The history of perfume dates as far back as the Egyptian times when it was used by the rich and privilegedas well as the Pharaoh and his family during special occasions in particular, but also simply to mask unpleasant odors.
Since then perfume, and the perfume and beauty industry, has gone through a lot of changes, some more strange than others.
Below are 11 of the strangest facts and tidbits about perfume that you're likely to come accros.
Originally, one of the main ingredients in perfume, Ambergris, was produced in the intestines of the sperm whales. This product is still one of the most valuable in the industry that produces an oceany and sweet smell.
Today, companies like Dolce & Gabbana use a synthetic product that creates the same smell. For example: 'Light Blue Escape to Panarea' (shown in the image above).
You probably recognise the bottle. 'Chanel no. 5', one of the best-selling perfumes of all time. Marilyn Monroe's favourite scent - the only one she would wear to bed, in fact.
Surprisingly, to most people, the perfume has its roots in very humble beginnings. Coco Chanel's mother was a laundrywoman, and the constant smell of newly scrubbed skin and soap was an important part of her childhood. So important, in fact, that when presented with the choices that perfumer Ernest Beaux presented to her, she picked this one first, because it smelled like soap.
The word 'musk' and the smell it represents, is based on a reddish-brown substance that is secreted by male musk deer when they are 'in season'. As this animal is endangered, this scent is now fabricated from products such as ambrette or synthetic raw material.
You'll never guess what synthetic product is used to mimic the smell of jasmine. Coal tar - at least this is what is used to derive the synthetic material 'Indole', which is used for creating a jasmine smell - but only in low concentrations.
Yes, it's true - you can, if you want, scent your cigarettes. 'Habinata' by Molinard was originally released in 1921, and worked like this: you could place the perfume satchels in your cigarette case or apply it directly in liquid form to create a 'delicious, lasting aroma'... the forefathers of the fancy e-cigarettes everyone!
This bacon scented perfume, 'Bacon by Farginnay', can transport you right back to your breakfast table if you just close your eyes. This scent was originally produced by a butcher in the 1920s as he came to realise that by combining the essence of bacon with 11 other essential oils, he could make more customers happy. Clever man!
Apparently, you've been doing it wrong. Again! Spraying your perfume on your skin doesn't make it last as long as if you sprayed it on... Wait for it... Your hair! The natural oil that is produced on your scalp retain the scent longer, and it also spreads more easily as your hair is almost always in motion. Who would have thought?
Fun fact: When your nose is exposed to the same smell for an extended period, it becomes familiar, and your nose becomes desensitised. Because of this, the only time you can truly smell your go-to scent is when you apply it first, and if you're consciously looking for it. Feel free to not douse yourself in it just because you can't smell it.
The creator of, among others, 'Miss Dior', Jean Carles did something few people would even consider. Apparently, he insured his nose for 1 million dollars. I guess it was useful in his work!
Queen B knows what she likes, and with her fragrance 'Heat Mrs Carter' selling enough to cash in 400 million dollars on a global scale which just happens to make it the best-selling perfume of all time.
The most expensive perfume in the world is the Clive Christian 'Imperial Majesty'. If you happen to have 215,000 dollars you can get a whole 16.9 ounces of the scent. It is bottled in a Baccarat crystal bottle and a collar made of 18-carat gold. To top it all off, the collar has an inlaid 5-carat diamond.