Squalane: the perfect skin care oil?

One of the most sought after natural ingredients in cosmetics and skin care today is an oil-like substance called squalane. It’s actually called squalene (with an ‘e’) or squalane (with an ‘a’) and it’s being used more and more in a variety of products such as hair conditioners, facial oils, moisturizers, anti-aging products, eye creams, lipsticks,… Read More

Mexican Sunflower

  It was Earth Day a couple Saturdays ago and in celebration I posted the above pic of a Mexican Sunflower – botanical name tithonia diversifolia – on my Instagram page. Mexican sunflower is also sometimes referred to as “tree marigold”. I received a cutting from Andromeda Botanic Gardens last year when I took part in their… Read More

Papaya flowers

These are some flowers blossoming on a male papaya (pawpaw) tree in a developing garden in Barbados. Although we all know a lot about papaya fruit, the benefits of its flowers (the blossoms that eventually produce the fruit) are less spoken about, although its curative properties and use as a herbal remedy I am certain have been known for centuries. Just like the… Read More

Three perfume ingredients

It’s been a while since I wrote about some of the perfume ingredients that I have been experimenting with in perfume blends. GERANIUM ABSOLUTE is extracted from the leaves and tops of geranium flowers. It’s a natural material from Egypt, but much more potent and penetrating than the better-known steam-distilled geranium essential oils. Fresh, sweet,… Read More

Floral edibles

I’ve been collecting images of floral edibles on Pinterest for some time. What exactly are floral edibles? They are basically any dish, drink or food that is infused with flowers. The flowers become a main part of the dish, not just used as a garnish. Normal everyday meals can be taken to a whole new… Read More

Stemone – the scent of freshly cut grass

If you wanted to create a note of freshly cut grass in one of your perfumes, then Stemone, an aromachemical manufactured by Givaudan, would prove very useful. Givaudan is the Swiss manufacturer of flavour and fragrance components for the food and perfume industries. Stemone was developed to be used as a green, leafy middle note in perfumery. The first time… Read More

What is fractionated coconut oil?

Fractionated coconut oil is regular or virgin coconut oil which has had its long chain fatty acids removed. Regular/virgin coconut oil has both long-chain and medium chain fatty acids. Fractionated coconut oil is made up primarily of the medium chain fatty acids – also known as medium chain triglycerides or MCTs. It is therefore just a fraction… Read More

Rose de Granville

This video by the House of Dior describes how their plant researchers have developed their very own species of rose – Rose de Granville – which they breed and cultivate exclusively for the fashion house in the Loire Valley, France. The rose is grown organically in the Dior Gardens, under special climatic and horticultural conditions which… Read More

Methyl laitone – the scent of creamy coconut milk

Methyl laitone is a synthetic fragrance ingredient I became familiar with a few years ago. I fell in love with it immediately and have since been using it in nearly all of my blends. It’s lactonic (sweet and milky), works as a base note, and can bring a formula to life by giving it “cosmetic body and milkiness”…. Read More