tea that she brought from Kyoto. The flowers unfurled slowly in the hot water, turning the liquid a shade of pale pink and infusing it with the aroma of almond and apricot. This springtime drink made me wonder what it is about the combination of salt and flowers that makes it so intriguing. The topic of salt and flowers is the subject of my FT column, Magic of Salt. I explore salty effects in perfumery and the way they can uplift floral notes.

Salt has its own mild scent and, depending on its processing and provenance, it ranges from bitter and iodinated to flinty and flowery. However, the magic of salt is its ability to volatilize the aromas of other ingredients. You can experiment by cutting a tomato in half and smelling it raw. Then sprinkle it liberally with salt, wait for a few minutes and have another inhale. Even if your tomato is an uninspiring greenhouse variety, once salted, it will have a more pronounced perfume. To continue reading further, please click here.

Continue reading →

Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt : Fragrance Review

33333

Patricia on the Boston Harborwalk, Jo Malone Wood Sage & Sea Salt and tide.

The Boston Harborwalk is a 47-mile continuous public walkway from Chelsea to the Neponset River along the Boston waterfront. Currently 80% completed, it is a treasure for locals and visitors alike, and I never tire of strolling along a small portion of it, watching the boat traffic and inhaling the briny, mineral scents that are part of a busy working harbor. The tides, too, influence the degree of intensity of salt and vegetation in the air. During high tide, saltiness predominates, and the breeze is fresher and cleaner smelling. Low tide, however, uncovers the rocky bottom, exposes wood pilings and seaweed, and adds an interesting vegetal and animalic muskiness to the air.

jm

Wood Sage & Sea Salt, a cologne created by Christine Nagel for Jo Malone, falls within the cleaner range and is what I would call a high-tide fragrance. It opens with a refreshing blast of grapefruit and ambrette, which as it is an unusual combination of top notes, sadly doesn’t last long enough to suit me. The overall effect is one of freshness from the citrus and depth from the plant-based musk tones in the ambrette seed. Soon, the sea salt and sage come into play, and they, too, are clean and polished and not likely to offend. This stage lasts for a few hours, not changing in essential character but gradually fading to a pleasant skin scent.

Continue reading →

Sea Salt and Brine : Perfume Notes

Does salt have a scent? “It depends on what salt you’re talking about,” says Benoît, who hails from Guérande, a French town in southern Brittany famous for its salt marshes. We meet by chance  at an airport lounge, and as he observes a book I’m reading, Jean-Claude Ellena’s Le Parfum, we strike up a conversation about scents. “Guérande’s fleur de sel smells of violets.” As he explains, refined table salt is about 97 percent sodium chloride and it’s virtually scentless, but sea salts from different regions have  impurities that give them a distinctive flavor and scent. Fleur de sel is hand harvested salt from the tops of salt marshes, and while Benoît is passionate about it, he urges me to try different salts and compare. “If you create a perfume based on Guérande’s fleur de sel, please let me know,” he says as we bid each other goodbye.

salt

While I’m yet to visit Guérande to experience the violet perfume of its famous salt ponds, I’ve been noticing the salty nuances in my perfume bottles. My salt collection has likewise grown. Even the sharp iodine scent of table salt now seems obvious to me, not to mention the roasted aroma of Korean bamboo salt or the earthy bite of Javanese lava salt. I’m suddenly discovering a whole new universe of saline flavors.

Along with sweet, sour, bitter, and umami, salt is one of the five basic tastes and it’s much easier to understand it as such–the sensation that you experience when a salt crystal melts on your tongue. But in perfume, the effect can also be distinctive. Spray The Different Company’s Sel de Vétiver or Lalique’s Encre Noire and notice the briny note that you can almost taste.

Continue reading →

From the Archives

Latest Comments

  • Klaas in Recommend Me a Perfume : May 2019: Longevity and sillage are poor indeed, but it is so invigorating and uplifting that I don’t mind re-applying! I use it as a summer cologne. May 25, 2019 at 7:23am

  • Klaas in Recommend Me a Perfume : May 2019: Ok, and please let us know if you smell ‘muguet pocelaine’ or ‘canteloube abominable’ ! May 25, 2019 at 7:20am

  • Klaas in Recommend Me a Perfume : May 2019: They are out of stock as well at my local store; 4 more of their scents are sold out as well. They are maked ‘available again soon’…..I just hope you’ll… May 25, 2019 at 7:18am

  • Tamsin in Recommend Me a Perfume : May 2019: I also love and worship wisteria… sometimes stop the car to smell a particularly enormous wisteria tree, and this year have been wondering why there is no perfume dedicated to… May 25, 2019 at 5:15am

Latest Tweets

Design by cre8d
© Copyright 2005-2019 Bois de Jasmin. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy