Scented inks

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I’m glad Chris, our Amateur Economist, thought to try them, because they’re something I’ve been curious about for months: scented inks from J. Herbin. I first noticed them in the Exaclair product catalog, and I have to say, I was a bit skeptical at first. I don’t wear much perfume, and I can’t imagine smelling anything other than pulped wood when I open a notebook.

Then I realized the scents are probably not as overwhelming as, say, the scratch-and-sniff stickers I remember from my childhood (which are the only real association I have with perfume and paper). Sure enough, Chris seemed to like the bottle of Encre Bleue that he tried, describing the scent as “flowery and generally pleasant.” His daughter liked it, too.

According to the J. Herbin website, scented inks were “inspired by a tradition that began in Italy in the 19th century,” when ink manufacturers “used to collect different scents from the perfume industry and add them to their inks.” Each ink matches fragrance and color: blue has a lavender scent, green has an apple scent, amber is orange, red is rosey, and violet is, well, violet.

Have you ever used scented inks?

6 thoughts on “Scented inks

  1. I’ve tried one, and found it very pleasant, specially while writing. The persons that received my letters did not notice any scent but one. My pens behaved normal, or I should say as good as with the excellent and safe both for the user and the pen, inks that Herbin makes.

  2. I should amend and say that I’ve heard others say the scent isn’t too strong, so maybe I just got a strong batch. The colors were lovely and they certainly didn’t hurt my pens. The color itself washed out a lot easier than some Noodler’s I’ve used, as Herbin inks often do.

  3. Yikes, sorry to hear you found the scent too strong, Missive Maven. I suspect these inks are not for everyone.

    Meanwhile, in response to Erin’s question, Karen assures me that these inks are completely safe for fountain pens!

  4. I have never tried them, but would be interested to try one. Are they safe for fountain pens? I would think I would need a glass or dip pen for these.

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