Blending a beautiful aroma is much like any other artistic endeavor. If you were painting, for instance, you would pay attention to the colors and composition, building a base of neutrals so that the carefully placed bursts of color would be highlighted. So it is with a great perfume. Base notes, such as musk, patchouli, or vanilla, build a sturdy foundation that allows mid and top notes, such as grapefruit, geranium, or bergamot to sing. The experience should start with a zing, and end in a mellow comfort. In past articles, we've gone over the details of building an aroma. Once you've crafted a masterpiece from your aromatic notes, how will you use it? While a blended aroma can be used to scent any number of bath & body products, it is best showcased in a perfume.
Perfume Oils are the simplest method of handmade perfumery. Aromatics are simply dropped into a suitable carrier, and agitated until fully mixed. You carrier oil should be considered carefully for color, scent, and stability. Ideally, you are looking for an oil that has no scent of its own, and is very stable. An oil that lacks color is often ideal, as your aromatics may have colors of their own to showcase. Some perfumers also choose to tint their perfumes to add to the overall esthetic. A colorless carrier makes that a lot easier. Alternatively, you can choose a colorful or fragrant carrier purposely to blend with your perfume. For instance, Berry Seed Oils often yield a slightly fatty, acidic aroma that could balance a heavy perfume nicely. For general purposes, I usually recommend Fractionated Coconut Oil or Jojoba, Clear as good, plain carrier oils with high stability.
The next order of business for your perfume oil is to determine the ratio of aromatics to carrier oil. Most aromatics cannot be used at full strength, and so they must be diluted. This is important for safety, but also helps the perfume to be less overwhelming. Natural aromatics are especially strong, and would be far too fragrant for comfort if used at full strength. Perfume oil should consist of 1% to 5% aromatics. Keep the strength, toxicity, and irritant value of the aromatics you are using in mind when deciding on the exact proportion. When in doubt, it is safer to use less aromatics. After all, the user can always apply more perfume if they prefer a stronger scent.
With these principles of blending handmade perfume oil in mind, I've created a base recipe for you to experiment with. This recipe uses a ratio of 3% aromatics. I'll include some notes later on to help you increase or decrease that ratio as needed.
Handmade Perfume Oil Recipe
- 1 ounce Jojoba, Clear (or another stable Carrier Oil)
- 21 drops Aromatics (Essential Oils, Absolutes, CO2 Extracts, Attars, or Fragrance Oils)
- 7 drops Aromatics to 1 ounce Carrier Oil = 1%
- 14 drops Aromatics to 1 ounce Carrier Oil = 2%
- 21 drops Aromatics to 1 ounce Carrier Oil = 3%
- 28 drops Aromatics to 1 ounce Carrier Oil = 4%
- 35 drops Aromatics to 1 ounce Carrier Oil = 5%