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Fragrance Blending and Perfumery 101, Day 3

Wow! Do you feel like your brain is over loaded yet? Suzanne asked yesterday about using fragrance blends in soap. Do the parts come through or do they need to be changed?

overwhelmedIt depends on what your fragrance blend components are. If you are making a blend that has a lot of the delicate vanilla or citrus components, you may need to change the blend for different uses. There is a big international brand that we all may be familiar with that produces lotions, body butters, shower gels, scrubs, hand soaps, electric scent diffusers and even candles that all have the same scent. Yet, each one of these products may have a slight change in the fragrance formula so the fragrance works to the best of its ability in the intended product.

Let’s look at the blend again from yesterday.

  • 55% Amyris
  • 10% Thyme
  • 18% Natural Vanilla
  • 18% Pink Grapefruit

For soap, we may change the Natural Vanilla to a vanilla that will be a little stronger in soap like our Vanilla Cream Fragrance. We could leave the Natural Vanilla in the blend and try the soap. It might turn out wonderfully, just like Taylor’s Chai Latte Blend

Make a test batch of soap. Test if your blend is soap worthy or if it needs a little change to make it just right. Don’t worry or panic if your test batch didn’t work out. Just like all fragrances we use, sometimes we need to make some changes before we can sell the finished product.

Iceberg photo inspiration.

Iceberg photo inspiration.

Today I’m going to share one of my favorite blends that was inspired by a picture of an iceberg.

When I looked at the picture and let my imagination go, I could feel the cold nipping at my nose and the crisp scent of cold water. I wanted to portray the biting winds, the frosty iceberg and frigid water. I knew my starting point would be with Peppermint Essential Oil as the naturally occurring menthol would help give the blend a “cold” scent. I looked through the catalog to find a “water” fragrance that would balance out the blend. The first fragrance to immediately jump out at me was Icy Water Fragrance Oil. I decided to start with the two fragrances and make a blend. After I tested the blend, I would be able to tell where I would need to make changes.

I began by mixing equal parts of Peppermint Essential Oil and Icy Water Fragrance Oil. Wow! It was very nice, but the Peppermint was too overwhelming! I decided to change the blend by using one part of Peppermint and two parts of Icy Water. Yum! That was perfection!


2 parts Icy Water Fragrance Oil
1 part Peppermint Essential Oil

Iceberg Recipe: (Make 28 grams, 1 oz or your desired quantity)

Recipe in Grams
18.7 grams Icy Water Fragrance Oil
9.3 grams Peppermint Essential Oil
Recipe in Ounces
0.67 ounces Icy Water Fragrance Oil
0.33 ounces Peppermint Essential Oil
Recipe in Percentages
66.67% Icy Water Fragrance Oil
33.33% Peppermint Essential Oil

This blend was mixed into a batch of cold process soap with a usage rate of 1.25% for a light scent. No discoloration or acceleration was noted.

Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
Coconut Oil
Olive Oil
Shea Butter
Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Iceberg Fragrance Blend
Mixing Container


Recipe in Grams
170 grams Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
142 grams Coconut Oil
113 grams Olive Oil
29 grams Shea Butter
64 grams Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
177 mL Water
6.2 mL Iceberg Fragrance Blend
Recipe in Ounces
6 oz Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
5 oz Coconut Oil
4 oz Olive Oil
1 oz Shea Butter
2.26 oz Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
6 fl oz Water
0.2 oz Iceberg Fragrance Blend
Recipe in Percentages
37.5% Hydrogenated Soybean Oil
31.25% Coconut Oil
25% Olive Oil
6.25% Shea Butter
Q.S. Sodium Hydroxide (Lye)
Q.S. Water
Q.S. Iceberg Fragrance Blend

Weigh the oils into a microwave safe container. Place into the microwave and heat. While the oils are heating, weigh the lye. Slowly add the lye to your container of water. DO NOT add water to your container of lye. The two chemicals reacting can cause a dangerous volcano.

For most soaps, you will want to mix your oils and lye solution when both are somewhere between 110°F to 130°F. We recommend having your oils and lye solution within 10°F of each other. In the winter when your soaping area is cooler, you will want to soap at higher temperatures. In the summer when your soaping area is warmer, you will want to soap at cooler temperatures. With the current weather we are having in Utah, I am soaping closer to 110°F to 115°F.

When your lye solution and oils are within the ideal temperature range, slowly pour the lye solution into the oils. Using either an immersion blender or a soap spoon, mix until you reach trace. Trace is when the raw soap has been mixed enough that oil will no longer rise to the surface when mixing has stopped. If you aren’t sure if you have achieved trace then stop mixing, go get a glass, fill it with water, do not drink it. Come back to your soap. Is oil floating on the surface? This short distraction will allow unmixed oil to rise to the surface.

Once trace is reached you can gently mix the fragrance blend into the soap and then pour the soap into a mold. Allow the soap to sit undisturbed for 12-24 hours. After the soap has been allowed to sit for up to 24 hours, you can unmold the soap and cut it. Arrange the cut bars of soap in an area where there is good air flow but where they will not be in the way. I like to put them on a sheet of cardboard. You are now ready for the curing process. The curing process is just allowing the soap to dry out, giving you a nice hard bar. You can use your soap immediately after cutting but it will not last as long as a fully cured bar.

We have two more days of spectacular tips, hints, ideas and inspiration! Ask your questions now!

See you Monday for more fragrance blending!


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