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In the Trenches: the Small-House Perfumer

Posted: April 11, 2007

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P&Fnow: You’ve written an article (Perfumer & Flavorist magazine, May 2007) in which you describe the last-minute formulation of an aloe vera baby wipe fragrance. Is this a typical experience? And have you learned any time-management tricks along the way?

Siegel: It would be rare that a perfumer only has one day to complete a fragrance submission, as is suggested in this article. But time is almost always a factor in some way, when juggling multiple projects and meeting deadlines. One way to save time is to make a 100–200 g sample of a fragrance “skeleton,” with all the major components included balanced to one’s liking. From this primary sample, many multiple smaller 10–20 g experiments can be created, adding various amounts of trace chemicals. This saves time from compounding the same sample over and over. Once an experiment is approved, the finished formula needs only to be made once more for customer submission.