Sunday, October 09, 2011

Ask the Perfumer - Sunday, October 9, 2011 - until 10 PM EST

Autumn is my favorite time of year.  It's almost as if it's a new year, with new beginnings and a fresh start on projects.  Do you feel the same?  I just launched one perfume, and I have one in the works for a late-November project, and yesterday I began to muse about another.  Have you found your perfume-making spirit stirring?  If you have any questions, I'll be here to answer them for you until 10 PM EST.

11 comments:

  1. Dear Anya:

    Can you tell me more about tinctures and how they are used in perfumery?

    Kyle from CA

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  2. Hi Anya,
    You previously provided some suggestions for using a UV light wand to sterilize bottles, etc. I'm having trouble finding that info again. Would you mind speaking more here about the use of UV wands for this purpose and perhaps providing some insight into purchasing and using them effectively?

    Thank you!
    Sharon

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  3. No question today just a note about the NPG latest project. What great reviews by all the bloggers on the work of NPG members. Great project and congratulation to all.

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  4. Hi Kyle,

    Many artisan natural perfumers are creating tinctures to supplement their raw materials. They do this for several reasons: to capture the scent of something not available, like coconut, or a rare jasmine, or perhaps to make their company a little "greener" by lessening their dependence on suppliers. Sourcing something you can grow in your back yard is a lot better than having it flown in from India, such as in the case of my white and golden champaca tinctures.

    If tea absolute is pricey or you found an incredibly fragrant tea, you can tincture it.

    Some tinctures take a long time to reach an intensity and strength threshold that is desirable. My aglaia tincture took almost three years of gathering the tiny, tiny flowers, but now I have the equivalent of 10 oz of absolute, plus I know it's organic.

    Other tinctures are incredibly easy, quick and inexpensive to make, such as coconut or raspberry.

    HTH,
    Anya

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  5. Hi Sharon:

    The best way to go it to get an IV table/hood. There are places that sell used lab equipment where you can pick these up. The light needs to be on for several hours and you need to wear eye protection. I'll always err on the side of safety and wear eye protection to avoid cataracts.

    On websites like this http://www.ultraviolet.com/products.htm?gclid=CNSo9ePl3KsCFYrs7QodcnPmPQ you'll see antigermicidal lamps and ballast, etc., to build your own set up.

    HTH, xoxo
    Anya

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  6. Hi Sandi

    Thanks so much. Hey, I miss the pic of you with the blue tongue and little one on FB!

    It's wonderful how bloggers picked up the slack and defied the politics stirred up by some, and persevered and made the project a success. The perfumes were all glorious, and I'm glad some previously-unknown Guild perfumers are now out there on the Internet, garnering fans and reviews. We're having a mini-project in late November that will be quite interesting, so look for that.

    xoxo,
    Anya

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  7. Thank you Anya,
    That is great information and saved me from going down the wrong path. I really appreciate your help.
    Sharon

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  8. I admire your appreciation for autumn. I wish I could muster those feelings for it, but for me it usually signals the beginning of some very blue months for me. I don't do well in fall and winter. What aromatics do you find the most uplifting when working with them?
    Thanks!
    Michael

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  9. Hi Sharon:

    Glad I could help. Better safe than sorry - esp. where the FDA is concerned - and knowledge is power. I'm full of quotes tonight, lol.

    xoxo
    Anya

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  10. Hi Michael:

    Many have the SAD problem starting this time of year, and it's a real, recognized disorder. SAD stands for Seasonal Affective Disorder, and is triggered by the diminishing light, both in intensity and length of day in fall and winter. Here's a link that talks about it http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/seasonal-affective-disorder-treatment/DN00013

    About the aromatics that may help you through the dark winter months: citruses! I learned this 20 years ago when I started to make custom scents. Many of my clients were from Europe and the Scandinavian countries, and almost 100% of them chose citrusy top notes, and lemon-y middle notes like litsea cubeba and lemon myrtle. Since I had also studied aromatherapy, I recognized they were choosing what they 'needed', and what was uplifting to them.

    We typically associate citrusy scents with spring and summer colognes and perfumes, but I would recommend you reconsider them for this time of year. Perhaps make a light body oil at a 5% dilution or so, and rub it on your arms and chest. Diffuse citrusy scents into the air, and maybe use a citrusy shower gel.

    HTH, xoxo
    Anya

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  11. Thank you Anya! I will definitely be giving that a try this season.

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