“The use of pure perfume creates a renewal like bathing does.  It is transporting, refreshing, and uplifts the human heart.


How CAN I evaluate your perfume prior to purchasing a bottle?


Scent Dots let you experience the fragrance itself

They give you a good idea how the fragrance will perform if you wear it on your HAIR, on ANIMAL-FIBER CLOTHING, or in SCENT JEWELRY

The Scent Dot will be retain the fragrance for at least 6 weeks, giving you plenty of time to intimately know the perfume.   The longevity is terrific, often exceeding 3 months.



Open the packet and and let it breathe (keeping the packet open to air) for about 15 seconds to allow the alcohol to evaporate.  This gives you an accurate first impression.

Smell the it every 1-2 hours for the first day.  For the next several days smell it a few times per day.  Thereafter, smell the scent every day.  The scent will unfold, transform, and eventually fade, but v-e-r-y slowly.


If you wear perfume on your SKIN, by all means purchase a Flight before purchasing a bottle to know how it interacts with your chemistry.  

Every perfume interacts differently with each person’s individual body chemistry, the condition of the skin, ambient conditions, and activity. 



Apply the perfume to a moister area of skin such as where the inner forearm meets the top of the forearm (on the thumb-side of your arm).  This helps the fragrance to not be mechanically rubbed off in activity, as would be the case on the inner arm or wrist. 

Wait for the alcohol to evaporate — until the area feels and looks dry. 

Smell every 5 minutes for 15 minutes — every 15 min for the following hour — every 30 minutes for another hour.  Finally, smell the fragrance at least once per hour for as long as you can smell the perfume.  You don’t have to be exact.  You get the idea.


The color or pigments of natural perfumes come from the plants themselves.  We recommend that you apply the perfume and let it dry before dressing.


Your first fragrance perception will be the “top notes” or “head notes”.  They dissipate the quickest, soon revealing the “middle notes” or “heart notes”, which last a moderate amount of time.  Finally, the “base notes” or “tail notes” will fully break through, and will last the longest amount of time.  The total time that this process takes and the stages it goes through can vary from perfume to perfume.   This is a generality because some perfumes smell mostly the same from beginning to end.

Try out your fragrance on at least two different days.  Environmental and personal conditions change daily.  It will create little differences.  


Notice the pleasant sensations in your body and nervous system.  Notice how the perfume changes the way you feel — the before and after.  The changes are palpable, ranging from subtle to distinct.  Be aware because it’s easy to be tricked!  The shift is very smooth!  Think of it as being in a plane running down the runway on take-off.  But you never feel the liftoff!  At a point, you just realize you’re airborne!

Notice what it does for you!   Stay observant and watch yourself and others around you.  You may be surprised at the interesting and meaningful things that happen in the days and weeks ahead as you wear the perfume.  You may end up circling back to reread the details about your perfume!

How do i wear natural perfume?

There is a famous quote attributed to Coco Chanel.  When asked where one should wear perfume, her reply was, “Wherever you want to be kissed!”.  A fabulous thought, right?  This was a racy remark for her day, not to mention excellent marketing, which Chanel was known for!

Of course, if you’ve ever tasted perfume, you have already realized that you want to do the opposite of what she advised.

Then there’s the ubiquitous advice, “Wear it on your wrist-pulse-points”.  That is okay for synthetics but naturals have their own best practices:



Natural animal fibers such as wool, alpaca, and cashmere hold scent especially well.  

1-2 sprays will be plenty and will last a very long time, often months.  Spray only your darker colored clothes that won’t be negatively affected by the pigments in natural perfume.  When in doubt, spray a part of the inner garment first.

An animal fiber sweater, scarf, coat, hat, or blazer are all perfect candidates.


Spray your perfume on a small bit of natural animal fiber and tuck it into the jewelry housing.  

If you are a person who talks with your hands, imagine a scent ring.  Move a lot?  Scent earrings are amazing.  A scent necklace, laying on your skin, will capitalize on both heat and air movement to disperse the perfume. 


Place your perfume anywhere on the body that is exposed to air and where the skin is naturally moist.

Wear it on low-contact areas.  For example, the thumb-side of your wrist as opposes to the inner wrist.

Avoid getting perfume on mucous membrane areas such as your eyes.

To increase longevity, prime your skin by using lotion, balm, cream, or body oil prior to spraying on perfume.  However, the perfume will wear  closer to your skin as a result.

