Plumeria rubra “fleurs rouges” absolute is obtained from these flowers mostly grown in India. Frangipani is a precious euphoric parfum in itself; the absolute is an intensely strong substance that captures the true essence of the plant. The process of obtaining an absolute is done through solvent extraction, so I prefer to limit the uses to the art of creating pure parfums as opposed to all over body anointment. Other than the ancient art of enfleurage this is the only way to obtain this plant oil. ( I have yet to see a co2 extraction). Due to the intensity of scent this is best used in a combination with other essential oils and botanicals in the creation of an aromatic elixir. If used solo, it does need to be extended for the scent to be a bit more subtle to the olfactory palette. As with many botanicals in their concentrated form, they excel when extended and blended.
Frangipani, just the sound of it is intriguing. Marquis Muzio Frangipani was a 16th century nobleman who made the perfumed gloves famous through his process of scenting them., hence the name Frangipani became a familiar term for perfume. Partly because of this many scents are titled “Frangipani” that really are blends made to imitate this precious exotic heady substance. Indeed, true Frangipani is rare due to the high cost of production and the sadly horrific use of synthetics that are cheap. Cheap is a rather nasty word and that is what synthetic substances are. Yuk! There is no compromise with Nature in mimicking what is real and substituting fake and expecting it to hold the essence and energy. Anyway without going onto a tirade about the importance of realness, I have always been skeptical about this component.
Fortunately through the years I have uncovered small supply sources of some unusual fragrant parfum material and I am so pleased to have this one. The absolute is very thick, very strong and does not smell like the blossoms until it is allowed to be extended and breathe. The highly concentrated substance is lovely in proper percentages and very favorable in pure parfums. One must know the latin to procure the plant substances. Frangipani has been called “Red Jasmine”, not so though. Jasmine is so lovely yet these two are entirely different substances. The common link is that both of these lovely flowers are high grade parfum material.
This is a rare botanical substance. These gorgeous flower petals are held with much reverence as they are sacred to Deities. Most notably the fine Frangipani flowers are used for temple honor in India. The luscious essence permeates the atmosphere when used as adornment for the hair and strewn about for reverent occasions and festivities. Like a Goddess of the Moon, the scent is more powerful at night. To me this indicates mystery and conjuring the charms to unveil desires that are held deep within. Blossoms are so revealing, opening up to passion and evoking sensuality with the power that it's scent holds.
When I was living in Florida I had the pleasure of picking many of these blossoms to bring inside our home where we would “float” them in a shallow bowl of water, allowing their fragrant molecules to permeate the air. There are numerous variations of this plant with the majority being the white with yellow trim. The pink “Rubra” is the more rare and fragrant one . We were fortunate to have had both in our yard at that time.