Do you use FOs you hate to make others happy?

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makemineirish

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I usually only order fragrances based on my own preferences. That is not to say that I do not choose to gift people scented products based on their own likes, but it is certainly within certain limitations. For instance, I typically dislike florals, musk, patchouli, camphorous scents, and those cloyingly sweet enough to trigger a diabetic coma or induce Beliebers to riot.

My tastes run towards clean, fresh, green, fruity, citrus, marine, amber, herbal, woods and more restrained gourmands. This is not to say that I do not own any of the previously disparaged options, just that most skew far away from the fan favorites (osmanthus rather than rose, etc). I am reluctant to make anything that I do not personally care for as it fails to "spark joy" and feels weirdly fraudulent.

However, I have someone on my Christmas list that really loves the smell of gardenias. My first inclination was to sample gardenia FOs until I found one that I liked...or at least could stand. My concern is that any interpretation that appeals to me would very possibly be lackluster to the person who loves them so. It seems like a getting turkey bacon or soy ice cream. It's not terrible, but is still disappointing by comparison with the real thing.

As it is, I rolled the dice on 4oz of a gardenia blend that had some promising reviews rather than end up with excessive amounts of FOs that are distasteful to me. It is more than likely that I will make an entire B&B assortment to use it. I am not a monster; I will still be thrilled if the BFF's mother loves it. Although, I am not sure that I could bring myself to expend the effort for a group of relative strangers...money or no.

It made me curious. Do the rest of you have a list of fragrances that you yourself abhor, but make for loved ones or customers? Are there best sellers that simply confound you? Do you refuse to employ your creativity in a somewhat joyless endeavor that forces you to escape the wretched smell of your own home?
 

lenarenee

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As a hobbyist I have the luxury of doing what I want. However, I do love pleasing the ones I love and have a fresh made batch of special request salt bars scented with Spiced Amber Ale that are going to be relegated to the garage - even if it is 90 degrees in there.

If he likes them and wants more - I'll do it as long as curing in the garage works! If it doesn't, them I'll teach him how to make his own. No one in the house can stand Spiced Amber Ale!
 

dibbles

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Yes and no. Perfumy florals are hard for me. I can only tolerate musk, rose and amber in very small doses, for example. But those are loved by many I give soap to. So I try to find FOs that don't bother me, or blend something with them. I gravitate to the green, citrus, fruity and wood scents. And I also love a straight, non buttery vanilla, but don't want all my soaps to be brown.

BB Crisp Apple Rose has promise. So far it's more apple than rose, so I'll have to see if there is enough of the rose note there when it's done curing. I just used Mad Oils Elderflower today. It is more along the lines of green - like a linden, and I really like it. It behaved perfectly too. I can't stand MO Spanish Fly, and won't use it again, even if it is requested. I have a couple of ounces left, and I'm giving it to a friend who does MP if she likes it.
 

cmzaha

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One of my best sellers, Plumeria used to give me migraines everytime I soaped it, so I would soap 25 lbs, get a massive migraine, but would be done with it for a few months. Fortunetly I found a much better realistic Plumeria that does not give me headaches. Because I sell I make what my customers like not what I like, but I am fortunate many of my customers like what I like. The earthy musks, patchouli, cedarwoods, etc.
 

dixiedragon

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I'm a hobbyist. I can't really think of an entire broad category I dislike - I am definitely an FO Ho! I really dislike BB's Energy - it's probably in my top 5 of most disliked. I used it to anchor some 5 fold orange EO for a soap for my sister. I probably won't do it again just b/c she wasn't nearly appreciative enough, LOL. She wanted soap that smelled like a fresh-sliced orange. That's the best I can do!
 

Rusti

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I haven't so far, but I'm not selling at the moment either. As a matter of fact I sold a few of the FOs I hated OOB to a melt and pour soaper in our community just to get rid of them because I hated the idea of tossing them.

There aren't too many categories that I broadly dislike as a whole, but I do hate 'food' smells like cookies, butter mints, pumpkin spice stuff and so on. Fruits are OK but nothing that is supposed to contain the scent of butter and/or sugar.
 

makemineirish

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As a hobbyist I have the luxury of doing what I want. However, I do love pleasing the ones I love and have a fresh made batch of special request salt bars scented with Spiced Amber Ale that are going to be relegated to the garage - even if it is 90 degrees in there.

