Essential Oils

Most scents are made by mixing the essential oils of plants, each oil having its own particular fragrance and effect. There are numerous oils and countless combinations to suit all moods and tastes.

Every plant contains essential oil, which can be described as being the “life force of the plant. Not only does the oil contain the true scent of the plant, it also contains the nati – and often therapeutic — properties of that plant. Some are relaxing, some uplifting, and some are reputed to have aphrodisiac qualities. The skill in making up a per- £ fume lies in creating a blend that not only smells the way u want, but also acts in the way you want.

Thousands of years, essential oils have been in use as medicines, perfumes, and cosmetics, as well as ingredients in cookery and religious rituals.

Buying and Storing Oils

Oils are becoming more readily available as interest in their therapeutic effect grows. Always buy them labelled, from reputable suppliers. Some mail order oils come in small, dark-colored bottles that are fitted with dropper tops or plastic inserts under the screw caps that enable you to measure them out by the drop.

Store oils in cool, dark places. They have a shelf-life of p about two years. Do make sure that they are safely shut s, although some oils can be used in cooking, others are toxic. If any oil has been swallowed, it is best not to try to induce vomiting, but to seek urgent medical help. It the oils come into contact with your eyes, rinse them thoroughly with cold water.

How to Blend Perfumes?

When it comes to perfume, likes and dislikes vary tremendously; perfumes also smell different on different people. Obviously, people have their own preierences, but these can also vary according to mood — you may adore a perfume one day, and be quite indifferent to it the next. This is because different oils can trigger or enhance particular emotions. One day you may feel happy and carefree, the t you may feel as if your batteries are a little low, and you need to withdraw into yourself to re-charge them. The scents that you use need to reflect changes of mood.

In the nineteenth century, a Frenchman called Piesse revolutionized perfumery by working out a way of classifying scents. It was very similar to music, with “top notes,” “middle notes,” and “base notes.” Top notes, such as the citrus scents or less intense herbs such as basil, are fresh and light. When you smell a perfume, the top notes are the scents you smell first. However, they soon evaporate, revealing the middle notes, which are the scents that form the true “character of the blend. The middle notes consist of most of the floral oils, some of the herbals, and one or two of the lighter woods and spices, such as geranium, lavender, clove, and coriander. The base notes are richer, heavier, warming scents – usually the woods, spices, and resins. They also include rose and jasmine. Ideally, a perfume should contain top, middle, and base notes. 

Published by Devjeet Singh