One of the first questions we usually need to ask of our Brands is ‘will your product be fragranced?’
Fragrance is really important to get right, as we can make a top performing product but if the consumer doesn’t like the fragrance it can affect their judgement of the product itself!
Whatever direction you choose it may behave in a different way depending on the products in which it is used.
For example a cream or lotion tends to smell very different from a water based product such a Shampoo or Body wash.
When choosing a fragrance you really have five main options and each has its positives and negatives.
Fragrance Free is an Option
You may say I don’t want a fragrance…in which case its important you are aware of many ingredients used have strange natural odours that may not be appreciated by the end user.
100% Natural Fragrances
(Please be aware there is no internationally accepted definition of natural in Cosmetics today)
This combines naturally derived fragrant materials with essential oils or is a blend of essential oils themselves.
Nearly all essential oils contain ‘allergens’. Allergens are what cause an allergic response in people …so it may be ‘natural’ but not necessarily safe to use by all. There are 26 allergens that must appear on your product’s ingredient list if they are in your finished product at more than 0.001% for a leave on product and 0.1% for a wash off product blend
Synthetic Fragrances with some Natural Notes
These commonly appear more natural since descriptions of the ‘notes’ used are usually the natural ones present but the description in the ingredients list or INCI will be parfum.
These are usually pretty powerful and complex fragrances since they employ the best of both worlds. This is common practice in the industry and many “natural” brands take this approach.
If you think of your personal fragrance known in the Industry as Fine fragrances it is composed of top notes, middle notes and base notes all of which lift off from the skin at different rates leaving the long term ‘core’ of the scent on the skin longest.
The skins acidity can affect the way a perfume performs on the skin and can smell very different from person to person.
The same applies with our using a synthetic fragrance in a product although since it’s not so concentrated this is less likely.
Allergen Free Synthetic Fragrances
This last one is an option usually chosen if the brand is for babies or for those wishing to make Hypoallegenic Claims.
It is designed specifically to avoid all known allergens.