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  1. #1

    Default Essential oil dilution

    Basically if in making dilutions in alcohol with essential oils there's a separation and settling of something at the bottom of that dilution that looks like a blobby fluid that beads up till it finally settles into a big blob at the bottom and never dilutes into the alcohol, that is carrier oil and the essential oil wasn't pure? Am I correct in this thinking or am I missing something?
    Last edited by Pipsta; 10th September 2012 at 06:21 AM.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    What percentage of alcohol are you using? What you describe sounds like you are using an alcohol with too high a concentration of water and the oil is separating out. In that case, the "blob" is the essential oil.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by Pipsta View Post
    Basically if in making dilutions in alcohol with essential oils there's a separation and settling of something at the bottom of that dilution that looks like a blobby fluid that beads up till it finally settles into a big blob at the bottom and never dilutes into the alcohol, that is carrier oil and the essential oil wasn't pure? Am I correct in this thinking or am I missing something?
    If you are using ethanol at 96% (or a perfumer's alcohol with a lower percentage of ethanol but some added solvents like PG, DPG, IPM etc.) then what you describe is exactly what happens if your essential oil has been diluted with a fixed oil such as almond or jojoba.

    Normally if you have too much water in your mix the essential oil ends up floating on the surface, though it does depend on which essential oil we are talking about - it can end up behaving as you describe with a heavier (higher specific gravity) oil.
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    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

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    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    I'm actually using 190 proof grain alcohol, everclear, with nothing added. I just received a few oils from a new supplier and all of their oils are separating like this. They advertised it as pure essential oil and before I contact them about this I wanted to get an idea if there is something else that would do this. None of my other oils do this out of the two dozen I have acquired and I made an strong effort to only purchase pure essential oils.

    I made a few more dilutions afterwards with other oils I already had, some of them 'top offs' of previous dilution bottles bottles I've been working off of using the same one and only bottle of alcohol I have been working with and none of the others separated at all so it's not contamination of the alcohol I'm working with.
    Last edited by Pipsta; 10th September 2012 at 04:37 PM.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by Pipsta View Post
    I'm actually using 190 proof grain alcohol, everclear, with nothing added. I just received a few oils from a new supplier and all of their oils are separating like this. They advertised it as pure essential oil and before I contact them about this I wanted to get an idea if there is something else that would do this. None of my other oils do this out of the two dozen I have acquired and I made an strong effort to only purchase pure essential oils.
    In that case I see no room for doubt - the oils are diluted and your supplier is misrepresenting them as pure, or to be generous, they may have been fooled themselves: though I'd be highly doubtful they could have accidentally bought a whole group of oils all adulterated in the same way. More likely they are aiming at the aromatherapy market, who won't detect this kind of fraud as they will dilute further with more fixed oil.

    Sadly this sort of thing happens a lot. The worse news however is that the fact that an oil dissolves successfully in ethanol is by no means proof that it has not been adulterated: smarter crooks use adulterants that are harder to detect - virtually all natural oils are routinely adulterated and getting pure ones is all about selecting trusted suppliers and then checking anyway.

    Good luck!
    ďA person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Another idea I was having.... since the carrier oil won't mix and falls to the bottom, would the part of it that is essential oil still, even only in part, mix into the alcohol? If I'm just using this for personal use and experimentation what harm could come from at least trying to slurp off the top the alcohol with some essential oil mixed in?

    Obviously I wouldn't be able to get an accurate reading on measurements to nail down an exact formula since I'm not sure what the accurate dilution is but I could use them to play with note combos and see what works together. That is if I can't get a refund on the fraudulent 'pure essential oils'!
    Last edited by Pipsta; 10th September 2012 at 05:58 PM.
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  7. #7

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Your theory is quite sound - that's the principle governing the process of extraction of absolutes from digestion - the ethanol soluble volatile aromatic parts will go into the ethanol, leaving the fixed oil behind. It does not happen quickly though: you'll need to give the mixture a good shake over a few hours or days and then let it settle again.

    The real problem though, as you say, is that if you produce something brilliant from your mixing experiments you won't be able to reproduce it because you will have no idea what concentration you started with.

    To be honest if it was me, and I couldn't get my money back on them, I'd use them up by mixing them with more fixed oil to form a massage oil or add some emulsifiers to make a bath oil.

    I'd also publish the name of the fraudsters who sold them to me . . . (though not before I'd given them a fair opportunity to make it right of course).
    ďA person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    As I expected the seller is insisting their oils are pure with nothing added and that I should test them. She also has told me carrier oils are alcohol soluble....lol. I want to reply to her with some links to more authoritative sources about the solubility of carrier oils in alcohol. Google search with various terms hasn't yielded good enough information. Does anyone here have some links to websites I can pass along to them as some proof.

