Jasmine is a sweet, narcotic like floral, instantly distinguishable from most other florals for it’s deeply intoxicating, sensual aroma. It is one of the most widely used florals in perfumery and ranges between a middle to base note. There are a few variations of Jasmine namely Jasminum Sambac amd Jasminum Grandiflorum. Jasmine Sambac is native to South and South East Asia and Jasmine Grandiflorum is native to Spain and France.
Differences in Character Profile
Jasmine Grandiflorum is the most widely used Jasmine Essential Oil and has a rich and opulent fragrance with a distinctly fruity note.
It’s sister Jasmine – Jasmine Sambac, has a more of an animalic essence, with a greener note.
Jasmine is a delicate, white flower with small petals. The petals of Jasmine Sambac and Grandiflorum look almost identical apart from there size: Grandiflorum has 5 petals wheras Sambac has smaller petals, and a lot more of them.
In stark contrast to how it looks it has a very intense floral aroma, with indole notes (an animal like, fecal tone), that gives it a unique fragrance that is attractive to both men and women alike. Jasmine is used frequently in commercial perfumes, but due to the vast expense of Jasmine Essential Oil and Jasmine Absolute it is very infrequently used in it’s natural form in perfumery. Instead, a synthetic copy that is made to smell like an almost exact replica of the flower is used.
Why is Jasmine so expensive?
Jasmine, next to Rose Essential Oil, is one of the most expensive oils to buy because of it’s extraction methods. It takes 8,000 flowers to extract just 1 gram (1 ml) of Jasmine Essential Oil.
Jasmine is too delicate to withstand the steam distillation method so it is instead extracted by a complicated method called enfleurage. The methods of getting the essential oil
differ depending on the type of plant material used:
Distillation: This is the most cost effective way of extracting oils as it collects the volatile vapour of the material and then condenses the vapour back into a liquid.
Expression: A cold pressed method of extraction that is mostly used with citrus oils.
Solvent Extraction: Solvents are used to coax the essential oils out of the botanical material. There are a number of ways that this can be done:
Maceration, Enfleurage, Solvent Extraction and Hypocritical H02.
The Enfleurage Method:
Jasmine flowers are freshly handpicked and then placed between glass plates (a chassis), which is then covered with a purified and odourless vegetable or animal fat. The petals are then left within the fatty compound for at least a couple of weeks to disperse within it, being replaced with fresh petals when completely saturated and then the fatty essence is removed and washed with alcohol to separate the fat from the essence. Naturally, this is a very time consuming and labour intensive way of extracting an essential oil and thus costly. Tuberose is also extracted in this way.
Jasmine oil is a beautifully sweet and exotic oil that blends well with most if not all other florals and citrus oils. Aswell as it’s divine scent, Jasmine has many therapeutic properties, stimulating the feeling of joy, happiness, sensuality, harmony and optimism. A deeply relaxing aphrodisiac and anti-depressant, Jasmine can also help to reduce stretch marks and scars and is particularly good for use on dry skin as it increases elasticity.
Probably the most famous perfume using Jasmine (and perhaps infact the most famous perfume of all!), is Chanel No5, in which Jasmine acts to brings a beauty, strength and character to the perfume that is irreplaceable.
Some other perfumes that feature Jasmine are: Beautiful by Estee Lauder, Marc Jacobs Daisy and Jasmin Noir by Bvlgari.
Personally, I LOVE Jasmine. It has a complexity, a sensuality and a depth that is unmatched and I have used it in a lot of our products such as our beautiful white soy candle, and body souffle’:
I want to know your thoughts on Jasmine! Tell me, what’s your favourite perfume featuring Jasmine? What do you love about it?