I Tried It: Essential Oil Perfume Workshop


Our class materials

Remember that time when I went on a little rant about how toxic synthetic fragrances are? Since then, I’ve sampled quite a few natural fragrances from Pacifica, but I have yet to find a scent I really adore. So when I came across New York Botanical Garden’s Essential Oil Perfume Workshop, I knew I had to give it a whirl. A few of my girlfriends and I attended the 3 hour course on a Saturday morning in Midtown Manhattan. The workshop was taught by the mother-daughter duo behind the natural skincare line Amber Blue.

First, we learned a few basics about essential oils as well as the difference between top, middle, and base notes in perfume blends. After the brief 20 minute lesson, we dove head first into the hands-on, DIY perfume-making portion of the workshop. We were given a box of 14 different essential oils to sniff and takes notes on. From there, we picked our favorites and decided which top, middle and base notes would constitute our first project of the day – a solid perfume. After the oils were blended, we mixed them into a base of beeswax and jojoba oil. I ended up naming my solid perfume “Christmastime” because that’s exactly what it smells like with a base note of clove, middle note of frankincense and a top note of sweet orange. I’m not sure it’s something I’ll wear, but it’d make a great candle scent.


Testing out the essential oils

Project 2 was blending a new scent for a roll-on perfume. For this one, I blended a base note of patchouli, middle note of lavender and a top note of grapefruit oil. The fragrance was then mixed into a carrier of almond oil. It sounds like a bizarre blend but it actually smells quite nice. This one ended up being my favorite and is definitely a scent I’d be happy to wear.

The final project of the day, an aromatherapy spray, was probably the easiest. I created a spray comprised of rose water, lavender water and witch hazel. I love using this one as a face mist because the ingredients are great for the skin and it’s equally as refreshing as my DIY green tea face mist.


My beauty haul: 3 handcrafted essential oil fragrances

All-in-all, we had a fun time and the Essential Oil Perfume Workshop was a great way to spend a girl’s day out in the city. The cost is a bit steep at $89/person, but we booked through CourseHorse and each saved $10.


If you want to experiment with crafting your own essential oil perfume blends, check out this guide to esssential oil blends that breaks down which oils are best for top, middle and base notes. To buy reputable essential oils and carrier oils, I highly suggest Mountain Rose Herbs.

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