JK Delapp is a well known Master of Science, Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
"Most people in the West do not realize that not all perfume is alcohol-based. In fact, alcohol-based perfumes are probably not the top selling fragrances in the world, at least not historically.
Alcohol-based perfumery is more of a modern French- or British-style of perfumery compounding, where the fragrance is in an alcohol base, and then atomized onto the skin. In the world of perfumery…this is actually a rather modern convention.
Historically, fragrances were oil-based.
There is an old distillation style predominant in India where materials are distilled into Sandalwood oil – better known as Attar-style distillation. In Muslim cultures, where alcohol is not used – there is a style of perfumery compounding that is alcohol-free, and composed entirely of oil extracts, or that use Sandal or Oud oil as a base (rather than alcohol or carrier oil). These oils are generally referred to as Attar or Mukhallats. It is this style of perfumery that I am most drawn to. I still use and sell animal musk but I am in the process of changing to become 100% animal cruelty free, follow me!"