Aromatherapy Scenting Guide

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Scenting with Essential Oils

Scenting oils and lotions and other skincare products are a great way to introduce aromatherapy into your skincare and body care lines.

(Note: Download our aromatherapy scenting guide and use it any time you need it.)

While each of us have our own preferences, there are industry guidelines for scenting products with Essential or Fragrance Oils. It’s best to start scenting with a portion of your base so you can get an idea of how strong you will want the final product. It’s easier to add more scent than it is to remove it. And as always, keep notes while you are creating. It is vital for a consistent product, especially when sizing up to larger batches.

Another safeguard is to use one pipette per EO. Don’t reuse the same pipette in different essential oil bottles.  While I like using glass, I find it is less risky to use plastic pipettes and throw them away after each use.

Good luck!


Aromatherapy Scenting Guide – (Find a more complete guide here).

Astringents, Toners & Splashes: 0.25% – 0.75%
Bath Salts & Powders: 0.25% – 1.0%
Conditioners: 0.50% – 1.0%
Jellies: 0.25% – 1.0%
Lotions & Crèmes: 0.25% – 1.5% (Depending on face or body)
Masques: 0.25% – 1.0%
Melt & Pour Lip Balm: 0.50% – 1.5%
Melt & Pour Soap: 0.50% – 3.0%
Serums: 0.25% – 1.0%
Shampoos, Gels, Household & Laundry: 0.25% – 1.5%
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[…] I cover this topic in my books, but you can find an online weights and measurements chart and an industry standard scenting guide on Essential […]

Delfondo Herron
5 years ago

Above it states percentage in which to add essential oils or fragrances to lotions at .25% or 3.0% how is that measured?

5 years ago

Hi Delfondo, Thanks for your question. The recommended percentage would be a percent of your total end product. For example, if you have a pound of lotion and you want a heavy scent, you would calculate 3% of one pound for the maximum recommended scent. The math would look like this – convert 1 pound to ounces = 16.
16 x 3% = 0.48 You would need to purchase 0.48 ounces of essential oil for the maximum recommended amount. I hope this helps but if you still need some direction feel free to email us at

5 years ago


I have just placed my 1st order with you. I purchased the basic shampoo wheat free and the basic conditioner along with the chrome dome oil combo. I believe I have the mix percent correct but could you give me the numbers so can be sure my calulations are correct.
Thanks you,

5 years ago

I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress lately, and I am looking for a way to incorporate aromatherapy into my everyday activities. I didn’t realize that you would need such a small amount of oil to scent something. Is it ok to add oils to any unscented lotion that you have? Thanks for this information! hopefully I can make some lavender lotion soon!

5 years ago
Reply to  April Cook

Hi April and thanks for your question. You can absolutely add essential oils to any of our lotions. They are specifically formulated to have essential oils and tinctures added.

Elizabeth Kohanmehr
5 years ago

Hi Kathy, The baby bath soak (111-100S) and Soothing Diaper Balm (109-112S) both have a heavy lavender scent. Is there anything can add to them to scale down the lavender scent a little bit? I also wanted to know the percentage of zinc oxide in the soothing diaper balm if you know the answer. Thanks.

Ryanelle Lee
4 years ago

Hi Elizabeth. I use Vanilla Non Discoloring Fragrance oil to help make my essential oil blends a bit toned down in aroma. I buy this product from Bulk Apothecary. Ryanelle

4 years ago
Reply to  Ryanelle Lee

Thanks, Ryanelle.

4 years ago

Hi. I’d like to know if the oils are considered therapeutic grade. Thanks

Brie garza
4 years ago
Reply to  Jody

I would like to know as well

4 years ago
Reply to  Jody

Hi Jody, It’s a good question. Because the phrase “therapeutic grade” is not a legal or regulated term, we don’t use it to describe the oils we sell. We adhere to FDA guidelines on not making any medical claims, as well, so you won’t see us refer to any claims about the effects of any ingredient other than how it affects the appearance or feel of the surface of the skin. All that said, … we do purchase unadulterated, pure essential oils in either conventional or organic form. We are very particular about our suppliers and source from over 57 countries around the world. Here’s a link to an article from our compliance team about it.

4 years ago

Good afternoon!
I would like to know how do I recreate the fragrance for the Kirk’s Natural coco castille soap. Can you help me with that? Thanks!

4 years ago
Reply to  Ern

Hi Ern,

I’ll pass your request on to Kathy. I don’t know if she’s ever smelt Kirks, but we can give you some general guidance. Back to you shortly.


