Best Bottles for Essential Oil Storage

Chris Bartlett

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 17, 2011
. . .
I still think though, that even if doing this drop by drop method of exploratory perfumery, that you should enter the data into a spreadsheet that can calculate percentages and the like, even if it is after the fact (well, I suppose it would have to be :p). . . .

Exactly: I do this all the time - go and play with things first, note down the weights as I pop them in and then (unless its really dreadful, which happily does not happen so much now) I type it up into the spreadsheet and give it a name. Then I can set about improving it and, if it looks like it has a chance of getting as far as going on sale, make it compliant.

I’m afraid my attempt to post the spreadsheet details was rather foiled by the parsing mechanism [and it too ages to get it all set out in the post too - *huff*] but the offer of a copy of the file stands.
 

SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
My biggest fear right now, as I am nearing the completion of something I've worked on for a long time...

the fear that I had a brain fart and botched the math on one (or more) of my dilutions back when I was diluting them in the first place. I'm pretty meticulous about this as a rule - actually very much so - but there are two ingredients in particular that I diluted rather quickly one day and was not as meticulous as usual, and was also making them at significantly different dilutions than I usually work with. Of course, the only thing I can do now is re-make the dilutions, making sure they're correct, and re-blend and see how things turn out. If my dilutions were off, this is going to be a pain, because I won't really know just how far off they were and it'll be a guess and smell game to get things right again. Argh! Granted, i'm pretty sure this is just an irrational fear jumping into my head as I have now, finally, just about perfected a formula, but still.. it's maddening!

Also, a few of my bottles have bad seals and have suffered some evaporation and thus I'm going to have to do some more tweaking and experimentation even when my formula should be final. Bummer. :(
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
How interesting it is, that each of us make and analyse perfumes so differently.... I will find one of my perfume graphs to show you. I take each ingredient and chart it using colours to represent the type of smell. I get a visual idea of the proportions and a visual idea of the smell that way. Not spreadsheet %ages but images instead. More artistic than scientific. It will be most interesting to know what a spreadsheet does with the same figures.

1051wzb.jpg


This was a floral chypre made last April 2010, so has fully matured now and smells lovely. You can see from the graph that the pinks and mauves are the flower ingredients, the greens are the greens obviously, the yellows the citrus, the oranges and dark yellows are fruits and ambers, the greys are animalics and the creams are vanillas and tonkas. It works for me.
 

SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
An interesting approach mumsy. I do something like that in my head but I might have to try actually doing it on paper. Is the length of the bar the perceived strength, perceived longevity, or some other property of the ingredient? (or is its length simply related to the amount in the blend).

I definitely do think in colors though, and you can often find me mentioning colors that I perceive when I review scents.
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
The x axis is directly linked to its longevity, so the first ingredient in Bergamot in yellow with a short duration, and the last one Vanilla with a long duration. The height is the quantity of each. I chart many of my perfumes like this and can see at a glance what type and strength of perfume they are without any title.

My original idea was to be able to see if a type of chart had any relation to it's successful smell, to see if there was any kind of pattern to a formula.
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
I have analysed any perfumes I could get the approximate recipe for. I have Chanel, Mitsouko, etc etc all graphed up as images to see if there was anything to be learned from them. Not much yet, except a good visual enterpretation of their smell. The trouble with this learning approach is that obtaining a formula is not an option usually. It has helped me understand about perfume construction up to a point, but is a long winded albeit interesting learning curve.
 

SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
That's very cool.

I'm imagining a computer program that draws such a graph for you, but also takes into account the diffusion and relative strength of each ingredient rather than the quantity, especially as there is rarely a linear relationship between amount of ingredient and perceived strength (ie doubling an ingredient does not always, or even usually, actually double its perceived strength, it's probably more like 1.3-1.5 increase in perceived strength)

The most difficult part there would not be writing the program, but getting such detailed information on so many oils. I have to imagine that the big perfume companies have something like this.
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
I took all the longevities from the good scents guide and married them using online graph systems at first, but they all had such bad limitations that it was easier to draw them myself in a graphics package. It would be nice to be able to write such a thing and could be very useful.

I used the tone of the colour to indicate the strength.
 

SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
I have analysed any perfumes I could get the approximate recipe for. I have Chanel, Mitsouko, etc etc all graphed up as images to see if there was anything to be learned from them. Not much yet, except a good visual enterpretation of their smell. The trouble with this learning approach is that obtaining a formula is not an option usually. It has helped me understand about perfume construction up to a point, but is a long winded albeit interesting learning curve.

I've had a paradigm shift within the last year of blending. Many of my old formulas might look something like this (all natural, mind you)

15
20
80
60
10
30
5
10
25
5
40

...the numbers could represent drops, microliters, whatever. Basically, there was relatively a lot of everything, and the different between the most highly dosed and lowly dosed ingredients, at least in this example, is only a factor of 16. (ok, my formulas weren't maybe this homogenous, but weren't much better. Also, I see a lot of formulas for natural perfumes that are listed like: 10, 10, 5, 3, 2, 1. In most cases, such simple blends are always going to smell rather.. uh, confused. They'll lack clarity or, if not lacking clarity, lack interesting nuances and smell like something you'd get at a headshop.)

Now my formulas look more like (taking relative dilutions into account)

200
120
30
15
10
7
5
4
3
3
2
1
1
1
0.75
0.5
0.5
.25
.125
.01

In other words, a much cleaner, clearer formula that may use as many ingredients, or often times, more even, than my old formulas, but most of those ingredients are used as a sketch artist uses various types of shading. A little hatch shading over here, some dot shading here, etc.

With naturals, at least, I find the results to be much better fragrances as they are not lost in the inevitable muck of 'too much everything.' I imagine it is different with synthetics, where each ingredient is not so much a perfume unto itself as is the case with naturals.
 
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SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
I took all the longevities from the good scents guide and married them using online graph systems at first, but they all had such bad limitations that it was easier to draw them myself in a graphics package. It would be nice to be able to write such a thing and could be very useful.

I used the tone of the colour to indicate the strength.

I've found the substantivity ratings there to be immensely helpful, but sometimes, way off the mark! Have you found this, too?
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
The man who made that site would have a medal from me. The whole thing is completely brilliant and most helpful. Some may be off the mark, but how on earth can one tell when each sample can be so different?

I'll be back. The poor dog needs a walk.
 

SculptureOfSoul

Well-known member
Jul 2, 2005
Y'know what would be helpful, especially for beginners:

If someone compiled a list of all ingredients that had a given term in their organoleptic/olfactory description, or in its 'suggested uses' section. What I mean is, tolu balsam is mentioned as being useful for hyacinth or lilac perfumes, but a beginner working on such a scent could very easily overlook tolu balsam as a useful ingredient in their blend.

It would be nice if a list was compiled such that you could type in "Lilac" and get a list of every ingredient that has lilac somewhere in its olfactory description or in its suggested uses. Or, imagine if you typed in "hay" and were returned a list:
hay absolute, beeswax absolute, boronia, oakmoss, etc etc - anything that is at all haylike.
 

Chris Bartlett

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 17, 2011
Y'know what would be helpful, especially for beginners:

If someone compiled a list of all ingredients that had a given term in their organoleptic/olfactory description, or in its 'suggested uses' section. What I mean is, tolu balsam is mentioned as being useful for hyacinth or lilac perfumes, but a beginner working on such a scent could very easily overlook tolu balsam as a useful ingredient in their blend.

It would be nice if a list was compiled such that you could type in "Lilac" and get a list of every ingredient that has lilac somewhere in its olfactory description or in its suggested uses. Or, imagine if you typed in "hay" and were returned a list:
hay absolute, beeswax absolute, boronia, oakmoss, etc etc - anything that is at all haylike.

But you can do that - use the search facility on the Good Scents Company home page - it isn’t perfect but it certainly gives you all the things with your search term in the Organoleptics section. I use it all the time . . .
 

ScentlessApprentice

Active member
Jul 24, 2010
I'm really enjoying everything all of you have to say about how you approach fragrance development. It is so interesting. This really is both a science and an artform, both technical and artistic. Every artist has their own unique techniques and approaches to produce the final piece. Thanks again to everyone for sharing. I'm feeling very inspired! :)
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
Good morning and a very snowy one here. A thread like this could be invaluable because we could make our own BN resource with whatever inclusions and relevant information we liked. It may be really good fun creating one together. I am very happy to donate a graphics trained eye to such a thing. We have plenty of skills between us all. It could be a magnificent tool for beginners and experienced perfumers alike. One for the pipe....
 

