How to make homemade cologne

by FabulousFrannie

Citrusy. Herbaceous. Bold. Subtle. When it comes to personal fragrance, we all have our preferences. While we all know what we like, it can sometimes be hard to find one that hits all the right notes. That’s why making your own cologne or perfume with essential oils is a great alternative.

Here are some helpful tips to consider as you create your blend.

1. Finding your notes
Different essential oils have different “notes,” and are either “Top,” “Middle” or “Base.” Having at least one oil per note, helps ensure that the fragrance is balanced and will last longer. It also helps reduce the likelihood of an overpowering aroma. You can find out which note your favorite essential oils are by checking out their profile.

Top: The first scent that you smell in a blend, but typically disappears quickly (within 1-2 hours). Examples include Basil, Bergamot, Eucalyptus, Grapefruit and Peppermint.
Middle: The second aroma that you pick up on is also referred to as the “bouquet,” and lasts a little longer (2-4 hours). Examples include Black Pepper, Cypress, Juniper Berry, Lavender, Pine and Rosemary.
Base: The last one you notice, but it will last the longest (some can even linger for days!). This is what gives your blend staying power throughout the day. Examples include Cedarwood, Copaiba BasalmFrankincense, Myrrh, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Vanilla and Vetiver.

2. Finding your direction
Not only should your blend be complex in its notes, but it should also be layered in its type of aroma. Start with the type of aroma you want and go from there.

Citrus – Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Mandarin, Petitgrain, Sweet Orange, Tangerine
Herbaceous – Basil, Cajeput, Clary Sage, Coriander, Eucalyptus, Lavender, Lemongrass, Oregano, Peppermint, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Thyme
Spicey – Allspice, Anise, Black Pepper, Cinnamon Leaf, Clove Bud, Ginger
Woodsy – Cedarwood, Cypress, Fir Needle, Juniper Berry, Pine
Tip: You can mix and match oils from different categories to make a more textured scent. I recommend placing a few drops of each of your desired oils in a small bowl and blending. Use your hands to waft the aroma and see how you like it. This is a great way to see if both the aromas and the notes blend well.

3. Creating your signature scent
Now that you’ve selected what oils you want to use, it’s time to get blending!

Personalized Cologne


  • 20 drops Top Note Essential Oil
  • 15 drops Middle Note Essential Oil
  • 10 drops Base Note Essential Oil
  • 5 oz. 70 proof Alcohol or Vodka
  • 1 oz. Distilled Water (if you are sensitive to Alcohol, you may use more Distilled Water)
  • Glass Roll-On or Spray Bottle


In a small bowl, add each essential oil drop by drop. Combine with alcohol and pour into glass bottle. Seal bottle tightly and shake well. Over the next 72 hours, shake bottle 1-2 times/day to make sure that oils have completely combined. Store in a cool, dark place to preserve fragrance. Note: You may use more than 3 essential oils in your blend, but adjust drops accordingly.


*For informational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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Diane June 24, 2016 - 8:37 pm

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