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  1. #1

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I have heliotropin crystals that I want to dissolve in alcohol. Does anyone know what percentage is good?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I have mine at 10% - no particular difficulty with dissolving these.
    A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person.
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Im happy to quote: if you want free advice, thats what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Is Heliotrope available from a naturally derived source... or is it an aroma chemical?

    Thanks,
    Tania
    Tania

    www.PureNaturalDiva.com

  4. #4

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    AS far as I am aware there is not Heliotrope extract or oil. Heliotropin is made synthetically.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by PureNaturalDiva View Post
    Is Heliotrope available from a naturally derived source... or is it an aroma chemical?

    Thanks,
    Tania
    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:

    Advanced Biotech

    Moellhausen

    Vigon

    Omega Ingredients
    A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person.
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Im happy to quote: if you want free advice, thats what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Chris,
    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.

    Tania
    Tania

    www.PureNaturalDiva.com

  7. #7

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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).

  8. #8

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.
    A person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person.
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Im happy to quote: if you want free advice, thats what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    David,
    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.
    Tania

    www.PureNaturalDiva.com

  10. #10

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I have a memory that it is used in Chinese medicine for purging toxins. I will check up on that.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.
    Tania
    Tania

    www.PureNaturalDiva.com

  16. #16

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    "I just don't think it's healthy to be recreating nature in a lab..." Why?

  17. #17

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    "Do you not find the very modern chemical formulas are aggravating to the sinuses in a way that natural ones are not?"

    No.

    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.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by mumsy View Post
    I'm not saying they all do, nor that it is only the fault of perfumes. Just a noted is-ness.
    I had a slight disclaimer there but I will explain one day on another thread and with more time. I have a million good reasons.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Mumsy, so far you haven't named one.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    My God.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by PureNaturalDiva View Post
    this does not appear to be popular in the perfumer circle
    au contraire: I never met anyone in the 'perfumer circle' who does not like or use naturals, I think those people are very, very rare.

    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.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    @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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  25. #25

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    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".

    http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/t...opinsmall.html

  26. #26

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Dear Truffle hunter,
    At the risk of being gross, I recently returned from a trip to Costa Rica. When I returned, my dirty laundry smelled exactly like black Perigord truffles. Just a thought. As concerns heliotropin replacer, I just ordered some and compared it with heliotropin. They are very similar and for my (not so great) nose it was hard to tell the difference. I may have detected a stronger chemical quality in the heliotropin replacer but it wasn't enough to be disturbing. I suggest you order a little of the replacer (Perfumers' Apprentice?) and compare. Good luck.

  27. #27
    Paul Kiler
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    James, PA's Heliotropin Replacer is in fact Heliotropin in another material at 50%. (Can't remember what though presently.) Just use twice as much. This is for legal ramifications only

    PK
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    On the subject of naturals verse synthetics, I as a student perfumer enjoy using both natural and synthetic materials in my formulations. When I first set out to make perfume I thought it was done with all natural ingredients, but when I learned otherwise I felt like it opened a whole new door of creativity. While I respect those that chose to work with all naturals, I don't agree that synthetics should be looked at as some form of witch craft or satanic magic that should never be placed on the skin. When I create I set out to create the best fragrance I possibly can by using what ever ingredients are required to achieve that goal be it naturals or synthetics. Also, considering the fact that every single essential oil have over 100 CHEMICALS in it to begin with, a chemical is a chemical is a chemical doesn't matter wether it's made by man or nature. The only time I chose to work with only essential oils is when I create beard oils and post shave serums for sale and that's only for marketing because of the "organic trend". If I had the choice Id use synthetics in my beard oils too because so much can be achieved creatively by the use of both. Paul Kiler and his line of PK Perfumes is an exceptional example of this. He uses both synthetics and natural materials in harmony with one another to create some of the best fragrances I've ever smelled and many times when I've worn them people have asked me if I bought th fragrance from an all natural perfumer because they smell that "real". I think synthetics should stopped being looked at as such a bad thing.
    Last edited by natureknowsbest; 3rd February 2015 at 01:19 AM.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I think synthetics are looked at negatively by only a small, vocal minority. I personally like working with natural fragrances but am expanding with AC's too. Niche marketing is what it is though and everyone's money spends the same . In the end we should just make what we like and sell to the appropriate markets.

