Today, let's continue with the history of perfumery and see together what changes of scenario occurred in the 19th century.
In this century, 'hygiene finds its primary place in people's daily lives, so much so that the first toilets are also installed inside homes and personal cleaning practices are taught from an early age.
The perfumed soap becomes the first perfuming gesture accessible also to the lower classes. Among the other perfumery products of this century we find cologne and lavender, perfumed lotions and the classic perfumed oils and ointments.
The eau de toilette, already present on the market, were mostly intended to be added in small percentages to the'water used for bathe and perfume concentrates (very precious and expensive) were poured on pocket handkerchiefs by the bourgeois.
L'evolution in the medical field dispelled any belief that mal'smell was the vehicle of pathogenic microorganisms and from this discovery the perfume will take on from'from now on only a hedonic and voluptuous character.
In this scenario, the first famous perfume houses were born for the'era such as Piver (1774) and Guerlain (1828).
Even the'use of raw materials undergoes a real revolution when it was discovered that some odors typical of natural raw materials could be reproduced through chemical synthesis! The first molecules of chemical synthesis were vanillin (1874) which replicated the'smell of vanilla and coumarin (1874).
L'implementation in the discovery of new natural and synthetic odorous molecules combined with'purely hedonistic use of perfumery leads to an exponential growth of this industry and also to the birth of new odorous families in line with the tastes of the society of thetime: this is the case of perfumes “oriental” with a top note of bergamot and a base of vanilla, from the de “fougères” with an accord of coumarin, geranium and lavender.
In this scenario, the'art of perfumery leaves the small craft shops and enters by force the shelves of department stores and the bazaars of perfumery with elaborate, precious and very expensive bottles.
Dott.ssa Federica D'Incà - COSMAST Master in Cosmetic Science and Technology
"Every woman has the right to be beautiful" - Elizabeth Arden