Thursday, June 28, 2007

Champaca Flowers vs. Nag Champa Incense

Michelia champaca details, originally uploaded by Amethist.

There is often confusion betweenchampaca flowers and the Nag Champa incense. A current project that involves the champaca as a note engouraged me to both look into the matter, as well as sample a few different champaca essences, and further deepened my intrigue by champaca. I hope you’ll find the following information useful.

Michelia Champaca, also known as “golden champaca” or “red champaca” is a flowering tree from the Magnoliceae family (magnolia alba is another species used for its essential oils in perfumery – from both the flowers and the leaves). It is native to India, Java and the Phillipines. Traditionally, Indian women would wear the buds behind their ears until the bud will open up and release its own scent.

Champaca is also related to Star Anise, and its scent in a way shares the spicy characteristics of star anise as well as the floral-fruitiness of magnolia. Unlike white magnolia, which is peach-like and very light, champaca has a penetrating, smooth and rich aroma that is reminiscent of tea, spices, and a floral note that is often compared to orange blossom. I personally think it is so unique it cannot truly be compared to orange blossom at all. Stephen Arctander describes champaca as similar to guiacwood (a waxy, smoky, tea-rose like wood from South America), yet at the same time mentniones that it is also used to adulterate champaca and therefore is not a very good way to describe champaca… I feel that until champaca is experienced, it is really difficult to describe it or imagine it.

I have experienced various champaca essences, including Champaca CO2, Champaca Absolute and Champaca Concrete. The champaca absolutes I have sampled varied a bit, one being more fruity and reminiscent of magnolia, and the other being more full-bodied, spicy and wine-like. In both cases they were intensely warm and rich but not in overpowering way. There is something really soothing and exoticly elegant about champaca in my opinion. Champaca CO2 is similar to the absolute, but with a less complex presence, and it feels a bit flatter, thin in comparison to the other essences. The lasting power and intensity was not to my satisfaction, but if combined with white magnolia and champaca concrete it creates a lovely champaca profile. The champaca concrete is by far my favourite, having a rich, complex tea-like undertones, a sweet body note, and minty-herbal-spicy overtones.

Those who are familiar with the Nag Champa incense may find champaca scent to be somewhat similar. The reason being that Nag Champa incense incorporates halmaddi, a grey, semi-liquid resin taken from the Alianthus tree, which smells very similar to champaca flower.

The champaca flowers may have been used in the traditional recipes for Nag Champa, but I doubt that any champaca flowers would be found in the myriads of champaca joss sticks that are sold at a very low price across the world. Considering that the going price for champaca absolute is between 3,000-5,000 a kilo, it seems very unlikely. The price is predicted to go only higher, as development in India is booming due to the growth of the high-tech industry there, making land more and more precious. Farmers of exotic oils in India are going to be asking for a much higher price for their fragrant goods to justify not selling their lands.

Because of its price, champaca is rarely used in mainstream perfumery. I have seen it mentioned as a note sporadically, i.e. in Calvin Klein’s Euphoria (can’t say I’ve noticed it though…), and in Patou most recent Sira des Indes. It is also found in a couple of niche fragrances, such as Commes de Garcons Guerilla 1, and of course the infamous Champaca by Ormonde Jayne. But it is most dear to natural perfumers, and I believe it is there where you will find the most intriguing use of champaca, as in the smoky Tango by Aftelier, or the sultry exotic beach scent Fairchild by Anya’s Garden. Over the course of the next few days I will do my best to review these perfumes.

*Many thanks to Christopher MacMahon of White Lotus Aromatics who shared with me his knowledge about Champaca and its current position in India.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


At July 05, 2007 9:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nag champa incense has a funky sweet aroma to it. It's attractive in it's odd way but nothing I'd want to smell often. Is the true essence in the perfumes you've mentioned, Ayala? If so I am going to be hunting down Sira des Indes.

I once loved Jean Coutourier's Keora with it's exotic notes. Yet I think I couldn't carry it off at my current age. However there are whole classes of exotic perfume notes I think are disappearing in favour of the mass-marketed and accepted synthetics whic lack depth and magic.

At March 21, 2008 4:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi.. do you know where i can find nag champa incense?

At March 21, 2008 7:45 PM, Blogger Ayala Moriel said...

Nag Champa incense is widely available - I've seen it in bookstores, dollar stores, and East Indian grocery shops.