  30. #30
    Super Member nicok's Avatar
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by pkiler View Post
    James, PA's Heliotropin Replacer is in fact Heliotropin in another material at 50%. (Can't remember what though presently.) Just use twice as much. This is for legal ramifications only

    PK
    It's in benzyl benzoate.

    This replacer can be used as normal heliotropin. Benzyl benzoate has no impact on the scent.


    As to natural perfumers, I don't how they propagate, every now and then a new one appears in the forum.

    To clarify few things: There is NO SUCH THING as natural perfumer.
    It is just Perfumer. Otherwise I should be called non natural!

    'Natural' perfumer is a person obsessed with a subgroup of the perfumery palette and refuses to use the rest of it.

    'Natural' perfumer is a person with inadequate education (or denialism) to be able to understand that eugenol from the lab is the very same thing with eugenol from clove oil.

    'Natural' Perfumer is a person who denies to admit that all natural perfumes smell horrible and they are not wearable!

    Did anyone of you go to a date or at work wearing one of your all natural creations?

  31. #31

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I think natural perfumery offers several hopes and appeals:

    1) Natural materials must be the best, the corporations are too tight with money to use the best, and if I use only the best maybe that will let me do better than the professionals at the corporation-ey corporations.

    2) I don't want my perfume to smell corporation-ey, and using all naturals should stop that!

    3) There are too many aromachemicals and it seems so much easier to have a small selection of naturals and mix them. How could I go wrong? They all smell good, so it should be easy to make mixtures that smell good.

    4) I can sell them at the flea market. People will be beating a path to my door because they want naturals and the corporations aren't providing them. Should be easy!

    5) My coat? Coyote. Farm-raised. Because I care about the environment.

    (1000 points to anyone who gets the last!)

  32. #32

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by nicok View Post
    As to natural perfumers, I don't how they propagate, every now and then a new one appears in the forum.
    Same way as you do but with more manners

    To clarify few things: There is NO SUCH THING as natural perfumer.
    It is just Perfumer. Otherwise I should be called non natural!
    You can call anything whatever you like. It merely defines a method of working that is clear enough to understand. You can invent another if you wish.

    'Natural' perfumer is a person obsessed with a subgroup of the perfumery palette and refuses to use the rest of it.
    Refuses is inflammatory. Chooses is a better word.

    'Natural' perfumer is a person with inadequate education (or denialism) to be able to understand that eugenol from the lab is the very same thing with eugenol from clove oil.
    Fan the flames if you like, but it is your own anger and ignorance of why choices are made that is being displayed here.

    'Natural' Perfumer is a person who denies to admit that all natural perfumes smell horrible and they are not wearable!
    Perhaps you just haven't tried all the nicer ones yet.

    Did anyone of you go to a date or at work wearing one of your all natural creations?
    Most of the time.

    Now then... feel any better for your rather rude rant?

    May I also point out that the original post was a number of years ago and many of us have leaned much since then. Our opinions may not remain quite the same as when we began. It is a free world and choices belong to the individual. They are of little concern to others they do no harm to.

  33. #33

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by nicok View Post

    'Natural' Perfumer is a person who denies to admit that all natural perfumes smell horrible and they are not wearable!
    Since this a subjective pursuit and not an objective one, your inclusive, absolute statement is on the face of it false and you obviously haven't evaluated offerings from the likes of Tauer and Aftel. Nonetheless, you are welcomed to your opinion of course and I agree that perfuming is as perfuming does. There are many reasons for not liking one or the other type of perfumes including the fact that the vast majority of current perfume wearers haven't smelled anything other than scents composed of 85% or more ACs so this is what is "normal" now. Do you really think a person from the 19th century would think a modern synthetic perfume smells "right?"

  34. #34

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    oh my goodness... btw mumsy I absolutely did not have you in mind in the slightest when I wrote the above and there is no application at all.

    Not that you said there was!

    My meaning that these appeals exist for many and can be their driving forces. At least as my opinion of what is often going on. (Why, I've sort of felt those drives myself, early on!)

    Few if any of those driven by those appeals are doing work like yours. Not the same at all.

    There is also absolutely the appeal of working with gorgeous stuff, or as you do, bringing gorgeous stuff out of raw materials.

    I was referencing the cult and the hoping-for-the-flea market areas, not the entirety of natural perfumery.