We find that taking a moment to reapply your perfume later in your day is useful and enjoyable.  Our travel size roll-on perfumes easily tuck into a purse, desk, or pocket for a refreshing, enjoyable, and discreet “reset”.


Natural perfume on average does not have extreme longevity.  Wearing it on hair and animal fiber clothing greatly extends the life of the fragrance — and has its own nice feel.   Those with fragile hair, experiment first as it may be a a bit drying.

Spray about 10-12 inches away from your hair to disperse the spray, avoiding your eyes.  Personal enjoyment is best when sprayed on locks that are at or below your ear lobe.  Men, also try your lower beard, sideburns, and exposed body hair.



There are many factors that affect your perfume’s longevity: temperature of the ambient air, wind, humidity, how dry or moist your skin is, how hot you are, perspiration, where you wear your perfume, and olfactory fatigue.


An individual’s body chemistry interacts with perfume (to better or worse effect).

Also, your skin “drinks” the perfume.  The fats in your skin and the volatile oils in the perfume have an affinity for each other and will pull some of the perfume into your circulation.  That small, absorbed amount is thought to be about 10%, based on extrapolations of other research.   That is 10% less to smell. 


This is the scientific term for the mechanism in your brain that will shut off conscious awareness of any odor after constant exposure to it for about 20 minutes.   You will think your perfume is a dud but you’ve been fooled.  The way to refresh your conscious awareness of your perfume is to go outside, smell a different aroma, drink an aromatic beverage, and you will again smell your perfume. . . for about 20 minutes.  Another way to wake up your perception is to change odor intensity. 

How can I best store and preserve my perfume?

Any perfume, natural or not, benefits from understanding the factors that negatively affect its chemistry:

Oxygen oxidizes.  It breaks down or changes the molecules in your perfume over time.

Heat speeds up the normal chemical changes that occur over time and will decrease the original beauty of perfume more rapidly.  

Unstable (highly variable) temperatures in the environment will have a negative effect on the chemistry.  For example, kitchens, bathrooms, or near intermittent space heaters .

Some perfume ingredients degrade faster in light but most do not as they are not reactive with the wavelengths of light that manage to get through the glass.  They are actually protected by the glass.  However, intense light also heats the perfume and is to be avoided to decrease the rate of chemical aging.  Average, low-level indoor light will work against your perfume but more slowly.  Of course, low or no light is best but practically speaking, few of us will store a perfume in a location that isn’t easily accessed.  Consider the light intensity multiplied by time. 


Store perfume in stable room temperature.  Cooler places with less light are best.  

Many ingredients in natural perfume have an amazingly long shelf life.  The base notes often improve with age.  However, the top notes, (the lightest notes that greet you first), usually significantly dissipate in a year or so.  This doesn’t mean that you won’t still enjoy your perfume but it will gradually change in character.  

As any perfume ages, it can become more sensitizing. 

Overall, the simple fix is to buy a smaller quantity that you will use within a few years.

What about health concerns?


There is a good chance that you will not have the reactions and sensitivity problems associated with synthetic products.  However, that cannot be assumed. 

If you have concern about allergies, irritation, or sensitivities:

Perform a 24-hr. patch test prior to widespread use:  apply a small amount of perfume on the inside of your arm.  Watch it over 24 hours.  If redness or other irritation occurs, wash the area with plenty of soap and water and discontinue the use of that perfume or other product.

Try wearing your perfume on dark colored, animal fiber clothing or in scent jewelry, or other non-skin option if skin sensitivity is your issue. (See “How Do I wear Natural Perfume” on this page.)

If you have a tendency to develop respiratory distress be prepared to get fresh air if needed.

If you use an inhaler for pre-existing respiratory issues, have it handy to be used as directed if by your physician directed — if needed.   

Some of the perfume materials we use can make your skin more sensitive to the sun (Sun Sensitivity).  If you anticipate having significant sun or sunlamp exposure, it is best to not wear our perfume on exposed skin.

Discontinue use of perfume that is older than 2 years old or switch to wearing it with non-skin options.

Buy in smaller quantities.  Any perfume can become more allergenic as oxidation increases over time.


You may use our perfume quite safely if you wear it on your clothes, hair, or scent jewelry.  We do not recommend exposing yourself to heavy amounts.  Moderation is the key.

