Secret Of Exotic Smells – Civet Oil

One actually feels quite well aware when they can mention names of things that many are not aware of, especially if those names hae to do with somethings really exotic and world-wide famous. One such things is Civet oil, not many know that the most expensive and exotic fragrances of the world use it as an integral compound in their perfumes.

The African civet hunts exclusively on the ground at night, resting in thickets or burrows during the day. An opportunistic and omnivorous predator, it will eat carrion, but prefers small mammals. Birds, eggs, amphibians, reptiles, invertebrates, fruit, berries, and vegetation round out its diet. African civets deposit their droppings in one place creating middens or “civetries.” Although typically found at territorial boundaries, they also mark their territory using their perineal gland.

The civet is a small, carnivorous wildcat native to Africa and India. The musk produced by a gland at the base of the civet’s tail – also called civet oil – is widely used as a perfume ingredient in North America and Europe. Frequently, civet oil is reproduced synthetically for use in perfume compositions.

Pure civet has a very strong, disagreeable odor. The scent is said to be similar to musk, but with a more smoky, sweaty aroma. However, when diluted and used in minute quantities, civet can add depth and warmth to a fragrance. It is also an excellent fixative, and is used in many top-quality perfumes to stabilize other, more delicate or volatile ingredients.

Some perfumes for women that feature civet in their composition include -

  • Chanel No. 5
  • Dior Diorissimo
  • Jean Patou Joy
  • Givenchy Ysatis
  • Estee Lauder Knowing
  • Guerlain Shalimar
  • Calvin Klein Obsession
  • Laura Biagiotti Roma
  • Carolina Herrera Carolina Herrera
  • Versace Blonde
  • Cartier Panthere
  • Joop! Joop! Femme
  • Elizabeth Taylor Passion
  • Nina Ricci Nina
  • Benetton Colors de Benetton

The civet’s (specifically the African Civet, Civetticus civetta) scent is also useful to those wishing to track big cats, a researcher in a recent issue of Natural History relating that central American jaguars (Panthera onca) are especially drawn to the civetone in Calvin Klein’s “Obsession.” Good to know if you’re in search of big cats, but it still leaves the question of what civetone actually is and why it is important. For that, I turn to Richard Despard Estes Behavior Guide to African Mammals, in which he describes the olfactory communication of the animals.

Have a look at the reference links now -

  1. Civet Cat by Blue Planet
  2. Civet by About
  3. Civet by Dope

Civet – The Sacred Animal

There is a wide-spread idea that the animal called civets are killed during the rpocess of extracting the oil of civet from them. The idea holds no water, ther is a complex menthod of obtaining the oil from civets but in no way are the animals killed during it.

All other species of palm civets live in the forests of Asia. Their semiarboreal life style is supported by sharp, curved, retractile claws, hairless soles, and partially fused third and fourth toes which add to a more sure-footed grasp. Although skillful climbers, they spend considerable time foraging on the ground for animals and fallen fruits. The broad-faced binturong, or bear cat, has a strong, muscular long-haired tail that is prehensile at the tip. This characteristic is unique among viverrids. The body hair is long and coarse.

There are five species of banded palm civets and otter civets (subfamily Hemigalinae), all living in the forests of Southeast Asia. Perhaps best known is the banded palm civet, named for the dark brown markings on its coat. The general coat color ranges from pale yellow to grayish buff. The face is distinctly marked by several dark longitudinal stripes. The coloration of the body is broken by about five transverse bands stretching midway down the flank. The tail is dark on its lower half, with two broad dark rings at the base. Foraging at night on the ground and in trees, the banded palm civet searches for -

  • Rats
  • Lizards
  • Frogs
  • Snails
  • Crabs
  • Earthworms
  • Ants

Otter civets could be mistaken for long-nosed otters. Similar in habit and appearance, otter civets are excellent swimmers and capable of climbing trees. Their toes are partially webbed, but their dense water repellant fur, thick whiskers, and valve-like nostrils are effective adaptations for living in water and preying on fish. There are two species which show differences in their coat coloration and number of teeth. Otter civets have smaller ears, blunter muzzles, shorter tails and more compact bodies than most banded palm civets.

There are 19 species of true civets and genets classified in the subfamily Viverrinae. One of the best known is the African civet. A rather large, heavily built, long-bodied and long-legged carnivore, it is the most doglike viverrid. Preferring to be near water, it lives in a variety of habitats ranging from moist tropical forest to dry scrub savannah. It is considered terrestrial, climbing trees only in an emergency such as when hunted.

Go through these reference links now -

  1. Civet Cat by Blue Planet
  2. Civet by About
  3. Civet by Dope

Civet Oil Spreading Fragrances

Civet essential oil that is obtained from the cats named civets is one of the most or possibly the most expensive and exotic oil tht is used for making perfumes all over the world. The oil has a mind-blowing smell that really is very rich and mesmerizing.

Small to medium-sized carnivores, civets are in the Viverridae family which includes genets, linsangs, and mongooses. There are 35 species of civets and genets in 20 genera. Their natural distribution is restricted to the warmer regions of the Old World, and they occupy a niche similarly filled by weasels and their relatives found in temperate deciduous forests. Civets vary in size and form, but most present a catlike appearance with long noses, slender bodies, pointed ears, short legs and generally a long furry tail.

