Awad Awad Talks About The History of Emirati Women and Perfume

  • Publish date: Thursday، 26 August 2021
Awad Awad Talks About The History of Emirati Women and Perfume
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Perfume is an essential part of Arab culture, whether in traditional origins or contemporary etiquette among Arabs, especially in the Arab Gulf region. Perfume has certain rituals that GCC nationals love to practice, whether on a daily basis or during special occasions.

The importance of perfume to the Arabs goes back to ancient times associated with trade between India and Africa. The Arabian Peninsula has collected the most precious aromatic ingredients ever.

And the woman had an important role in the perfume industry, as she was the one who prepared it in her home

Because perfume is so important in the Emirati culture, we were keen to have this dialogue with the perfumer Awad Awad, to tell us about Arab perfumes and the role of women in them.

Awad is a businessman born in the Palestinian city of Nazareth. He has been ranked among the top pioneers of management and economics in the Middle East.

Like other ambitious youth, he had many hobbies. Awad was passionate about traveling and discovering the world in his own way. He got acquainted with different cultures, discovered various societies, and civilizations.

His career as an entrepreneur started with the establishment of GBI investment company in Hong Kong in the field of commerce and public relations, with more than five years of experience. Recently, his trade business expanded towards the world of luxury fashion, this expansion manifested in the launch of a luxury brand called Chisciotte to be a prominent name in the world of luxury perfumes.

First of all, tell us about the history of Arabic perfumes and their connection to your upcoming collection

In perfumery, our ancestors relied on plants and simple aromatic ingredients that were present in their surroundings, such as musk or basil, saffron, sandalwood, civet, musk, amber, rose water and its powder, and the aromatic leaves of Elias. Many types were used by Emirati women in making perfume mixtures and they also combined some of them with aromatic ingredients and materials that came to them mainly from India and Africa.

Therefore, in our blends, we were keen to adopt the same principle by incorporating the ingredients that invoke the spirit of originality with every whiff of Chisciotte packages.

What is the difference between the perfumes of the past and the present?

In general, the essential difference can be referred to in the quality of the ingredients. Today, many chemical elements are used in aromatic ingredients, while in the past, perfumes were based on completely natural ingredients. The use of perfume was also restricted to special occasions rather than daily use.

It is worth noting that perfume was and still is one of the basics of the bride's preparations. Within the bride’s clothes or gold, and among these perfumes were the scents of jasmine, the fiji, the motia, the saffron, the mahlab, and the makhmaria, in addition to the agarwood, sidr, yas, and sandalwood.

He adds: "Old Emirati perfumes are of great importance on the night of henna and wedding, so the bride used to perfume on the day of henna, and it was usually on Wednesday, with all kinds of perfumes before wearing the green robe, and on Thursday or the wedding day, she sprays the same perfume and puts jasmine on applies jasmine on her head, and the mukhmaria on the body. Sprinkle clothes with rose water and scents her garments with oud and amber.

Speaking of incense, incense has a strong presence on occasions, holidays and weddings for Emiratis, as Emirati women used to manufacture it at home, as it was used to fumigate men and women’s clothes.

Which perfumes are popular among Emirati women?

Emirati women adopt scents such as sandal, amber and oud are the basic perfumes, as well as fermented ones, which is one of the best mixtures that Emirati women relied on to decorate their looks, according to what our partners in the UAE market indicated to me.

On a personal level, when did you start getting interested in making and mixing Arabic perfumes?

I had a passion for perfumery in general since I was young, knowing the ingredients of any perfume was my obsession.

As for my passion for Arabic perfume, it started one day when I happened to pass by an Arab woman at an airport in Hong Kong, and I was struck by the smell of her perfume, which was very distinct from others. I couldn't ask her about the perfume at the time, but I didn't ignore the magic of that perfume.

I returned home and began a journey in search of ingredients that I collect that might lead me to that perfume, of which I kept fantasies in my aromatic memory.

After several days, I designed a perfume and which will be in the new collection that will be launched next October.

What are your tips for every Arab woman who wants to stand out with her perfume?

I tell her not to choose a perfume that does not resemble her personality, no matter how famous or "trendy" this perfume is.

Since the same fragrance varies from person to person, always remember to try it on your skin, not on your friend's skin.

Avoid buying perfumes if you are going through a sensitive period, such as pregnancy, because the changes that occur in the body directly affect your senses, especially the sense of smell.

Remember that every occasion has a fragrance to suit it, the fresh floral and citrus scents are used during the day, while the musk and amber scents are dedicated to romantic evenings and night events. Also, perfumes extracted from fruits and flowers are very suitable for hot summer days, while woody perfumes are suitable for winter because it breaks its cold with its warmth.