Developing an idea for a new perfume...
and how I'm going to sell it

I've mentioned the Etsy store I've been setting up as a research project. Regardless of what you may think of Etsy, for me it has providing some inspiration and giving me new energy. We can all get in a rut at times and, by forcing yourself to interact with a platform entirely new to you (to me, in this case!), fresh insights and ideas get pounded into your head and, if you stick with the program, you find old skills refreshed and new skills acquired.

Marketing online can seem overwhelming, even if you've had marketing experience, but Etsy guides you – and requires you! – to provide the minimal essential information needed for your goods to be purchased; so that a sale can be made from your store. Beyond the minimum requirements, Etsy prompts you to add additional content and links to your store to make it search friendly for both Etsy and Google. Merchandising tips help you make your store attractive to visitors.

The inspiration and energy I mentioned above came as I began to develop my Etsy store. I was reminded that I should be taking those same promotional and merchandising steps on my own website and through my social media. I felt like I was being mentored by Etsy because, when you're a small – or very small – business, you find yourself pulled in multiple directions and too often you're pulled away from the most important tasks by small tasks that, aside from making your feel you've "done something," don't do much for your sales or profit.

While I'm not eager to get back into the business of shipping merchandise – daily trips to the post office with tubs of orders – doing the setup work on Etsy energized me. All of what can be found on my Etsy store can be found elsewhere. The books are available at both Amazon and My fragrances are all available at But it struck me that my Etsy handle, "Unnatural Aromas" – a name I came up with on the spur of the moment, wasn't synchronized with the site. This prompted me to take two steps. (Are you following this?) First, I added a big "Unnatural Aromas" headline to the PGLightyears site. Then – very important – I registered "" as a domain name so it would be available to me should I want to set up an independent site to mirror what I'm doing on Etsy.

But there was another important inspiration – two meanings of "unnatural aromas." The first is a bit of a slam at those who insist that their fragrances be "natural." Before the advent of synthetics, the range of materials available to the perfumer was limited. You would find yourself creating the same, or nearly the same, scent over and over again because the number of available naturals was small, and now many of the most historically important naturals have been banned due to ethical or health considerations. Meanwhile I plunge ahead with the "unnatural."

My inspiration from the name "unnatural aromas" may be even more to the point. A handful of my fragrances are... a bit "oddball." My fragrances for men don't follow the unwritten rules for how a man's fragrance should smell. My women's fragrances definitely do not follow the rules for "ladies" perfume. Many of my male, female, and unisex fragrances are quite... "unnatural."

So now, thanks to my fussing around with Etsy, I'm working on gathering up the more "unnatural" of my fragrances and promoting them as a collection. Currently that collection has three fragrances with unquestioned credentials (Blackberry, Xotic, and Mimosa) but I'm already planning a new fragrance to become part of this club.

You might ask why I continue to develop new fragrances rather than just hammer away at those that are already finished and bottled. The answer is, I love to explore, to find new fragrance ideas, and to develop new smells that, while they might be "unnatural," are nuggets of beauty for those who can set their prejudices aside and embrace that which is different.

Making Perfume By The Quart
Making Perfume By The Quart: A do-it-yourself project book

Many who love perfume dream of having their own -- but it can seem too complicated, too "from another world." Making Perfume By The Quart brings it down to earth for you in ten remarkably easy to understand chapters of instructions that guide you through the complete production process, from concept to finished perfume. But you make just one quart.

