How Much Fragrance Oil For Soap Making

  • By: Carl
  • Time to read: 6 min.

The amount of fragrance oil that you are adding to your soap recipe plays a crucial role in making the finished soap retain its scent.

Use 0.8 ounces of fragrance oil per pound of soap if you desire a strong scent. This is roughly 2 teaspoons of fragrance oil for each pound of soap base. Make adjustments to the amount of fragrance oil according to the strength of the scent you are using as well as your personal preferences.

Make sure to go only for soap-safe fragrance oils. This number will vary depending on the oil you are choosing. For example, Cherry Almond scent is quite a strong choice, so you need to use a maximum of 0.2 ounces per pound of soap base.

soap making

Soap Fragrance Oil Load

Calculating A Percentage

The percentage recommendations are based on safety guidelines provided by the International Fragrance Association and Research Institute for Fragrance Materials. What percentage of fragrance oil should be used in soap?

Use around 5%-6% of fragrance oil in soap if the oil comes with a high IFRA safety rate. Every scent has a maximum usage rate that makes it safe for soaps. Make sure you always go for a fragrance marked with a safety rate below 5% to avoid any skin problems and a messy soap bar later.

Whatever percentage you choose to use, the best thing is to test the scent in a small amount of soap before heading for a large chunk.

Fragrance Oil By The Ounce Of Soap

If you are working in smaller quantities of soap base, you will have to work on a different system for measuring the fragrance oils. This can be adjusted by using a dropper to add the fragrance oil. How much fragrance oil to add per ounce of soap?

Add approximately 10 drops of fragrance oil per ounce of soap base at the most. Do not add more than this, however, you can start at this number and work your way down to whatever amount fits your preferences. Any more than this and you may exceed the suggested fragrance oil load percentage.

It is important to remember that as long as you stay under the maximum allowed amount per regulation. Everything else comes down to the preference of you and your customers.

Fragrance Oil In Hot Process Soap

When it comes to hot processes for soap making you have the traditional hot process and you have melt and pour soap making. Each one of these can have its own percentages and measurements. How much fragrance do you put in hot process soap?

For hot process soap, add approximately 15-20 grams of fragrance oil per kilogram of soap base, or .5 oz to .70 oz per 2lbs of soap base. Do not add the fragrance oil while the soap base is too hot or the fragrance will begin to evaporate and the soap will lose its scent.

When making melt and pour soaps you have a little bit different measurements. You cannot use quite as much fragrance oil in melt and pour soaps. How much fragrance oil for melt and pour soap base?

For melt and pour soap, add approximately 10 grams of fragrance oil per kilogram of soap base. You can add around .5 oz of fragrance oil per pound when preparing melt and pour soaps. However, do not exceed this amount. The exact amount may vary with the specific scent that you select.

Fragrance oil will vaporize in large amounts if you add them while the soap base is too hot. i.e. 200 degrees F and higher. So, it’s crucial to allow the soap to cool if you want the fragrance not to fade.

Usually, fragrances are likely to last longer for hot process soaps as they are added into the mix after saponification has taken place.

The chemical reaction that occurs between the oils and the lye can bring out a slight difference in the fragrance you use.

Fragrance Oil In Cold Process Soap

Make sure to check the specified usage rate of the fragrance oil while making cold process soap and stick to the same. Usage rates are provided to ensure a safe product as overusing scenting ingredients may affect the behavior of the fragrance. How much fragrance oil do you put in cold process soap?

For cold process soap, it’s recommended to go for 30 grams of fragrance oil per kilogram or 1 oz per 2 pounds of soap base in your recipe. If you want to achieve a strong scent, make sure not to add more than 0.8 ounces of fragrance oil for every pound of cold process soap.

Finally, make sure to prepare a test batch as it will help you find out if the fragrance separates the soap or makes it seize. Testing a single-pound batch is always better than having a large improperly made batch.

Fragrance Oil Troubleshooting

Diluting Fragrance Oil

Make sure to check the oil’s IFRA certificate for each fragrance you are using to find out if you need to dilute the oil before adding it to any soap base. Do you have to dilute fragrance oil for soap making?

Fragrance oils need to be diluted in a solvent first before using them for soap making. The reason behind the same is that some fragrance oils can cause seize due to certain elements present in them. Floral fragrance oils lilac or lily or gardenia are some of the common oils that cause seize.

To get that done, take some warmed oil that’s about four times the amount of the fragrance oil out of your soap pot before putting the lye in.

Mix the warmed oils with the fragrance oil, further adding the oil-fragrance solution to the base when it’s time to throw in the scent at light trace.

The warming of the oil and a proper dilution eliminates the shock factor when you add a fragrance to the pot.

Using Too Much Fragrance Oil

If you end up adding too much fragrance oil to your soap recipe, the smell can get quite overpowering and may even lead to skin irritation.

The soap may seem sticky and the excess oil can mess up with its texture. There’s also a risk of the fragrance oil leaking out of the soap, which can be a total waste of all time and effort. How to fix soap with too much fragrance oil?

Fix soap with too much fragrance oil by chopping it up after it cures and add it to unscented soap. For example, if you think the fragrance is twice as strong as required, mix it in a ratio of 1:1 with unscented soap. This can help salvage a batch of soap that may be otherwise unusable.

If you add too much of it to hot-pressed soap, a lot of fragrance can instantly vaporize and fill the entire space with the scent, which may be a little problematic and calls for opening the windows to allow for a smooth air passage.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much oil do I need for 1kg of soap?

Use approximately 15g to 20g of fragrance oil for 1kg of hot process soap base. For melt and pour soaps use 10g of fragrance oil per 1kg of soap base.

How much essential oil do I add to 100g of soap?

You want to add no more than 3% essential oil to your soap mixture. This means for a 100g soap base do not exceed 3g of essential oils.

How much fragrance oil do I add to melt and pour soap?

Add approximately 3% fragrance oil to melt and pour soap base. If you are making 2lbs of melt and pour soap base then you should add no more than .8 oz of fragrance oil.


In conclusion, with a variety of ways to make soap you have a variety of methods to measure out the fragrance and essential oils to make the soap.

The most important thing to remember when measuring oils to make soap is that you follow the manufacturer suggested amounts. This will help you create high-quality soap that can be a viable product to sell or use.

In addition, following manufacturer-suggested measurements will help make sure everyone is safe and no one gets any unwanted skin irritation.


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