Working With Stinky Ingredients - Part 2

Late last year, I asked a few fellow formulators who use predominately natural ingredients if there were any particular ones they would categorize as stinky and hard to work with.

There was a literal flood of replies.

Apparantly, I am not the only one who finds some ingredients a little, pretty, awfully, ridiculously challenging to work with.

The Stinky Winners

Here's some of the most 'popular' nose-crinkling ingredients my fellow green formulators (and I) may or may not choose to work with due to their inherent smell
  • Cocoa butter
  • Unrefined shea butter
  • Lanolin
  • Wheat germ oil
  • Argan oil
  • Neem oil (the all time winner and receiver of most votes)
  • Carrot seed oil
  • Tamanu oil
  • Pomegranate seed oil
  • Evening Primrose Oil
  • Raspberry Seed Oil
  • Kelp powder
  • Spirulina
  • Tea Tree Essential oil
  • Valerian Essential Oil
  • Soapnuts
A portion of these ingredients have some wonderfully skin-loving properties that are difficult to simply disregard.

So, how do we deal with all this stinkiness?

Work With, Not Against

Over the years, creating a pleasantly scented product with (some) inherently stinky ingredients has slowly but surely made its way into my regular formulating routine.

After years of trial-and-error and experimentation, it has almost become second nature to me. And even though there are some limitations, it is indeed possible to 'bend' a stinky ingredient or 2 into something entirely different with no need of masking the smell.

The answer: work with, not against.

The trick: get your perfuming nose on and compose your scent to include said stinky ingredient.

You doubt?

It's perfectly ok. I didn't think it was possible until I tried it either.

Next time, I'm going to show you how to get your perfuming nose on!

Stay tuned!


María said…
Yes, please tell us how because I cannot find a single gram of perfume-making capabilities in my whole body...
LisaLise said…
I hope I can be of help María! :D
Unknown said…
The worst ingredient is evening primerose oil. I tried everything to hide the smell of this oil but nothing worked...
LisaLise said…
Hang in there Audrey -- there is hope to be had :) I've got a how to coming up on that one.
Unknown said…
Hi Lise One of the ingredients that I love but find it almost unbearable to use is Organic Cocoa Butter. It makes my eyes water. I have since discovered you put a large amount spread out on a baking sheet that is covered with parchment paper. I then get two or three clean tea towels and cover entirely the Cocoa Butter and put it outside on a table to air. The towels protect it from anything flying about or landing on the butter chips. I remove the towels every day with fresh ones. I do this for usually 3- 4 days. Of course weather dependent also. I then am able to smell the "chocolate" fragrance of the Cocoa Butter without what I believe is a very strong almost urine like smell when you get a fresh batch of non-deodorized Cocoa Butter. I hope this works for you if you give it a try.
LisaLise said…
Thanks for this Jane. The coca butter I buy comes in tubs, so this method would be rather difficult for me to try. Interesting idea though!
Unknown said…
I also buy in tubs, but I get the round discs in them. You could also chip out a block and then put it in a grater to make smaller bundles.

Just a thought. :-)
Unknown said…
Yesss, I need to learn how ti get my perfuming nose on... Its si difficoult to mask some smells!
Unknown said…
Yesss, I need to learn how to get my perfuming nose on... Thanks!
Some smells are so hard to mask/include!
LisaLise said…
Hi Maite - It's easier than you think! Have fun with it!
Olivia said…
Cold pressed unrefined Camelina oil is a stinky one too! Smells of rotting veggies. This is very helpful info, thanks for sharing!
LisaLise said…
Hi Olivia - Thanks for sharing!