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Sandalwoods Anthology theme

You can order all perfumes featured in this theme as a pack of samples.

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In this theme

Sandalwood, a material known and used for thousands of years for its beautiful aroma as well as excellent fixative base note properties. Several natural varieties exist: Indian, Australian, New Caledonian and African. Also some very interesting synthetic blends have been developed.

Indian sandalwood (Santalum Album) has a warmer more ambery character whereas the Australian variety (Eucaria Spicata) has more of an extra dry-bitter top note.

It’s not always that perfumers specify which sandalwood they are using. It could even be a combination of several natural sandalwoods with some added synthetic highlights on top of that.

In the edit below and the corresponding sample pack we are trying to explore the effects a sandalwood note might have in a formula rather than learn how different species of sandalwood smell.

In this edit there are perfumes that illustrate most shades and effects of this note: bitter leathery, smoky, fruity, or as a smooth inconspicuous background for florals, green fresh woody (oozing sap), the exotic potential in spicy blends and as well as the classic use of sandalwood in old-school amber perfumes and finally a few synthetic (and proud of it) sandalwood options.

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Nanban Arquiste Smoky and leathery

This perfume is an example of a smoky, rich and leathery sandalwood interpretation. Sandalwood is a very versatile perfume material often tilting towards a certain effect only because of its company in a formula. In Nanban (a perfume story about 17th century sea travel) sandalwood is in an exotic company of spices, coffee, smoky cade, and resins.

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Chameleon Zoologist An inconspicuous background for a floral

Sandalwood would not be that ubiquitous if it was not a very functional and useful material. Apart from having a beautiful smell it helps perfumers to create a stable backbone in a perfume structure. Sandalwood can be very discreet in the background and still hold a perfume together. Take Chameleon, a huge arrangement of frivolous, undisciplined flowers which would fly apart without the hard to notice but essential woody background built around sandalwood.

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Elephant Zoologist Synthetic milky sandalwood fantasy

In this perfume sandalwood is green and still oozing sap (as if you are smelling the freshly mulched wood waiting to be distilled). This effect is achieved by using synthetic sandalwood (kohinool) in the company of dewy violet leaf and a watery coconut milk accord.

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Vetiver Santal Marie Jeanne Fresh and crisp

This perfume features a beautiful and rare variety of sandalwood from New Caledonia. This note introduces the warm flowing effect in the background of the otherwise fresh almost mineral blend.

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I am Trash | Les Fleurs du Dechet Etat Libre d'Orange Synthetic (and beautiful)

Try for a synthetic alternative (sandalore) to natural sandalwood. This molecule in the base supports the less disciplined apple and rose notes and carries them as if in cars on a roller coaster ride. Synthetics are not necessarily inferior to natural oils. If a perfumer wants only that particular nuance of the material (in the case of I am Trash – fruity and sweet), synthetics offer a more focused and easy to tame alternative. Secondly, the perfume’s concept of using zero-waste materials makes synthetics very relevant as no matter gets wasted during extraction.

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Ambar del Sur CARNER Sandalwood as part of an amber theme

Sandalwood is one of the key original materials used in perfumery since pre-Medieval times for its beautiful scent as well as fixative properties and ability to hold a formula together. Back then lots of precious materials would be floating in sandalwood oil (instead of alcohol). Those sandalwood based attars still exist today and found their reflection in modern formulas that we call ‘oriental’ or ambery. Ambar del Sur is glimpse into those ancient recipes: ambergris mixed with (or into) sandalwood and aromatic resins. A formula to show off the wearer’s status in the Middle Ages.

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Lumiere Blanche Olfactive Studio Fresh and soft

Try this perfume for a soft, creamy and very smooth sandalwood note powdered with tonka, iris and cool cardamom.

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PG18 Cadjméré Pierre Guillaume - Parfumerie Générale A vintage ambery interpretation

PG18 is a creamy warm and comforting sandalwood perfume composed in a slightly retro style. Before the era of modern advanced aromachemicals sandalwood was one of the main materials that was used for its stability, longevity and fixing/carrier properties (and not only for its beautiful aroma). In PG18 the way sandalwood serves as the backbone of the structure (not just the main theme) is a perfect illustration of that (now) somewhat retro approach.

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South Mendittorosa Dry and smoky

 In this perfume sandalwood is very distinct and has a dry, nicely bitter and fresh character. However, the perfume house uses this sandalwood note to tell a story of pleasant childhood memories of comfort, warmth, aromas of clean linen and the steaming crust of freshly baked bread.

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Pluie de Soleil Phaedon Paris Fruity sandalwood

Did you know sandalwood has a fruity nuance in its odor profile (apart from woody, milky, green, ambery and floral)? This is why it’s in the background of this fruity floral perfume and connects the freesias and pineapples in a harmonious way.

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Ciel Immobile Phaedon Paris An inconspicuous background for a floral

Sandalwood would not be that ubiquitous if it was not a very functional and useful material. Apart from having a beautiful smell it helps perfumers to create a stable backbone in a perfume structure. Sandalwood can be very discreet in the background and still hold a perfume together. Take Chameleon, a huge arrangement of frivolous, undisciplined flowers which would fly apart without the hard to notice but essential woody background built around sandalwood.

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Jangala 2019 Edit Pierre Guillaume Cruise/Croisiere Exotic/spicy

In this formula sandalwood is velvety soft and, with the help of ginger and cardamom, reveals its radiant sweet spicy potential.