The sweet, flowery, rich and exotic scent of Jasmine has been revered since ancient times, well known to be an aphrodisiac for both men and women, and used in many love potions, perfumes and teas. Living in the South, we have many summer memories of jasmine’s fragrance floating in the air at night.
Originally native to Persia and Asia, Jasmine was brought to Europe in the 17th century through Spanish endeavors. It is still commercially grown in Egypt, France, India, Italy and Morocco. You’ll see it in many gardens across the globe as it is highly sought after for its fragrant white blossoms.
The Jasmine flower releases its fragrance at night after the sun has set and especially when the moon is waxing towards fullness. Jasmine flower buds are more fragrant than the flowers. The oil comes from the petals, which are collected at night for the best scent It is an essence (floral absolute) rather than essential oil and must be extracted by a solvent. This is a delicate process and large quantities of petals are needed. The chemical structure of jasmine is close to human perspiration and has over 100 different compounds. There are over two hundred different species of jasmine that occur in nature.
We carry the two jasmines that are used in the production of floral absolutes, (Jasminum grandiflorum and Jasminum sambac). While their chemical components are similar, their scent is a bit different when blending. To me, Jasmine sambac has a higher indole note. Indole is the deep, raw animal note that is sometimes found in flowers. Jasmine is a very potent and expensive oil, but due to its odor intensity, only a little is required for use in perfumes and aromatherapy.
Each area of the world has its own religious, marriage and flower symbolisms attached to this most fragrant and sacred of flowers. Like the rose, Jasmine is known as a symbol of love, romance, elegance, and sensuality.
In India, Jasmine is known as the “King of Flowers”, “ Moonlight of the Grove” and “Queen of the Night” and a symbol of love and temptation. According to Indian mythology, Kama, the god of love and lust, attached jasmine flowers to his arrows to pierce the heart through the senses to make his victims fall in love. In weddings, garlands are strung together for special guests and the bridal couple. The bride’s hair may have jasmine flowers as the flower is said to promise the bridal couple a deep and lasting affection for eternity.
Jasmine or Sampaguita is the national flower of the Phillipines. Sampaguita, is a a variety of jasmine and comes from the Filipino word “sumpa kita”, which in English means “I promise you”. Couples used to exchanged Sampaguita necklaces – just as a today’s couples exchange wedding rings. A traditional Asian belief is that jasmine penetrates the soul and opens up emotions.
Did you know the English name is derived from the Persian yasmin, meaning “jasmine flower”, a plant in the olive family and the masculine form is Jasmin?
Some aromatherapy uses are for: easing depression, nervous tension, a drop on the temple will clear a headache in minutes. Beneficial for helping to calm allergies. Very soothing to the skin and can increase skin elasticity. A great confidence booster. Jasmine is a very romantic and sensual warming oil for massage, as well as being excellent for dry and sensitive skin. Sleep studies have shown that Jasmine encourages restful sleep, and its fragrance was chosen as appealing by men and women.
Drop us a note and let us know how you like to use Jasmine in your aromatherapy blends or perfumes!