Fragrance body oils are fun to make and experiment with at home to come up with your own fragrance combinations.  Fragrance oils are made from all natural plant-based ingredients, so you know exactly what you're putting on your body.  Fragrances all derive from plants or trees. The essence of the plant is captured in concentrated form, known as essential oils. These essential oils can be combined with carrier oils which will stretch the essential oil, taking on its essence, and diluting the concentration which allows it to be used to its fullest potential.

What You Need

Container for mixing


Carrier Oil

Essential Oil

Container for mixing

To start with, you can use any container you have around the house or in the kitchen, such as a bowl, glass, jar, or a cup.  Keep in mind that if you use a container that is usually used for eating or drinking, you'll need to clean it out well before and after using it to mix oils.  We recommend a 10 mL glass dropper bottle/roller bottle, or a 30 mL dropper bottle if you have one.


Next you'll want a pipette or dropper for combining oils.  These can be found at craft & hobby stores, or can be ordered online.

Carrier Oil

A carrier oil is an oil that is used for carrying the fragrances of the more concentrated essential oils. Carrier oils are plant-based, and they don't interfere with the fragrance of the essential oils that will be mixed. Carrier oils dilute essential oils to stretch the fragrance and make the essential oil safe to use on your skin.  NOTE: Using essential oils without diluting them can cause harmful irritation to the skin, as some essential oils are harmful if they are not properly diluted. 

Oils that can be used as carrier oils are:

  • Coconut Oil
  • Jojoba Oil
  • Apricot Kernel Oil
  • Sweet Almond Oil
  • Olive Oil
  • Argan Oil
  • Rosehip Oil
  • Black Seed Oil
  • Grape Seed Oil
  • Avocado Oil
  • Sunflower Oil

For mixing fragrances, we typically to use jojoba oil, grape seed oil, sweet almond oil, and avocado oil.  Carrier oils have different properties such as thickness. viscosity, and skin absorption that will affect your choice of which to use.

Essential Oil

Essential oil are oils that come from plants, trees, shrubs, and seeds.  One of the most popular methods for extracting essential oils is steam distillation, whereby steam is used to extract the oils from plant material.  Another popular process doesn't use heat, and instead uses methods such as grinding, squeezing, or rotation to extract oils.  These are known as cold-pressed methods.

Essential oils can fall into three categories. They are: base notes, middle notes, and top notes

Base Notes

Base notes form the foundation of a fragrance.  They are rich, heavy, and long-lasting, lingering for up to 6 hours.  Base notes will carry and boost fragrance of the lighter notes while adding more depth and resonance.

Popular base notes are: vanilla, amber, musk, patchouli, moss and woody notes like sandalwood and cedarwood.

Middle Notes

Middle notes are sometimes called heart notes because they make up the heart of the fragrance.  They typically make up 70% of the fragrance, and last longer than the top notes.  Their fragrances come forth as the top notes fade.

Middle notes include full-bodied, aromatic floral oils like jasmine, geranium, neroli and ylang-ylang, as well as cinnamon, pepper, pine, lemongrass, black pepper and cardamom.

Top Notes

Top notes are sometimes referred to as head notes, and make up the top layer of a fragrance.   This means they are the first notes you detect when you first smell a fragrance.  Top notes evaporate quickly, lingering for the first 5-15 minutes after a fragrance is first smelled.  They consist of lighter, smaller molecules, and give off an initial scent to your fragrance, which eventually blends in with the middle notes.

Common top notes include citrus scents – like lemon, orange, and bergamot – as well as light floral notes like lavender and rose. Basil and anise are also commonly used as top notes.

Basic Recipe

1 part base note fragrance

1 part middle note fragrance

1 part top note fragrance

Carrier oil

How to combine

Start with adding 5 mL of carrier oil to your mixing container

Using your pipette, add 5 drops of the base note fragrance

Next add 5 drops of middle note fragrance

Add 5 drops of the top note fragrance

Add a little more of the carrier oil (approx 3 mL)

Combine the mixture by stirring or shaking the bottle with a top on it to prevent spilling

Smell the fragrance you've just created, adding more of the top, middle, or base note as desired.

Citrus Lavender Vanilla Fragrance Recipe

5 drops lemon essential oil (or other citrus such as lemongrass, orange, bergamot)

5 drops lavender essential oil

5 drops vanilla essential oil

9 mL almond oil


Start with adding 5 mL of almond oil to your mixing container.

Combine 5 drops of vanilla oil, 5 drops of lavender oil, and 5 drops of lemon oil to your mixing container.

Add the remaining carrier oil.

Put the top on your container and combine the mixture by shaking or stirring

Remove the top and your fragrance is ready to use!

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