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The Popularization of Oud


The first time I stepped into Dubai’s Galerie LaFayette in Dubai Mall, the aroma of the store kept pulling me into the perfume section.

There I was asked to sit down on one of their beautiful velvet armchairs and the most exquisite and rare perfumes were brought to me on a silver platter (literally).

I noticed the luxurious perfumes beautifully displayed all around me on lavish tables with reflective glass tops and couldn't help but take a closer look. I noticed the lineup of perfumes are nothing I have seen in Canada. As I came in closer to examine these alluring perfume bottles, the Gucci sales representative offered me a sample and said Gucci Oud exclusive to the Middle East.

It only took one sniff to be enchanted and feel like I was transcended to another time another place.

As I looked around I can see Yves St. Laurent OUD, Armani OUD, Cartier OUD and each line had a significant combination that captivates your senses and your imagination.

The price of these exotic and exclusive perfumes that are infused with one of the most expensive fine perfumes and oils in the world, the 75ml bottle starts at $200-300 and one spritz lasted all day.

Although Oud is deeply rooted in the East and a strong part of the culture, over the past few years this expensive and unique ingredient has made its way into a lot of the Western luxury perfumeries for its aphrodisiac and sensual effects.

Oud was used in smaller amounts with a trace of woody notes in men’s fragrances and niche luxury fragrances, in the recent years Oud has become the centrepiece of perfume construction.

According to Donna Hathaway:

‘the first mainstream fragrance to feature it was Yves St. Laurent's M7 in 2002, the first YSL fragrance released under Tom Ford's direction. It was a resounding failure at the time, although it would probably be very popular if it were introduced today due to the current market's new familiarity with Oud.It was apparently too much, too soon, as it was a very powerful fragrance, but it has a cult following to this day, due in part to its provocative ad campaign.’

According to the NPD Group, sales of oud perfumes are going strong within the prestige fragrance market, which is valued at $3 billion. A 2013 report stated that total Oud sales were up by 68%.

So if you are still new to the oud world, it is time you get introduced. You don't have to buy a luxury Gucci Oud fragrance, but try our sample size mini soap bars to get a whiff of each of our 6 unique scents for only $2 including shipping.

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