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

It's the first Ask the Perfumer Sunday of the new year, and the new decade.  Happy New Year to everyone!  Got any perfumery questions? I'll be here unti l10 PM tonight.


  1. Happy New Year :)
    I hope this year will bring all the best for you:)

    Do you ever put essential oils, (perfume) blends of something natural into iron?


  2. Well, this had me stumped at first, thinking you meant liquid iron supplement drinks for anemic people! Then someone I was on the phone with said maybe you meant iron container?

    That makes more sense.

    No, iron is too reactive, and you need to store and bottle EOs and perfumes in as inert a substance as possible, like glass and stainless steel, for example

  3. How many base note fragrances should a perfumer use to get a REALLY strong long lasting essential oil perfume?

  4. HI Shila:

    There is not a simple answer to that. The base notes are the foundation for the perfume, and their number can vary greatly, due to the variable intensity levels of different base notes, and the aromatics you're using for the middle and top notes of the perfume.

    For instance, in my Light perfume, I used only two base notes, different types of frankincenses, because I didn't want them to overwhelm the lighter middle and top notes. Still, people marvel at the longevity of this perfume.

    For Amberess, I used more base notes than I've ever used before, ten. It's an amber perfume, which demands a complex amber base, and the musk roses and rose geraniums in the middle were able to hold their own.

    Intimate knowledge of the aromatics, saved in your Scent Memory, is the ultimate determinate in how many base notes you will use. It's not just an arbitrary number, which I think you were asking for.

  5. Hi Anya! I am curious about and would like to learn more about champagne accord. There are many scents on the market that are not natural fragrance but say there is champagne in it. To what extent is that.

    Thank you, Felicia

  6. Hi Felicia:

    I don't follow perfume trends, nor do I follow mainstream, synthetic perfumes, so I'm not familiar with the champagne accord.

    I would suspect it's a fantasy scent, much like "cashmere wood" I was asked about in the past. To me, champagne would mean it would have a slightly boozy scent, maybe cognac EO in it, a touch of fuzziness, and I just don't know what else.

    Knowing how protective the Champagne region is in not allowing the use of their name on anything outside of the bubbly they produce, I'm surprised anybody can get away with using it.

  7. Hi Anya,
    Happy New Year to All!

    Is there such a thing as a spice base note?

    Seems like I should know this,but are top notes ever what a perfume is greated around?

    I thought maybe Hvala was asking about an iron.(the chore I never do)

  8. Hi Denise:

    I think many spices are middle/base notes, as they are very tenacious and can be extending in the drydown by using spice-friendly base notes.

    There's a top/middle/base note podcast I've been meaning to do, and I have to get to it soon. Sometimes the definitions can be a bit fluid, as in top/middle and middle/base notes.

    You might want to start a discussion on this in the student's chat group.


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