  35. #35

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by I.D.Adam View Post
    Do you really think a person from the 19th century would think a modern synthetic perfume smells "right?"
    Well, Bach's music probably wouldn't have sounded "right" to a person from the 1500's or to the ancient Greeks, nor whatever music of whatever different era one might name, and what the person of the 19th century thought to smell right may well not have smelled right to the ancient Jews or Egyptians or, say, Indians or Arabs of the year 1000.

    I don't see a particular value in defining perceptions of the 19th century as being a benchmark. Surely the benchmark is things we have smelled in our own lifetimes? And if wishing perfumes to be for others as well as (or even instead of) ourselves, surely what they've smelled in their lifetimes is more the benchmark?

  36. #36

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    It's ok Bill, I was responding to Nikok. I don't actually really mind what anyone thinks. I just do what I do and I love it. Water off a ducks back here...

    I will, however add that I do study and use lots of aromachemicals to learn their profile and to see what they do. I happen to have chosen not to put them in my client perfumes so far because the ones I made smelled better without them. I will do so if I choose to.

  37. #37

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I have noticed this and admire it!

  38. #38
    Super Member nicok's Avatar
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Mumsy you are absolutely entitled to your opinion and use only naturals as you want.

    I will respect the fact that it is a choice of course.

    Although it is a choice driven by an obsession.

    It also NOT a greener choice, that is the common argument.
    Why is better to destroy massive crops of roses or sandalwood or agarwood than using a synthetic equivalent?

    @ID Adam: Tauer is not all natural. I know all his fragrances. For example Incense Rose has 19% Iso E super and many more synthetics (I have the GCMS).
    Tauer has a line called Pentachord where he has made perfumes made of only five synthetics each time and no natural at all.

    I have only smelled one aftelier in a perfumerie and I picked up hedione.
    Last edited by nicok; 4th February 2015 at 03:55 PM.

  39. #39
    Paul Kiler
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Our fellow Perfumer Andy Tauer uses a blend of naturals and "synthetic" molecules.
    Our fellow Perfumer Mandy Aftel uses a blend of naturals and "natural" molecules.

    There really isn't any difference between them.



    PK
    Paul Kiler
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    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  40. #40

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I expect he meant Andy T's Cologne du Magreb. A fantastic and all natural cologne. I would defy you to hate it.

    Naturals being a choice of obsession grates with me a bit. I just happen to feel more comfortable with things that are closer to their source. I do not see why that has to be perceived as an obsession in such an antagonistic fashion. So what if some people wish to specialise in a certain way? Doctors do it in medicine, perfumers do it in perfumery. So what? It doesn't make it right or wrong. Just different and true to themselves.

    As for the greener and endangered species thing. Of course that is taken into consideration in the same way as anyone would. One wouldn't use buckets more, just something else instead. It's a silly point to push some fury over with. Why do so called 'natural' perfumers make people so cross?

    I now know of lots of aromachemicals that I didn't know before when this thread started. I saw it resurrect with some trepidation, but I read through carefully and I think I still stand pretty much by what I said then.

    Live and let live. Don't be so cross with someone elses choices. You don't have to follow. It doesn't even matter.

  41. #41
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I just don't understand why some are so stuck on natural perfumery, as stated above there is no difference between a chemical made in a lab and one found in an EO. Mumsy, could you please further explain your reasoning for not using aroma chemicals? I ask in no way to undermine you, but to understand your point of view which I respect just as much as my own. Btw, hope your arm is feeling better, can't wait to receive the samples you sent me

  42. #42

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Roberts View Post
    Well, Bach's music probably wouldn't have sounded "right" to a person from the 1500's or to the ancient Greeks, nor whatever music of whatever different era one might name, and what the person of the 19th century thought to smell right may well not have smelled right to the ancient Jews or Egyptians or, say, Indians or Arabs of the year 1000.

    I don't see a particular value in defining perceptions of the 19th century as being a benchmark. Surely the benchmark is things we have smelled in our own lifetimes? And if wishing perfumes to be for others as well as (or even instead of) ourselves, surely what they've smelled in their lifetimes is more the benchmark?
    The 19th century isn't the benchmark for perceptions. Rather it roughly marks the boundary (early 20th century) between purely botanicals and the addition of synthesized materials. nicok was railing against natural perfumery, however that may be defined, based on specious arguments. I merely meant to bring attention to the faulty logic.

  43. #43

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I really don't find a logic fault. It's an entirely arbitrary distinction regarding the expansion of available materials over time. The nose or the brain couldn't care less and cannot know or perceive, unless communicated verbally or by watching the preparation process, where a given kind of molecule came from.

