Perfume Alternative

Be it perfume or cologne, most of us have a favorite scent. Mine happens to be Jovan Musk for woman as it reminds me of a beloved aunt. Whenever she would come to stay with us, my older brother and I would fight for her pillow after she had left in order to smell her perfume. I rarely smell it these days, but when I do, my head swivels around looking for my aunt.

The reason people wear perfume or cologne is varied; some of the main reasons are to:

  • Attract someone
  • Be seductive
  • Feel good
  • Be individual
  • Make a statement
  • Feel feminine/masculine
  • Display status

The scents available cover ingredients with floral, exotic, woodsy and fresh notes; the combinations are endless! The base ingredients tend to be the same and can include water, alcohol, natural and/or synthetic fragrances/ingredients. It takes a skilled perfumer to masterfully blend pleasing palates for the masses.

As much as I would love to wear perfume, my head does not agree with them. My body is sensitive enough that wearing it ends up giving me an incredible headache no matter how little I have used. This reaction, for me, is caused by the synthetic ingredients in perfumes. 

So what do you do if you want to wear something pleasing but you’re sensitive or you want to lessen the use of chemicals on your body? Try a homemade perfume, body spray or cologne; whichever you fancy. The ingredients are straightforward and simple. Be sure to only use distilled water as tap water contains microorganisms that could turn your hard work in to a science experiment. 

Body Spray Recipe

  • 2 oz Glass bottle with a spray top (preferably dark glass such as cobalt or amber)
  • 0.75 oz Alcohol (80 proof vodka)
  • 0.75 oz Distilled Water (do not use tap water)
  • 60-90 Drops of your essential oil blend
  • Scale
  • Gloves


  1. Place the glass bottle on a scale and tare (zero) out the weight 
  2. Add the alcohol to 0.75 oz and tare (zero) out the weight
  3. Add the distilled water 
  4. While wearing gloves, top with the essential oil blend of your choice
  5. Cap the bottle with the spray top and shake well to mix
  6. Shake well to mix prior to each use; the essential oils will separate from the alcohol and water. 

The beauty of this recipe is you can tailor it to suit your tastes. You could use anywhere from one to several different essential oils in your blend. One that is quite refreshing is a one-to-one ratio of sweet orange and lavender essential oils. If you really want to get fancy with your blends, make it from essential oils that come from the tried and true combination of top, middle and base notes. I have included links below for more in-depth information.

Until next time, discover the power of smelling great without synthetics.

One fun tidbit is the breakdown of perfume types:

  • Parfum (Perfume) contains anywhere between 15%-40% fragrance and can last 6 to 8 hours; most expensive.
  • Eau du Toilette contains between 5%-15% fragrance and can last 2 to 3 hours
  • Eau du Cologne contains between 2%-4% fragrance and can last up to 2 hours
  • Eau Fraiche contains between 1%-3% fragrance and can last up to 2 hours; least expensive


A Guide to Perfumes. (n.d.). Perfume. Retrieved from

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