The definition of a natural perfume is so simple: it is made with extracts of plants or animals without any other ingredient.
In order to give full information about my fragrances, I have published the list of all the ingredients that I use, and in order to avoid any trick, the list of the ingredients that I do not use as well.
How I become a natural perfumer
I did not really choose to take this branch of perfumery. it just came logically to me.
Initially I was buying indiscriminately the raw materials, searching for what the public clamoured for without any idea about their real nature. Musk, amber, violet, sandal, rose, patchouli, ecc...
I soon noticed that some of them caused me allergies and heavy headaches, and I realized that these where the synthetic ones.
On the other hand, while I was starting my business in 1986, I found in the Grasse bookshop the book of Valnet on Aromatherapy and started straight away to use of essential oils for myself and my friends as medicines. I was selling the single essences as pure attars, to be used as personal scents as is done in the east, but I also started to experiment with them according to the book of Valnet and I witnessed their wonderful healing power through aromatherapy.
I had realised that synthetics materials of perfumery made me ill and that natural essences would heal me. I also came to understand their superior olfactory beauty as well. Unlike the chemical materials, the life that was in them, they had wholeness, cohesion and the power to arouse positive emotions.
My choice to dedicate my study and my trade exclusively to these ingredients was then logical, not commercial.
I chose to make natural perfumes as someone chooses to work with precious metals and rare gems instead of plastic beads and pearls of colored glass. These essences are indeed olfactory jewels.
Price of natural fragrances
The botanical extracts, essential oils and absolutes are among the most expensive goods on earth. In this sense as well they are truly jewels.
Some of these raw materials are more expensive than gold and they last only for a few hours when applied on our person while gold and diamonds last forever.
Five tons of rose petals produce one kilogram of rose essence, or millions of handpicked jasmine.
As Luca Turin explained, mainstream fragrances simply cannot afford anymore to use them because of their price: "The big six perfumery firms are aroma chemicals manufacturers, and it is in their interest to keep naturals, with their attendant problems of price and quality fluctuations, to a bare minimum. Just how bare that minimum can be has become clear in the last five years, during which the cost of a «fine fragrance» formulation has gone down by half and the quality by nine tenths. Good frags have almost disappeared: there are 500 launches each year, but only a dozen are worth smelling twice."
The price of botanical fragrances is obviously much higher than mainstream ones. That is because they are true olfactory jewels made with real olfactory gemstones.
These fragrant gems that have a much higher cost than synthetic essences.
Someone may argue that he likes glass beads more than emeralds and rubies, but the superior beauty of the later over glass and plastic beads is not a question of opinion; it is a question of understanding.
This is equally true for the botanical ingredients that compose pure natural fragrances.
Animal scents in perfumery
Perfumers sometimes use some animal pheromones. Most of them are in the form of tinctures. When this the case customers are informed about it by the "Non vegan" mention.
The same animal pheromones were long before the advent of modern perfumery. They are present in all traditional pharmacopeia.
There was a time indeed when scents were used for health as well as for beauty and pleasure.
When Luca Turin, the famous perfumery critic wrote in 2006“There are now officially four kinds of perfumery: normal, niche, vintage and natural”, he threw a bomb and initiated a worldwide process of recognition that is still going on but is largely limited to the web.
Not many shops in our cities propose pure botanical frags, but the amount of “scents by nature” online shops is growing steadily.
Since 2006 the number of perfumers committed to make 100% natural scents has grown and their presence on the web is unavoidable. They often propose perfumery classes and this is fostering new vocations for botanical perfumery.
Natural perfumery is an open source world. Mainstream perfumery is a caste system.
Thanks to those who helped in the recognition of natural perfumery