Perfume Replacements
30 November 2023

Essential Oils as Perfume Replacements

Synthetic fragrances dominate the mainstream market with their overpowering scents but the trend of using essential oils as a perfume replacement has been gaining momentum. The ingredients in perfumes are painfully vast and normally consist of things such as benzyl alcohol, ethyl acetate, benzaldehyde, formaldehyde, methylene chloride – to name a few! Phthalates are potentially hazardous to humans and we are all happily putting these on our skin. Essential oils, extracted from plants, not only offer a natural and holistic alternative to traditional perfumes but also come with a myriad of therapeutic benefits.

The discovery of Essential Oils, to me, was like Christmas for a child! I use Essential Oils in my diffuser, in a bowl with hot water when my kids have colds, I mix whatever scents I love into distilled water to make room sprays or spray my furniture, and indeed use them as perfumes! I know people that use them in lotions that they make and homemade soaps. Honestly the uses are wonderfully endless, and there are so many different smells to suit everyone’s individual tastes. I didn’t realise but just through the acts I have mentioned above, is basically the practice of Aromatherapy! So let's explore the versatile uses of essential oils as a fragrance substitute (and the many other uses of essential oils!) and the joys of Aromatherapy and promoting well-being.

Essential Oils

The Benefits of Making the Shift

So why make the shift at all? Obviously you don’t have to chuck all of your expensive perfumes in favour of the option of Essential Oils, so try starting with one purchase of a scent that you like and see how you go. The following are some very enticing reasons to embrace this option:

Natural Essence:
Essential oils are pure, concentrated extracts derived from plants, flowers, and herbs. Unlike commercial perfumes that often contain artificial additives and chemicals, essential oils capture the true essence of nature. This natural purity makes them an ideal choice for those seeking a cleaner and more authentic fragrance experience.

Therapeutic Benefits:
Beyond their aromatic appeal, essential oils boast therapeutic properties that can positively impact both mental and physical well-being. Lavender, for instance, is renowned for its calming effects, while peppermint can invigorate and refresh. By choosing essential oils as your fragrance, you not only smell good but also enjoy the potential health benefits associated with each oil.

Customisable Blends:
One of the unique advantages of using essential oils is the ability to create personalized blends. Unlike mass-produced perfumes with fixed compositions, essential oils allow individuals to tailor their scents according to personal preferences. Experimenting with various combinations provides a bespoke fragrance experience that caters to individual tastes and moods.

Long-Lasting Scents:
Essential oils may surprise you with their longevity. While the aroma of synthetic perfumes tends to fade quickly, essential oils linger on the skin, offering a subtle and enduring scent throughout the day. This not only enhances the cost-effectiveness of essential oils but also reduces the need for frequent reapplication.

Eco-Friendly Choice:
The production of traditional perfumes often involves the use of synthetic chemicals and contributes to environmental pollution. In contrast, essential oils are extracted from renewable plant sources, making them a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative. By choosing essential oils over synthetic perfumes, you actively contribute to a greener, more sustainable planet.

Reduced Allergenic Risks:
Many commercial perfumes contain allergens and irritants that can trigger sensitivities in individuals. Essential oils, being natural substances, are generally gentler on the skin and are less likely to cause allergic reactions. Individuals with fragrance sensitivities or allergies may find relief by making the switch to essential oils.

Spiritual & Emotional Well-Being:
Essential oils have been used for centuries in various cultures for their spiritual and emotional benefits. Scents like frankincense, myrrh, and sandalwood are associated with meditation and relaxation. By incorporating these oils into your daily routine, you can create a sensory experience that promotes emotional balance and mindfulness.

Different Oils

Different Oils & Their Uses

Essential oils offer a wide range of benefits, and their uses can be customised based on individual preferences and needs. Some say it’s essential to dilute most essential oils with a carrier oil before applying them to the skin to be mindful of individual sensitivities and allergies, and if you have not used essential oils on your skin before then it’s definitely advisable to approach this with caution and perhaps use a very small amount on your skin for the first attempt, like a patch test. Everyone’s tolerance and sensitivities to the compounds found in essential oils can differ. I however, LOVE the essential oils applied straight to my skin (I don’t however suffer with allergies so if you do, do your research and approach with caution). Here are just a few of my personal favourites and their benefits and different uses (and not just as perfumes!):