    Part of it is that they offered a refund but I'm concerned that when I do they will deny my refund based on me using a couple grams from some of them. So I'm building a 'item not as described' case through the messaging system so even if they try to refuse my refund that I can get it through ebay buyer protection. I guess that's what I get for trying to get some oils quickly and not having to meet minimum order requirements of most of the other essential oil suppliers I feel more comfortable with.
    ***My SALE thread***My TRADE thread***
    Frag addicted? Join the support group We are too but dam we smell good!

  9. #9

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by Pipsta View Post
    As I expected the seller is insisting their oils are pure with nothing added and that I should test them. She also has told me carrier oils are alcohol soluble....lol. I want to reply to her with some links to more authoritative sources about the solubility of carrier oils in alcohol. Google search with various terms hasn't yielded good enough information. Does anyone here have some links to websites I can pass along to them as some proof.

    Part of it is that they offered a refund but I'm concerned that when I do they will deny my refund based on me using a couple grams from some of them. So I'm building a 'item not as described' case through the messaging system so even if they try to refuse my refund that I can get it through ebay buyer protection. I guess that's what I get for trying to get some oils quickly and not having to meet minimum order requirements of most of the other essential oil suppliers I feel more comfortable with.
    The best place to refer them to is probably right here you know: quite apart from this thread and others like it (that is concerning dodgy oils) I must have advised people against attempting to mix fixed oils with ethanol dozens of times here. It's such a simple test I'm slightly at a loss to understand why people don't just do it themselves - pop some jojoba or almond oil into some ethanol and see what happens: the two liquids are not miscible any more than fixed oil and water are.
    ďA person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Im still confused about how to make my 30% eau de perfume from the 10% diluted oils blends. Most perfumers stay it is easier to work with 10% dilution, but it seems difficult for me to get the math to make it a higher concentration. I was reading Chris blog, which I found very instructive, about the dilutions and the spreadsheet he uses to make the final concentration but... I don't seem to get the idea. Is there any other suggestions?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Yani, It's not possible to start with a 10% dilution, and then obtain a 30% Perfume. No matter what you do, if your original materials are at 10%, the highest concentration you'll obtain is 10%.

    You'll need to reblend the original materials at 100%, (No dilution), and then dilute that stock to your desired strength, in this case 30%.

    PK
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Ummm!! Got it. So it is better to blend the EO 100% and then make the dilutions concentration I want. I thought that by making a 10% dilution first I would waste less product in case I 'm not pleased with the formula.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Just dilute everything to 30% so that:
    A. You don't waste materials experimenting
    B. So that everything you blend will be at a final dilution of around 30%

    I dilute all of my materials to 10% for experimentation purposes. Some materials have a very high odor strength so I dilute them at 5% or 1% to keep everything at easy to remember, standardized, dilutions.
    Justin E. Beasley

  14. #14

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Yes, Testing with 10% solutions spends/wastes less materials, when you are making trials to get to your goal. Most perfumers who dilute to 10% for this task, need to then keep two sets of materials for blending, and for construction of the finished scent.

    The thing about pre-diluting your materials, is that it gives you the chance to bring some wildly loud smelling materials into parity with other quieter materials too.
    So some materials might be diluted to 10%, and some to 1%, for example.

    But when constructing you final concentrate, provided your concentrate is a large enough Qty, then you can blend all of your materials in their pure state to obtain your concentrate. If your Qty is small though, those materials at 1% for blending may need to also be kept at 10% for purposes of your concentrate stock mixing.

    PK
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  15. #15

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    I keep mine at 10%, 1% and 0.1% for blending purposes. At 20% for making perfume blends, plus the originals at 100%. I don't often have a need for any others but can make them from the 100% if I need to.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Good evening! I have been working with the 10 % dilutions in perfumers alcohol and I am having problems diluting myrrh oil This thick resin is not diluting well. It looks like small particles of grease in water. Gummy, thick spots stays in the dropper. Is this normal?

  17. #17

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Sounds like your Myrrh is cut with something else than what is useful and desired. I get all kinds of Myrrh, the odor profile is all over the place. globby mess shouldn't happen. Get another from another supplier, and put that supplier on your "Suspect" list.

    PK
    Paul Kiler
    PK Perfumes
    http://www.PKPERFUMES.com
    Gold Medal for "Best Aroma"; Los Angeles Artisan Fragrance Salon

  18. #18

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by Yani View Post
    Good evening! I have been working with the 10 % dilutions in perfumers alcohol and I am having problems diluting myrrh oil This thick resin is not diluting well. It looks like small particles of grease in water. Gummy, thick spots stays in the dropper. Is this normal?
    No it isn't normal. You say Myrrh oil. I think you have Myrrh + oil.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by mumsy View Post
    No it isn't normal. You say Myrrh oil. I think you have Myrrh + oil.
    Thanks mumsy and Pkiler for the prompt response.
    It is incredible! I thought I was buying good quality EO from that seller. Very disappointed!
    Any essential or fragrance oils trusted sellers suggestions?