Chris Bartlett

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 17, 2011
It is getting to be valuable indeed, though I was thinking last night that we’ve strayed far from the OP and as a result the title is misleading. I wonder if Moderators can change thread titles? If so it would be good to do that with the sticky on ethanol (which looks as though it’s just about the merits of having Isopropyl Myristate in it, when in fact its all about the types of ethanol and where you can get hold of them in different parts of the world) as well as this one - though I confess I’m not sure what we’d call this one now it’s ranged over so much territory.
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
I was thinking of a linked thing like the good scents guide but more a perfumers learning platform that can be generally contributed to. Something that had a learning structure to it so any level of beginner perfumer could kind of latch on where they were and move in a logical direction. I for one cannot possibly go on a course and would dearly love to, so I glean wherever and whatever I can and muddle it together myself until it makes sense. It would be nice to assemble these types of things we find useful in collective learning stages rather than in random threads. I would have to think that through properly to see if it were even possible. I'm rambling as I think so that idea may be nonsense.
 

Chris Bartlett

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jul 17, 2011
I was thinking of a linked thing like the good scents guide but more a perfumers learning platform that can be generally contributed to. Something that had a learning structure to it so any level of beginner perfumer could kind of latch on where they were and move in a logical direction. I for one cannot possibly go on a course and would dearly love to, so I glean wherever and whatever I can and muddle it together myself until it makes sense. It would be nice to assemble these types of things we find useful in collective learning stages rather than in random threads. I would have to think that through properly to see if it were even possible. I'm rambling as I think so that idea may be nonsense.

Ah OK, well that’s a bit more ambitious and would need hosting somewhere other than Basenotes I think.

In the meantime though I’ve put the spreadsheet file up on my own website so that it can be conveniently downloaded from there. For the moment I’ve simply stuck that into a folder and not linked it to anything, but if it’s popular enough and we end up with a few files of that sort I could make up a proper Perfumer’s Resources page.
 

mumsy

Basenotes Plus
Basenotes Plus
Jan 31, 2010
Thats awfully sweet of you but I was thinking of an online resource though that can be used online without needing any programme downloads or burdening your own private sellers site with all that extra non-purchasing traffic.
 

ScentlessApprentice

Active member
Jul 24, 2010
It is a simple enough spreadsheet that it could be imported into Google Documents and made public with no save option for public users. I think it might still be possible for a public user to add notes and get calculations without requiring save permissions, however, I could be wrong. As for mumsy's and others suggestions for some type of scent database and more - building a database of the information available from other sources as well as our own attributes, relations, etc. would be the more difficult part. The web front end is trivial.
 

Grace1

Member
Feb 25, 2012
Hi sculpture.....just to introduce myself...I am a novice who is just starting to explore natural perfumery. I am a registered nurse by profession. I have purchased a decent set of oils and also some not-so-decent ones (by choice for comparison) but not the pipettes, scale and perfumer's alcohol and I do not as yet have the know-how to build a spreadsheet (which I believe is an excellent idea). These are all next steps. I am keeping careful records of everything I use in a blend even as I use the droppers that fit my 1-dram bottles as my measuring tools! BTW I have always loved perfumes but it was Aftelier's Essences & Alchemy that inspired me to take the plunge into this already very expensive but immensely satisfying hobby.
A point of confusion which I'm hoping you can clarify....
1) How are you able to use the 5ul & 1ul pipette & capillary tubes if ...
(the 5ul pipette does not suck up enough juice to create a full drop that will fall on its own accord….but allows ones blends to stay small and precise……and 1uL capillary tubes...being able to work at a "one tenth of a drop" level (and below, as you can mark off the 50%, 25%, etc levels)

How are you able to dispense fluids from these sizes?
 

James Peterson

Well-known member
Dec 20, 2011
I've been using glass-stoppered reagent bottles for my tinctures but they are 60 ml. I (and you) need similar bottles, but much smaller ones. Does anyone know someone who sells them?
 

skydancer

Member
Apr 3, 2015
Hi SculptureOfSoul! It's been a few years since you posted this but are you still willing to share your spreadsheet? I have one I've created for myself but it's not as detailed as yours and Chris' sounds. I'd love to see what else I could be doing with mine. Thanks!
 

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