Back to scents that I love apart from Oud. Some of my favourite fragrances have sandalwood in them such as Samsara by Guerlain, Coco by Chanel, Addict by Dior Pure DKNY by DKNY and my absolute favourite Black Orchid by Tom Ford. Sandalwood has a warm woody scent that just lasts and lasts it also adds depth to other ingredients combined with it.
Where does Sandalwood come from? It is from trees in the genus Santalum, the wood is quite heavy, yellow and fine grained and unlike many other aromatic woods sandalwood retains it’s fragrance for decades making them a great ingredient for fragrances. Sandalwood is the second most expensive wood in the world which as been highly valued for centuries. Sadly they have been over harvested this past century making Sandalwood rare and very expensive.
Sandalwood can be found in a few locations around the world such as India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Australia, Indonesia, Hawaii and other Pacific Islands. The price of Sandalwood oil has risen to $20000 per kilo. In India, Pakistan and Nepal the harvesting of the trees are controlled by the government but many trees are illegally cut down for their oil. In Kununurra in Western Australia Indian Sandalwood is grown on a large scale as it is the primary source of sandalwood used in commercial oil production. In the 1840’s it was the biggest export earner for the state of WA and in 2012 $2.5million AUD of Sandalwood was imported for the year.
Hawaiian Sandalwood is also to be considered of high quality and was exploited between 1790 and 1825 before the supply of trees ran out. It takes at least 15 years for the tree to grow before they can be harvested. Since it is so expensive compared to other types of wood, to maximise on profits when the trees are harvested the entire tree is removed rather than sawing it. This also allows the wood from the stump and root to be processed and sold as they also possess a high level of the Sandalwood oil.
Next time you go out fragrance shopping try to smell some with Sandalwood and appreciate that a lot of thought went into the fragrance and it is very much a sought after oil. Also if you have enough time walk around as I find that most fragrances with Sandalwood have a beautiful base note to their fragrances.
Hope the weather is getting better for you all in Kuwait as it’s warming up for me.
Much love Ruby
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