Omixochitl (October 2021) ☽•☾ Tuberose extrait from enfleurage
"Omixochitl" ("bone flower" in Nahuatl: "omitl" "bone" and "xochitl" "flower"), was cultivated and prized by Nahua in pre-conquest Central Mexico. Prior to cultivation, tuberose was probably a wildflower native to the region. Unfortunately any botanical record seems to have been lost to or erased by colonization, along with so many other Nahua histories. Omixochitl is very special organic alcohol based perfume from my tuberose (Agave amica) enfleurage.
From season to season, approximately 3,000 tuberose rhizomes on our site contribute their aromas. We grow these plants biodynamically on terrain high in granite and silt. The October 2021 vintage features notes of wintergreen gum wrapper and the powdery coating on a stick of Juicy Fruit gum, camphor, cream, lily and honeysuckle nectar, accompanied by a subalpine char.
Each vintage of Omixochitl is a tuberose soliflore (single note perfume). Omixochitl is available in a sample size of 1ml (25 drops), which comes in a glass sample vial with applicator. Or choose from larger 3ml, 5ml or 10ml clear glass vials with atomizers. The 10ml frosted glass roller ball bottle is convenient for travel. Please make your selection from the menu.
Tuberose emits a cool scent, most similar to plumeria's lactic silk fragrance, with the lushness of star jasmine. 1980s suntan lotion, grass, milk foam, Baja sun, beeswax, the marine layer, lily, angel's trumpet, wintergreen. But scents are more than catalogs of notes. They can flood us with memories. They can be overwhelming and unexpected reminders of the past: the beauty of experiences and the horror of their passing.
This is a labor intensive product using the whole flowers, through more than 90 charges of the enfleurage pommade, followed by multiple washings with organic ethanol to produce an extrait of enfleurage. Enfleurage is an ancient, non industrial method of extracting fragrance from plants. I make many of my own extracts and this one is truly my own from bud to bottle. I am excited to share it with you. Limited quantity.
To learn more about the enfleurage process generally and at Wild Veil, please continue reading below.
Wild Veil's Tuberose Enfleurage:
Tuberose Enfleurage. An organic, handmade, botanical solid perfume produced by hand using the slow artisanal process of cold enfleurage from tuberose grown in my garden, and collected in late summer and autumn. Please note, this is indeed a truly organic tuberose fragrance-- a rarity. The scent is creamy, minty, and saline. I have a very limited quantity.
I like to pick tuberose flowers in various stages of opening for enfleurage. My favorite are the double blossomed, although I also grow the single blossom variety. The double have a more powerful fragrance, opening with frosty wintergreen notes. When fully opened they are creamier, though not exactly sweet, and less minty. Tuberose is creamy like sour or heavy cream, while gardenia is creamy like custard or pastry cream. Tuberose also has ethereal lily notes that are not present in gardenia. Some people denote coconut notes in tuberose and/or gardenia, but I don't find that fruit's aroma to be present in either. Mango in gardenia, yes, and perhaps papaya, but no coconut. Tuberose has a menthol saltiness especially when first opening. As they decline and desiccate on the enfleurage pommade their wintergreen notes reemerge.
To read more about the enfleurage process generally and at Wild Veil, please continue reading below. Here, I have used enfleurage to capture the the complex, creamy, green white flower scent of night-opening tuberose. This "pommade" (highly scented solid perfume-- not to be confused with pomade for hair!) consists of hundreds of individual organic tuberose blossoms that I gathered from my perfume gardens, laid onto an emulsion of organic avocado butter and raw beeswax. I repeated this process throughout the two months they were in bloom to reach a high degree of fragrance saturation. In my enfleurage, the scent is engorged with tuberose singularity: silky, with a salty creaminess. Apply to pulse points.
Photos: my organic tuberose enfleurage from my night-blooming perfume gardens showing fresh blossoms charging the pommade; my tuberose garden of over 3,000 rhizomes.