Consult a qualified physician before topical use of any perfume or any other chemical, especially in the first trimester and when trying to become pregnantOther chemicals that are more critical to avoid all together include products for yard care, farming, cleaning, professional use, personal care, and drugs of any kind.  As one Harvard-trained MD said, “If you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin”. (Some essential oils may be taken internally but not if you do not know what you are doing or, if you are pregnant.)

For worried parents-to-be, natural perfume is not your greatest threat [by far].  Consider research from MIT that implicates Glyphosate (Round Up) as being especially dangerous to you, the environment, a developing fetus, and children.  It is implicated in many illnesses and is linked to the Autism spectrum disorders.  Autism now occurs in 1 out of 50 children.  It is predicted to reach 1 out of 2 children sometime in the 2030’s.   Glyphosate is widely and heavily used in the US.  It is now so ubiquitous that we are unable to avoid some of it in our bodies.  The best defense is eating organic food that is prepared from scratch, homegrown organic food, and pure water. 

While most natural perfume ingredients in folklore and [some] science, are said to be acceptable during pregnancy, a few are not.  The dose, (the amount over time) of that aromatic or isolate is what you would need to be aware of.  Because that is not possible in most purchased products, it is best to wear your perfume on hair and clothes, –or with scent jewelry, –or abstain, –or content yourself with a modest amount of single-note fragrance that has been approved for pregnancy by your qualified health care provider.


It will cause irritation and may cause damage.  Mucous membranes are your eyes, inside your nose, mouth, throat, and genital-anal area.  To clarify, there are safe ways to use natural aromatics orally for health reasons but that is another matter, and one to be taken up with a qualified health care provider.


Little children have been known to drink perfume.  Although our ingredients are generally regarded as safe when used as directed, they are not intended for oral consumption, especially if an entire bottle were to be consumed.  The amount (dose) in the tiny body of a small child is of concern.   Ingesting a few sprays is quite unlikely to harm a child, but we warn against taking a risk.

Children can accidentally spray their eyes or those of another child.  

They might take the perfume near high heat (a fire hazard). 

Or, they may break the glass and cut themselves.  Etc.

To where can you ship?

We ship to the United States and its territories.  Your perfume contains alcohol, so it is required to ship “Surface Only” (by boat or ground), which takes 5-8 business days once shipped.  Recently, in 2020 and 2021, changes have been made to the United States Postal Office that may increase the shipping time beyond 8 days.

Shipping is complimentary. 

What Are The Standards For Using The Term, "Natural"?

Standards vary by organization.  The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) defines natural, raw perfume materials as being obtained from plants through physical means of extraction, distillation or expression. If the materials are made in a lab to be “nature identical” (bio-identical) or are synthetically modified, altered, reconstituted, etc., the ISO states that they cannot be described as “natural”.

Other agencies state that natural, aromatic, raw materials are considered to be essential oils and their fractions, isolates, resins, distillates, extracts and volatile concentrates, with the exception that Absolutes are not included.

Still other entities believe that organic or pesticide-free plants must be part of the definition.

In the US, the FDA has nothing more than a policy, defining what the word “natural” means on a label: 

“Although the FDA has not engaged in rulemaking to establish a formal definition for the term “natural,” we do have a longstanding policy concerning the use of “natural” in human food labeling. The FDA has considered the term “natural” to mean that nothing artificial or synthetic (including all color additives regardless of source) has been included in, or has been added to, a food that would not normally be expected to be in that food. However, this policy was not intended to address food production methods, such as the use of pesticides, nor did it explicitly address food processing or manufacturing methods, such as thermal technologies, pasteurization, or irradiation. The FDA also did not consider whether the term “natural” should describe any nutritional or other health benefit.”

Unfortunately, in the world of sales the term “Natural” means next to nothing because it is widely used deceptively.   Read the following sections to learn more about the natural materials we use, what they truly are, and decide for yourself what you think.

WHAT Raw Ingredients do YOU USE?

At Apologue, we use: Absolutes, CO2’s, Tinctures, Essential Oils, Fractionated or Rectified Oils, Natural Isolates, and Natural Undenatured Perfumer’s Alcohol.    We usually use organic Grain Alcohol, but may also use organic Grape, Sugar Cane, or other Specialty Alcohols.

These materials are extracts from raw, natural materials including Herbs, Spices, Citrus, Woods, Conifers, Leaves, Grasses, Roots, Rhizomes, Moss, Fungi, Aquatic plants, Resins, Flowers, Mineralics, and Animalics.