4 years ago
Reply to  Val Sanford

Hi Em, Kirk’s doesn’t list their EO blend except as fragrance. And they refer in their FAQs as less than 1% of the ingredients and is a blend of EOs from the citrus and pine families. Without having smelt it, I can’t be much more helpful. You may need to consider less obvious EOs if you haven’t had any luck – like litsea or blood orange from the citrus and hiba, for instance. Good luck!

4 years ago

Hello, I would like to know how to use the Lip Plumper EO blend in an oil blend of Jojoba and Avocado oils with a touch of vitamin E? I added it at 1% and it did nothing. Can I add it at a higher percentage without worry? Would this particular blend work better in a lip butter/balm? Thank you!

4 years ago

Hi Kathy,

Sorry about the delay. I got a little behind in my comment-following :-). In the oil blend you can go up to 2% and it should not break the oils. It is a great blend for a lip butter/balm but I wouldn’t use it any higher than 1%. I will ask Teeneke to do a quick test and see what she gets. THanks!

Mary Jocelyn
4 years ago

hello. I would like to ask how much scented oil should i put on a gallon of lotion if I want it to be scented? it says .25%-3% of the oil. How do i compute ? Thank you

4 years ago
Reply to  Mary Jocelyn

Hi Mary, The math can be daunting sometimes. This is what the math looks like 1 gallon = 128 ounces. Since most essential oils are sold in ounces it’s easier to convert your gallon to ounces. 128 x .25%= .32. So you would use .32 ounces to scent your gallon at .25%. There are some handy aps to help you convert ounces to other measurements such as tablespoons or teaspoons. I like to use KitchenUnits for quick conversions. You can convert .32 ounces to 1.92 teaspoons. If you are using this for resale and want exactly the same percentage every time, I would suggest using a scale and converting everything to weight. It’s much easier to get accurate percentages by weight. The same math would apply, just take the weight and multiply by the percentage you want to scent at to get the weight of the essential oil to add. For example 8lbs X .25%= .02 – So you would add .02Lbs of essential oil to your product.

4 years ago

I want to use Marigold Oil in a water base to make a Mosquito Repelant to use on myself and our 2 dogs, how much oil would I use to scent a quart, 32 oz, of water. I can’t use store bought items because my Little 16 1/2 year old Poodle has the knots and lesions so have to be careful with her. Thanks

4 years ago

Hi, I just purchased some of your new fragrance oils. According to the scenting guideline they can be used in lip balm? I just wanted to double check before I did it. 🙂

Daune Kandah
4 years ago

Hi can you tell me what the coconut oil fragrance smells like. I am looking for the Hawaii. Tropic beachy coconut smell. Thanks

3 years ago

Hi can you tell me what product you make that would be great for people that suffer with eczema?

3 years ago

I am making my own body butter and am using the essential oil blends. I’m using recommended % but the scent just isn’t strong enough. Some products I’ve tried have such strong aromas I wonder how they are only using essential oils at safe amounts to scent them. Any suggestions on safely increasing the aroma for a body butter?

3 years ago

what’s the percentage should be added to scented candle?

lucy metzler
3 years ago

Hi Kathy, have you worked with nutmeg products like nutmeg butter. I am launching a skin care line, and one of my main product is nutmeg butter. I love all of your products
that I have tried and I am hoping to to be able to incoorporate this with your products. i will welcome any feedback you can give me . thahks.


Mary Ann Sainopulos
2 years ago

What percentage for bar soap made from scratch?

2 years ago

Hi Mary Ann — We aren’t soapers here so please take this as a guide. For a stronger scent profile, you can add up to .8 ounces of essential oil per pound of cold process soap. For melt and pour, you can add .25 ounces of essential oil per pound. Different essential oils are going to have a stronger or lighter smell at the same ratio, so you’ll want to experiment. Remember you can always add more.

Amy Wyscaver
1 year ago

So this guide talks about percentages to use for scent but what about the percentage to use to get the other benefits of the essential oil? For example I am wanting to make a serum that will help to calm down my acne. I want to use Tea Tree, Rosemary and Clary Sage EO in the serum but not sure what percentage to use for it to actually be useful and not just smell good.

Thank you!!!

2 months ago
Reply to  Amy Wyscaver

Hi Amy!

Unfortunately the FDA does not allow us to make any claims so we are unable to list the benefits of each oil.


Esther Gaillard
1 month ago

Hi I’m curious about the natural fragrance oils. The link doesn’t work, and I’m wondering if it can be used in facial products, also if it’s natural, does it have a preservative base?

1 month ago

Hi Esther!

I’m not sure what link you are referring to.

Our natural fragrance oils can be used in facial products, and they do not have a preservative base.

You can view all of the oils here:

Natural Fragrance Oils

Warmest regards,