**Although the floral perfume produced by enfleurage is osmically balanced (meaning it contains sufficiently complex interplay of top through base notes to be considered a perfume in itself), it is a subtle creation. It must be given time to breathe on the skin. When cold, it may not smell much at all. Allow it to breathe and warm on a pulse point before inhaling deeply. Most noses love the aroma of my enfleurage but, a small percent of my clients are anosmic to enfleurage and therefore cannot smell the floral fragrance. This has to do with natural differences in nasal receptors and is not due to an issue with the product. I always recommend ordering a sample before committing to a larger size for this reason.**
A B O U T • W I L D • V E I L • E N F L E U R A G E
Enfleurage is a beautiful process whereby odorless fats that are solid at room temperature are used to capture the fragrant compounds exuded by plants. Enfleurage is by far one of the oldest methods of fragrance extraction, and it is nearly extinct. Only a handful of artisans still practice it today as it is no longer used in the manufacture of perfumes on a mass scale. A voluptuous art, enfleurage is quite the labor of love, consuming time, labor, and expense. Historically enfleurage was done by women, or maidens, in the fields of Grasse, France. Although far rarer to find enfleurage products in the market today, is still "largely" practiced by women.
There are two types of enfleurage: "cold" and "hot." Wild Veil exclusively uses cold enfleurage:
In cold enfleurage, a large framed plate of glass, called a chassis, is smeared with a layer of fat, traditionally unscented animal fat rendered from lard or tallow, and allowed to set. Wild Veil does not use any animal fat whatsoever! My enfleurage products are organic and botanical; I purvey fats from a variety of nut and plant butters such as shea, jojoba, avocado, fair trade palm, and mango. Botanical matter, usually petals or whole flowers, is then placed on the fat and its scent is allowed to diffuse into the fat over the course of 1-3 days. The process is then repeated (traditionally 36 times depending on the fat and the botanical matter) by replacing the spent botanicals with fresh ones until the fat has reached a desired degree of fragrance saturation. The cold fat process was developed in southern France in the 18th century for the production of high-grade concentrates.
In hot enfleurage, solid fats are heated and botanical matter is stirred into the fat. Spent botanicals are repeatedly strained from the fat and replaced with fresh material until the fat is saturated with fragrance. This method is considered the oldest known procedure for preserving the fragrances of plants. Wild Veil only incorporates cold enfleurage into products.
In both instances, once the fat is saturated with fragrance, it is then called the "enfleurage pommade." This is a highly perfumed solid fat, not to be confused with pomade used for styling hair. Historically, this enfleurage pommade was either sold as it was,* or it could be further washed or soaked in ethyl alcohol to draw the fragrant molecules into the alcohol. When the alcohol was separated from the fat and allowed to evaporate, it would leave behind the absolute of the botanical matter. The spent fat would typically be used to make soaps since it is still fairly fragrant. *This listing is for an organic pommade.
The advent of modern perfumery ushered in the ease and relative inexpense of commercial solvent-based extraction of natural materials along with mass production of synthetic compounds, making the art of enfleurage seem highly inefficient and costly in comparison. The method is now superseded by more efficient techniques such as solvent extraction or supercritical fluid extraction using liquid carbon dioxide (CO2) or similar compressed gases. Enfleurage had been the sole method of extracting the fragrant compounds (containing thousands of aromachemicals) from delicate floral botanical such as jasmine and tuberose, which are be destroyed or denatured by the high temperatures required by cheaper methods of fragrance extraction such as steam distillation. It is still believed by some perfumers that enfleurage remains the only way to capture and preserve the full range of complexity of certain scents, particularly of flowers.
r a w ☽•☾ m a t t e r
Wild Veil natural perfumes are composed by me, Abby, using homemade, wildcrafted and organic aromatics in Vermont. These include my handmade enfleurage, tinctures, enfleurage extraits, absolutes, resinoids and concretes, and floral waxes. I spend as much time growing plants and foraging as I do composing perfumes.
h o w ☽•☾ t o ☽•☾ w e a r
The best way to experience a natural perfume is to apply it to well-moisturized skin, without rubbing in (absorption only shortens the wear time of fragrance) and without scrubbing off. Natural perfumes are dynamic and take a minimum of 2 hours to reach their final stage, or dry down. Enjoy the alchemical changes as they unfold from the initial intensity of top notes, to the warmth of the heart, to the depth of lower base notes.
☽•☾ Wild Veil ☽•☾ alchemy between earth and ether ☽•☾
☽•☾ All aesthetic material copyright Abby Hinsman 2021 ☽•☾