Read “ARE APOLOGUE PERFUMES CRUELTY FREE?”, on this page, below.




Our all-natural perfumes will safely biodegrade.  There are some extremely long-lived molecules that we use but these have not been shown to cause any health problems.  Quite the contrary.  They have been shown to benefit physical, mental, and emotional well-being.  They fight many kinds of disease.   Importantly, all molecules/chemicals in our perfumes are found in nature .

Our perfume ingredients are 90% organic on average, and never less than 85%, due to the organic alcohol.   As time goes by, ever more farmers are switching to organic and we hope the percentage will go up.

Some of our ingredients are extracted from conventionally grown crops. (Many ingredients are not available in organic.)  Extremely low, trace amounts of pesticides remains in our finished perfumes.

Some of our ingredients called, “Absolutes” are extracted from natural materials using hexane.  Exceedingly minute, trace amounts of it are in the finished perfume.  These materials include the worlds most beautiful floral aromatics.  We feel they are indispensable to our perfumes. 

Thankfully, there is a new, hexane-free solvent,  just coming into use that solves the problem.  Apologue will switch to using these new materials as they become available.

To explain how tiny the amount of hexane or pesticides are, know that one breath of city air contains vastly greater amounts of toxins than in a years worth of our perfume.



When we originally created our packaging, we made an effort to minimize our footprint.  Here is how: 

Our luxury box was made to be reused. 

    • The box-back label peels off cleanly.  The tray insert comes out with a firm, steady, twist-pull-pry action.  (Use the bottle cavity to grip.)  
    • The box, minus the tray, can be reused as a “treasure box” or for a gift box.  Hint:  Little (and big) girls love pretty boxes.
    • The box, minus the tray is also recyclable. 
    • The tray was created so that the perfume safely ships without peanuts or bubble wrap, and its small size lowers the energy required to ship.
    • The sturdy, compact shipping box is also a handy size to reuse when you are shipping a small gift of your own. 

Our bottles are glass and can be recycled or reused. 

    • The 3ml roller-ball housing will pop out of the bottle neck by pushing sideways and slightly up at the top.
    • The 15ml and 30ml bottles make charming bud vases, or you can also use a cork as a new seal to create a reusable bottle. — However, it is not something we recommend for everyone.  Getting the metal, spray-housing-collar off is tricky.  The glass can easily break if one is not very careful.    The bottle is made of thick, high-quality, high clarity glass.  It breaks cleanly with too much pressure, leaving a razor sharp ridge that easily cuts.  (If you try this, we are not responsible for injuries.)



            • Wear thick leather gloves during the procedure. 
            • First, remove the spray head. 
            • Then grasp the top rim of the collar with a needle-nose pliers to pull straight up a tad.  Repeatedly do this, working your way around the collar.
            • This creates a small space to insert a strong knife-edge under the bottom edge of collar.  Gently pry up a little.   Patience and gentleness is the key.  Shift the position of your knife a tiny bit and repeat the gentle “pry-up-action”, working your way around the collar in this fashion.  Then repeat the action, going around the circumference again, and yet again until a sufficient gap is opened.  
            • Then use a c-clamp  jaw-style cutter / pliers that have a claw-bite action to grasp the collar under the bottom edge on both sides and gently pull straight up.  The collar will easily give way and come off.   
            • The remaining, non-recyclable, plastic spray-set is then easily lifted out of the bottle.  
What Is The Difference Between Threatened or Endangered?

“THREATENED” means the plant has become increasingly scarce in the wild, potentially threatening the species.  It puts us all on alert to be cautious.  We should more closely monitor the seriousness of the status of the plant, or if needed reverse the negative trend through moderating use or to seek alternatives and so on.

“ENDANGERED” means the plant is getting close to being on the “critically endangered list”.  In other words, it is time to put the brakes on its use before it is so critically scarce that extinction of the species is imminently at stake. In this case we should all cease to buy or use products made from that plant in a concerted effort to help prevent its extinction. To lose species is a loss to us all and imbalances the environment.  The loss to future generations is incalculable.

