Today at the Arab festival I found a great bargain at the Yemen booth: Al Aziza perfume on sale two for a dollar. You can find Arab perfumes all over–in the suq in Arab countries and in the little Arab neighborhood shops. The Al Aziza stuff is alcohol-free too, so if you follow a religious prohibition against ingesting alcohol, now you don’t have to put it on your skin either.
It’s pretty hard to tell what perfume is going to smell like on your skin just by sniffing the bottle, so I just bought four of the little 3-ounce bottles and now I am busy dabbing and sniffing. I got Abu Ghutra (which smelled the best in the bottle) plus Majmooa, Marina, and Solitis.
The Majmooa was definitely the “majnoona”, having a very strong and fun scent in the beginning. After several hours the odors of all the perfumes had faded quite a bit. The Majmooa could hardly be smelled at all, and the Marina was a very faint sweetish smell. But the Solitis had a curiously fresh smell–I don’t know any other way to describe it–and the Abu Ghutra was still quite strong and had kept its characteristic scent. So if you want a scent that can last for several hours, it’s definitely the Abu Ghutra.
You probably won’t find the exact same perfumes in your own neck of the woods. But playing with perfume scents is just another way to stop the American push button rat race culture for a few moments and just savor life.