Monday, March 23, 2009

Oil based fragrance sprays and solid perfume

We made a water based fragrance spray that was incredibly easy (1% poly 20, 1% fragrance oil, 0.5 to 1% preservative, and 97.5% to 98% water), so why are we making something more difficult to do the same thing? Because we can. And because there are different reasons for making a oil based spray.
  • It can act as a moisturizer as well - which is a bonus; and
  • It will stay on your body longer than a water based mist.
An oil based fragrance spray is just is composed of oil based ingredients. We won't need a preservative as it is oil based, but you will want to add 0.5% to 1% Vitamin E to keep the oils from going rancid (which is the LAST thing you want in a fragrance spray!)

When making a fragrance oil, you will want to use something with a long shelf life, so grapeseed, hempseed, and walnut oil are not good choices. Fragrance based things tend to end up in the back of your cupboard for months on end, and we want them to keep their lovely scent. As well, we want oils that don't really have much of a smell, so choosing olive oil or sunflower oil would probably be a bad idea as well. So we'll want to use light feeling oils with very little natural smell and a long shelf life.

97% fractionated coconut oil or shea oil
2% fragrance oil (if you wish to use essential oils, check the usage rates for your choices...)
1% Vitamin E.

Pour each of the ingredients into a spray bottle, then using sparingly as a wonderful fragrance.
This is a great after bath spray as well, as a note, if you are using fractionated coconut oil (non-staining).
(As a quick note, you probably don't need Vitamin E with either of these two oils as they have long shelf lives. I'm recommending it anyway because you might just end up leaving it at the cabin and not using it for a year and because it gets you in the habit of putting Vitamin E in everything oil based you make!)

Solid perfume is a great way to carry your favourite scent with you in an easy, non-spill container. You can put this recipe into a small pot or a lip balm tube, and use it whenever you need a fragrant pick me up! This is intended to be solid but will melt at body temperature. We're using ingredients that have very little scent of their own.

20% beeswax (use refined for extra non-smelliness)
30% shea or cocoa butter (or a combination of the two - both refined and deodorized)
39% liquid oils (fractionated coconut or shea oil are great choices)
10% fragrance oil
1% Vitamin E

If you want to use essential oils here, please check the safety levels.
If you use only shea butter, you'll want to put this into a pot as it will be soft.
Using 15% cocoa butter or all cocoa butter will make this hard enough to put in a lip balm tube.

Melt everything, except the fragrance oil, in a double boiler until the ingredients are liquid. Remove from the heat and add the fragrance oil. Pour into a lip balm pot or lip balm tube and let set. Give it a funky name that's all your own, and you have a solid perfume!


Bunny said...

I am going to try this with Meadowfoam oil... it's got a super long shelf life, and apparently doesn't absorb too greasy. Here's hoping it works out! =) Thanks!

Samira Khan said...


Thanks for sharing recipe, I tried to blend fractionated coconut oil with Lavender and vitamin E to make an Apres Bath Oil, but after i poured it into my bottles it seems to have seperated.
Not sure why, perhaps the density of the oils? The spray bottles have this clear liquid, which I assume is lavender EO floating on top of a cloudy one.. likely the coconut oil.
Then I tried to add polysorbate 80 to see if that would help mix it all but no luck. Do you have any idea what I could do to emulsify the oils?



Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Sam! I think I've address this elsewhere on the blog, but yes, it has to do with the density of the oils. You can add a solubilizer, and I encourage you to check out the experiments I've done on the blog with this. You'll have to do some experimenting to see how much polysorbate 80 you have to add to the mix to get it to work. You may be experimenting for quite some time. Personally, I'd just put it in an opaque bottle and tell the user to shake it up before using than add a sticky solubilizer to the mix.

Heather said...

Maybe jojoba oil would be a better oil to try.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Heather. What are you referring to in your comment?

Pierrette Guertin said...

Hi Susan,
I made this recipe, but I found it very greasy. Is it possible to have it less greasy with the same hardness. I use 15% cocoa butter and 15% shea butter with 39% coconut oil.
As I love Vanilla scent, I put Vanilla (the one with 15% dilute) and Bergamot. I had to put 1-2 drops of PEG 40 to mix the EO as Vanilla alway separate. At least 5% of HE and next time I will put more if I could find a way to make it less greasy.


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Pierrette! Yes, any all oil and butter product will be greasy. That's one of the reasons we making lotions - they are less greasy than anhydrous or non-water containing products. Do a search on this blog for "solid perfume" and see the less greasy feeling recipe I make with the kids in my youth programs

Why do you need to solubilize your vanilla? I have a feeling it's water soluble. I don't believe there are any vanilla essential oils, just extracts. And what is HE?

Pierrette Guertin said...

Thanks Susan
HE is the abbreviate name of Huiles Essentielles. In English it is EO. Sorry I put HE instead of EO.
You"are right about Vanilla.(Vanilla planifolia). It is not oil soluble. Voyageur list it in Essential oil but it seems to be more an extract (Extracted through enfleurage), I don't know why Voyageur list it in EO. So we need a solubilizer to mix Vanilla with another EO.
I though it was the Beeswax used in the recipe which gave a greasy feeling. But I will look of the said recipe you made with kids and tell you more about it.

Jo Menzies said...

I'm fairly certain you've answered this question above, but I'm a newbie to all this and I made some body mists using a combination of essential oils, aloe, almond oil, witch hazel and hydrosols and I ended up with major seperation. Can i tip it all into a larger container and add solubiser to fix it? Id really hate to waste what I've made - any advice woukd be awesome.
Also, do you do classes? Its do refreshing to find someone who truly understands this stuff.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Jo. Check out today's Weekday Wonderings to see my answer. As an aside, I did a pretty extensive post on this topic in June, so I'll refer you to that one to look at many many posts I've written on solubilizers.