    Nothing magic about the set of what was available at a given time.

    There have to be natural products that were not available then either; is there a point, merit, or virtue in avoiding them as well?

    It's simpler to avoid them, and a person might prefer to as personal choice.

  44. #44

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by pkiler View Post
    Our fellow Perfumer Andy Tauer uses a blend of naturals and "synthetic" molecules.
    Our fellow Perfumer Mandy Aftel uses a blend of naturals and "natural" molecules.

    There really isn't any difference between them.



    PK
    Well, from a scientific point of view, and I believe a well grounded one, the difference is just biology. It's all about taking off our chemist hats for a second and putting our biologist hats on. Biological relationships between humans and nature's whole materials/chemicals have evolved over the aeons; and these are both hard wired, and/or from life experience and conditioning. That part can't be discussed away. It is what it is. So it's not as if naturals lovers have absolutely no rational leg to stand on, whatsoever. They have that one.

    Having said that, I do believe people overreact in a too bad way to perfume chemicals, and in particular, that a nature identical chemical is a chemical, whether from a lab or natural sources -- for the most part (trace chemicals are different, though, which is what it is). And even if something is originally from nature in its whole form, that doesn't mean one can isolate and maximise that element with no negative consequences whatsoever.

    In most of the rest of life with such things, there is a middle path. For a conceptually clear example, you can isolate sugar from fruit, and that's mostly fine. However, there would be some adverse consequences to eating a primarily fructose diet (and this would ultimately prove fatal over time, for that matter). I think that kind of phenomenon applies in countless ways in life. In all things moderation is key, is it not?

    That is also not to suggest natural things are always safe. Even too much sandalwood (mega quantities over a long time) can be hard on the liver, I've read. (not that it's practically possible to get too much for most of us these days.) Pennyroyal can be bad for fetuses, etc. Generally speaking, there is always a potential downside to isolating anything from nature, anywhere in life. Once we take advantage of that possibility of isolating and maximising nature's goods, for trying to improve on nature, we also inherit some kind of responsibilities for moderate behavior. That's mostly fine, if we can handle it.

    I think it's possible to be reasonable or unreasonable from either direction, therefore. As long as we're not freaking out on each other, we're probably OK.

    Another point is that synthetic perfume chemicals are often very similar to those one might find in nature, such that it is possible to synthesize one in the lab, and find it somewhere in nature later. There is increased chance, I should think, that human bodies could process and relate to those in moderation, biologically speaking. Even the fact that someone can enjoy a synthetic smell (of say, iso-e super or safraleine) is some evidence that a human body might be somewhat capable of processing that at some level, in that there is already a positive relationship of sorts. Humans also have standing relationships with crude oil and other geological chemicals, which may influence our relationships with some perfume chemicals. I don't know.
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 4th February 2015 at 07:04 PM.

  45. #45

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Our ancestors (or 99.9% of them probably) had no opportunity to smell extracts of gardenia, tiara, or very many other things in natural perfumery, or even the flowers etc themselves. What percentage were really exposed to tonquin musk, or civet paste, or angelica root? It would have to be really low.

    So I'm having trouble with the if-it's-a-natural-molecule-then-we've-evolved-to-its-scent argument (not that you said it that way.)

  46. #46

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    In biology, it's not necessary to directly experience something to have a relationship to it hard wired into ones makeup, at least not applied to individuals, and an individuals particular experience. Genetics don't work like that. The human species and the human-transcendent ecosystem nonetheless evolved a web of relationships among musk deer, gardenias, civet weasels, and every other member of the ecosystem. All the genetics of an ecosystem's members still somehow come to mirror each other, biologically, in some way, over the earth's long history.

    As a newborn infant, you've never experienced your mother's milk either. But you surely have hard wired into your body the capability of processing and benefitting from your mother's milk, not having directly experienced it. That is a simplistic example just to highlight the concept. You could have a villiage where no one drank mothers' milk, ever. And yet every member of that villiage and their offspring would stay hard wired to process, enjoy, and benefit from mothers' milk in a special and unique way, regardless. (not that there would be no extinction effects whatsoever over time. Some traits are more prone to extinction, genetically, and some not, and in some ways, and some not, with traits more necessary to adaptation being more resistant to extinction once present.)

