My favorite all-natural perfume maestro, Mandy Aftel, has an entire chapter of her book Essence and Alchemy (Gibbs Smith, 2001) devoted to “Perfume and the Boudoir.” I love this book. It details the natural history of perfume and scent, and also offers some truly sensuous and lovely perfume formulas that you can make at home.
She says that in memory, erotic scent, which is founded on the specificity of the beloved’s body, at last assumes a life independent of the body. As Casanova observes in his Memoirs, “There is something in the air of the bedroom of the woman one loves, something so intimate, so balsamic, such voluptuous emanations, that if a lover had to choose between Heaven and this place of delight, his hesitation would not last for a moment.”
The book has two formulas for aphrodisiac perfumes, the one below is based on essences that conjure up an edible aroma.
15 ml perfume alcohol or jojoba
15 drops black tea
10 drops vanilla
8 drops cognac
12 drops rose absolute
2 drops champa
2 drops ginger
8 drops blood orange
3 drops pink grapefruit
Mix together ingredients in a glass jar, and store in a cool dark place. Rub perfume wherever you like. Remember the words of Coco Chanel when asked where to apply perfume, “Wherever one wants to be kissed!”