Ingredient Spotlight: Wild Lavender
Posted on April 09 2019
Our beard goods are crafted from all-natural ingredients, with scent compositions inspired by the seasons and built upon the tenets of natural perfumery. In this series, we shine the spotlight on the ingredients that make Fjordmist beard oils, balms and waxes so ethereal.
Botanical Name: Lavandula angustifolia Mill.
Process: Steam Distilled Essential Oil
Plant Part: Flowers
Note: Middle to Top Note
Aroma: Very fresh, floral, soft green, herbaceous aroma with smooth penetrating notes
Wanna make a mummy? Not one of those gross smelly mummies, a clean and fresh-smelling mummy. Or as fresh as a mummy can be, certainly.
For you see, the use of lavender has been well documented for over 2500 years, from being part of both perfumes and the mummification process in ancient Egypt to the Romans, who used it in much the same ways we do today (medicinally, for it scent, culinary preparations and so on).
A favorite Roman use of the herb was in baths, to the point that the scent became synonymous with clean. The Latin verb lavare means “to wash.” Chicken/egg style, it is unclear which happened first.
Regardless, lavender's scent being a signifier of cleanliness carried straight on to Renaissance era France when washer women for hire were called “lavenders,” whose work was washed in lavender water and dried on its bushes. Now that’s a tradition we would be keen to bring back.
Not that we’re making medicinal claims, especially in beard product form, but the plague and cholera carriers of 16th and 17th century Europe were sure betting on lavender’s illness-banishing effects. If nothing else, its aromatherapeutic calming benefits certainly couldn’t hurt if you had the plague.
Few if any essential oils today are as widely used as lavender although we use a wild variety as opposed to cultivated), but this flower and its oil are anything but vanilla.
It even has a waft of controversy about it, hilariously known as "The Great Nard Controversy" (tl;dr spikenard, not lavender was used for the Jesus foot anointing bit in the Bible, the Greeks called lavender “nardus” after the ancient city of Naarda, which sold a lot of lavender, and everyone's been confused for a couple thousand years).
For a humble little floral herb, Lavender is pretty metal. It could perhaps use a slogan. We suggest: "Lavender: wash the smell of death off you."
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