    And although not every community has Tonquin musk deer, they do have deer, and they do have mammals. And some of them have have
    Tonquin musk deer, or it's relatives. Mammals have more similarities than differences, by far, biologicaly and genetically. That is why a human can get aroused by high quality deer musk almost as much as by an attractive human body smell. We are already hard wired for it, so to speak.

    People move from one community to another, and interbreed. Eventually the gene pool gets intermixed, just as every gene pool in every ecosystem already enjoys a shared history, people from fish, and fish from plants -- it's quite interesting how much genetic material is shared even between species of life that on the surface couldn't be more different (this is why, say, fruit flies can be used in so much biology research with positive results for all of biology). But it is really remarkable in particular how much genetics and biology all mammals share. It is also adaptive for genes to mix, thus making humans (and other organisms) more capable of surviving maximally diverse situations, and so nature has ways of making that happen (the hundredth monkey phenomenon is an interesting quirky example here, where traits spread among mammals), as nature operates to continue its survival above all else, ostensibly. Adaptation drives biology, and existing biology theory. At least that's the current state of knowledge. Science can always be proven wrong, expanded, and/or completed.

    Sorry to get so off topic. I never know how much detail is required, so I'm just trying to paint a coherent picture, successfully or unsuccessfully, as the case may be. Perhaps a real professional geneticist will come along and do it much better than my sort of "generally biological/scientific/intellectual" big picture approach.
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 4th February 2015 at 08:09 PM.

  47. #47

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I really don't see the mechanism of biologically hardwiring response to, say, some chemical found uniquely in tiara (or some other rare natural material).

    Science can be proven wrong when wrong, but claims of that hardwiring cannot be, which would make the claims not science?

    Do these other deer have L-muscone? What are the mechanisms causing hardwiring to this rarely-if-ever-smelled L-muscone to occur? I'm not asking for proof that it happened but at least a suggestion of a mechanism.

    Or could it be that we can enjoy molecules quite regardless of whether they ever existed in nature, and of whether our ancestors ever smelled them (let alone had evolutionary change to adapt to them?)

    Could it be that whether a never-smelled-before-by-any-significant-percentage-of-mankind molecule has existed in nature, or has not, really does not affect perfuming today in any way other than if the person smelling is prejudiced/biased/what-have-you?

    Horrors for the true-believer natural perfumer religionist who thought that Hedione was natural, and enjoys it and got such great use in perfumes he has made, and then discovers it is not. Or that his essential oil that he's used successfully in many formulations, which still smells fabulous to you or me, is spiked with a synthetic. Suddenly, his perfumes smell not as good.

    Or do they still smell just as good, regardless of an unprovable hardwiring theory and of the material never being smelled before 1900?
    Last edited by Bill Roberts; 4th February 2015 at 08:22 PM.

  48. #48

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I highly doubt l-muscone is the single key to my reaction or a deer's reaction to deer musk (there are studies to that effect, that the chmical by itself is not significant so far). There are hundreds of chemicals in a particular profile, such as hormonal chemicals. I think chemists too often want to isolate one chemical and think "this is the one". I think it's more often the case that the whole is much greater than the sum of parts, much less one part that supposedly the strongest or only effect. Chemistry is just not the best discipline for understanding this stuff, at least not alone as it is tradtionally taught. Whereas biology is more inclined to see a chemical as part of whole, rather than in isolation as the whole picture. I think this forum and perfumery in general tends to overemphasize chemistry to the exclusion of other disciplines. Just my opinion.

    I think I agree that it is possible to enjoy a chemical regardless of a prior specific relation to that specific chemical, as I said above. So we agree there. But there is still, for example, a neurological "receptor" (in the nose and or brain, or elsewhere in the CNS) that can accomodate that chemical hard wired into us, and if there wasn't we couldn't enjoy it. That receptor would also have to be hard wired into pleasure centers somehow. so there would be some kind of similarity between this new chemical and some other chemical we we hard wired to process, enough similarity to make the processing happen. This happens all the time in biology, such as with new chemicals that trigger hormonal receptors. I think this happens with new musks sometimes, if not often.

    Hedione is is jasmine, at least in some form. Is it not? Like you I think it makes little difference for most practical purposes whether the hedione comes from a flower or a lab, if it is the same chemical. Or the difference is at least way exaggerated.

