Absolutes are exotic oils that are similar to essential oils but because the parts needed are so delicate to extract, the oils are very very expensive. The extraction method is more complex due to the fragile nature of the flower.
Which flowers are categorized as absolutes?
Here's the short list:
~ Bulgarian Rose, Indian Jasmine, Indian Lotus, and Egyptian Geranium ~
Absolutes are more aromatically potent than their essential oil counterparts so the old adage that a little goes a long way truly applies to an absolute. These oils are typically used in perfume type products, either spray or solid. You'll never see me use these in soap....unless you'd like to pay the price. How much you ask? Here are some examples:
Now that you've picked up your dropped jaw, you can understand why these types of oils are treasured for special products. And those are wholesale prices! It really doesn't make sense to use these in a wash-off product like soap.
There are fragrances (we use only phthalate and paraben free) and natural essential oils that are similar in scent. I'd rather use organic geranium essential oil knowing that I don't have to charge a small fortune for a bar of soap! Btw, it takes 14,000 rose petals to make 1 lb. of rose absolute! That's a lot of roses....
The world of absolute oil and essential oils is an interesting one and there are many articles on this topic. It's important to communicate that neither should ever be ingested for any reason, and those that are pregnant or nursing should avoid using them. Absolutes and essential oils must be diluted into carrier oils like sweet almond or jojoba oil before massaging onto skin. Even natural ingredients need to be treated with respect.
And so the next time you see any product with any of these scents and a hefty price tag, you'll know it was made with an absolute oil. The ingredient name should say -
* Rosa centifolia (rose)
* Jasminum officinale (jasmine)
* Pelargonium graveolens (geranium)
* Nelumbo nucifera (lotus)
Having said all of that, I have purchased a teeny tiny bit of rose absolute to formulate a special solid perfume. Solid perfumes can contain nourishing oils for your skin and aren't as overpowering as a spray. Keep checking in to the online shop or follow on facebook @lakeshoreharboursoap