Perfumes & Body Mists 6

Yesterday we covered room sprays, but what about perfumes and body mists? Using a body mist or perfume can help make a person smell nice when we go to events that we don’t want to smell like sweaty pigs, but we don’t want to smell like we have jumped into a swimming pool of perfume either.

What is the difference between a perfume and a body mist?

A perfume is something applied in dabs. This is the small amount applied behind the ears and the wrists. Unfortunately, media advertising programs have worked against perfumes and concentrated materials in general. We have been taught that more is better. This is why perfumes have taken a lesser place in the market.

Body sprays, mists, and splashes are all applied generously. Think of the commercials you see which splash gallons, or it appears as such, of scented liquid across the body. If this were a real perfume, then the body would stink until 2030! We don’t want you to lose your family because they can’t stand your new odor, or have the neighbors complain.

So, let’s consider the amounts of fragrance material used in each form of scenting liquids. Perfumes are 20 to 35% fragrance material. They are usually carried in alcohol, special denatured types so you won’t drink them to get drunk. Body sprays are often as little as 0.5% (this is half of 1%) and may go as high as 3%. Again, these are in special denatured alcohol.

Scenting the body is as much art as it is science. A person should never wear so much perfume/body spray that others can’t stand being in the same room. This much scent destroys the ability to smell and offends other people, all at the same time.

Let’s Make It!

If you want to make small amounts of perfumes or body sprays in alcohol for yourself and family, then you can use Everclear from the liquor store. If you chose to sell the products, you must get a special denatured alcohol and the necessary permits for purchasing, and storing, such an item.

To make with alcohol, let’s make something closer to a cologne or body spray. We will use the fine perfume atomizers for this project. Because this application uses a fair amount of material in the application (a full spray), we want to keep the amount of scenting oils low so the body isn’t overly scented.

Everclear or high % vodka
fragrance oil of choice

Measure 5 mL of alcohol into the atomizer bottle. Add 2% fragrance oil. (5 * 0.02 = 0.10) This is 0.10 mL of fragrance oil. Fill a pipette with fragrance oil. Count how many drops are in 1 mL of scent. There will probably be about 20. Each scent is different, and each pipette can be different, too. Once you know how many drops are in a mL, calculate how many drops are needed. If 20 drops are in a mL, then the math looks like this 20 * 0.10 = 2. This means of the 20 drops in a single mL, we only need 10% for our project. 20 drops multiplied by 10% is 2 drops. Add the scent, in drops, to the alcohol in the atomizer bottle. Cap the atomizer. Shake well. Label. The body spray is done.

We have tested various scents, and this one is lighter and fruitier, so we are using it at a higher usage rate. Something heavy like sandalwood or patchouly would be used at a lower rate.

Shhh! Don’t tell anyone how easy this was. They won’t believe you, but just in case they did, our secret would be out!


Before you ask why the Everclear based perfume is still clear and the vodka based perfume is cloudy, I will explain that. The vodka is 50% alcohol content in volume, or 100 proof. The Everclear is 95% alcohol content in volume, or 190 proof. What is proof? Proof is simply the percentage doubled, or the arbitrary standardized strength of the liquor. Alcohol is a solvent, so if you have a higher percentage of alcohol, the finished perfume will stay clear. This is why the Everclear, which has 95% alcohol, is clear, while the vodka with 50% alcohol is cloudy. The vodka has more water in it, so the water and oil don’t mix.

Next week is our Bath Tub Pleasure Week! Bath Fizzies for the kids and the kids at heart, bath oils for those leisurely evening baths, and bubble bath for bubbly entertainment! Wow! This is going to be so much fun!

Collect needed items.

Collect needed items.

Adding fragrance oil to the vodka.

Adding fragrance oil to the vodka.

Vodka and fragrance oil.

Vodka and fragrance oil.

Adding fragrance oil to Everclear.

Adding fragrance oil to Everclear.

Everclear perfume on the left and vodka perfume on the right.

Everclear perfume on the left and vodka perfume on the right.

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About Andee

Director of Happiness. I'm a thirty-something soap snob. I've grown up with handmade soaps, and I love them! I really like making lotions, soaps, and perfumes. I adore mixing scents to come up with something new. My favorite scent is either Wicked or Cotton Candy. I tend to hoard fragrances, I even have an Earl Grey Tea from the MMS catalog. I won't tell you how old it is, but it sure is good!

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6 thoughts on “Perfumes & Body Mists

  • abarrios

    YEAH I had a bottle of Everclear sitting on top of my fridge that has been there for years!!! Everytime we visit Wyoming we have to bring back several bottles for friends that find it such a novelty. Anyway back to my point. I had this bottle with NO intention of drinking it because been there done that never want to go there again, so I found this little post and was so thrilled I had found something fun to do with this Everclear!! I think my daughter has promised every girl in our apt building a bottle of her mom’s AWESOME perfume (her words). LOL

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  • ArtisanShelly

    Hi Andee, You said this:
    Perfumes are 20 to 35% fragrance material. They are usually carried in alcohol, special denatured types so you won’t drink them to get drunk.

    Well, I was wondering about Witch Hazel. I see many recipes online for using whitch hazel mixed with Distilled Water along with the FO or EO….is this a combination that will work as good as the denatured ? I did try this combination, I liked it, but I think the witch hazel does come thru just a bit. But I see you were stating if I used the denatured A, that I would need to get a permit to sell it.
    Would I need a permit to sell perfume made with Witch Hazel? that you know of? thanks Andee

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    • Tina

      Witch Hazel would not be appropriate here. It is difficult to get the scent of just a perfume to come through.

      If you don’t want to use alcohol then use something that does not require the permits such as an oil. Remember too, perfumes are very concentrated and are not sprayed on. That is just too much scent being applied at one time. A dab is all that is needed for a real perfume. Lesser concentrations are also an option.

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