Oud or Oudh is one of the most expensive raw ingredients for fragrances in the world. It is also known as agarwood, this is extracted from the resinous heartwood of the agar tree. It is found in forests of Southeast Asia, India and Bangladesh and the ingredient is extracted by distillation from the wood or by resin melting. The resin forms upon being triggered by a fungus. So for every ten trees in the wild only one will have the required substance which explains why it is so expensive.
A history of using Agarwood for religious purposes including the Muslim and Buddhist religions exists till date. Recently, however, the use of oudh has entered into modern perfumery.
The rise of boutique hotels in the 1980s brought a sense of opulence and exoticism with it. And one of the luxurious items in demand became Oudh fragrance. In recent times, famous designers have launched Oudh based designer fragrances including Giorgio Armani’s Oud Royale and Tom Ford’s Oud Wood.
Oud is most often a base note in perfumes and remains on the skin the longest. While woody notes in general have an earthy odour, Oud gives a pleasant sweet scent. It is the perfect extra splurge for a complete perfume collection, a blend of subcontinental fragrance and modern perfumery. This luxury item is like no other when it comes to conveying lavishness and opulence.