At July 23, 2008 1:23 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Good Afternoon I had a tree of champaca I love the smell of the flower but my problem is I dont know how to plant or propogate the said tree I had attemped to propogate it but I always fail can you teach me or introduce other website that teach how to plant or propogate the said tree from

At August 05, 2008 10:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ayala I know plantations in India that are organic certified as per US and European norms [since 2004] and growing champaka for extraction. These would produce more complete products for aroma therapy I suppose.
Dr. Abhay

At October 20, 2009 9:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello :)
I am re-posting something I left previously at The Olfactory Rescue Service blog. Mike said I might receive more help at one of the perfume blogs ... so here I am. :)

~~~~ keeping mind that I originally asked the question in relation to Nag Champa incenses they were discussing- here is the post~~~

I am hoping that you can answer a question for me. Does the above information concerning nag champa incense also apply to the fragrance oils?? I am desperately seeking ‘my’ Nag Champa I have worn for 6 years now. The lady whom I purchase from has lost her supplier and what she has now neither one of us are happy with. “My” Nag was very deep and warm and had what my Western nose called a spicy hot cinnamon-y scent. I think there may also have been Amber. Ganesh and Shanti both sound like what I may have had maybe Ganesh more so.
If I use this information here what on earth do I ask for in an oil?
I am so addicted to this stuff that I have anxiety problems when it looks as though I am running out.


At January 15, 2010 11:31 PM, Anonymous Term papers said...

This blog is Useful for every one who wants to get a good Knowledge.
Many thanks to Christopher McMahon of White Lotus Aromatics who shared with me his knowledge about Champaca and its current position in India.

At January 16, 2010 5:55 AM, Blogger Ayala Moriel said...

Thanks for posting!
Christopher McMahon is very generous with his knowledge, and India's natural perfume is certainly his specialty.

At November 28, 2010 11:13 PM, Anonymous Custom Essay said...

The Champaca Flowers vs. Nag Champa Incense is a very good competition to watch I think that the information about about both is really good to read about and to know about it.

At December 12, 2010 11:32 PM, Anonymous College research papers said...

Nag Champa became popular in modern Western Culture in the 60’s and 70’s when burned at the performances of Dylan, The Grateful Dead, and others. The heady fragrance became part of the concert experience for millions of music fans.

At January 06, 2011 9:34 PM, Anonymous Custom Home Detailing said...

Both flower are just beautiful. The smell of both flowers are very similar.

At April 16, 2011 4:16 AM, Anonymous Study in UK said...

I always learn something new from your post!Great article. I wish I could write so well.

At October 20, 2011 2:00 AM, Anonymous cctv karachi said...

I have found your blog to be quite useful. Keep updating your blog with in valuable information... Regards

At January 24, 2012 11:36 PM, Blogger grincense said...

GR international is a reputed manufacturers and exporters of AIncense Sticks, INCIENSO, Natural Incense Manufacturers, Masala Incense, Amruthvani Incense, Agarbatti Exporters, Floral Incense India, Maya Nag Champa India, Gr Nag Champa, SandalWood Incense, Agarbatti, Sahumerio, Nag Champa, Incenso in India.

For more details visit

At January 24, 2012 11:50 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Darshan International has been involved in this pure and sacred art of making forever 50 years and has experienced the growth of the importance of incense in every field. We are manufacturing like Agarbatti, Incense Sticks Manufacturers.
For more details visit

At January 29, 2012 4:30 PM, Anonymous Window Cleaning Irvine said...

Very eductional about the Champaca & Champa. We will share this with the class.

At February 01, 2012 12:23 AM, Anonymous anaheim marriott hotel said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At March 12, 2012 11:37 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At March 12, 2012 11:42 PM, Blogger Ayala Moriel said...

Darshan, please stop spamming my blog!!!

At March 16, 2012 4:31 AM, Blogger rudrakshincense said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At June 11, 2012 12:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is such an interesting story at it gives in-depth information to the reader as well. Good thing you have it shared. herbal incense

At July 26, 2012 12:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi all,
Have a nice day.

spices of madurai

At May 08, 2013 12:50 AM, Blogger Funkyscents said...

Great post, thanks for all the valuable information that you have provided.

Buy legal herbal incense

At August 31, 2013 1:35 AM, Blogger Anitaommer said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At October 08, 2013 3:17 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

It has relevant information. Thanks for posting this. Your blog is so interesting and very informative.Thanks sharing. Definitely a great piece of work Thanks for your work.
