Macedonian oakmoss, the key to the intoxicating beauty of Chypre Shot

Oakmoss is an essential ingredient in perfumery. It plays an important role in many fragrances but nowhere is it more important than in a family of fragrances called Chypres. The basic Chypre structure has existed since antiquity but all modern Chypre are descended from François Coty's iconic 1917 release "Chypre de Coty".

In Chypre de Coty, fresh bergamot is juxtaposed with the sweet ambery aroma of cistus labdanum and placed against a backdrop of bitter oakmoss. These three ingredients-united by their shared resinous facets-form the backbone of all modern Chypres.

While Chypres come in many forms, the one esential ingredient to any true Chypre is oakmoss. Without it, a fragrance can not be considered a classic Chypre. Oakmoss is easily one of the most important raw materials used in perfumery-and easily the most important perfumery ingredient that most of us have never heard of.

Oakmoss (Evernia prunastri) is technically not a moss, but rather a lichen-a composite plant consisting of a fungus containing photosynthetic algal cells. While it can be found on many species of trees in the temperate forests of the Northern hemisphere, it grows primarily on the trunks and branches of oak trees. It is harvested principally in the Balkans (Macedonia) and Morocco during winter and spring months. To produce one kilogram of oakmoss absolute, no less than 100 kilograms of oakmoss must be collected.

Oakmoss imbues fragrances with a characteristic warmth, intensity and depth. The incredibly powerful and tenacious aroma of oakmoss makes it an excellent fixative; as such it is often added to the base of amber and floral compositions to provide depth and complexity. Its fragrance is earthy, bitter, humid, woody and even slightly smoky.

For the past twenty years, the use of oakmoss in perfumery has been severely restricted due to the adoption of new allergen regulations in the early 2000s. Recently, however, new methods have been developed to remove the potential allergens in oakmoss absolute.

Chypre fragrances possess an intrinsic complexity and sophistication, which corresponds to the sophisticated men and women who adpot them. Discover Chypre Shot and give in to the intoxicating power of this truly original fragrance!