What is op·op·on·ax, (noun) /əˈpɑpəˌnæks/?

What is op·op·on·ax, (noun) /əˈpɑpəˌnæks/?

Opoponax: What is it? It sounds a lot like a character you would find in a children’s book, but in the fragrance world, it’s more commonly known as sweet myrrh, one of the historic gifts presented to the baby Jesus in the biblical nativity-scene narrative, right alongside frankincense and gold. Having been around since biblical times, where it was used as a component of incense, opoponox’s value has proven timeless.

Opoponax comes from a yellow-flowering herb that thrives in the warm climates of Italy, Greece, and Turkey. The resin that holds the plant’s valued fragrance is concealed deep inside the bark and is extracted from the base of the plant to produce an effervescent scent that is warm and inviting, sweet yet acidic. The resin can also be burned like incense.

To extend opoponax’s historical background, it was once said that King Solomon regarded the scent as the noblest of incense. To pop some royalty into your fragrance wardrobe, look for base notes of opoponax in a perfume’s ingredient profile: It will boost that fragrance’s staying power to last all day.

Classic fragrances with opoponax include Coco by Chanel, Poison by Dior, and Oscar by Oscar de la Renta. 

Next Post:
Previous Post:
This article was written by

Deborah Fulsang has spent the last two decades as a journalist covering news and trends in the worlds of style—in fashion and beauty, design and décor, food and entertaining. Her long-held love of fragrance led her to launch The Whale & The Rose, a destination for all things perfume-related. Now, when she indulges in a crazy-expensive bottle of fragrance, she can do so guilt-free. Well almost. It’s all in the name of research after all.