Monday, 22 October 2012

Being Legal

That on the right is a one litre bottle of Lady Rose Lion (Monkey Unicorn) made by me a couple of weeks ago. It needs to hang around in that form for another month before it'll smell just right. The materials will macerate, mix together and combine to make a smooth lovely scent.

I know this because I've done it before.

Lady Rose Lion (Monkey Unicorn) is made with lovely things like rose absolute, jasmine absolute, honey absolute, patchouli, oakmoss and ladbanum. It also has a sparkle of gamma undecalactone, a peachy material that doesn't exist in nature, and Iso E Super, another synthetic that's woody, musky and subtle.

Without the two synthetics it wouldn't be as lovely as it is. It would be a bit heavy and dull, hard to wear. It would also be outrageously expensive.

But today's post is not about the synthetics, because it's the natural materials which are causingme the grief. I could make a whole perfume with just the Iso E Super and sell it perfectly legally. (Someone did, and hyped the hell out of it.)

No, it's the rose, jasmine and oakmoss that are causing me grief, and causing the same amount to every perfumer in the EU who loves using natural materials. They are restricted, just in case they give someone a rash. It's true, they might. But I can wear oakmoss at 20% concentration my skin and I'm fine. That's 50 times the EU legal limit.

Every wondered why you can no longer buy something at perfume strength, but you can get Eau de Toilette. Ever wondered why a lovely scent from the 90s disappeared entirely in the 00s? That's the new EU regulations. And they're going to be even tougher from 2013. It's partly safety, but it's partly the perfume people not wanting to tell you what they put in their scents.

Anyway, I've found some great techies who make software linked to the databases I need to produce my materials safety data sheets. The software will tell me if I've got too much of a material in my formula, so I can readjust it to make it legal. It costs several arms and legs, but if I want to sell through shops, I need to have my certificates. (A bit like people who make great biscuits then get an order from Waitrose, you're suddenly up a league and enveloped in legislation.)

So not long now, and I'll be in that nice shop who've been chasing me since April to get five of my scents. I'll keep you posted.      

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