    I really don't see how it is so hard to imagine that a natural organism could have evolved to process biochemicals it had not yet individually experienced. This seems like normal biology to me. I see that this is not taught in chemistry, sure. That's because it's not chemistry. It requires biological reasoning. That's all I'm saying, and I cannot imagine I am saying something at all controversial for a biologist.

    I am not talking about experimental science right now, but theorectical science based on the history of previous experimental science. I might not have an experiemental study for every point I make.
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 4th February 2015 at 08:38 PM.

  49. #49

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Mumsy, could you please further explain your reasoning for not using aroma chemicals? I ask in no way to undermine you, but to understand your point of view which I respect just as much as my own. Btw, hope your arm is feeling better, can't wait to receive the samples you sent me
    Thanks for the best wishes. It's getting there. I will try to explain properly if you promise not to shred me too hard afterwards.

    Quote Originally Posted by natureknowsbest View Post
    I just don't understand why some are so stuck on natural perfumery
    I hope you mean stuck in the fond sense. The other sort of stuck means a lack of choice.

    as stated above there is no difference between a chemical made in a lab and one found in an EO.
    To me, there very definitely is. Not perhaps to the aroma or the molecule itself, but the whole entity matters more to me. I will try to explain why.

    Firstly, to clarify a point; I do now use and have aromachems to learn from. When I began this thread, I did not have any. I realised along the way, that one needs the full aroma language for knowledge; whether one chooses to write with it or not. Not knowing aromachemicals was preventing any ability in playing blind sniff games.

    As for actual use, personally, and only so far, I mostly prefer the gentleness of my own hand made natural ingredients. In perfumes I have designed for others, I have sometimes added aromachemicals and then often chosen the version without as the better one. It could be familiarity, or perhaps I am not using the aromachemicals correctly to get a better result. Time will tell more of that as we go along. I have been playing with some in some online BN practice perfume games. We will see when the recipients get them what the verdict is on those.

    Overall, I think it is because I value the immersion in life part. The whole shebang about the vital energy thing. The feel of real resin in my hands, the smell of the raw product, the juice of a real plant making my hands green. The textures and the way something breaks or shreds or whatever. I like to see, feel and experience all these things. I like to immerse myself in the hard work to obtain the hand powdered or smashed plant and I like to watch as the colour appears over months of sometimes thrice daily agitation. I like to know where something has come from, and value it all the more if the hands that got bruised to obtain it are the ones that directly gave it to me without others inbetween. I like the rawness of real.

    I am a hands on sort of person. I like to make all things. I really love knowing for sure that there is no contamination in my product. I don't have oodles of money to spend. I can't afford tons of ingredients but I do have an insatiable desire to make perfume. I've been smashing up roses to make perfume since I was a tiny girl with a jam jar, and I'm still doing the equivalent now. It is a passion that is not satisfied with a single little smell made in a sterile lab. It doesn't mean I don't like them. I have every admiration for the scientists that can do that. Maybe If I was to be in the lab and could make some of my own, then that would be different.

    My perfumery is like my art, it is an extension of me. What I make is part of me, so I value very highly those things that are part of something else. My passion for ambergris for instance. A material that has been through the intestines of a great whale and then left floating around for 20 years on the sea. Watched over by the millions of stars and a whole universe, to arrive at me, to be condensed by my hands into a tincture. An essence of the whale and the life it has seen, is here in my vials, right here in my hands. I've matured these myself for years. They contain all the energies of the whale, the sea, the long, long time, the sweat of the grizzer to get to the far flung corners of the earth to get them and then all my patience. All in these little glass wands. Each contains a different magic for me.



    So I could use ambroxan then..... just tell me. Where is the comparison for the soul?

    Anyway...... I could whitter on, but there you have it. Heart laid bare.

  50. #50

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    To a natural perfumer no, Hedione is a synthetic, an unacceptable-to-their-craft unnatural substance. And in fact it does not occur in nature, and in many instances our modern aromachemicals are no more different from naturally-occurring analogs than Hedione is from dihydrojasmone.

    If one feels free to add or subtract a methyl anywhere, or a double bond anywhere, or a hydroxy or keto anywhere, a vast world of further molecules opens up... to which natural perfumery is not open.

    I never learned a mechanism for a species to adapt to things none of the predecessors experienced. I can't call that theory normal biology. Can you add something about how it could happen?

    It surely would not be "survival of the fittest," as there's no relevance of effect of things not experienced to "fitness" as meant within that explanation. (Not that the phrase is really good science in the first place, it is not, but it's a common way of summing up.)

