Fragrance - the Ultimate Sense

by Sue Griffiths
Fragrance - the Ultimate Sense

Ever notice how a scent can take you back to your youth, take you on vacation, or get you in the mood for the holidays?  

It's the power of the olfactory - here's a rabbit hole of more information.

Basically, you can assign a scent to a memory.  And so can your customers!  That's why some hotel chains have a scent in their lobby and in their toiletry products to subliminally brand your sensory visit to your memory.  Have you considered creating your own signature scent?

A little more about fragrance...

1.  There are three layers of "notes". 

Top, Mid and Base.  When you take the lid off of a candle, your first sniff is the top note.  A second sniff should give you the mid notes.  The third sniff should get you to the base.  And the FOURTH sniff is the complete body of the fragrance.

When you light a candle, you will first smell the top note, which will welcome the mid note after 10 minutes or so, and the base note will follow.  When you extinguish the candle, the base note will linger.

Many of the fragrances at Village Craft and Candle are singular fragrances.  Take Peanut Batter as an example.  Mixed with a warm vanilla, it becomes a peanut butter cookie.  Add banana and chocolate and you have a decadent treat.  A bit of strawberry and some bread notes, and you have the classic PB&J.  With imagination, anything is possible.

2. A fragrance oil made for candles is not always ideal for soaps and visa versa.

Burning a candle requires a different construction to the fragrance oil than an oil that is being put on your skin. 

In a candle, there is unscented (0%) through wonderfully scented (6-10%).  Wax type, process and wick sizing are all part of the secret to making a scented candle fill a room.  (Another blog to follow) .  Here at VCCandle, our focus is candles first.

If you make bath and body products, there is another step to consider.  Does the fragrance contact the skin, and then is washed away, such as soap?  Or is it applied as a lotion or after shower product where it stays on the skin?  Referring to an IFRA document would answer that, and let you based on your recipe if a certain oil can be used.

(An IFRA document determines % of use, whereas an SDS sheet is used to educate you about the contents of the oil and how to handle it in an emergency spill or accidental injury scenario.)

3. Watch out for the colour of the fragrance oil and if it contains vanillin if you want to make whiter candles.  Oils can vary from clear to soft yellow to amber, green and almost black.  Oxidation with shelf life can change the colour over time, as can the materials used.  It is not uncommon to see slight variations from lot to lot from the manufacturer as well.

Expect to see more information being added to the site on an ongoing basis regarding fragrance.  It is forever evolving and there is always more to know.


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