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Essential Oils As Perfume | How to Make Perfume

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The Perfume Dilemma:

I was never a big perfume girl; perfumes and fragrances easily gave me migraines even as a young teenager. I could barely walk into Bath and Bodyworks. Sometimes I was embarrassed. I was only able to tolerate the lightest of scents. Years later, I learned why those synthetic aromas gave me migraines – they are full of toxic chemicals. Conventional, synthetic perfumes can contain many toxic chemical ingredients, such as: benzaldehyde, benzyl acetate, benzyl alcohol, camphor, ethanol, ethyl acetate, methylene chloride, stearates, plus multiple phthalates and parabens. Most of these are known carcinogens and hormone disruptors – UGH! Once I learned this, I knew I wanted nothing to do with those toxins.

The Perfume Solution:

But I still wanted to smell nice and enjoy a perfume. That is why I decided to learn how to use essential oils as perfume. I already love what essential oils have done for my health and wellness. Since so many smell amazing, it seemed like the perfect idea! And while I love using roller bottles, it’s just not the same “feel” as a spray perfume. This post will show you how to craft your own essential oils into perfume. And if that is more intensive than you were looking for, I will also share some favorite recipes ready for you to mix and enjoy.

Blending Essential Oils as Perfume

Blending essential oils into cohesive aromas is often referred to as an art. It is certainly not as simple as just dropping this and that into a roller bottle and hoping it smells good. Certain essential oils will compliment one another better than others. A custom perfume blend is the best way to create the scent you desire AND give you the benefits of aromatherapy! If you would like to create your own blends for essential oils as perfume, the following section will show you how to do it.

Common Essential Oil Scent Notes:

When blending essential oils as perfume, there are three categories of scent notes that the essential oils fall into: top, middle, and base. Although this is not a hard and fast rule, typically, there will be an essential oil from each category for the perfume blend. Below are some common scent notes from each category – you will notice that some essential oils are in multiple categories. That is because identifying an essential oil as a top, middle, or base note is based on a subjective assessment of the scent in combination with the constituents present in the essential oil. Typically when you create an essential oil perfume, you will choose a 1 top note, 1-2 middle notes, and 1-2 base notes. You can use the chart below to help you get started creating your own perfume blends:

Essential Oils as Perfume Dilution Chart

For this post, I will take you through how to create a perfume blend by using all three categories.Next, I will take you through common essential oils in each category. After each essential oil, I have listed some other essential oils that blend well with it to help you jump start your creativity! Here is a little helpful tip: Gather the essential oils you are considering, and remove the lids off of them all. Take a sniff of all the essential oils together, this gives you an idea of how they compliment one another.

Top Note Essential Oils:

Top notes are bright and clear, and the first thing that you smell. They are often citrus essential oils. Generally, top notes will make up 20-40% of the perfume’s essential oils.

Top Note Essential Oils for Perfume

Citrus Top Notes:

  • Orange (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, grapefruit, patchouli, geranium, frankincense, lavender, nutmeg, lemon, peppermint, rosemary, ylang ylang, jasmine, ginger, pine, juniper)
  • Lemon (Blends well with: geranium, thyme, frankincense, eucalyptus, ylang ylang, peppermint, lavender, bergamot, chamomile, sage, lemongrass, juniper)
  • Lime (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, tangerine, clary sage, orange, vanilla)
  • Grapefruit (Blends well with: geranium, lemongrass, frankincense, thyme, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, cedarwood,
  • Jade Lemon (Blends well with: lavender, bergamot, ylang ylang, peppermint, palmarosa)
  • Bergamot (Blends well with: palmarosa, jasmine, lemon, cypress, ginger, lemongrass, patchouli, geranium, lavender, eucalytus, chamomile, thyme, ylang ylang, juniper)
  • Tangerine (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, geranium, frankincense, basil, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, chamomile, orange)
  • Lemongrass (Blends well with: lemon, jasmine, grapefruit, sage, geranium, basil, rosemary, lavender, cedarwood, eucalyptus, bergamot, clary sage, nutmeg)

Herbal, Minty, & Spicy Top Notes:

  • Basil (Blends well with: spruce, cypress, wintergreen, geranium, lavender, lemongrass, bergamot, peppermint)
  • Wintergreen (Blends well with: cypress, spearmint, geranium, basil, lavender, lemongrass, bergamot, chamomile, peppermint, juniper)
  • Spearmint (Blends well with: wintergreen, basil, rosemary, lavender, ginger, bergamot, peppermint)
  • Peppermint (Blends well with: palmarosa, lemon, spearmint, wintergreen, geranium, basil, rosemary, lavender, eucalyptus, sage, ylang ylang)
  • Cinnamon Bark (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, lemon, rose, grapefruit, basil, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, ylang ylang, peppermint, nutmeg, orange)

Woodsy & Floral Top Notes:

  • Sage (Blends well with: lemon, lavender, rosemary, lemongrass, bergamot, peppermint, pine)
  • Eucalyptus Glubulus (Blends well with: lemon, spearmint, geranium, frankincense, basil, lavender, lemongrass, juniper, pine)
  • Lavender (Blends well with: lemon, patchouli, palmarosa, geranium, rosemary, cedarwood, bergamot, clary sage, clove, chamomile, peppermint, vanilla)

Middle Note Essential Oils:

Middle notes are the heart of the scent, and hold the scent together. They are often florals, herbs, spices, or trees. Usually middle notes will make up 40-80% of your perfume’s essential oils.

Middle Note Essential Oils for Perfume

Floral Middle Notes:

  • Ylang Ylang (Blends well with: lemon, rose, grapefruit, geranium, bergamot, chamomile, lavender)
  • Geranium (Blends well with: lemon, rose, jasmine, patchouli, lavender, lemongrass, ginger, bergamot, ylang ylang, peppermint)
  • Palmarosa (Blends well with: lemon, rose, jasmine, patchouli, geranium, cedarwood, lemongrass, bergamot, ginger, peppermint)
  • Chamomile (Blends well with: rose, spearmint, geranium, frankincense, rosemary, cedarwood, eucalyptus globulus, bergamot, clove, orange)
  • Lavender (Blends well with: lemon, thyme, patchouli, palmarosa, geranium, rosemary, cedarwood, bergamot, clary sage, clove, chamomile, peppermint, vanilla)
  • Jasmine (Blends well with: palmarosa, rose, spearmint, geranium, frankincense, lemongrass, bergamot, orange)
  • Rose (Blends well with: jasmine, palmarosa, lemon, patchouli, geranium, bergamot, clove, chamomile, ylang ylang)
  • Clary Sage (Blends well with: cypress, geranium, cedarwood, bergamot, juniper lavender, ylang ylang)

Herbal & Spicy Middle Notes:

  • Rosemary (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, frankincense, thyme, basil, lavender, cedarwood, eucaplytus globulus, lime, clove, peppermint, pine)
  • Thyme (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, rosemary, lavender, cedarwood, bergamot, juniper, pine)
  • Clove (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, lemon, rose, grapefruit, basil, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, ylang ylang, peppermint, nutmeg, orange)
  • Nutmeg (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, clove, orange, lemon, cypress, patchouli, frankincense, rosemary, eucalyptus globulus, lemongrass, ginger, clary sage)

Woodsy Middle Notes:

  • Juniper (Blends well with: cypress, grapefruit, geranium, frankincense, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, chamomile, orange)
  • Black Spruce (Blends well with: wintergreen, frankincense, orange, eucalyptus globulus, chamomile)
  • Cypress (Blends well with: lemon, frankincense, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, orange, juniper, pine)
  • Pine (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, frankincense, rosemary, cedarwood, clary sage, juniper)

Base Note Essential Oils:

Base notes are strong and lingering, the last thing that you smell. Essential oils classified as base notes tend to evaporate the slowest, so scent often lingers the longest. They are often earthy, woodsy, or spicy. Typically base notes will make up 10-25% of your perfume’s essential oils.