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Which would be the best type of myrrh to use as base note and fixatives in a formulation?
    The same dilution problem happened to me with oakmoss essential oil from "essential Pleassures" seller. I guess this is not a good quality product either.
    Last edited by Yani; 14th November 2014 at 01:34 AM.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Can you take a picture and show us?

    I just looked up essential pleasures and it took me to an American candle and fragrance oil burner site. That may explain the use of oil if it's the right site.

    Found another on ebay that deals in soaps. These are the most marvellous cop out clauses here.....

    The 100% Pure or Commercial Grade oils are considered 100% pure and may have been altered by manufacturer by adding or removing a component to create the standardized blend on the retail market today. These oils are 100% pure as designated by the Industy.

    Oils listed for soap making / crafting are 100% Pure but a commercial grade standardized industry blend allowing for a cost effective product.




    I cannot speak for suppliers outside the UK but here is the sticky thread on that subject

    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/258...ogress-12-2013

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Thanks Mumsy. I already ordered some fragrance from perfumers apprentice. I love floral scents and I am making some experiments to get some jasmine perfume. I have jasmine absolute from C.O.Bigelow and jasmine sambac from an ebay supplier called " sweeders" which seems to have good reputation. I am making some floral accords using some info I got from perfumers apprentice corner and I am trying to keep my blends more or less at a ratio they suggested in the web. It definitely seems to be working cause. I found the scent more refined and balanced. What do you think of the use of aldehydes? Which would be a good choice for my jasmine frag?

  23. #23

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    I'm not much of a one to ask about added aldehydes as I have been more of a natural perfumer to date. From what I've gleaned, I would think Hedione would be more a thing for jasmine support to add some translucency, but will stand corrected on that from those better qualified to answer in that direction.

    Here is a good thread about hedione.

    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/371633-Hedione-effects

  24. #24

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by Yani View Post
    Thanks Mumsy. I already ordered some fragrance from perfumers apprentice. I love floral scents and I am making some experiments to get some jasmine perfume. I have jasmine absolute from C.O.Bigelow and jasmine sambac from an ebay supplier called " sweeders" which seems to have good reputation. I am making some floral accords using some info I got from perfumers apprentice corner and I am trying to keep my blends more or less at a ratio they suggested in the web. It definitely seems to be working cause. I found the scent more refined and balanced. What do you think of the use of aldehydes? Which would be a good choice for my jasmine frag?
    Aldehydes can work well with Jasmine although I agree with mumsy about Hedione as the first thing to try: itís very easy to use, while aldehydes are difficult to work with and very easy to overdose.

    That said you could consider Aldehyde C12 MNA, Lauric Aldehyde or perhaps C11 enic. I find itís often helpful to use a combination and if you get it right they can give you a wonderful sparkling effect, on the other hand if you get it wrong you can end up with a very nasty, plastic smell. If you decide to have a go Iíd recommend that you dilute your entire stock of these aldehydes to 10% in ethanol as soon as you get them and then make a further dilution to 1% to use in blending. Details of why I recommend that are in my blog post on the subject.
    ďA person who is nice to you, but rude to the waiter, is not a nice person
    ― Dave Barry

    Chris Bartlett
    Perfumes from the edge . . .

    www.perfumedesigner.co.uk
    Twitter: @PellWallPerfume

    If you are looking for a perfumery consultation Iím happy to quote: if you want free advice, thatís what these forums are for
    You can also join my blog if you wish to ask questions of me.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Quote Originally Posted by mumsy View Post
    Can you take a picture and show us?

    http://www.basenotes.net/threads/258...ogress-12-2013
    Here is the picture of the EO that are not diluting well. Both are really really thick and smell like resin specially the oakmoss which is very deep and strong in scent.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Yani; 16th November 2014 at 02:25 PM.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Sorry, I meant the liquids that were not behaving, not the bottles.

    Also…. maybe you can tincture from them anyway just for your own use. Dilute the whole lot to 20% with ethanol, and just leave it for four months. Shaking it daily or as often as you remember then (after four months) separate off the oil layer. The ethanol will take what it wants and be fragrant. No good for real perfumes but good enough for practicing with.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Essential oil dilution


  28. #28

    Default Re: Essential oil dilution

    Gosh it's still hard to say why, but it certainly isn't behaving.

    If you've only just bought these oils. Might it be worth telling the supplier they aren't behaving well? They might not be aware if they are selling on something they have bought in good faith themselves. The problem is theirs really.

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