Shamama is a beautiful traditional attar elixir native to the city of Kannauj in India. It has its own secret heritage formula unique to each producer. Shamama just like all key attars require manual labour and therefore the creators are true artists with exceptional skill and a sense of craftsmanship.

Now let’s take a little tour to the world of Shamama and have a whiff of this extraordinary raw material...Our nomad is in the city of Kannauj following the footsteps of Shamama wizards. Let’s hear it from her:


"If it sounds like magic, that’s exactly what shamama is! I decided to travel to Kannauj to find out more about this mysterious product. Shamama is always mentioned when talking about attars and is a key ingredient in oriental perfumery... but no one seems to know very much about it. Kannauj - its source - is a remote place, far from India’s tourist attractions and difficult to access, especially when rains flood the roads turning them into real swimming pools much to the enjoyment of the cows that frolic in the middle of a busy road."

"Our guides to shamama have prepared a room in a small guesthouse. During our days with them, I will discover the magic of this product or rather this process because there are as many shamamas as there are perfume formulas. “Each secret recipe is passed on from generation to generation. These are built around traditional techniques inherited from Mongol ancestors that consist of co-distilling many ingredients with special know-how. Indeed, no less than forty-five rare raw materials go into this composition. Each mixture a closely guarded secret to the families that make them."

"Foam, grass, mitti (the fragile clay pottery that gives its unique earthy smell) are distilled in large batches over 20 days, enriching the essential oil at every step. The resulting elixir is then finished with an infusion of precious spices (cardamom, saffron, cinnamon) mixed with essential oils of rose, kewra or oud."

"Smelling shamama is like smelling a concentrated essence of India itself, sometimes hard, sometimes sensual, always intense: an aromatic evocation of India´s stirring colors. The contrast between the beauty of this golden liquid and its environment made of mud and vapors can’t be more extreme. As I left the distillation plant during our stay, I came across a young girl with a deep and memorable expression. Perfect beauty from out of nowhere, just like Shamama itself. "

Sincerely yours and see you soon!