  1. Lavender Oil:
    • Benefits: Calming and soothing, promotes relaxation, helps alleviate stress and anxiety.
    • Uses: Diffuse for a peaceful atmosphere, add to bathwater, apply topically for skin soothing.
  2. Peppermint Oil:
    • Benefits: Invigorating, enhances focus and mental clarity, relieves headaches.
    • Uses: Inhale for a quick energy boost, mix with carrier oil for a cooling massage, diffuse for a refreshing scent.
  3. Tea Tree Oil:
    • Benefits: Antimicrobial and antifungal properties, supports skin health, can help with acne.
    • Uses: Add to skincare products, apply to blemishes, use as a natural household cleaner.
  4. Eucalyptus Oil:
    • Benefits: Respiratory support, clears sinuses, anti-inflammatory.
    • Uses: Inhale for congestion relief, add to a humidifier, mix with carrier oil for chest rubs.
  5. Lemon Oil:
    • Benefits: Uplifting and energizing, purifying, supports immune system.
    • Uses: Add to cleaning products, diffuse for a fresh scent, mix with water for a natural air freshener.
  6. Frankincense Oil:
    • Benefits: Grounding and calming, promotes spiritual awareness, anti-inflammatory.
    • Uses: Diffuse during meditation, apply topically for skin rejuvenation, add to a carrier oil for massage.
  7. Chamomile Oil:
    • Benefits: Relaxing and calming, aids in sleep, anti-inflammatory.
    • Uses: Add to a warm bath, diffuse in the bedroom, apply topically for skin irritation.
  8. Rosemary Oil:
    • Benefits: Improves focus and concentration, supports hair and scalp health.
    • Uses: Inhale for mental clarity, add to hair products, diffuse for a fresh aroma.
  9. Cedarwood Oil:
    • Benefits: Grounding and balancing, supports respiratory health, insect repellent.
    • Uses: Add to skincare routines, diffuse for a comforting atmosphere, apply topically for respiratory support.
  10. Ylang Ylang Oil:
    • Benefits: Mood-enhancing, aphrodisiac, promotes relaxation.
    • Uses: Add to a diffuser for a romantic ambiance, mix with a carrier oil for massage, use in hair care products.
  11. Geranium Oil:
    • Benefits: Balancing for hormones, supports skin health, uplifting.
    • Uses: Add to skincare routine, diffuse for a floral aroma, mix with a carrier oil for massage.
  12. Patchouli Oil:
    • Benefits: Grounding and calming, skin rejuvenation, insect repellent.
    • Uses: Add to skincare products, diffuse for a unique scent, mix with a carrier oil for massage.

If you would like to use carrier oils to dilute your essential oils then there are various ones you can try. These include:

  • Sweet Almond Oil.
  • Jojoba Oil.
  • Olive Oil.
  • Coconut Oil.
  • Shea Butter.

There is no real standard for you to meet for your own uses so this is your creation to get creative with. We are all different so will appreciate different potencies and our tolerances are different also. As a general starting point, start with 1 drop of your choice of essential oil to 1 teaspoon of carrier oil. From here you can increase the amount of essential oil to carrier oil on your desired strength to suit you!



Aromatherapy is a practice that taps into the healing properties of essential oils to promote physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Rooted in the use of aromatic plant extracts, aromatherapy has evolved into a widely recognised holistic approach to health and relaxation. At the core of aromatherapy is the belief that the inhalation and absorption of aromatic compounds from essential oils can stimulate the limbic system, the part of the brain associated with emotions, memory, and behaviour. This interaction between the olfactory system and the brain's emotional centre is thought to influence mood, stress levels, and overall health. Different placements of the oils, such as the back of the neck, behind the ears, on the wrists, on the temples for example, are all said to have different benefits based on your desired need.

Benefits of Aromatherapy:

Stress Relief: Aromatherapy is renowned for its stress-relieving properties. Essential oils like lavender, chamomile, and bergamot can induce a sense of calm and relaxation, helping to alleviate stress and anxiety.

Improved Sleep: Certain essential oils, such as lavender and cedarwood, are known for their sedative properties. Aromatherapy can be an effective natural remedy for promoting better sleep and managing insomnia.

Mood Enhancement: Citrus oils like orange and lemon are celebrated for their uplifting and mood-enhancing effects. Aromatherapy can be a valuable tool in combating feelings of sadness or low energy.

Pain Management: Some essential oils possess analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Peppermint and eucalyptus, for example, may help alleviate headaches, muscle pain, and joint discomfort.

Improved Cognitive Function: Certain essential oils, including rosemary and peppermint, are believed to enhance cognitive function and concentration. Aromatherapy can be used as a natural aid for focus and mental clarity.

Diverse Applications of Aromatherapy:

Diffusion: The most common method of aromatherapy involves using a diffuser to disperse essential oil molecules into the air. This allows for easy inhalation and absorption, creating a pleasant and therapeutic atmosphere.

Massage: Combining aromatherapy with massage enhances the overall experience. Diluted essential oils are applied to the skin during a massage, promoting both physical and mental well-being.

Inhalation: Inhaling the aroma directly from the bottle or through steam inhalation can be a quick and effective way to experience the immediate benefits of essential oils.

Baths: Adding a few drops of essential oils to a warm bath creates a luxurious and relaxing experience. This method is especially effective for promoting sleep and relieving stress.

Skincare: Many essential oils have beneficial properties for the skin. They can be incorporated into skincare routines through facial oils, creams, or diluted in carrier oils, or as previously stated, placed directly onto the skin as perfumes. One method of using as a perfume is to place my favourite oils into a rollerball container with a carrier oil and use on my wrists.

Candles and Sprays: Aromatherapy candles and room sprays provide a convenient way to infuse living spaces with pleasing scents that contribute to a desired atmosphere.

Aromatherapy offers a holistic and accessible approach to enhancing well-being. Whether used for relaxation, mood enhancement, or specific health benefits, the diverse applications of aromatherapy make it a versatile and enjoyable practice for individuals seeking a natural and complementary therapy for health and balance.


As we become more conscious of the products we use and their impact on our health and the environment, essential oils emerge as a compelling choice for those seeking a perfume replacement. From their natural essence and therapeutic benefits to their customisation options and eco-friendliness, essential oils offer a holistic fragrance experience that goes beyond conventional perfumes. Embrace the power of nature's essence and discover the diverse world of essential oils for a fragrant journey that is as unique as you are.

“Essential oils are like little drops of sunshine distilled from nature’s most healing plants”
Danielle Sade.

“The word ‘essential’ comes from the word ‘essence’ as the oils capture the scent and flavour of the plants essence”
Holly Brandenberger.