I have mine at 10% - no particular difficulty with dissolving these.
Thread: Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin
I have heliotropin crystals that I want to dissolve in alcohol. Does anyone know what percentage is good?
I have mine at 10% - no particular difficulty with dissolving these.
Is Heliotrope available from a naturally derived source... or is it an aroma chemical?
AS far as I am aware there is not Heliotrope extract or oil. Heliotropin is made synthetically.
Heliotropine is an aroma chemical that can be synthesised cheaply and extracted from natural sources more expensively.
Heliotropine was discovered in 1869 by Fittig and Mielk who synthesised it and thus made the 'cherry pie' note of the Heliotrope flower, for which it is named, available to perfumers for the first time. It is used for vanilla or almond accords or to bring a balsamic character and also has powdery, floral aspects.
Heliotropine (or Piperonal - they are the same molecule) occurs naturally in a range of botanicals including dill, violet flowers, black pepper and others and is also commonly used as a flavouring, where the natural extract is more commonly used. Perfumers normally work with the cheaper synthetic version.
You can buy the natural extract from several sources, though not easily due to licensing and minimum order quantities. Here are some examples of companies that stock it:
You are a wealth of information on this board. I have learnt so much from reading your generously crafted responses to others. Thank you for this response as well... I'll investigate your links.
Whilst it is available, why would anyone want to use "natural" Heliotropin when the synthetic is so much cheaper, and (usually) better quality. And I repeat, there is no commercially available Heliotrope oil (i.e. the oil from the flower). Oh, and by the way, there is no Heliotropin in Heliotrope (according to Wikepedia anyway).
I should probably confess at this point that I wrote that part of the Wikipedia article!
I've seen claims that there is an oil extracted from the flowers (on the Wiki article on Heliotropium genus for example) but I've not been able to establish whether it's true: I'm certainly unaware of any such oil. If I can find out for sure I'll correct that article too.
I think there are many times in life when we choose to pay more for things... it just depends on your goals and tastes...
For my purposes I'm afraid I fall on the natural side... this does not appear to be popular in the perfumer circle, but it is in line my personal values and beliefs. So as I'm crafting, my ingredients need to align accordingly... even if it means overcoming obstacles such as higher price and sourcing challenges.
Perfumer's Apprentice stocks a "Heliotropin Replacer" at 50%. Does anyone know anything about this? They provide no further information as to exactly what this substance is. Is it a single aromachemical, or, as I suspect, a blend?
PND, I respect your choices, I just don't agree with them. If it pleases you to think that there is some magic mystical power in all things "natural", that (for example) a molecule of Heliotropin extracted from an essential oil is somehow better than a molecule made in a lab, then you go ahead. I just think you are wrong.
David, I completely agree with you. But, as someone who has only recently moved on to aromachemicals, out of frustration over trying to work (largely unsuccessfully) with all naturals, despite having amassed over a hundred of them, I understand and respect PND's philosophy and aesthetics. I would now much rather use coumarin than fiddle with the mess, expense and inconsistency of tonka beans, but I admire those who insist on the discipline of the opposing view.
To me, as a perfumer (retired) the naturals and synthetics each have their own role to play. There are many notes unachievable using only naturals; there are many naturals that cannot be copied by using synthetics. My aim, as a perfumer, was to create the best fragrance that I could. I cannot believe that an Essential oil (which shouldn't be thought of as a single material; Essential Oils contain hundreds of chemicals) has a special property simply because it has been extracted from a living thing. The idea of "vitalism"; the living "spark" died out in the 19th century. It is just not true that a molecule extracted from an oil is somehow better than the same molecule made in a lab. Coumarin is coumarin however it is derived. The only difference that could possibly have any affect is the difference in the optical isomerism of a naturally derived molecule and a synthetically derived one. Even that does not involve the mystical and magical.
I have a memory that it is used in Chinese medicine for purging toxins. I will check up on that.
My interest in natural actually has little to do with aromatherapy benefits. I just don't think it's healthy to be recreating nature in a lab... I believe that the thousands of chemicals that we are constantly exposed to are not healthy. I know it's not a belief held by others in this forum. My hope is that we can respectfully agree to disagree.
That said... I need to be as informed as possible about all the naturally derived options available for me to use.
"I just don't think it's healthy to be recreating nature in a lab..." Why?
Do you not find the very modern chemical formulas are aggravating to the sinuses in a way that natural ones are not?
I have many very powerful naturals, but they do not hurt my nose in the same way as a synthetic can.
Is the world not seeing an increase in allergies and respiratory problems?
I'm not saying they all do, nor that it is only the fault of perfumes. Just a noted is-ness.
"Do you not find the very modern chemical formulas are aggravating to the sinuses in a way that natural ones are not?"
As the "very modern formulas" contain naturals as well as synthetics. As have perfumes since the beginning of the 20th century.
"I have many very powerful naturals, but they do not hurt my nose in the same way as a synthetic can."
Surely this depends on the strength (dilution) of the material, and the material itself. I have heard that smelling pure Narcissus Absolute can give you a nose bleed. I find grating horseradish very unpleasant to my nose. I do not find Hedione unpleasant even if I smell it at 100.0% concentration.
"Is the world not seeing an increase in allergies and respiratory problems?"
Possibly but if so I think it due to the increase in pollution due to increase in cars etc. rather than the use of fragrances. Increase in allergies is an interesting one. Certainly an increase in asthma in children, and an increase in food intolerances. More likely due to the wipe clean society that does allow babies to build up a proper immune system.
We have had this discussion before and I think it best that we agree to disagree, although I am still waiting for a sound explanation as to why you think the way you do. I have not yet had one.
Mumsy, so far you haven't named one.
On the other hand, if there is not an olfactorial reason for it most perfumers will not use the natural in case a good synthetic is available. I like geraniol ex palmarosa, but in most cases ordinary synthetical geraniol (made from purely natural pinene) will do fine.
If any ingredient isn't available in the perfumers palette for any reason, either expense, availability, refusal to use, etc etc, then it is totally fine to use a substitute of another or an accord built to emulate as closely as possible the scent desired. The reason for the use or the non-use of anything is of no consequence to anyone except the actual perfume designer themselves.
Without an extremely advanced level of skill and knowledge, then no great barriers are going to be met at the beginning of perfumery because the skills are not great enough at that stage to find them. Maybe later, that will be so.
If Heliotropin is only available to the chemical perfumer, then another accord can be built instead for the natural perfumer. It is surely a good thing that there is a definite distinction between the two paths. If cost is not a driving consideration, then surely the 'best quality' is the right thing to use either way.
I happen to interpret 'best' as 'pure, natural, untampered with, and as near to it's source as I can achieve'.
It is of no consequence to a natural perfumers choices if someone else does not share this view, and just because one takes that view, it does not stop one from hearing and heeding anyone else's. All views are good learning experiences.
@janmeut, great to see you here again
I totally agree, and I think that is also @mumsy's point: whatever fits your fancy for whatever reason.
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Interesting article and picture on Heliotropin, and also reference to it "becoming increasingly regulated due to its potential use in the illegal production of ecstasy and other designer drugs".