Perfume Press: The Ultimate Guide to Making Your Own Fragrances

Hello, Good News! Welcome to our blog, where we share everything you need to know about perfume making. Whether you are a beginner or a pro, you will find something useful and interesting here.

In this article, we will focus on one of the most important tools for perfume making: the perfume press. What is it, how does it work, and why do you need one? Read on to find out!

What is a Perfume Press?

A perfume press is a device that extracts the essential oils from natural materials such as flowers, herbs, spices, and fruits. These oils are the main ingredients for making perfumes. They give the fragrance its character, intensity, and longevity.

There are different types of perfume presses, such as steam distillation, enfleurage, maceration, and solvent extraction. Each one has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the material and the desired result. We will explain each one in detail later.

Steam Distillation

Steam distillation is the most common and oldest method of perfume extraction. It involves heating water to produce steam, which passes through the plant material and carries the volatile oils with it. The steam then condenses into a liquid, which separates into two layers: water and oil. The oil is collected and stored in a dark glass bottle.

Steam distillation is suitable for extracting oils from hardy materials such as wood, bark, roots, seeds, and resin. It is also relatively cheap and easy to do at home. However, it can also damage some delicate materials such as flowers and leaves, which may lose their aroma or color due to the high temperature.


Enfleurage is a traditional and elegant method of perfume extraction. It involves placing fresh flowers on a layer of fat (usually animal fat) that absorbs their scent. The fat is then scraped off and dissolved in alcohol, which evaporates and leaves behind the oil.

Enfleurage is suitable for extracting oils from fragile materials such as jasmine, tuberose, rose, and violet. It preserves their delicate aroma and color very well. However, it is also very expensive and time-consuming, as it requires a lot of flowers and fat, and several repetitions of the process.


Maceration is a simple and natural method of perfume extraction. It involves soaking the plant material in a solvent (usually oil or alcohol) that dissolves their scent. The solvent is then filtered and used as perfume or further processed to obtain the oil.

Maceration is suitable for extracting oils from soft materials such as petals, leaves, and fruits. It is also very easy and inexpensive to do at home. However, it can also produce a less concentrated and less pure oil than other methods.

How to Use a Perfume Press?

Using a perfume press is not very difficult, but it does require some preparation and equipment. Here are the basic steps for using a perfume press:

  1. Choose your plant material. You can use fresh or dried materials, depending on the method and the availability. Make sure they are clean and free of pesticides or chemicals.
  2. Choose your method. Depending on your plant material and your preference, you can use steam distillation, enfleurage, maceration, or solvent extraction. Each one has its own pros and cons, as we explained before.
  3. Prepare your equipment. You will need a perfume press (which can be bought online or made at home), a heat source (such as a stove or a burner), a container (such as a pot or a jar), water or solvent (depending on the method), and a separator (such as a funnel or a pipette).
  4. Follow the instructions for your method. Each method has its own specific steps and timings, which you should follow carefully to get the best results. Generally speaking, you will need to heat up the water or solvent, add the plant material, let it simmer or soak for some time, collect the liquid or fat, separate the oil from the water or solvent, and store it in a dark glass bottle.
  5. Enjoy your oil! You can use your oil as it is or blend it with other oils to create your own unique fragrance. You can also add other ingredients such as alcohol, glycerin, or water to adjust the concentration and consistency of your perfume.

A Detailed Table Breakdown Related to Perfume Press

To help you choose the best method for your perfume press, we have prepared a detailed table breakdown that compares them in terms of cost, time, difficulty, yield, quality, and suitability. Here it is:

Method Cost Time Difficulty Yield Quality Suitability
Steam Distillation Low Short Easy Medium Medium Hardy Materials
Enfleurage High Long Medium Low High Fragile Materials
Maceration Low Medium Easy High Low Soft Materials
Solvent Extraction Medium Short Hard High High All Materials

Frequently Asked Questions About Perfume Press

What is the difference between perfume oil and perfume?

Perfume oil is the pure and concentrated essence of a fragrance, while perfume is a diluted and blended version of it. Perfume oil can be used as it is or mixed with other oils to create a custom scent. Perfume is usually made by adding alcohol, water, or glycerin to perfume oil to adjust its strength and longevity.

How long does perfume oil last?

The shelf life of perfume oil depends on several factors, such as the quality of the oil, the storage conditions, and the exposure to light, heat, and air. Generally speaking, perfume oil can last from 6 months to several years if stored properly. To extend its shelf life, you should keep it in a dark glass bottle, away from direct sunlight, heat sources, and moisture.

How do I apply perfume oil?

The best way to apply perfume oil is to dab a small amount on your pulse points, such as your wrists, neck, behind your ears, and inside your elbows. These are the areas where your blood vessels are close to the skin, which makes them warmer and more likely to diffuse the scent. You can also apply perfume oil on your hair, clothes, or accessories for a longer-lasting effect.

How do I blend perfume oils?

The art of blending perfume oils is called perfumery, and it requires some creativity and experimentation. There are no fixed rules for blending perfume oils, but there are some general guidelines that can help you create a balanced and harmonious scent. You can use the following steps as a starting point:

  1. Choose your fragrance family. There are four main fragrance families: floral, oriental, woody, and fresh. Each one has its own characteristics and mood. You can choose one family or mix two or more families to create a more complex scent.
  2. Choose your notes. Notes are the individual scents that make up a fragrance. They are usually divided into three categories: top notes, middle notes, and base notes. Top notes are the first ones you smell, but they fade quickly. Middle notes are the heart of the fragrance, and they last longer. Base notes are the ones that linger the longest, and they give depth and character to the fragrance. You can choose one note or several notes from each category to create your blend.
  3. Mix your oils. The ratio of oils you use will determine the strength and balance of your fragrance. A common formula is to use 30% top notes, 50% middle notes, and 20% base notes. However, you can adjust this according to your preference and taste. You can use a dropper or a pipette to measure and mix your oils in a small glass bottle.
  4. Let your blend rest. After mixing your oils, you should let them rest for at least a week in a cool and dark place. This will allow the oils to blend together and develop their full potential. You can also shake the bottle occasionally to help the process.
  5. Test your blend. After letting your blend rest, you can test it on your skin or on a paper strip. You should smell it at different intervals to see how it evolves over time. You can also ask for feedback from other people to see how they perceive it.
  6. Tweak your blend. If you are not satisfied with your blend, you can tweak it by adding more or less of certain oils until you get the desired result. You can also add otheringredients such as alcohol, glycerin, or water to adjust the concentration and consistency of your perfume.


We hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new about perfume press. Perfume press is a great way to make your own fragrances from natural materials. You can use different methods to extract the oils, and then blend them to create your own unique scent. You can also experiment with different ingredients and ratios to find your perfect formula.

If you want to learn more about perfume making, check out our other articles on this blog. We have plenty of tips and tricks for you to master this art. You can also subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest updates and offers. Thank you for reading and happy perfume making!