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Oud Fragrance Oil: History, Origin, Types And Uses

Perfumes are an essential part of our daily lives, and the fragrance industry is constantly evolving. With so many ingredients available to perfumers, it's not easy to stand out in the market. However, there's one ingredient that has captured the hearts of fragrance enthusiasts and perfumers alike - Oud. This rare and exotic ingredient has been used in perfumery for centuries and continues to be one of the most sought-after notes in the world.

Oud, also known as agarwood, is a resinous wood that is formed in trees when they become infected with a specific type of mold. The wood becomes dark, dense, and fragrant, with an aroma that is intense, woody, and earthy. The history of oud dates back to ancient times, when it was used for medicinal purposes and later as an incense in religious ceremonies. Today, Oud has become a symbol of luxury and elegance in the fragrance industry, and its popularity only continues to grow.

In this blog, we will delve deeper into the world of Oud, exploring its origins and history, and take a closer look at what oud fragrance oil is, its types, and its use of Oud in the fragrance industry. If you're a fan of this exotic and sensual ingredient or simply curious about it, this blog is for you. Join us as we discover the wonders of Oud and explore why it's nature's finest gift to the world of perfumery.

History and origin

Oud Fragrance Oil: History, Origin, Types And Uses

The history of Oud is steeped in culture and tradition, dating back to 1400 B.C.E. It has been used for centuries for medicinal and spiritual purposes, with mentions in some of the oldest texts of mankind, including the Sanskrit Vedas and the Hebrew Bible.

The tropical evergreen Agar tree or Aquilaria species is the source of Oud, originating from Assam, India. It occurs mainly in the rainforests of Southeast Asia, including Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, the Philippines, Borneo, and New Guinea. As centuries went by, traders began exporting Oud to other Asian countries, where it became an incense burned in homes, royal palaces, places of worship, and gatherings of friends and family. It has transcended virtually every aspect of their lives.

With its roots in Southeast Asia, Oud has earned its place in Middle Eastern culture as a highly esteemed component. This precious ingredient holds great significance in various religions, such as Hinduism, Chinese Folk religion, and Islam. Arab culture has embraced Oud as an emblem of lavishness and sophistication, especially in the Gulf region. Even today, Arabs continue to infuse their homes with the captivating fragrance by burning agarwood, a custom that has been passed down for generations. Oud's calming and grounding properties have made it a vital component of spiritual practices, meditation, and personal grooming, particularly before prayer. Oud's enduring popularity has even extended to the fragrance industry, where it is used in perfumes, colognes, and essential oils, cementing its position as a timeless champion of fragrance.

What is an oud fragrance oil?

Oud oil, also called agarwood oil, is a rare and precious substance derived from the resinous heartwood of the agar tree. This prized ingredient is obtained by distillation from the wood or by melting the resin, resulting in a fragrant and potent oil that is highly coveted across the globe.

The process of obtaining Oud oil is a delicate one that requires careful attention to detail, as the agar tree is only infected by a fungus in rare instances, leading to the formation of the sought-after resin. It is this unique and natural process that gives Oud its distinct aroma, which is revered for its calming and grounding properties.

Despite the complex and time-consuming process of obtaining Oud oil, it remains a highly lucrative market, with an estimated value of around $6 billion annually. This luxurious oil is often referred to as "liquid gold" due to its high value, which is frequently estimated to be one-and-a-half times that of gold.

Oud oil's rarity and prestigious status have made it a popular ingredient in high-end perfumes, where it is known for its long-lasting and distinctive fragrance. The scent of pure Oud oil is intensely aromatic, with rich and complex notes that can include woody, smoky, and even slightly sweet undertones, making it a beloved and sought-after ingredient in the fragrance industry.

Types of oud fragrance oil

Oud fragrance oil is a popular ingredient in many perfumes and colognes, known for its unique and distinctive aroma that is both woody and sweet. There are two types of oud fragrance oil:

  • Black Oud

  • White Oud

Black Oud typically refers to a type of oud fragrance that has a dark, smoky, and woody aroma. It is often derived from the heartwood of the agar tree that has been infected with a specific type of fungus. This fungus causes the tree to produce a dark, resinous substance that is harvested and distilled to produce the oil used in black oud fragrances. Black Oud is known for its intense, masculine, and mysterious aroma and is often used as a base note in men's colognes and perfumes.

On the other hand, White Oud is a type of oud fragrance that has a softer, lighter, and more delicate aroma. It is often derived from the heartwood of the agar tree that has not been infected with the fungus that produces black oud. White Oud is also sometimes referred to as "white gold" because of its high value and rarity. It is often used in women's perfumes and can be blended with other floral or citrus scents to create a more feminine and refreshing fragrance.

Oud oil in the fragrance industry

Oud oil in the fragrance industry

Oud fragrance oil is treasured for its warm sweetness combined with woody and balsamic notes, creating a complex and aromatic scent that is both luxurious and sophisticated.

Many of the top luxury brands in the fragrance industry utilize oud oil in their expensive designer products. From Tom Ford® to Creed® to Guerlain®, oud-based perfumes have become increasingly popular in recent years. This has led to a surge in demand for oud oil as fragrance enthusiasts seek out the unique and complex fragrance that this precious ingredient offers.

Oud oil is typically used as a base note in perfume compositions, meaning it is the foundation upon which the other fragrance notes are built. Unlike top and middle notes, which tend to dissipate quickly, base notes such as oud oil linger on the skin long after the other fragrance notes have faded away. This makes oud-based perfumes particularly desirable for those seeking a long-lasting and sophisticated scent.

One of the reasons oud oil is so special in the fragrance industry is its versatility. It can be used in a wide range of perfumes, from masculine and woody scents to feminine and floral ones. It also blends well with other fragrance ingredients, such as rose, sandalwood, and musk, creating a unique and complex, alluring, and captivating fragrance.

Here are the top perfumes with oud fragrance oil

Indulge in the intoxicating blend of oriental charm and timeless elegance of oud fragrance oil, leaving a trail of captivating allure wherever you go with our top 10 oud perfume collection.


In summary, Oud fragrance oil is an exceptional and highly sought-after ingredient in the world of perfumery, known for its rareness and also its exorbitant cost. Its rich, deep and luxurious scent profile and impressive sillage make it a coveted note for both men and women. Unfortunately, the high cost of designer perfumes featuring this ingredient can make it challenging for fragrance enthusiasts to experience this opulent world. However, with over 500 inspired designer fragrances in our collection, Unleashed Perfumes offers an excellent alternative. We provide an array of oud-inspired scents without the hefty price tag, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking to indulge in this luxurious fragrance note. So don't hesitate to explore our collection today.


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