Fragrances are traditionally made in several strengths to reflect the function of each. Most quality perfumes have been launched as an extrait (please see table below) before coming onto the market in lesser concentrations at lower prices. The following table shows the approximate scent content of the different concentrations in perfume alcohol and the name of each type.
Extrait 15% to 30% scent
Eau de parfum 8% to 15% scent
Eau de toilette 4 % to 8% scent
Eau de Cologne 3% to 5% scent
Eau Fraiche 1% to 3 % scent
Click here for details of our fine fragrances.
Our Extraits are effectively single note fragrances containing 20% aromatic material in aged organic grain alcohol. Many can be used as single fragrance natural perfumes or blended to give more complexity. You can also add them to any fragrance to introduce new notes.
We prefer to work with extraits when blending our own fragrances for a number of reasons. Firstly, many of the concretes, absolutes and essential oils that we use are solid or extremely viscous, which makes them very tricky to work with in their basic form. We therefore dissolve (or tincture) the aromatics to a standardized strength of 20% aromatic in alcohol to create the extrait.
Then when we start blending our perfume, we can measure them easily and accurately using pipettes as small as 1ml. With a 1ml pipette we can measure to an accuracy of 1/100th of 1ml, so we can make up tiny volumes of perfume when we are blending, which allows us to experiment with minimal wastage. We can also accurately record the formulae of the perfumes that we blend.
Finally, we age both the alcohol and the extrait before we use them. This means that the experimental perfume blends we create are as close as possible to the final smell of the completed perfume. Traditionally, natural perfumers who have diluted their perfume with raw alcohol at the end of their blending processes have had to wait for weeks or months before they can smell the results of their experiments.
We blend our fragrances using the extraits, then dilute to the desired strength (Eau de Toilette or Eau de Parfum) using our aged-alcohol fragrance base.
To find out more about extraits and to get started with blending, you might like to read these articles:
More about Extraits (coming soon)
And if you find yourself wanting to learn more, we use nearly 60 of our extraits on our popular Artisan Perfumery Course. Over a period of 5 days, you learn to work with a whole range of extraits to blend sophisticated perfumes both for yourself and for other people.