Now that gardens have a wonderful show of colour and fragrance, why not preserve this fragrance all year round with easy to make colognes and toilet waters?
Aromatic waters are a delight to use, and when splashed onto your body their refreshing fragrance will lift your spirits, make you feel special and refresh your skin.
Body colognes especially, are ideal to use on hot summer days and nights to cool the skin and leave it feeling fresh and clean.
An old-fashion recipe that is easy to make, and which my wife adores as a summer body splash, is based on the Carmelite Toilet Water invented by the Carmelite monks in Paris in 1611.
To make it put one generous handful each of lemon balm leaves, 15 grams of bruised coriander seeds, one minced nutmeg, two tablespoons of cloves and three pieces of crushed cinnamon stick in a wide-mouthed glass jar.
Add 300 millilitres of high proof vodka, seal the jar so that is airtight and shake vigorously. Leave the jar in a warm place, shaking it every day, for about three weeks.
Strain the contents through muslin or cheese cloth, then drip the fragrant vodka through coffee filter paper and dilute with 150 millilitres of distilled water.
Store in an attractive glass bottle for future use.
For people who love the outdoors, the following refreshing and invigorating lemon skin cologne will cool you down and leave you feeling fresh and alive.
Put two cups of tightly packed lemon balm leaves in a ceramic bowl, then add 600 millilitres of boiling water, cover and allow to steep overnight.
Strain through clean muslin or cheese cloth and set aside.
Next add half a litre of vodka to a suitable glass bottle, then add 10 drops of lemon essential oil and five drops of lime essential oil, seal and leave to stand for one week.
Mix in 500 millilitres of the lemon balm water, reseal, shake vigorously and leave to stand for a further two weeks.
Drip through coffee filter paper and store in a suitable bottle. Splash the lemon cologne generously all over your body whenever required to remove that hot, sticky feeling from your skin.
Another warm weather favourite is the following citrus blend.
Not only will it refresh you, but will impart a beautiful lemon scent.
In a suitable glass bottle combine 45 drops of lemon grass essential oil, 12 millilitres of lemon essential oil and three millilitres orange peel essential oil with half a litre of vodka.
Seal and allow the mixture to stand for a month, then dilute it with half a litre of distilled water, then drip through coffee filter paper and re bottle.
This coming summer, don't let the weather get you down during those hot, sticky days and nights.
Keep yourself feeling fresh and cool with easy to make natural skin colognes.