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The Powerful Yet Overlooked History of Fragrance Oils

Mortar and pestle with lavender.

When some of us think of history, we may think back to the various wars or influential individuals who have shaped our society today. However, a large part of our history consists of trading from one place to another. Hence, the name P&J Trading was created where we aim to bring the world to you!

With the act of trading comes different inventions which also shaped our society. These inventions comprised of several aspects which included the birth of fragrance oils or perfumery. But how exactly did fragrance oils develop over time? Today, we want to discuss with you the history behind fragrance!

Ancient Egypt

The beginning of fragrance oil dates all the way back to the days of ancient Egypt. Some of the most elegant fragrances or perfumes of the ancient world come from the Pharaohs. They regarded themselves as divine and wanted to receive blessings from the gods. Thus, the Pharaohs offered huge quantities of perfume to temples as an expression of devotion. The Egyptians soon began associating fragrances with their gods. Additionally, they believed the perfumes had positive effects on their happiness and health. The country was also involved with the international perfume trade. This meant Egypt would receive new fragrances which helped develop a more prized perfume for the people.

The Egyptians in the ancient world would use fragrances for a do it yourself oil-based salve. This applied salve was used for several recipes which are portrayed in temples across the land. The oils were also used for religious and burial preparation for their loved ones. Throughout religious practices, they would burn lamps filled with fragrance oils at the altar for their gods. It was a ritual to burn fragrances at least three times a day. Lastly, the Egyptians started to use the oils within everyday attire as perfume. They believed that by having the oils in their homes, it would guarantee safety and compassion.


Throughout Europe, the popularity of fragrance or perfume began to grow as well. Europeans also used fragrances for several ceremonies. The most popular events included births, weddings, funerals, and dancing.

Fragrances not only played a large part in rituals but in everyday life as well. The Europeans linked perfumes to body care as they became more aware of personal hygiene. However, perfume was only associated with the upper class at the time. The upper-class Europeans would place a smaller silver container strung around the neck which contained fragrance oil. This aroma would then spread around to other people and usually consisted of a lavender scent. Hence, the popularity of our P&J Trading Lavender Fragrance Oil!

Additionally, with progress in the Renaissance period, perfumery or fragrance oil knowledge expanded. The discovery of the New World and India Way brought Europe vanilla, cocoa, cinnamon, and ginger. All of these spices developed into fragrance oils used by Spanish and Italian perfumeries. These perfumes began to move to France where the first cologne was made in the 1600s. After cologne was established, the Italian fragrance trading in the 1800s pushed fragrances from barberries into popular perfume stores.

Personal Experiences

Today, we are surrounded by fragrance oils and perfumes everywhere! For some, fragrance oils create a sense of individuality. It is a way to express yourself and who you are. Scent or smell is the most powerful sense we have! This is why you might think of your sweet grandma or grandpa who had that certain smell you cherish so much. Here at P&J Trading, we want you to not only experience memories but establish confidence through your own individualism.