Creating Your Own Perfume With A 1700 Percent Markup! (3rd edition)

Perfume is famous for the markup it can achieve, even for a middle market fragrance. While "everybody knows" that perfume costs next to nothing to make (not completely true) the making of it is often considered an esoteric secret. "Creating Your Own Perfume With A 1700 Percent Markup!" details how a 3-person company with no experience created their own fragrance in response to a marketing opportunity that was too good to pass up. The book explains exactly what was done to create a fragrance for that opportunity but it is far more than a history of the author's project. "Creating Your Own Perfume With A 1700 Percent Markup!" lays out every step in the process of creating your own perfume, either as a do-it-yourself project – and without the benefit of automated equipment some compromises and workarounds are required – or full bore professional production under your supervision. Either way you will be producing a quality fragrance at a remarkably low cost. Do you have a marketing opportunity that would be wildly profitable if only you could obtain your fragrance at a ridiculously low cost? "Creating Your Own Perfume With A 1700 Percent Markup!" is the guide you need to do it.

Naming Your Perfume And Protecting Your Name

A really great name, a special name that is just right for a particular perfume or perfume marketer (or entrepreneur with money to invest!) can be worth a ton of money. But few individuals with great ideas ever manage to cash in on those brilliant ideas. Instead they wait while others "discover" their idea, acquire legal rights to it and make all the money while they are left out in the cold without a penny having been earned for what was once THEIR idea.

If you are struggling to name your perfume and are looking for a name that will have real value, "Naming Your Perfume And Protecting Your Name" will help you weed out low value names and point you to names that have better marketing value plus the potential to become valuable assets in themselves.

If you have a great name you want to protect but no fragrance, "Naming Your Perfume And Protecting Your Name" will guide you through the simple steps you must take to acquire a legal right to that name before someone else grabs it! Best of all, "Naming Your Perfume And Protecting Your Name" shows you how to gain strong legal protection for your name without a lawyer and without spending more than pocket change.

Never had an idea for a product name? Never thought much about perfume? "Naming Your Perfume And Protecting Your Name" may stimulate your interest in a whole new game that, when played well, can make you lots of money without your having to leave the comfort of your home office.

How To Launch Your Own Perfume Company: A Simple Business Plan

You can build a perfume business of your own using this business plan as a guide. By following its detailed strategy you learn to identify motivated groups of potential perfume buyers. Members of these groups are near the tipping point of desire for a new perfume. You don't know these people and they don't know you but you know a marketer they trust, one who does not currently sell perfume and might never think of selling perfume were it not for your approach. Here is where you step in with a professional plan, promotion, and perfume to take advantage of this ripe opportunity for mutual profit. Before your first promotion has peaked, you will already be developing a relationship with your next marketing partner. Following this plan, you will gain more and more profit with each new marketing partnership.

Creating your own perfume from dropper bottles: Methods, mechanics, and mathematics

Now when you make your own perfume you can make it fully "commercial" meaning you will be creating a product ready for regular, continuous sales to friends, relatives, and the public! If the fragrance you've made has already won praise, why not share it with others? Some might pay you for it and want it for their web stores or retail boutiques! Creating your own perfume from dropper bottles: Methods, mechanics, and mathematics guides you through steps that can turn your hobby project into a perfume business. Discover how close you are now and how little more you must do to take what you made with essential oils and dropper bottles into a business of your own! For an introduction to this book, watch this video.

How To Create A More Valuable Name For Your Perfume

When you name a perfume you create a valuable asset – the name itself. To sell your perfume you want the most effective name possible. But a good name can have value beyond the edge it gives your sales. In naming your fragrance you are creating a trademark and a trademark can have value independent of the product. The value of that trademark can vary. Much depends on how well, in naming your perfume, you follow the trademark "rules." How To Create A More Valuable Name For Your Perfume first helps you develop a name that will be effective in selling your perfume. It then prods you to make use of certain techniques that can turn a good name into a great trademark, strong and valuable. If you have questions about how to protect a name, How To Create A More Valuable Name For Your Perfume will answer many such as:

  • Can you protect your name yourself or do you need a lawyer?
  • Can you register a trademark without a lawyer?
  • What does it cost to register a trademark?
  • How do I enforce the rights I have established?

How To Create A More Valuable Name For Your Perfume covers both state, federal, and international protection.

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Photo of Phil Goutell
Philip Goutell's Signature

Philip Goutell
Lightyears, Inc.