Scent Profile: Lilac
by Ellie J on Dec 09, 2021
S C E N T P R O F I L E
Lilac (Syringa Vulgaris), also known as the common lilac, is a species of flowering plant native to the rocky hills of the Balkan Peninsula and is a part of the olive family, Oleaceae. It has since been naturalised in other parts of Europe, Asia and North America, and this large shrub or small tree is widely cultivated for its fragrant, springtime flowers.
The substantial, deciduous shrub is now highly popular as an ornamental plant in parks and gardens due to these beautiful, sweet-scented flowers which bloom each May. They are predominantly lilac to mauve in colour but occasionally also appear in white, and the flowers are often seen to symbolise love.
Lilac itself has many uses - medicinal, culinary and in perfumery. Whilst the efficacy of its health benefits are still up for debate, the flowers have aromatic and astringent characteristics, meaning they could potentially help with tightening skin tissues and anti-aging or be beneficial for rashes, cuts and other skin ailments. They may also aid sore mouths, parasitic worms, malaria, fevers, minor cuts and sunburns. As for its culinary uses, just one popular method of many is to crystallize the flowers in order to use them later as a decorative item in baking and cooking.
Being a highly fragrant flower, Lilac is also commonly used in perfumery and is described as having a refined, floral aroma with subtle notes of honey and jasmine-like freshness. The essential oil itself, light purple in colour and also with that refreshing scent, is a steam-distilled extract of the Syringa Vulgaris plant’s leaves. As well as in perfumery, both in the home and cosmetic, the benefits of lilac essential oil supposedly include its ability to reduce inflammation and aging, protect the skin, boost the immune system as well as lower stress and anxiety. With all of these advantages, thankfully lilac is one of the most popular varieties of flower in the world, which results in the essential oil being greatly accessible.At The Master Herbalist, we use real lilac essential oil in our drawer liners and wardrobe freshener - the fragrance is available in our traditional floral print and William Morris’ Pinks and Roses design in purple.
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