New essences from Australia


New essential oils are just arriving to me from Australia, Eco Sandalwood and Fire Tree.

Australian Sandalwood is precious to me as a substitute to Mysore Sandalwood. Not only a minor quantity is enough to have the top and heart note of Sandalwood in a fragrance, but it costs also a lot less than the Mysore.
It does not have the clean and very special drydown of the Mysore, but this is not very important because the delicate smell of the Mysore sandalwood dry down would be lost in most of the fragrances a perfumer can make, except if he were to use synthetic Santalol in heavy dose.
Australian Sandalwood is farmed, just like the Mysore, it’s availability is anyway limited but one may always buy a few hundred kilos if need be, while this would be very difficult with the Mysore. This is definitly an advantage for a natural perfumer who wants to be ready for big opportunities.

Australian Sandalwood contains more Farnesol than the Mysore, and this molecule can be allergenic, but this problem could appear only if it is used pure on his own.
The Eco Sandalwood does not come from cultivations but is obtained from dead branches of wild trees that are collected by the bushmen.
This Sandalwood essence has a more powerful and longer lasting fragrance, with a Sandalwood note even clearer than the conventional one.
The essence of Sandalwood, like those of many aromatic trees, becomes better with age. Apparently, the essence trapped in the old dead branches has done just that. We can consider then the Australian Eco Sandalwood as the vintage Australian Sandalwood

The Fire tree (Xanthorrhoea preissil) is an aromatic wood so loaded with essential oil that the bushmen use it as matches to light their fires. I have seen the same being done in Afghanistan, where fires are lighted with the oily perfumed Himalayan cedar wood. It burns with a black smoke as if it was soaked in gasoil.

The Fire tree has been defined by Luca Turin as “the most interesting smell of the last years”. It has a very sweet and strong fruity head smell, like apricot and myrtle. This notes goes on unchanged in the heart of the fragrance and it settles down after a day in a delicate and persistent woody fruity bottom smell.
It is indeed an interesting odor and it encounters a nearly universal positive appreciation. I am curious to present it to present it to the students at the next course, just to see how unprejudiced persons work with it.


By: Andrew
Hello AbdesSalaam Attar,
I found your blog a few weeks ago now and have been reading your articles, they are very informative! I was wondering if I could ask of your help? I am a 21 year old university student studying music in Australia. I have always been interested in cologne and perfume, and about 8 months ago I started going out with my current girlfriend Jennifer, whom I have had feelings for for years. She loves cologne, and as a gesture of my affection for her, I have started trying to make her her own unique scent. I have been researching for about 2 months now, and buying some essential oils here and there. I am starting to develop something that is..well…its ok, but I want to create something trully amazing…and something that will suit her. I understand you run a business from this so please dont think I am trying to obtain your knowledge for free or anything, more just if you can offer any words of advice at all? With no real knowledge of perfumery at all other than titbits of information on each essential oil that I can glean from the internet, it really is rather difficult. To make matters worse, Im keeping it a suprise, so I cant really ask her what oils she likes, other than trying to accidentally have them on me and see if she reacts positively to them (Im still amazed she believed the smell of clary sage was from me cooking eariler that day when I tried to judge if she would like it!)
This email is a bit disjointed sorry, Im actually in a bit of a rush to go into uni, I thought I shoudl send this now though or I will keep procrastinating and never get around to it. Thankyou for any advice you can offer at all :)

Andrew Galloway

By: AbdesSalaam Attar

Ciao Andrew,
you can get some recipes of traditional colognes from the book of Dussauce

2 replies
  1. AbdesSalaam Attar says:

    Dear Shade, the tree looks like a dishevelled palm tree. I was not aware that there were 2 species of fire tree. I assumed it was Xanthorrhoea preissil as it was the only one mentioned by Arctander, but with your information I think it might rather be the Stenocarpus Sinuatus. With what I said now about the appearance of the tree, probably you can conferm which of the 2 it is really.

  2. Shade says:

    I’m just wondering whether you are referring to the correct species with regards to the Fire Tree? In Australia, Xanthorrhoea preissil is known as Balga or Blackboy. It is from a family of grass trees and is a grassy shrub. Fires are lit using the flower stalks, not the wood itself. It is harvested for its resin.

    In contrast, the Stenocarpus Sinuatus is very well known here as the Fire Tree or Firewheel Tree. Oil can be extracted from the leaves and wood and bear the sweet smells you describe.

    I’d be interested in seeking clarification from you regarding my confusion about Australian native flora.

    Far North Qld


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