If he likes them and wants more - I'll do it as long as curing in the garage works! If it doesn't, them I'll teach him how to make his own. No one in the house can stand Spiced Amber Ale!
I should have mentioned that I am a hobbyist as well, but hate being so repetitious as almost every post starts with, "I do not sell, but...":rolleyes:

I'm a pleaser by nature and willing to do more than is reasonable for strangers, much less those I actually care for. (Last week entailed an errand to a mental hospital to acquire keys, a police escort into an apartment inhabited by strangers, and a feline (previously feral / likely unvaccinated) house guest for a week...all because someone who was admitted had my phone number in their contact list due to my volunteer work.)
 

makemineirish

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I probably won't do it again just b/c she wasn't nearly appreciative enough, LOL. She wanted soap that smelled like a fresh-sliced orange. That's the best I can do!
That is my fear.

I am absolutely willing to make gardenia products for my BFF's mother. However, we all know how disparate scents can be between suppliers and I am not sure that I have EVER made a one-note product. I may have BOUGHT a one-note FO, but with the intention to incorporate it into a blend.

I did not really want to order options of a scent that I am likely to dislike any interpretation of. While I certainly have FOs that I do not care for, every single one was bought with the effervescent hope that they would live up to the expectations that I had.

It appears that the FO I bought is more akin to Hawaiian gardenias than the native version. :confused: I am not familiar with Hawaiian gardenias, but assume that if someone is making a distinction, they smell markedly different. Darnit! I am now vacillating on ordering another option to hedge my bet.

The life and times of a fragrance oil ho/ Down the rabbit hole I go...
 

makemineirish

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There aren't too many categories that I broadly dislike as a whole, but I do hate 'food' smells like cookies, butter mints, pumpkin spice stuff and so on. Fruits are OK but nothing that is supposed to contain the scent of butter and/or sugar.
I usually view "things I dislike" as a challenge. An initial antipathy for kale when the whole world is telling me it is vital to my health will engender experiments to find an acceptable delivery system. Before you know it, I have decided that Lacinato/Dinosaur is the best option and have figured out that I can devour it:
- chopped, roasted, and tossed into my rice
- sauteed with olive oil, garlic, salt, and Marsala or broth
- roasted into crispy kale chips
- finely shredded and tossed in Caesar dressing (which conveniently kills two birds with one stone as I wrestled with how to consume RAW garlic:sick:)

With FO's, I can certainly appreciate a soft musk or incorporate patchouli into an interesting blend, or find a few florals that appeal to me. While I do not like my soap, lotions, or even candles to smell of chocolate or confections...a good OMH is still a favorite. However, the person that loves patchouli will probably turn their nose up at my light hand. The woman that appreciates rose, gardenia, or jasmine is likely to be unsatisfied with a honeysuckle and chamomile "floral".

It is not that I hate the entire category, but assume that my tastes run counter to those of its fans. I'm not opposed to challenging myself to find a rose that intrigues me. If I sold, this would probably be my solution to appease the masses. "I have a floral. Its brightened by lemon and blended with champagne...but there is definitely rose in there!" After all, part of the allure of creating a handmade product is fulfilling your own artistic concept.
 

Viore

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For the life of me I will never understand why people like the smell of lavender. But a lot of people do, so I always have a few bars of it. Now why don't more people like the smell of Dragon's Blood...... :think:
 

DeeAnna

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My impression is that most non-soapers are much less particular about a scent than most soapers. Most of the people who enjoyed my soap do focus on scent, but they mostly want an appealing, distinct fragrance. They're really not expecting a perfect match for Y cologne or Z flower.

So I wouldn't overthink this, to be honest. If it's not ~your~ personal passion to find the "best" gardenia fragrance, then it may be perfectly fine to find a decent gardenia FO that works well in soap and use it for BFF's mom. Unless she is a connoisseur who knows at 20 paces whether she's smelling Hawaiian or mainland gardenias, she will probably be very pleased with a scent that's reasonably gardenia like.
 

green soap

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Not anymore since i closed my business! I stopped all FOs altogether, and now only use EOs, since it is what I LIKE. I do have a lot of different EO blends, so I hope that my gift recipients like at least one of them. If they don't, well....there is always unscented (which I also make on a regular basis).

For someone really special, like my spouse, I will make pine tar soap. I strongly dislike the smell too, but it is somehow in a different category. If his skin is acting up and he asks me for it I can't say no.

