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Oud has grown in popularity and interest in today’s world of complex fragrance formulations.
It is one of the most in-demand and expensive oils out there that is used in perfume. It also has a very interesting history.
But what even is oud, where does it come from, and how is it used in oud perfume?
What Is Oud?
Oud refers to both agarwood and its resin extracts. Many perfumers in Western countries use agarwood essential oil under the names “oudh” or “oud.”
Oud is definitely one of the most expensive raw fragrance ingredients on the market.
This priceless ingredient is taken from the tropical agar tree, which grows in the Middle East.
When mold infects the agar tree, it produces a dense and fragrant resin in order to protect itself.
Then, the resin is absorbed by the tree and becomes the source of oud. The ancient Egyptians are thought to have been the first to use Agarwood.
It was used in death rituals over 3,000 years ago. It was also used in perfumes, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals.
The agarwood chip was able to be carved into an artistic shape or used to make incense, which is currently popular.
But oud perfume will always be most in demand.
Is Oud Expensive?
Agarwood is without a doubt the most valuable essential oil, according to research. Prices range from $50,000 to $80,000 per litre.
The perfume industry accounts for most of the agarwood trade. The annual oud market is worth about $6 billion.
That is approximately 12 times the value of gold. That is why some refer to it as “liquid gold.” For every pound of oud, it can cost about $5,000.
While some oud retailers charge $300 or more for a 3g bottle.
It is estimated that one out of every ten trees in the wild becomes infected with Phialophora parasitica.
That equates to about 2% of all trees, making oud very expensive. To create the final product, experienced perfumers search for these trees.
The Agarwood is then distilled with steam to extract the oud oil. The total yield for 70 kg of wood will not exceed 20 ml.
Furthermore, agarwood oil contains over 150 complex chemical compounds. Their precise balance varies according to the species and age of the tree.
Like other expensive perfume ingredients, synthetic ouds are manufactured.
When compared to naturally produced fragrance, these are nothing short of a letdown.
Synthetic oud is more leathery and woody, sacrificing warmth, sweetness, and balsamic notes for a lower price.
What Does Oud Smell Like?
The scent of oud perfume is derived from the resinous heartwood, also known as Agarwood, of a large evergreen tropical tree.
It is known as Aquilaria and comes in 15 different species. Because oud is derived from trees, the smell varies depending on the tree.
It’s typically described as a sweet and woody scent with a smoky undertone. Oud is a unique fragrance with a seductive and strong aroma.
Its olfactory profile is sure to catch your attention, and its woody scent is full of nuances ranging from sweet, earthy, to spicy fragrances.
The smell of oud varies depending on the tree species and method of extraction.
However, the thing about oud is that it smells slightly different on each individual.
The healing oil is naturally derived, meaning that the smell can be altered by your individual pheromones and body chemistry.
When oud comes into contact with skin, it acts more like a living organism.
On drier skin, it retains more of its original scent and develops into a different scent on skin that is more oily.
If you wear oud on a warm day, different notes will emerge as the day progresses. But there are a few things that all oud fragrances have in common.
They’re always woody, with a hint of spiciness and a delicate sweet note. Base notes are always complex and earthy, leathery, and seductive and intriguing.
How Do You Pronounce Oud?
English speakers typically pronounce Oud like the “ood” in “food’. People who speak Middle Eastern languages may pronounce the beginning of the word slightly differently with a phoneme that has no direct equivalent in English (some describe it as sort-of similar to an “ow” sound). Nevertheless, “OOD” is perfectly acceptable.
How To Wear Oud Perfume
Oud scents are very potent, making them ideal for the colder seasons and special occasions. They look great with formal attire.
The method of application is very important when using oud fragrance.
You don’t want to spray it on your palm because it will touch everything and may stain some clothes. You should instead apply it to your pulse points.
The neck, wrist, and behind the ears are all included. These areas tend to stay warm and activate the scent, allowing it to last for an extended period of time.
If you’re using a stick, you can swipe it across the desired area in a straight line.
To get the most out of your purchase, spray the oud perfume right before the event.
You can also spray some more before leaving to make the scent last longer.
This exquisite essential oil has a wide range of applications, from spiritual to therapeutic and medicinal.
It is frequently associated with harmony, spiritual serenity, and getting rid of destructive and negative energies in the home when used regularly.
It is a highly effective meditation aid that is also known to improve mental clarity and alleviate neurotic and obsessive behavior.
Both men and women in the Middle East burn wood chips to scent their homes and clothes.
Some Muslims also believe that their prayers are carried directly to the Creator by the scented smoke of agarwood.
The essence of oud is its depth, luxury, and spiciness. It may appear to be too strong for some, but it can evoke wonderful warm and smoky notes.
This can be a bit too pungent for some people but also perfect for others. It can be very sensual and seductive when combined with fruity or floral notes.
Because of the growing demand, scarcity, and difficulty in harvesting it, oud prices make it one of the most expensive oils on the market.
Having said this, no matter how rare or precious oud is, whether or not you like the way that it smells is key!