The history of perfume

The history of perfume

In terms of memory, smell is the dominant sense. Its "data bank" stores thousands of scents that are recalled in various ways throughout life, evoking pleasant feelings and long-removed memories. It can be the aroma of fresh laundry, peaches, cut grass, baby powder, vanilla... The oldest perfumes in the world, which are over 4000 years old, were discovered by archaeologists in Cyprus. The first documented creator of perfumes was a woman named Tapputi. Come and take a look at the history of this invisible liquid jewel with us.

The history of perfume

Although it may not seem like it in public transport and gyms, perfume has a history dating back to 4000 BC. The first documented inventor of perfume was the chemist Taputti. This revolutionary discovery originated in Mesopotamia and to this day greatly improves the lives of most people. But fragrances were an integral part of the lives of Egyptians, Arabs, Greeks and Indians or Romans. These nationalities have remained pioneers in the field of perfume to this day. At that time, however, fragrances were in the form of incense, and even in later times they did not have the form they have today. Both women and men could smell oil-based products, the most used ingredients were oriental spices, flowers and fruits, after all, we were also inspired by this formula with our IDENTITY iconic perfume.

The whole Europe fell in love with the Hungarian water of Queen Elizabeth

The first perfume in modern history was created by perfumers at the express request of Queen Elizabeth in Hungary around 1370. The so-called Hungarian water, which was composed of rosemary and lavender, fell in love with the whole of Europe. Even perfumery did not escape modernization, so perfume recipes began to be documented in writing, and innovations also took place in the field of utensils used to produce intoxicating scents.

Sailors brought many technological discoveries to Europe, but at the same time they were also responsible for the development in the field of perfumery, and that in no small part. The arrival of important ingredients in perfumes, such as vanilla, tobacco, ginger or cloves, was ensured by sailors, and thanks to the maritime crossroads, Venice, Italy, became the center of perfumes. France, which is now considered a perfume power, came to the fore only in the 16th century. The center of perfumery thus became the French city of Grasse, where, thanks to the ideal climate, many different flowers were grown, where, due to the strategic location in the hills, a considerable amount of humidity was maintained. World perfumers come here to recognize up to 2,000 different scents.

But perfume did not always have only the noble function of a fashion accessory. During the plague epidemic, when people were afraid to use water because they believed it was the cause of the spread of deadly disease, they reduced personal hygiene to an absolute minimum and perfume served in large doses as a way of masking the smell of unwashed skin. The most used ingredients were musk, ambergris or jasmine. People did not only use perfumes for themselves, but literally scented their entire households and even pets with them every day.

History of perfume in the Czech Republic

However, the history of perfume in our country is very young. Not much information has been preserved about the use of aromatic substances in the Czech lands. In the Middle Ages, fragrances were almost certainly not used as a cosmetic accessory, and if they were, they were perfumes used for church and religious ceremonies. According to some sources, aromatic oils reached us during the reign of the noble families of Pernštejn and Rožmberk, and their use gradually spread among the inhabitants of the wealthier strata.

Previously, aromatic mixtures were prepared only in pharmacies and were mainly used for medicinal purposes. Later real perfumes were only imported goods for a long time. The first perfume compositions began to be produced in our country only at the end of the 19th century, when the first Czech companies producing fragrances were established.

Perfume and human psychology

People sometimes use fragrances not only to smell nice, but also with the hope that they will reduce stress, give them energy, or just lift their spirits. Aromatherapy is a practice based on the idea that scents can affect mood and well-being. There is also "aromachology" - the study of the connection between scents and psychology.

Indeed, a study by the Olfactory Research Fund in New York found up to a 63% reduction in stress in MRI patients when the scent of vanilla was pumped into the air around them. The beneficial effect on the psyche is also proven by regular aromatherapy in home conditions.

The development of perfumes in the 21st century

Since the 1960s, the perfume market has been very broad. Manufacturers immediately react to changes in lifestyle and bring wellness, unisex or sports fragrances. They are including more and more natural ingredients in their perfumes and are also putting together a whole series of niche fragrances intended for discerning individualists.

Consumers also have their say. Thanks to the affordable prices, they can have a whole collection of them and fine-tune them differently each time according to their mood. On the threshold of the second quarter of the 21st century, woodsy, deep pink or modernized fougere fragrances are popular. It's great that today everyone can choose their perfume almost "tailor-made" - without being subject to general fashion dictates.

Did you know...?

Did you know that women have a better sense of smell than men? They have been training him since prehistoric times. For gathering fruit and preparing food, they needed a more sensitive nose than men for hunting. Poisonous or spoiled food could poison the whole community...

In past centuries, perfumers had around 150 natural fragrances at their disposal, today there are about 400. However, artificial ingredients have been increasing since the 19th century, so modern specialists work with about 3,000 ingredients.

Quite a few people are involved in the art of perfumery today. There are only 200 to 300 true experts worldwide. In addition to the indisputable talent for creating fragrances, perfumers also need to study for years, for example at a special institute in Paris. That is why we chose French ingredients from the most famous region of France, Provence, as the basis of the IDENTITY perfume, which will be the signature scent of the entire D.N.A brand. The final product is completed by a certified Czech factory.