advertising agencies in pakistan | advertising agencies in Lahore | advertising agencies in Karachi

At January 13, 2014 4:54 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I just read your website it’s really good and impressive having good information about the Incense sticks manufacturers and we also in same category. We are one the best exporters of Joss sticks, Joss sticks, Agarbathiand many other Incense sticks. For more details please visit our website

At January 21, 2014 2:10 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I read your blog it’s really good and impressive having good information about the
Golden Nag Champa Incense,Nag Chandan Dhoop, Agarbathi Exporters In India
and many other Incense sticks. For more details please visit our website

At January 31, 2014 2:37 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Hi thanks for good information about the nag champs incense
Golden Nag Champa Incense,Nag Chandan Dhoop, Agarbathi Exporters In India
and many other Incense sticks. For more details please visit our website

At February 11, 2014 11:04 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

i gone through your website its really good information, we are also using much similar PRODUCTS,YoucanvisitusRed Nag Champa Incense,Incense Sticks Manufacturers

At February 17, 2014 2:52 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I just read your blog it’s really good and impressive having good information about the Incense Sticks Manufacturers & Exporters, Agarbathi Manufacturers & Exporters, and many other Incense sticks. For more details please visit our website

At March 11, 2014 4:51 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Nice information! Its useful for all. Thanks for sharing your information.
Golden Nag Champa Incense,Red Nag Champa Incense

At March 30, 2014 5:04 PM, Anonymous Buy herbal incense said...

very nice blog. incense can definately help relieve stress in your daily life

Visit For Potent Herbal Incense

At July 03, 2014 3:13 PM, Blogger K said...


I'm a natural perfumer and aromatherapist from Calgary, AB and I am attempting to make my own champa attar. I was wondering if you know of any reputable distributors for golden champa absolute, and if you could forward me that info. it is very difficult to come across. thnx, Katherine

At September 03, 2014 11:46 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Your post is really good. Useful content. Very helpful to me. i have similar products.
see my products also
Masala incense manufacturers

At February 10, 2015 1:26 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Hi.. I read your blog its amazing, Nice to read. Thanks for sharing.
I have a page on Incense sticks manufacturers and exporters
Visit my page here
Agarbathi manufacturers and exporters

At February 18, 2015 8:36 PM, Blogger Legal Puffs said...

I just wanted to add a comment here to mention thanks for you very nice ideas. Blogs are troublesome to run and time consuming thus I appreciate when I see well written material. Your time isn’t going to waste with your posts. Thanks so much and stick with it No doubt you will definitely reach your goals! Have a great day!
Herbal Potpourri

At May 04, 2015 7:34 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Great work. Truly speaking I never seen a blog like that. Absolutely superb work. Good luck. Thanks for such an informative post.
Welcome to Green Herbz 2014 Potpourri Herbal Spice

At July 17, 2015 12:19 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Interesting post. I am looking for blogs related Nag Champa Manufacturers.
Its looks good but it needs more clarifications. Thank you for your post.

At May 11, 2016 7:42 AM, Anonymous Best Herbal Incense said...

Great website! I love the layout.

At April 10, 2017 5:50 AM, Anonymous incense said...

Sarathi is one of the leading manufacturers of incense products like sticks, cones, burners & fragrances oils. we are exporting to across the globe. For more information visit our website

At October 26, 2017 2:24 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Nag champa incense sticks article is more information you’ve provided on the website. Available for online Pooja items like as agarbatti sticks,dhoop sticks,burners & fragrances oils and many others products

At September 10, 2018 6:55 AM, Blogger The Perfumist said...

Do you want buy highest quality incense fragrance oil at very cost effective prices? Then visit The Perfumist.

At February 22, 2019 11:40 PM, Blogger Jainperfumers said...

As a result the aroma of our sticks doesn’t have any adverse effect on your body it just relaxes your mind and soul and make you feel closer towards the spiritual powers.

pure sandalwood essential oil

At February 24, 2019 5:42 AM, Blogger Gane said...

Preparing foods is really a serious matter, so do adding right spices to the receipe. Just jump in for more spices online Raw Honey Online, Black Pepper Online, Buy cardamom online

At April 08, 2019 7:24 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Can anyone please provide the details from where champa flowers can be purchased I will be deeply indebted for the same.

