The world of Arabic perfurmes and natural oils often refer to essential oils. It seems not many people, at least first-time purchasers, are aware of what constitutes an essential oil. Moreover, rarely do people understand how essential oils are related to the fragrance or perfume industry. This is a small discussion to help you get familiar with the basics of this niche. Our motive is not to overwhelm you with information. Instead, the emphasis is on easing you into the subject. Read ahead to understand what makes essential oils precious and how they are delivered to your doorstep…
Starting with the Basics
Essential Oils are inherent to most plants. Plants continue to create these through their natural lifecycle since smells/fragrances play an important part in pollination, warding off pests and predators. In terms of a pure definition, volatile oils procured from plants with a natural aroma are called Essential Oils. These can be called botanical aromatic oils too but the marketplace prefers to use ‘essential oils’ as the accepted nomenclature.
Please understand that any fragrant oil that promises to be 100% natural is not an essential oil. Similarly, herbal oils or herbal extracts that carry a strong fragrance also don't qualify as essential oils. Another big misconception among people is that essential oils are very hard to get. This is true to some extent but not entirely. For example, if you pluck some lemon balm leaves and rub them hard, you are bound to get some of these aromatic oils. The strong notes will instantly hit your senses, making you realize that essential oils have been released—but in this form, the essential oil is highly impure. This is not what is sold in the market!
This is because the pleasant smelling concentrate that you get is no entirely essential oils. They form a very small percentage of the entire compounds that have been squeezed. Additional biological elements include resins and plant extracts that usually don't make it to what you get to purchase as a customer. The product, which is bottled and delivered at the retail counter, is a highly concentrated form of these aromatic substances where all other, unwanted entities are methodically removed. This is why a single application of essential oils can leave your senses uplifted for the entire day—the purity ensures the longevity of the fragrance.
Let us conclude this discussion with an example—it might take more than 60 whole roses to get one 100% pure drop of precious Rose Oil. In a follow-up to this discussion, we will talk about the distillation processes that yield pure essential oils.