Why natural perfume?
When most people ask why I make natural perfumes, there is an expectation to hear about how bad and unhealthy commercial brands are. That’s not my reason.
I’m a student of science; I don’t have a problem with chemicals. I understand and love chemicals; they make our bodies go ‘round. I chose natural perfume for different reasons, and I’m glad I did. It has honed my scent ability and my attunement to the natural world, in a way that regular perfume would be unable to do. Commercial perfumes from brands I loved (Lancome’s La Vie Est Belle, and Viktor & Rolf’s Flowerbomb) now smell like the chemicals that compose them and come off as poorly crafted to my nose. It wasn’t an outcome I expected but it is one I’ve become quite grateful for.
I had to learn to love naturals, with all their differences, and in doing so rediscovered the peaceful contemplation of the natural world.
But I digress.
It is not that I ‘chose” natural perfume, but that it was a normal progression within my own interests and works. “Obsessed” may not be the perfect word, but it certainly is a close one. So let’s say this, I’m “obsessed” with ancient civilizations, folk rites, and cultural artifacts. I love history, though not from the perspective of war or leaders. Instead, i prefer to narrow my focus onto the mundane day to day relationships people have. I wanted to learn how to make the ancient Kyphi and practice the ancient Greeks’ perfume arts to discover the essence of what living in the time could be like, and I suppose what smelling in that time could have been like. In this way, I am a historian, which allowed me to dive into the study and produce something beyond my study’s straightforward enjoyment.
And for the most part, the majority of ingredients and processes that were available were fairly natural. (However, these civilizations and tribes did have access to and did create chemicals as well through various synthetic methods. But it was undoubtedly rarer, and to us, it looks more like alchemy than chemistry. )
So I chose the natural course, not from a hate of the commercial era, but from a love of the older ancient ways, and the gifts I’ve received from the world through this choice have been outstanding.