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Custom Fragrance Lines: A Comprehensive Guide to Custom Perfume and Cologne

Mar 4, 2023

Do you love trying new perfume or cologne? Have you ever tested a fragrance and felt you could make it better if only you knew how and where to start?

If so, you’ve come to the right place!

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Nowadays, more than ever, people like you are building their custom cologne and custom perfume lines to sell to their fellow scent lovers.

At Dynamic Blending, we’ve fallen in love with the new and original fragrances inspired by our customers who are just breaking into the cologne and perfume world.

Because we want more people to experience the joy and satisfaction of making their own perfumes and colognes (admittedly so we can smell them, too!), we decided to compile a comprehensive guide to starting your custom fragrance lines.

This complete guide will help jumpstart the process for those interested in creating their custom fragrance lines and uncover the secret behind fragrance manufacturing processes today.

Before We Begin, What’s The Big Secret?

Suppose you’re wondering what the hidden ‘truth’ behind manufacturing your custom fragrance line is. In that case, we’ll tell you right up front: it is so much easier than it used to be!

Thanks to turnkey manufacturing companies and their modern manufacturing practices, building your own fragrance isn’t solely reserved for big retail companies like it used to be. Instead, contract manufacturing companies are turning their eyes to the future.

With low MOQs (minimum order quantity for all you newbies out there), custom formulation labs, and brand development teams, turnkey manufacturers are tailoring their services to assist small business owners and people who are just starting a new product line for their respective industries.

Let us show you how easy it is to start your custom fragrance lines with our comprehensive fragrance guide.

How to Start Your Custom Fragrance Lines:A Comprehensive Guide

Step 1: Find a Turnkey Contract Manufacturer

Some might say this is putting the cart before the horse. If the old-school manufacturers were the only options around, making it difficult for individuals to create their perfume or cologne line, we would’ve undoubtedly agreed with you. 

But today, the contract manufacturing industry is about more than having the faculties to produce a material product. Instead, the best turnkey manufacturers also offer custom formulation services, brand development, and private label services.

Because of this, they are fantastic resources for people who need a starting point for their fragrance line. Every department involved can help you develop a strong plan of attack for taking your fragrance from concept to market. Their experts range from beauty lab scientists to seasoned marketing and brand specialists who can help develop a product line that reflects a brand that is uniquely you.

We recommend you call a contract manufacturer specializing in cosmetics and fragrances. A consultation with them will help you visualize the potential of your custom fragrance while also providing a rough estimate of the upstart costs.

From this consultation, the outline you build with them will dictate the remainder of the process for starting your custom fragrance line.

(The digital landscape is changing how we market fragrances. Check out Unhinged’s blog post on Promoting Custom Perfume in a Digital Marketplace!)

Step Two – Develop Your Scent

Now that some experienced professionals have helped you create a framework for your fragrance line, it’s time to develop your scent. While you may have something in mind, it is much more complex than you think!

First, you’ll decide what kind of fragrance you want to create.

Do you want to make perfume, cologne, diffuser oil, Reed diffuser, or something else? Each has different methods for production and various packaging options. You’ll also decide what scent you want. Do you like floral fragrances or something more woodsy?

The Specifics of Scent


Getting into the underlying characteristics, you’ll need to choose the main note, or notes, for your fragrance. The main note is the smell that will be most prominent in your perfume. For example, the main note is flowery if you make a floral perfume. 

Once you’ve chosen the main note, you’ll need to select the middle notes. Middle notes are smells that support the main note and round out the fragrance. They usually appear after the top note has dissipated somewhat. The last set of notes is the base note. 

These are smells that will ground your fragrance and give it staying power. They usually only appear once the top and middle notes have entirely dissipated. 

For example: if you make a floral perfume with a jasmine main note and a rose middle note, you might choose a musk base note.

(Want to be an expert perfumer or scent creator but need more time to go to an actual classroom? Be part of a virtual perfumery classroom and learn to create your custom perfume or cologne online!)

Time to Formulate!


Once you have chosen the notes for your fragrance, it’s time to start playing around with different combinations until you find something you love!

This step is where your beauty lab scientists will come in handy! They’ll be able to help you with the science of fragrance development and offer suggestions for scent combinations that will work well together.

(Ever wonder how weird you can get with custom colognes and perfumes? Check out our blog post on the 5 Unusual Fragrances You’ve Never Heard Of!)

Step Three – Build Your Brand Identity

The third step in starting your fragrance line is to build your brand identity. This brand development includes everything from choosing a name for your company to designing a logo. You’ll also want to decide what packaging you want for your product.

Your turnkey manufacturer will help guide you through most of these decisions. They should have designers on staff who can help with things like logo design and packaging. However, it is ultimately up to you to decide your company’s identity.

(Remember, a logo is not a brand! Your company should fully embody what it means to wear your custom fragrance! Check out the Unhinged blog post for more info!)

Some things you’ll want to consider when building your brand identity:

– What is the overall look and feel of your brand?

– What colors do you want to use?

– What is the story behind your fragrance?

– Do you want your branding to be more modern or traditional?

– What kind of feeling do you want people to have when they wear your perfume or cologne?

Step Four – Create a Marketing Plan and Execute!

The fourth and final step for your custom fragrance line is to create a marketing plan.


Some things you’ll want to consider when creating your marketing plan:

– How are you going to sell your product? (online, in stores, through sales reps, etc.)

– What types of marketing materials do you need? (website, business cards, product photos, etc.)

– What is your budget for marketing?

– How are you going to get the word out about your product? (social media, advertising, PR, etc.)

Once you have a plan, it’s time to start executing! This final step is where working with a turnkey manufacturer who also offers marketing services can be extremely helpful. They will be able to help you with everything from designing and launching your website to creating social media content and running ad campaigns.

(Marketing plans and Brand development strategies are similar yet different. Check out the Unhinged blog post on Brand Development Strategy to learn more!)

We hope you found this blog post helpful! If you’re ready to start your custom fragrance, contact us. We would love to help turn your dream into a reality!

What do you think?

No one knows beauty trends like Dynamic Blending. We bring Skin Care Creators, vendors, and designers together to innovate with simplicity and delight, and we’d love for you to join the community. Help make your mark on the beauty industry of 2022 and beyond;
Jake Tripp

Jake Tripp

Jake Tripp is a Content Strategist for Unhinged Creative Agency

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