It is getting increasingly more difficult to find birthday or Christmas presents for my daughter. In previous years she has loved craft kits and gifts that encouraged her creativity. This year, as we very definitely embark into her “tweens”, all she wants is makeup. I am not quite ready for her to fully abandon toys and play, and so I am constantly on the lookout for gifts that will appeal to her new desire for more grown up things, whilst at the same time encouraging play and learning. I was delighted when Interplay sent me their Fab Lab Invent-a-Scent Perfume kit to test out, and I had a feeling this would cover all bases.
The Invent-a-Scent perfume kit is recommended for ages 8 and up, and comes with everything you need to learn about the art of perfume blending. It includes 5 bottles of different base fragrences, 5 pipettes, 4 gift bottles to make your finished perfumes in, a pair of gloves, test strips and full instructions. The box is also cleverly designed with slots and impressions to hold all the bottles upright whilst you are working with them, and spaces to test your perfume mixes out.
The instructions talk you through the basics of perfume making, explaining what a base note, heart note and top note are, and then gives some suggested mixes to start you off. The idea is that you test out combinations using single or small numbers of drops of your chosen combinations, and when you find a scent you like you can mix a whole bottle full. So this kit encourages scientific experimentation during play, and also requires maths skills as when you’ve found a blend you like based on only a few drops, you then need to work out how to multiply the drops up to fill a whole bottle.
This video shows the geekdaughter unboxing and using the Invent-a-Scent perfume kit:
The geekdaughter and I both really liked the Invent-a-Scent perfume kit. We found the instructions clear and easy to follow, and we enjoyed trying different combinations of fragrences. The one thing we struggled with was the little stoppers in each bottle. Obviously they are there to prevent the fragrences from leaking out, but we found them very hard to remove. I must confess I ended up having to use my teeth to get them out, whilst at the same time instructing my daughter to “never do this”. The instructions were very clear about not getting the fragrences anywhere near your mouth, but desperate times call for desperate measures!
I particularly like the way this kit encourages scientific experimentation, not just in mixing the fragrences together, but also in writing down which combinations you have tried and what you thought of them. It’s not going to be a very long-lasting kit, as once you’ve made your four bottles of perfume you are likely to be close to running out of all the fragrances, and it doesn’t seem to be possible to buy refills. But then this kit retails at just £12.99, which I think is fair for the amount of play you get out of it. It would make a good rainy day activity for your tweenager.
The Fab Lab Invent-a-Scent Perfume kit by Interplay has a recommended retail price of £12.99 and is available direct from the Interplay website as well as many online or high street toy retailers. My retailer of choice is Amazon, and you can order it from there for the retail price of £12.99 with free shipping for Prime members using my affiliate link.
Disclosure: We were provided with the Fab Lab Invent-a-Scent perfume kit by Interplay for review purposes. All words and opinions are my own. The Amazon link within this post contains my affiliate ID – if you make a purchase after clicking I will receive a small commission payment. I link to Amazon because I use them personally and recommend them.