Sunday, April 12, 2009

Forbidden Perfumes for Passover

Forbidden Passover Perfumes, originally uploaded by Ayala Moriel.

Craving leavened bread and pastries this Passover? You may want to try these starchy, pastry-like perfumes. Or, alternatively, avoid them altogether. Some particularly zealous Jews even go as far as not using any toiletries made with grain alcohol (if you don’t eat corn and legumes during the holiday).

I’ll leave it up to you whether you use these perfumes to cope with the inert Middle Easter craving for freshly baked bread; or choose to use this list to decide what to clear off your shelves. But these are the starchy, pastry-like perfumes I found in my collection and after the customary soul-searching for leaven prior to the Passover.

My list is divided into three categories, by the degree of danger it may theoretically pose to those observing Passover: the dangerously non-kosher for Passover, containing wheat products; scents with unknown kosherism level that have a very clear pastry or starch-like qualities; and finally – gluten-free, rice-smelling concoctions. Feel free to add to the list as I’d love to hear of more scents from either categories.

Dangerously Non Kosher
These are dangerously non-kosher for Passover, which actually contain wheat absolute.

En Passant
This light cucumbery lilac is reminiscent of the first sprouts of wheat and actually contains wheat absolute. Could be the equivalent of a Hendricks gin in the land of lilac. But honestly, with this name - could there possibly be a more appropriate perfume for this holiday?!

Immortelle l’Amour
These cinnamon waffles are made with wheat absolute, maple syrup and orange. Delicious but definitely will not pass for a Passover brunch!

Questionable Pastries
The Passover kosherism-level of these scents isn’t confirmed but they are quite possibly benign despite the fact that they remind me of pastries or starch;

This liquid version of violet macaroons is creamy and marzipan-like and as far as I can tell has all the baked goods qualities sans the wheat.

Starchy raw root aroma, reminiscent of a semolina dessert.

Vetiver Tonka
With an un-identified cereal note, this vetiver is as warm as roasted nuts with a hint of caramel.

Bois Farine
Another starchy concoction, which is what I would imagine the “bread fruit” to smell like.

Sira des Indes
Named after a dessert of cream of wheat, banana and butter. That can’t be good…

Gluten Free
Consider switching to rice-based, gluten-free fragrances:

Ormonde Jayne’s Champaca
Basmati rice gives champaca absolute the royal treatment it deserves.

KenzoAmour or KenzoAmour Le Parfum
Milky rice with frangipani and an almondy cherry note.

"Robin" Starch Advert, originally uploaded by Motorman Tel.

"Robin" Starch Advert, originally uploaded by Motorman Tel.

Labels: , , ,


At April 12, 2009 7:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


What a fabulous article. You should submit this to Lifestyle magazine for publication. It is in NYC and very well repected and read by very prominent observant Jews


At April 12, 2009 7:14 PM, Blogger ScentScelf said...


This is great! I love it as concept and, for those who observe, as a way of thoughtfully approaching scent offerings. You've got me thinking in a whole new way.

Thinking which leads to raising the question of kosher layering. Perhaps at some point you will explore a list of scents that should not go together on the same skin?

Meanwhile, I think I am going to go give a little thanks that my own lifestyle allows for wheat, both under religious and dietary concerns. I just became very attached to En Passant as part of my springtime ritual; it would be very hard to give up!

At April 13, 2009 5:01 PM, Blogger Ayala Moriel said...

Thank you for your kind comment; I'm so flattered!
I don't know that I want to become a magazine writer though - I've already got two full-time jobs (if being a mom counts!).
Pesach Sameach!

At April 15, 2009 2:42 AM, Anonymous bbnet said...

Thanks, it is great.

At March 04, 2012 6:51 PM, Blogger eula_w said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


Post a Comment

<< Home