There are nuances in the reports found on the internet about “threatened” or “endangered” species that may be confusing or misleading:

Regarding specific plant species with a very a specific scent profile that only grows in a specific geographical area: When those plants are endangered, it means exactly that. An example is Sandalwood, specifically from the Mysore region of India. It is endangered and we should all avoid its use. Yet Sandalwood from plantations in other areas of the planet are well-managed and are perfectly responsible to use.

Some endangered species lists can be inadvertently misleading.  For example, a plant may indeed be endangered in one area of the planet but be abundant in the wild in another area, or under cultivation somewhere else.

Here is where you must either do your own research or trust your perfumer to source responsibly.

An excellent source to visit for up to date information on all species, not just plants, is the IUCN Red List.


If protection of species is your only concern, synthetic perfumes may be a good choice for you.  They entirely avoid endangering plants.  Of course, it is never quite so simple.  The trade-off is more complex than this one factor. 


If Apologue Uses Aromatics from Endangered Species You May Assume:

We are tapping our stock of beautifully aged materials, purchased long before the plant was placed on the endangered species list


We are using materials that are in healthy supply from an abundant location and are not truly threatened or endangered


We may have missed a problem.  If so, please let us know.

Are Apologue Perfumes Cruelty Free?

Apologue is “animal testing and cruelty-free”.  We support changes in our global system that start with recognizing that animals are sentient beings, capable of great suffering and with no way to voice their pain.

Apologue had to make the decision to remain silent on this claim – or if we made the claim, to ensure that you knew what it really meant:

Regarding Animal Testing

In the US, by law, all materials intended for human consumption, including all-natural perfume materials, must be tested on animals by researchers to prove the designation “GRAS”, or “generally regarded as safe”.  

When a perfume business claims “no animal testing” that merely means that no testing is done in that business.   That is to say, every perfume-related company, except those bringing a totally new synthetic or natural product to market, does not need to do testing of any kind.

The claim is [then] little more than an announcement of a political stance or addressing customers who are unaware of the way the system works but are trying their best to do good.  If you are against animal testing, your efforts must be spent on animal farms, scientific methodologies, and governmental policy makers.  Your average perfume company has zero to-do with the matter.

Regarding Animal Cruelty

Not engaging in animal cruelty is simple to claim when the perfumery uses only botanicals.  If the perfumery uses natural animalic fragrances the claim becomes more important to understand.

Apologue uses “found” animalics, which means that the animal left the aromatic substance behind and someone literally found it.

We also use animalic materials that are verified to be from areas where the overpopulation of the animal is causing devastating environmental effects.  (Loss of natural predators, etc.)  When relocation is not feasible and culling the animals is a critical and unavoidable solution, we find no ethical dilemma in using animalics derived from them.

Other animalics that we use are extracted from sustainable, cultivated, raw materials such as beeswax or dairy products.

Natural Musk and Civet are not purchased on the open market at this time because of our own uncertainties surrounding reports of animal mistreatment and possible endangerment.  If a method of collecting “found” Musk or Civet develops, we would use them.  In such a situation, jobs are created for “collectors”.  The sustainable harvesting is an incentive to protect these animals in the wild.  A win for all.

Synthetic perfumes use lab-made “animalics” in substitution, clearly a winner for animals such as the Musk Deer or Civet Cat.  Yet to our nose, the real thing cannot be matched.


Overall, animal cruelty is quite a complex issue.  There may be exceptional circumstances that give the appearance of cruelty when in fact there is none.  There are times when one moral requirement conflicts with another.  But indeed, there are many obvious and needless reasons that animals suffer.

Apologue makes these twin claims because we avoid contributing to negative consequences for animals within a reasonable, contextual framework.  We support the kind care of animals in any circumstance and support the preservation of their habitat.

What Is The Difference Between Natural and Synthetic Isolates?

The definition of an isolate is “a chemical substance in an uncombined or pure state”.  Put another way, they are individual molecules.

Natural Isolates are made by nature and extracted by man.

Synthetic Isolates are made by man from a secondary, unrelated raw material, usually petroleum. 

Of the synthetic isolates there are two broad categories: “Bio-identical synthetics” and synthetics that are not found in nature.  The latter includes molecules that have been proven to be harmful to the environment, human health, and animal health.

More about isolates can be found under “Our Ingredients


A disclaimer to any statement on this website that might be construed as health advice:

The reader should assume it is educational or opinion and otherwise seek medical advice from an appropriate physician about their health care decisions and treatment.

Have other questions not answered here? Contact us and we will be happy to help!


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