At April 08, 2019 7:25 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Of course in india

At May 27, 2019 5:22 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

top 10 biography health benefits bank branches offices in Nigeria dangers of ranks in health top 10 biography health benefits bank branches offices in Nigeria latest news ranking biography

At May 27, 2019 5:22 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

top 10 biography health benefits bank branches offices in Nigeria dangers of ranks in health top 10 biography health benefits bank branches offices in Nigeria latest news ranking biography

At August 26, 2019 5:12 AM, Anonymous Study in Canada said...

As per education consultants in karachi Canada encourages international students from any part of the world, the detailed educational plan provides chances to international students to pursue jobs during their Bachelor’s or masters’ studies also to stay in the country for work opportunities after completing their degree.

At September 05, 2019 4:26 AM, Anonymous Education Consultant said...

The whole process of admission starts with you. You have decided to study in Australia but to make it possible you have to first understand your own goals.

At October 09, 2019 3:13 AM, Blogger Ronny Alfred said...

Hi Dear,

I Like Your Blog Very Much. I see Daily Your Blog, is A Very Useful For me.

You can also Find Cannabis dispensary online ukBuy Weed online UK at Cannabis Dispensary Shop UK. Buy wide range of cannabis oil, medical marijuana, cbd paste and ointment, herbal incense at our shop.

Visit Now:-

At October 10, 2019 6:23 AM, Anonymous Edvise Hub said...

best education consultants in Pakistan assist the students with accommodation. We provide detailed information to the students with respect to their University/College accommodation, hostel facilities, etc.

At October 29, 2019 5:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

buy best medical marijuana and some very good cannabis oil from our online dispensary at call/text or whassap at +17202138072
discreet online cannabis delivery
how to buy medical marijuana online
buy the best online cannabis seed
online discreet cannabis suppliers united kingdom
where can i buy online cannabis oil
how is cannabis good for cancer
how can cannabis help for dipression
is cannabis good for chronic pain
buy weed online underground
how can i buy online cannabis united states
what is cannabis wax concentrate used for
side effects of smoking dabs
legit online dispensary shipping worldwide
where can i buy online cannabis in australia
where can i buy cannabis kief in united states
buy online cannabis dispensary
where to buy marijuana using bitcoin
where to buy thc rosin, wax & live resin
buy top cannabinoid isolate products
buy best moon rocks joints
full spectrum cbd oil for sale
online discreet marijuana suppliers
best pain relief medications USA
online discreet cannabis suppliers united states
best cannabis products USA
medical cannabis online store
medical marijuana delivery store online
Get Online Dispensary And Pharmacy
Best Of Weed Plant Products Online
Cannabis Strains products in USA
buy co2 extracted cbd oil
how to buying marijuana from darknet
buy marijuana gummies edibles online
how to buy pain relief drugs off the darknet with bitcoin

At December 12, 2019 11:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get dispensary offers you premium-quality cannabis buds including sativa, indica, hybrids, and high-CBD flowers all carrying a generous layer of cannabinoid-rich resin, and some of them can pack a serious punch. We deliver in all the states in the US and also Europe and Australia. call/text or whassap at +17202138072

dispensary united states
og kush ferminized cannabis seeds
buy kush online in usa
buy kush herbal incense online
buy kush hemp flowers
buy vapes online cheap
vapes in united states
buy vapes uk
buy concentrates online usa
buy cannabis concentrates
marijuana concentrates online store
online concentrates cbd thc usa
buy indical cannabis oil
buy indical catridges online
buy indical capsules online
buy satival cbd oil
easy buy satival cannabis in usa
cbd oil benefits
best cbd oil
how to buy wax
buy vapes onlien europe
buy live resin cartridge
live resin concentrate
buy live resin carts
buy live resin uk
buy vapes las vegas
sativa cannabis strains
buy sativa seeds feminized
kush strains
buy kush cannabis plants oregon
buy vapes in bulk
live resin concentrate
Balanced Hybrid Cannabis INDICA Top Shelf Strains
CONCENTRATE High Terpene Full Spectrum Extracts

At January 16, 2020 12:06 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

buy kingpens

buy moonrock clear carts

buy plug play pods online

durban poison vapes

heavy hitters online

At January 16, 2020 12:10 PM, Blogger Unknown said...






At January 16, 2020 12:11 PM, Blogger Unknown said...




buy packwoods

buy exotic carts

At January 16, 2020 12:12 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

buy mario carts

buy brass knuckles

buy heavy hitters online



At January 16, 2020 12:12 PM, Blogger Unknown said...






At January 16, 2020 12:13 PM, Blogger Unknown said...






At January 16, 2020 12:13 PM, Blogger Unknown said...






At January 16, 2020 12:14 PM, Blogger Unknown said...





Post a Comment

<< Home