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Rose in perfumes

The rose isn't called the Queen of flowers for nothing. Rose is one of the most used flowers in perfumes. Sometimes you don't recognize the pink flower, but it just gives that 'sparkle' and elegance. Typical rose perfumes are often classic, elegant and romantic, but a rose-based perfume can also be surprisingly mysterious, dark and sensual. Find out what rose in perfumes smells like, what types there are and in which perfumes the rose is centralized. From nostalgic rose to naughty rose, from powdery rose to fruity rose.

Nez Editions Damask Rose in Perfumery | Perfume Lounge

The scent of roses

Roses smell soft, delicate and floral: rosy! Rose accords are often found in the heart of a perfume.

  • The May rose (rosa centifolia) smells honey-like, lemon accent, slightly meaty and very rich.
  • The Damask rose (rosa damascene) smells more cognac-like, honey-like and spicy.

The scent of roses naturally consists of more than 300 different fragrance components, such as rose oxide, linalool, beta-damascenone and phenyl ethyl alcohol. Read more in the informative booklet published by Nez LMR about rose.

Read more about roses in perfumery

The May rose and the Bulgarian rose

Two types of roses are mainly used in the perfume industry: the May rose and the Damask rose. May rose (rosa centifolia) has (almost literally) 100 petals per flower. It is the most commonly used rose in perfume. Damask rose (rosa damascene) is also called Bulgarian rose. This rose has a deep red color ('the rose of love') and is used in perfumes as well as in creams, lipsticks and powders.

The rose harvest is early in the morning from May to mid-June. Only the petals of the roses are used and must be processed immediately to preserve the scent. The oil (also called rose attar or rose otto, hence the name of the scented candle Otto) is obtained by steam distillation. The rose absolute or concentrate is obtained by a solvent (solvent extraction).

To get 1 kg of rose oil you need 4 to 5 tons of rose petals.

More about roses

Did you know that rose oil was already adored by the ancient Persians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans? Since ancient history roses have been used as key ingredient in fragrances and cosmetics for the skin.

The rose is not only the queen of flowers, but also a symbol for romance. Rose was the flower of Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty. According to the legend, her tears and her lover, Adonis’, blood watered the ground from where the red Roses grew. It was then a symbol of love until death.

Why is natural rose oil that expensive?

Did you know that it takes 5000 kg of freshly picked roses to obtain 1 kg of high-quality precious Bulgarian rose oil? This video shows how the harvest and distillation take place and how the value of $15,000 per kilo is achieved.