Nag Champa

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Various packages. The topmost is commonly used in cannabis coffee shops in Amsterdam
Nag Champa incense stick burning

Nag Champa is a fragrance of Indian origin. It is used in incense, soap, perfume oil, essential oils, candles and personal toiletries, and is common in ashrams. Introduced to the West by the Hippies in the 1960s, it has become one of the most popular and recognizable incense fragarances.[1]


Ingredients of Nag Champa incense include:[1]

  • A base of wood powder and charcoal powder
  • The Halmaddi paste, made from the resin of Ailanthus triphysa: A hygroscopic paste, it slows down the rate at which the incense burns.
  • The Nag Champa perfume mixture, which varies with the manufacturer. The most commonly used components are:
  • Vanilla (natural or artificial): Added to tone down the halmaddi and provide a subtle sweetness.
  • Other oils: Added to accentuate the scents.
  • Honey or water

Many flower species in India are known as champa or champak:[2]

Either of these – Magnolia champaca,[1][3] Plumeria,[4] or Mesua ferrea[2] – may be used to prepare the perfume mixture for Nag Champa scent.


  1. ^ a b c "Halmaddi - India". Equinox Aromatics. Retrieved 8 October 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Robert Béer (1999). The encyclopedia of Tibetan symbols and motifs. Serindia. p. 50. 
  3. ^ Stephanie Rose Bird (2006). Four Seasons of Mojo: An Herbal Guide to Natural Living. Llewellyn. p. 67. ISBN 978-0-7387-0628-3. 
  4. ^ Tess Whitehurst (2013). The Magic of Flowers: A Guide to Their Metaphysical Uses & Properties. Llewellyn Worldwide. pp. 295–. ISBN 978-0-7387-3194-0. 

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