Frankincense in perfume
Frankincense was one of the three treasures given to Baby Jesus. Also known as olibanum, frankincense is actually a resin from the Boswellia sacra tree, which grows in the Dhofar area of Oman, as well as Yemen. Once exclusively reserved for kings and queens, Frankincense has been used in religious ceremonies and burial rituals for thousands of years. Ancient Egyptians called it the Sweat of Gods.
Harvesting from the Boswellia sacra trees begins early April as the temperature rises and the sap flows more easily. Harvesters cut small incisions into the bark, causing it to ooze white milky sap. The sap solidifies into a gum over 10 days which the farmers scrape. After about 5 years of tapping, the tree is left to rebuild for 5 years.
Frankincense is a powerful ingredient – an alluring musky scent. It’s been used for 6000 years as a perfume and panacea. The value of Frankincense resin is determined by its colour, clump size and oil concentration. The most valuable grade, known as hojari, comes from a narrow, dry microclimate belt of the Dhofar Mountains just beyond reach of the summer monsoon that blankets the tip of the Arabian Peninsula in mist. Frankincense has been heralded as treating many ailments throughout history from wounds to throat infections. It is burned for energetic purification and the whirling smoke is said to ascend directly to heaven. Frankincense is an integral part of the Omani culture and a treasured ingredient in perfume.