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À quoi sert l'alcool dans l'eau de parfum ?

What Is the Purpose of Alcohol in Perfume?

What are perfumes made of? Eau de parfum is a blend of aromatic notes and alcohol. In fact, its composition can contain up to 80% alcohol. While this may worry some people, the use of alcohol in eau de parfum is perfectly safe. Focus on the use of alcohol in perfume.

What Is Eau de Parfum?

What are perfumes made of? Eau de parfum is a fragrance obtained from a mixture of aromatic notes diluted in alcohol. The best alcohol for perfume making is ethyl alcohol at 70 or 90°, which may or may not be denatured. Denatured alcohol is a preparation rendered unfit for consumption by the addition of other substances, which tends to alter its taste and smell. Undenatured alcohol, on the other hand, contains olfactory notes that may be of interest in the design of eau de parfum. In addition, some natural perfumes contain alcohol derived from the fermentation of sugars present in certain fruits and vegetables, such as beet.

In addition to alcohol, eau de parfum contains between 8% and 20% fragrance ingredients. These may be essential oils, plant absolutes or chemically synthesized fragrances. The composition of an eau de parfum includes 3 aromatic notes (olfactory pyramid):

● The top note, the first to be smelled, with a light, volatile scent. It's typically fruity, like citrus fruits.

● The heart note, which characterizes the eau de parfum and lingers on the skin. It can be floral, fruity, or spicy.

● The base note, generally a “heavier” scent such as woody notes, which ensures an eau de parfum's staying power. 

The Different Roles of Alcohol in an Eau de Parfum.

While aromatic ingredients lend fragrance and character to an eau de parfum, the best alcohol for perfume making is also an indispensable component. In fact, the use of alcohol serves different purposes:

● Alcohol is the carrier of an eau de parfum, knowing that all the ingredients will be diluted in it. The presence of alcohol therefore enables aromatic notes to be blended, without altering their scent. It even contributes to fragrance development. Acting as a solvent, it also ensures non-irritating eau de parfum. As a reminder, essential oils are substances concentrated in active ingredients that can attack the skin.

● Alcohol in perfume is used to provide a sensation of freshness when it is is sprayed. As it is volatile, it evaporates on contact with the skin, leaving only the various aromatic notes. The latter will bind to the skin to maintain the fragrance throughout the day.

● Alcohol acts as a preservative for eau de parfum. By preserving the aromatic notes of an eau de parfum, it enables it to be used for several months, or even years, after opening. However, prolonged opening of an eau de parfum bottle evaporates the alcohol. All that remains is a concentrated substance, which may smell different from the original perfume. To preserve eau de parfum, we recommend closing the bottle and storing it away from light and humidity. These factors can cause oxidation of eau de parfum.

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