    It could maybe fit in with Rupert Sheldrake's morphic field theory though (which I hope he gets better evidence for with time.)
    Last edited by Bill Roberts; 4th February 2015 at 08:50 PM.

  51. #51

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Roberts View Post
    To a natural perfumer no, Hedione is a synthetic, an unacceptable-to-their-craft unnatural substance. And in fact it does not occur in nature, and in many instances our modern aromachemicals are no more different from naturally-occurring analogs than Hedione is from dihydrojasmone.

    If one feels free to add or subtract a methyl anywhere, or a double bond anywhere, or a hydroxy or keto anywhere, a vast world of further molecules opens up... to which natural perfumery is not open.
    Absolutely...... and it doesn't need to be either. There is plenty left to play with, without them. Those that wish to, can do.

  52. #52

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Agreed!

  53. #53

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by DrSmellThis View Post
    I highly doubt l-muscone is the single key to my reaction or a deer's reaction to deer musk (there are studies to that effect, that the chmical by itself is not significant so far). There are hundreds of chemicals in a particular profile, such as hormonal chemicals. I think chemists too often want to isolate one chemical and think "this is the one"..
    But in the context of perfumery, it's worthwhile and relevant to focus on the simple - L-muscone - rather than the deer pod itself or the back end of the deer in person, which we have no access to.

    And L-muscone is one of the most useful materials I have in terms of making me really satisfied with my final product.

    I'm finding trouble in a hardwiring-due-to-experience-of-ancestors argument given that probably very few of them would have had exposure to L-muscone, and as you say, even if they did it would have been embedded in a while lot more, of which L-muscone may not be key.

    And there are all kinds of natural molecules which are of far less use to me in perfumery, or which I would insist on being kept away from me. It's only a small percentage that are great.

    As with a small percentage of potential synthetics being great.

    There may well be an effect that exposure to a broad general category of molecules has resulted in hard-wiring as you say: I wouldn't doubt that ancestors were exposed to molecules of those categories and their responses mattered.

    But I can't go with "Ah, we respond well to L-muscone so well because being a natural, we're hard-wired" when we may respond as well to another musk which is not, or that "We respond so well to dihydrojasmone because being a natural, we're hard wired" when we may respond better to Hedione, which is not-natural.

    You of course didn't say those sentences, but I am trying to follow the hard-wiring argument as a justification for natural vs, non-natural molecules within similar olfactive categories.

  54. #54

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Roberts View Post
    I really don't find a logic fault. It's an entirely arbitrary distinction regarding the expansion of available materials over time. The nose or the brain couldn't care less and cannot know or perceive, unless communicated verbally or by watching the preparation process, where a given kind of molecule came from.

    Nothing magic about the set of what was available at a given time.

    There have to be natural products that were not available then either; is there a point, merit, or virtue in avoiding them as well?

    It's simpler to avoid them, and a person might prefer to as personal choice.
    You didn't follow the line of reasoning and have made it seem as I asserted something I did not. The statements offered by nicok did not logically support his premise. That is all. This has gotten way off any meaningful discussion and I only added to it as I was temporarily moved by the absurdity of some of the statements. It appears I wasn't the only one. Nevertheless, I really don't care what materials are used in fragrances and everyone should use what they want. There is a market for them all as can be easily evidenced by what is selling in the various venues available. If we just want to talk artistry then we can be as snobbish as we want, but if we're talking about what people like to buy and wear then realize that there is a lot of stuff barely above plain ethanol all the way to $50-at-cost naturals making money for their purveyors.

  55. #55

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I didn't feel I made it seem as if you said anything of any sort, but apologize since you felt I did.

    Whether I didn't follow a line of reasoning or not I don't know; I didn't agree with it having an effect on anything other than opinion and personal preference as to where one makes one's cutoffs on what materials are available. That's okay, we should each make the types of perfumes we like.

    In the original controversial post on this subject, myself I only saw some points relevant to the doings of those who act kind of as nutters on it and turn out awful "perfumes." Mixtures that realistically do not meet the standard or even the general type of what people in the West today consider to be perfumes. I can also see where some could have found disagreement, and if taken too far, it would have been incorrect. Because there are natural perfumers to whom the comments don't apply -- but to very many natural mixers, they probably do apply, as personal opinion.

