Create your own Scent

Create your own Scent :

Perfume is a classic gift, but it's even better if the perfume you give is a scent that you've created yourself—especially if you package it in a beautiful bottle. The perfume you make yourself is free from synthetic chemicals and can be fully customized to suit your personal tastes. Here's how to make your own perfume.

Perfume Materials

Perfume consists of a mixture of essential oils in a base oil, together with alcohol and water.

  • 1/2 ounce jojoba oil or sweet almond oil
  • 2-1/2 ounces ethanol (e.g., vodka)
  • 2 tablespoons spring water or distilled water (not tap water)
  • Coffee filter
  • Dark-colored glass bottle
  • 25 drops essential oils (You can either buy them at a health store or online or distill your own.)
    • 7 drops base note essential oils
    • 7 drops middle note essential oils
    • 6-7 drops top note essential oils
    • A couple of drops of bridge notes (optional)

The essential oils that you'll be using will form the base of your perfume, called the "notes." Base notes are the part of the perfume that lasts the longest on the skin. The middle notes evaporate a little more quickly. The top notes are the most volatile and disperse the most quickly. Bridge notes have intermediate evaporation rates and serve to tie a scent together.

Sometimes other substances are added to a perfume formulation, such as sea salt (ocean scent), black pepper (spicy), camphor, and vetiver. Since essential oils evaporate at different rates, the way a perfume smells actually changes over time as you wear it. Here are some examples of common base, middle, top, and bridge notes:

  • Base notes: cedar wood, cinnamon, patchouli, sandalwood, vanilla, moss, lichen, fern
  • Middle notes: clove, geranium, lemongrass, neroli, nutmeg, ylang-ylang
  • Top notes: bergamot, jasmine, lavender, lemon, lime, neroli, orchid, rose
  • Bridge notes: vanilla, lavender

The order in which you mix your ingredients is important since it will affect the scent. If you change the procedure, record what you've done in case you want to duplicate a particular scent.

Create Your Perfume

    1. Add the jojoba oil or sweet almond oil to your bottle.
    2. Add the essential oils in the following order: the base notes, followed by the middle notes, and then the top notes. Add a couple of drops of bridge notes, if desired.
    3. Add 2.5 ounces of alcohol.
    4. Shake the bottle for a couple of minutes, and then let it sit for between 48 hours to six weeks. The scent will change over time, becoming strongest at around six weeks.
    5. When the scent is where you want it to be, add 2 tablespoons of spring water to the perfume. Shake the bottle to mix the perfume, and then filter it through a coffee filter before pouring it into its final bottle.
    6. You may pour a little perfume into a decorative bottle, but in general, perfume should be stored in a sealed bottle, away from heat and light. Ideally, you should use a dark bottle with minimal airspace, since light and exposure to air degrade many essential oils.
    7. Label your creation. (It's always a good idea to record how you made the perfume, in case you want to recreate it later.)

Perfumery Notes

It takes experimentation to get the scent you want, but you can get started in the right direction by keeping in mind the type of scents associated with essential oils:

  • Earthy: patchouli, vetiver
  • Floral: geranium, jasmine, neroli, rose, violet, ylang-ylang
  • Fruity: bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, lemongrass, lime, mandarin, orange
  • Herbal: angelica, basil, chamomile, clary sage, lavender, peppermint, rosemary
  • Ocean: sea salt
  • Spicy: black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, coriander, ginger, juniper, nutmeg
  • Woodsy: cassia, cedar, cypress, pine, sandalwood

If the perfume is too strong, you can dilute it with more water. If you want your perfume to retain its scent longer, add a tablespoon of glycerin to the mixture.