Creating a new soap scent – Day 1

Lemon Essential OIl We have market coming up soon and of course the beginning of a new  year.  We received lots of feedback from our customers and potential customers via our “What’s Your Favorite Scent” survey.  Ergo: it’s time to work on creating a couple of new scents.

I thought you might be interested in how I do this so I decided to bring you along for the ride.  This is a time consuming process with lots of trial and error but I really enjoy it so here we go.

I usually have some inspiration for a scent in mind; although it can vary a lot in terms of how defined it is.  Right now for example I am pretty definite that I want to create a lemon type blend and maybe a lavender mint blend.  Lavender ranked #1 on our scent survey and it is our best selling blend over all.  Citrus was #2 and since we don’t have a strong lemon blend that’s how I came to this point.  My next step is to get some general suggestions of which essential oils I want to include in my blends.

There is a great website that I love to visit when researching essential oil scent blends – Rainbow Meadows.  They sell essential oils, waxes, fixed oils and other supplies.  Under their Info section they have an area called essential oil blends that has an incredible number of essential oil blends with suggestions on how they may be used.  You can select at least two essential oils and search for blends that contain them.  I already knew that I wanted my blend to contain pettigrain essential oil along with the lemon so that is what I searched for.  As both of these are pretty common ingredients in eo blends it pulled up a total of 21 blends.  I eliminated many because they weren’t the type of scent I was looking for or the ingredients were too expensive.  I also eliminated blends with more than 4 or 5 essential oils as it dramatically complicates the entire production process to use scent blends with a large number of ingredients.  One other quality that I like in a blend is for it to use essential oils which I already have in stock.  (No sense carrying more inventory if you don’t have to.)  And as you can see below it’s not like I don’t already have quite a few in stock.

Essential-Oils-Frig
One of our refrigerators where we store essential oils.
Essential-Oils-Utility
Essential oils that don't require refrigeration.

I eventually narrowed it down to four blends to play with.

  • Lemon, Lemon Eucalyptus and Pettigrain
  • Lemon Eucalyptus, Lemongrass and Rosemary  (I will change this up a lot as it doesn’t even start with Lemon but liked the idea of a little Rosemary in it.)
  • Lemon, Rose Geranium, Pettigrain  (this would give a floral note which am not sure I want but trying new combinations is what this is all about.)
  • Lavender, Lemon and Pettigrain

So now I will go out into the soap shop – pull out the essential oils mentioned above and start blending into little test vials.  Maybe I will start with Rainbow Meadows suggested blend.  Maybe I will bypass it altogether and just use the suggested oils but in my own proportions.  Maybe I will go in an entirely new direction.  I use my own experience with blending, what I like, what I think my customers will like to guide me.  Once I come up with some test blends I try them out on my employees and get their feedback.  Then I tinker with the blends some more.

Tomorrow I will you an update of how first stage of blending went.

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