What is Nag Champa, and how do you pronounce it?

What is Nag Champa?

We get this question quite a bit at area farmer's markets. Well, through research, it seems there are a few different blends. Typically, Nag Champa is a fragrance blended with a base of Plumeria and Sandalwood. The oil manufacturer that we use will blend in Patchouli as well. I will include our oil description at the end of this post. 

Matthew Alice, from the San Diego Reader on 9/24/98 (way back when) has a different twist on Nag Champa:

"As for your favorite irritant, Nag Champa, the name is Hindi, though I'm told by my experts that it has a Sanskrit origin. "Champa" is the local name for a flower that grows about ten feet tall in the tropics, Alpinia nutans, shell ginger. "Nag" is more of a problem. It literally means "cobra," but has other layers of meaning in different contexts. Here it probably means "breath" or "spirit." So the fragrance of the ginger flower is the principal scent in Nag Champa, though I'm told by those who've smelled the plant, the fragrance is very delicate, and of course when it burns in incense, it smells like smoldering compost.

Commonly used in incense sticks for decades, Nag Champa is seeing a resurgence in Candles, Lotions, Perfumes, and Essential Oils. We were newbies to Nag Champa before we started this candle company, but have fallen in love with it. It has become a best seller on our Amazon store.

Per our oil manufacturer, the oil we use is best described as:

Nag Champa is an Indian fragrance popular in incense (for those of you who didn't come of age in the 60s and 70s). It has woody notes similar to patchouli, with touches of powder, musk, amber, and vanilla. If you haven't smelled it before, you have to try it. If you know it, we think you'll love this rendition.

This fragrance oil is infused with natural essential oils, including patchouli and gurjun balsam.

Note Profile:
Top: Musk, amber, vanilla
Middle: Orange flower, geranium, spice
Base: Patchouli, woody

Pronunciation? Well, Nog Chompa is how it rolls off my tongue, but I have heard many a different variation. Nag (as in nagging), and champa (as in champion) are commonly heard at farmers markets.

No matter how you pronounce Nag Champa, we think you will love our soy candle version. We offer a 5oz and 16oz version on our Amazon store. You can discover it here. 

If you are interested in other incense candles, we just released Gardenia and Sandalwood. Here is a quick post about those two new scents. You can also find them on Amazon.


Marc Gaskins1 Comment