Here are five perfume ingredients that would make great television fodder.
1. Abergris (a.k.a. whale puke)
Squid make for a tasty meal for sperm whales, but the whales can’t digest the squid’s beak. So their whaley intestines cloak the beaks in a paste. The whales then spit the paste-coated beaks into the ocean, and the salt in the water and the sun in the sky give the paste its odor. Just watching this guy talk about it is fascinating.
According to the Guardian civet is “a fecal paste extracted from the anal glands of the civet cat.” In this video, a man discusses what raw civet oil smells like: “A mixture of a cat’s spray marking its territory and a dirty litter box — just fecal, and just pungent.”
And here is adorable footage of a civet cat playing.
3. Castoreum (beaver balls).
Castoreum is a substance extracted from dried beaver balls. Apparently on its own, this substance has an unpleasant pungent scent, but once diluted can be quite pleasant, and is used commonly in men’s cologne to give it a leathery, smokey smell. In this video, a woman holds and discusses a pair of dried beaver balls.
Here is some adorable baby beaver footage.
Of course, Animal Planet’s show should not include footage of these guys (or any other animals) being slaughtered for their balls. Perhaps Indiana Perfume Jones can focus on finding kill-free alternatives, perferably by skydiving into scenic red canyons and spelunking.
4. The Holy Ghost plant.
It is found in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Greenland, the Faroe Islands and Iceland. All marvelously entertaining “Planet Earth” super stars!