One of the beautiful outcomes of going back to making soap just for us, is this selfish soaping I do now. Enjoying every minute of it too!
 

makemineirish

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For the life of me I will never understand why people like the smell of lavender. :think:
I fully agree. The standard 40/42 lavender falls under the heading of camphorous or medicinal to me which even sounds unappealing. I can handle French or floral iterations, but it is still not my preference...just less unappealing than other options (like voting:mrgreen:). Even nicer interpretations tend to be reminiscent of cleaning products given that it is such a popular choice.

My only explanation is biological wiring and emotional conditioning. With biological wiring (scientifically inaccurate, I know), I think of that conversation in the Matrix where Mouse ponders,
Tank: Here you go, buddy; "Breakfast of Champions."
Mouse: If you close your eyes, it almost feels like you're eating runny eggs.
Apoc: Yeah, or a bowl of snot.
Mouse: Do you know what it really reminds me of? Tasty Wheat. Did you ever eat Tasty Wheat?
Switch: No, but technically, neither did you.
Mouse: That's exactly my point. Exactly. Because you have to wonder: how do the machines know what Tasty Wheat tasted like? Maybe they got it wrong. Maybe what I think Tasty Wheat tasted like actually tasted like oatmeal, or tuna fish. That makes you wonder about a lot of things. You take chicken, for example: maybe they couldn't figure out what to make chicken taste like, which is why chicken tastes like everything.
Apoc: Shut up, Mouse.
I assume that one of the reasons is that other people simply smell things differently than I do. Maybe I would like their version:)

Like everybody, I am aware of the emotional component of scent recognition. Maybe I would feel differently about the aroma of lavender if it was a scent associated with hugging my grandmother. My best correlation is horse droppings. I grew up with horses and have only positive associations with a barn. Nevertheless, I have no desire to combine the scent of manure, sweat, leather and hay into a signature scent. (It is the only fragrance where an "animalistic" note might actually make sense to me.) But I can certainly acknowledge that that particular aroma has a certain nostalgia for me that it might not hold for other people. It is even conceivable that I MIGHT enjoy a candle that recreated the experience in my workroom...but I would still use a much heavier hand with the hay and leather notes. I like a CLEAN barn:)

Wheels are turning....I might need to make that candle after all.
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makemineirish

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My impression is that most non-soapers are much less particular about a scent than most soapers. Most of the people who enjoyed my soap do focus on scent, but they mostly want an appealing, distinct fragrance. They're really not expecting a perfect match for Y cologne or Z flower.

So I wouldn't overthink this, to be honest. If it's not ~your~ personal passion to find the "best" gardenia fragrance, then it may be perfectly fine to find a decent gardenia FO that works well in soap and use it for BFF's mom. Unless she is a connoisseur who knows at 20 paces whether she's smelling Hawaiian or mainland gardenias, she will probably be very pleased with a scent that's reasonably gardenia like.
I concede your point and am likely to use the FO that I already ordered with this hope. It is not even here yet as I squeezed it in on a small order to take advantage of a free shipping promotion. However, I hate to expend effort on something that fails to exceed expectations. Furthermore, the BFF and her family members are somewhat sensory freaks. They should all be working for a winery or fragrance house.

The BFF cannot even be in the room if Italian sausage is being cooked or consumed because she finds the smell of anise so off-putting. Her mother has grown gardenias her entire life and is intimately acquainted with their scent. This is not to say that she will dislike the FO that I bought, but she will almost certainly notice the disparity. For this reason, I won't include gardenia in the name (I'm definitely a "renamer').

They make me appreciate the SO's ambivalence about most things. While I am often aggravated with his universal and monosyllabic "fine" response, it can be oddly pleasant at times. Heck, he might be perfectly content using the gardenia soap if it doesn't work out for its intended recipient:mrgreen:
 

Koric

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For the life of me I will never understand why people like the smell of lavender. But a lot of people do, so I always have a few bars of it. Now why don't more people like the smell of Dragon's Blood...... :think:
I thought I was the only one who thought this. DW loves the smell, but it just smells like chemicals to me. I found it funny how much of a difference thing smelled to us. Now I try to find a happy middle of road.
 

dixiedragon

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Generally, I don't want to use foodie scents on myself - I don't want to smell like chocolate cake, or bathe with chocolate cake. But I don't inherently DISLIKE them. I enjoy making them and smelling them.
 

JuneP

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Yes I do, with one exception. Nag Champa! And that's only because my hubby can't stand it at all and refuses to make anything with it. :think:
My late husband loved Nag Champa and so do i. In fact, he told me I never had to use another other scent as far as he was concerned. My daughter and other family members love it as well. In fact, I should be making more soon!
 
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