Base Note Essential Oils for Perfume

Woodsy Base Notes:

  • Cedarwood (Blends well with: cypress, rosemary, eucalyptus globulus, bergamot, clary sage, lavender, juniper)
  • Pine (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, frankincense, rosemary, cedarwood, clary sage, juniper)
  • Cypress (Blends well with: lemon, frankincense, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, orange, juniper, pine)

Earthy Base Notes:

  • Patchouli (Blends well with: geranium, frankincense, orange, tangerine, lavender, lemongrass, bergamot, ginger, clary sage, pine)
  • Frankincense (Blends well with: jasmine, cedarwood, pine, cypress, bergamot, orange, nutmeg, clary sage, lavender, black spruce, juniper)

Sweet, Floral, & Spicy Base Notes:

  • Vanilla (Blends well with: orange, lime, patchouli, lavender, bergamot, clove, cinnamon bark, nutmeg)
  • Ylang Ylang (Blends well with: lemon, grapefruit, geranium, bergamot, chamomile, clary sage, lavender, palmarosa, rose, tangerine)
  • Rose (Blends well with: jasmine, palmarosa, lemon, patchouli, geranium, bergamot, clove, chamomile, ylang ylang)
  • Ginger (Blends well with: jasmine, rose, spearmint, geranium, rosemary, frankincense, cedarwood, bergamot, eucalpytus globulus, clove, cinnamon bark, orange, vanilla)
  • Clove (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, lemon, rose, grapefruit, basil, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, ylang ylang, peppermint, nutmeg, orange)
  • Cinnamon Bark (Blends well with: cinnamon bark, lemon, rose, grapefruit, basil, rosemary, lavender, bergamot, clary sage, ylang ylang, peppermint, nutmeg, orange)
Essential Oil Perfume Spray Bottle from Whimsey and Wellness

5 Favorite Essentail Oils As Perfume Recipes:

If you are not ready to create your own essential oil perfume, don’t worry – I have some delightful recipes for you to choose from right here! One of these would also make a lovely and thoughtful gift for someone special in your life. (*Each of the following blends are for a 5 ml spray bottle. My favorite place to get high quality spray bottles is Whimsey + Wellness! The spray bottles in the photos were purchased from them. You can visit them here.) Keep scrolling for step-by-step instructions!! 

1. Walking on Sunshine

A happy citrus blend with a hint of herbal floral. This smells so bright and fresh! Wonderful for a spring or summer day.

  • 5 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 5 drops tangerine essential oil
  • 5 drops jade lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil

2. Fancy Like

A sophisticated earthy floral aroma. Perfect for a date or anytime you want to feel feminine.

  • 4 drops frankincense essential oil
  • 2 drops patchouli essential oil
  • 5 drops lime essential oil
  • 5 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 5 drops orange essential oil
  • 3 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops spearmint essential oil

3. Once Upon a Dream

Like a walk in the forest, this perfume will surround you with a woodsy floral aroma.

  • 7 drops black spruce essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 7 drops bergamot essential oil
  • 5 drops frankincense essential oil

4. My Girl 

Feminine and floral with a hint of citrus, this is a lovely blend for any occasion.

  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 7 drops palmarosa essential oil
  • 5 drops vanilla oleoresin
  • 7 drops orange essential oil

5. At Last 

This moody and spicy blend is perfect for romantic time with the one your heart loves.

  • 5 drops of nutmeg essential oil
  • 7 drops of vanilla oleoresin
  • 7 ylang ylang essential oil
  • 7 drops of bergamot essential oil
Essential Oil Spray Perfume Ingredients image

Essential Oil Perfume Instructions:

After you create your own perfume blend, or choose one of the recipes above, you will be ready to make your own essential oil spray perfume. Gather the desired essential oils, 190 proof vodka, and a pretty glass spray bottle – then you’re ready to begin! In the photos, I am making the Fancy Like recipe above.

(The reason for using 190 proof vodka is that it will quickly evaporate, leaving only the essential oils behind. It works well, and you absolutely do not smell it! Side note: I have tried this with witch hazel, but I can still smell it after spraying, and it does take away from the scent. If you are opposed to using vodka, you can instead make a *perfume roller.) 

1. Remove the spray top.

Essential Oils as Perfume step 1

2. Add all of the essential oils from the recipe into a 5 ml glass spray bottle.

Essential Oils as Perfume step 2

3. Top off with 190 proof vodka. (You may want to use a mini funnel or syringe for this part.) 

Essential Oils as Perfume step 3

4. Tighten spray top and gently shake to combine.

Essential Oils as Perfume step 4

5. Apply perfume as you normally would.

*NOTE: you can make any of these recipes into a roller bottle. Simply add the recipes into a 5 ml roller bottle and top off with your favorite carrier oil, like fractionated coconut oil or Young Living’s V-6. (the carrier oil replaces the vodka) 

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