Civets with a spotted or striped coat have five toes on each foot. There is webbing between the toes, and the claws are totally or semi-retractile. The pointed ears extend above the profile of the head. The ear flaps have pockets or bursae on the outside margins, similar to domestic cats. Their teeth are specialized for an omnivorous diet, including shearing carnassial teeth and flat-crowned molars in both upper and lower jaws. Teeth number from 38 to 40, depending on the species.

The Viverridae family can be broken into six subfamilies. There are seven southern Asian and one African species of palm civets (subfamily Paradoxurinae). The African palm civet, also known as the two-spotted palm civet, spends most of its time in the forest canopy where it feeds primarily on fruit, occasionally supplemented with -

  • Small mammals
  • Birds
  • Insects
  • Lizards

It is distinguished by its semi-retractile claws and perineal gland covered by a single fold of skin. 

The ears have long black tufts of hair with white margins. Nearly four feet long, it is the largest member of the civet family. Despite its mostly vegetarian diet, the binturong has been reported to swim in rivers and prey on fish. The celebes, giant, or brown palm civet may be fairly common in certain limited areas (known by its tracks and feces, rather than by actual sightings). It is quite adept at climbing and has a web of thin skin between the toes.

Have a look at our reference links now -

  1. Civet Cat by Blue Planet
  2. Civet by About
  3. Civet by Dope

Civet Oil’s Therapeutic Side

The oil of civet has a world-wide appeal for being an amazing fragrant oil that is undoubtedly a part of the richest and priciest fragrance brands of the world. But rarely are people aware of the fact that this oil has medicinal and therapeutic qualities too.

Civets are nocturnal foragers that have semi-arboreal and arboreal habits. Arboreal means those animals that live in trees. These animals rest in a hollow tree, shallow burrow or a rock crevice during the day time. The methods of extracting the scent from the Civets differ. Few of the species passes the scent passively when moving. This happens when their glands rub vegetation. Few others pass the scent by squatting, rubbing or wiping the gland on the ground or on any object. The African civets are said to be the best among the species.

They are found with two-spotted palm. This type of Civets spend most their time in the forest canopy. African Civets generally rely on fruits, insects, small mammals, lizards and birds. The lifestyles of Civets are assisted by their hairless soles, sharp curved claws, partially fused toes that support climbing the trees. Few species of Civets are also said to swim and prey fish and few other amphibians.

Primarily nocturnal foragers with semiarboreal and arboreal habits, civets typically ambush their prey. During the day, civets usually rest in a hollow tree, rock crevice or empty, shallow burrow. They are solitary animals maintaining a wide home range (250 acres [101 ha]) by scent marking trees on the borders of their territory. The term “civet” is derived from an Arabic word describing the oily fluid and its odor secreted by the perineal glands. Scent marking is important in civet communication, but the method differs among species from passively passing the scent when moving about causing the gland to rub vegetation, to squatting and then wiping or rubbing the gland on the ground or some prominent object.

Civet oil has been used in the perfume industry for centuries and has been recorded as being imported from Africa by King Solomon in the tenth century B.C. Once refined, civet oil is prized for its odor and long lasting properties. Civet oil is also valued for its medicinal uses which include the -

  • Reduction of perspiration
  • A cure for some skin disorders
  • Claims of aphrodisiac powers

Although the development of sensitive chemical substitutes has decreased the value of civet oil, it is still a part of some East African and Oriental economies.

Have a look at these reference links -

  1. Civet Cat by Blue Planet
  2. Civet by About
  3. Civet by Dope

Civets – The Rare Little Creatures

Civets are cats, as in they belong to the family of cats. The animal is quite sought after all over the world. They are not easily found and they have hence created a place for themself in the world market for their rich and strong fragrant oil.

African civet lives in savannahs and forests of South and central Africa, while Indian civet lives in Nepal, Bangladesh and Vietnam. These animals produce odorous secretion with purpose of marking their territory. Diluted, after some time, the odor of civet secretion, which normally is strong and repulsive, becomes pleasant with animalistic-musk nuance. For the purpose of collecting this secretion, animals are kept in cages. Luckily, this scent is nowadays mainly synthetic.

Civet oil is not extracted from a plant or a herb. It is extracted from small to medium-sized carnivores called as civets. This animal belongs to the Viverridae animal family. This family includes other members like mongooses, linsangs and genets. There are more than 35 species of civets. Civets are generally found in the temperate deciduous forests. These animals vary in size and appearance according to their species. The general description of this animal is that it looks like a cat. It has -

  • Slender body
  • Long nose
  • Short legs
  • Long furry tail
  • Pointed ears

The natural distribution of this animal is spread in the temperate climatic conditions and is restricted to the warmer areas. The term ‘Civet’ is derived from an Arabic word which means the oily fluid and its odor secreted by perineal glands.

Civet oil is used to foster love, lust and sexual feelings. It helps in attracting the opposite sex with its incredible fragrance. Civet oil is in use in the perfume industry for centuries together. It is said that this oil was imported by King Solomon from Africa. This oil has also proved effective in treating certain skin disorders and helps in bringing down perspiration.

Civet oil is nothing but the glandular secretion from the small pockets that are located near the testicles. This oil was initially extracted from the Civet male cat. This is an endangered species. For this sole reason, Civet oil is produced synthetically in the recent times. This rich oil has a musky scent. This mesmerizing scent is used to attract the opposite sex. It is still used in many parts of the world for this purpose. Civet oil often signifies love and lust.

Go through the reference links now -

  1. Civet Cat by Blue Planet
  2. Civet by About
  3. Civet by Dope