    I don't think nicok, and definitely not myself, ever meant anyone on this forum, but obviously he can speak for himself and does not need me to. It seems an excessive tempest was stirred in a teapot.
    Last edited by Bill Roberts; 4th February 2015 at 11:00 PM.

  56. #56

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    .... nice thing is..... it still doesn't really matter and there's no hard feelings either. Not to anyone. It's only a discussion and it means we are all passionate about it. That's a good thing.

    BTW. I went to a presentation recently of the best of the years perfumes..... well don't worry chaps. There is nothing to fear. The modern restricted perfume types are all pretty terrible these days anyhow judging by what I smelled. Mostly meh.

  57. #57
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    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by mumsy View Post
    The modern restricted perfume types are all pretty terrible these days anyhow judging by what I smelled. Mostly meh.
    I will say just one word- Dihydromyrcenol!

  58. #58

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Roberts View Post
    To a natural perfumer no, Hedione is a synthetic, an unacceptable-to-their-craft unnatural substance. And in fact it does not occur in nature
    Again, my understanding is that hedione is a constituent of natural jasmine, and not only jasmine. Here is the tgsc page that supports my contention:

    http://www.thegoodscentscompany.com/data/rw1015272.html

    That is of course different from saying, which I am not, that hedione made in a lab is "natural" by the definition of most "all natural perfumers". Do I consider it to be "natural"? Yes, I do, because to me nature identical chemicals are natural in an important, practical sense, though certainly not in every possible relevant sense, and the fact they were made in a lab is relatively trivial for many purposes. And I have no interest in winning that debate. It's just my perspective, which I adopt just to have some perspective to work with. I'm sure some people on either side of the debate would disagree.

    I hope you are aware that I am in no way arguing for a strict "perfume-naturalism" point of view. If you will notice my expressed interests here have been at least as concerned with perfume chemistry as with naturals. I love it all.

    There is a part of me, however, that feels for naturals lovers inasmuch as they might at times be painted as some kind of loonies for suggesting naturals have a unique value (just as synthetics do). I happen to strongly believe they have a solid scientific basis for not considering themselves to be clinically insane. I think they deserve a modicum of intellectual respect too, and so if I feel capable of defending them as not being crazy and worthy of mockery, I probably should try.

    I also believe that while synthetic perfume chemicals are good things for perfumery, that is different from believing there is no relevant difference between a typical chemical well known to ecosystems and a new one, collectively or on the average, as regards its role in nature and relationship with it, generally speaking, or on the average. I believe it is possible there would be no recognizable difference for a certain chemical, sure, but that as a rule, chemicals that have a history of life-supporting, healthful and beneficent relationships with certain organisms would on the average, tend to be less harmful (more easily incorporated into ecologic life without negative consequence), than random new chemicals without such a history, especially at levels similar to those observed in nature. This is just common sense evolutionary biology to me. If a biologist surfs these forums, which is possible, I highly doubt this line of thought will be exposed as irrational, and I would welcome any expert in that field to scrutinize what I am saying critically. I think chemisry is wonderful stuff too. I just think biology is also a worthwhile science (and psychology, and... and...).
    Last edited by DrSmellThis; 5th February 2015 at 02:59 AM.

  59. #59

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    I'd never seen that claim on Hedione before, and many times the claim of it not being naturally occurring.

    At the Essential Oils University database, nothing turns up for any natural occurrence: http://www.essentialoils.org/eoudb/s...hydrojasmonate

    But that doesn't prove the point of course.

    I've never seen it in a GC/MS of any jasmine except one which was an obvious fake. (That proves the point even less than the above.)

    TGSC has a GC/MS for osmanthus where methyl dihydrojasmonate is reported in trace quantity: http://www.thegoodscentscompany.com/gca/gc1000081.html

    So are the many sources saying it's non-natural wrong, or is that GC/MS wrong?

    Hopefully someone can provide a definitive answer!
    Last edited by Bill Roberts; 5th February 2015 at 02:39 AM.

  60. #60

    Default Re: Heliotrope / Heliotropin

    http://www.researchgate.net/publicat...05e3000000.pdf

    The above chemistry article indicates hedione was extracted from jasmine oil many years ago

    I'm no chemist, however, and am also open to any new information about that. It wouldn't be the first time I had used apparently reputable sources to merely further confuse myself. I once saw a GC-MS that found alpha ionone in sandalwood, and believed it to be true of sandalwood for years.

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