Meadows and Hedgerows

imagesGoing back to my first blog, we explored ‘peak experiences’ in the natural world; the times when any boundaries between you, the observer, and the environment, or what you are observing, become blurred or disappear altogether, and a sense of wellbeing is experienced. Since then, we have looked at some of the scents of the natural world – the forests and woods, and the seashore. This time we will consider the beautiful fragrances of the hayfields, pastures and hedgerows. These scents are often described as ‘agrestic’, meaning that they are reminiscent of the countryside.

One of the most popular and pleasing fragrances is Continue reading

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Scent Marketing in the Workplace

If you stop and try to think how your workplace smells like, can you identify a specific odor? Or can you at least remember how you feel when you think about it? I personally find it really easy to recreate in my mind the scents I smell every day, and with them also specific moods and attitudes I associate to those specific environments. For example, the smell of my house makes me feel relaxed and cosy, the smell of buses makes me feel anxious (because I’m usually in a rush), the smell of my office makes me feel productive and the smell of my university hall makes me feel concentrated.

Now, ‘because scent marketing is so effective at increasing sales in a retail setting, we might lose sight of the fact that Continue reading

How do we Know that Scents are Safe? Part 1

The creation of fragrances that are used in so many products, from fine fragrances to hair care products to scented candles to cleaning products – literally thousands and thousands of products – requires many hundreds and even thousands of different fragrance ingredients.  It isn’t enough to think that creating a scent that smells like oranges or grapefruit or any other recognizable, descriptive scent that we know very well will be safe simply because it smells like things that we KNOW in our life experiences to be safe.  Is it safe if it is all-natural?  As it turns out, it may not be even then.  So how do we handle this potential problem?
We start by grounding ourselves with facts.  First, the most potent toxins known to man are all-natural.  One example: aflatoxin.  Second, regardless of the source (natural OR not) if a single chemical structure is derived from natural sources and it is purified OR if it is made synthetically and it is purified (purified is KEY for both) then the toxicity profile will be the same for each.  Third, an ingredient as described above will usually have an effect on tissue when it is applied at a Continue reading

The Spectrum of Scent

Nature is the consummate creator of olfactory beauty. Consider the classic florals – rose, gardenia, jasmine, tuberose, lilac to name a few. For so many of us their visual beauty elicits unbelievably persistent and clear memories of their spring/summer odor. If we move on to the stone fruits – peaches, nectarines, plums, apricots, mangoes, apples, and cherries as well as their berry counterparts – raspberries, blueberries, boysenberries, strawberries, blackberries, dewberries, elderberries, gooseberries, and others, we are reminded of their incredibly sweet and inviting tastes. Continue reading