Fragrance Is The Ultimate Accessory
Just like the perfect rug can effectively pull together a room, fragrance can do the same – making this an often overlooked but ultimately important accessory for your home. Incorporating the right scent can help you achieve a balanced atmosphere for your space, while adding distinctive depth and character to make it feel like home.
The mind-body connection
The associations we make with aromas can have a significant impact on both mind and body. Certain scents have proven to improve pain tolerance, promote relaxation, lift mood, enhance sleep, reduce stress, and even stimulate better physical and cognitive performance. Yes, there is scientific evidence to support aromatherapy.
The same part of your brain controls both smell and emotion, and new memories are generated in a section of the brain with a direct connection to the olfactory center. It’s no wonder, then, that your sense of smell can trigger so many different responses. The brain builds such deep associations with scents that they have the power to evoke strong memories – studies have even shown that inhaling an odor while reading or studying can help you recall the information more effectively when you breathe in the same aroma later on.
Scents have the power to improve your life – and you can take advantage of the positive associations you have with your favorite aromas to make your home feel more comfortable, personal, and welcoming.
Choosing the perfect fragrance
With plenty of scents to choose from, though, it can be difficult to determine the right fragrance for your space. By associating scents to music, however, you can gain a better understanding of how your sense of smell can influence your emotions. In a room where you’d prefer quiet background music, you can achieve a similar soothing effect with a subtle floral scent. In a setting where you’d rather enjoy more energetic music, a more noticeable, social fragrance can work wonders.
For the kitchen, it’s best to avoid strong floral aromas that will conflict with the smell of whatever you’re cooking – stick to other food-inspired scents, like fruits and herbs. A citrus scent will also help eliminate lingering cooking odors. Squeeze the juice from a lemon wedge into your sink after washing up and put the rind down the disposal, if you have one.
The kitchen also provides the opportunity for creativity. Brew your own fragrance to permeate through the home by simmering some water in a saucepan along with slices of lemon, orange, or grapefruit, cranberries, cinnamon, and herbs like mint or lavender. Coffee is another welcoming kitchen aroma, and even helps absorb unpleasant odors – just choose high-quality beans with a sweet, complex flavor for the best scent profile.
In a home office, fragrances infused with peppermint can help you stay focused while you’re hard at work – keeping you more alert and helping you combat fatigue. Citrus scents can provide similarly invigorating effects. And for a bathroom or a laundry room, choose clean, crisp scents like fresh linen, ocean-inspired fragrances, or citrus-infused aromas.
A good bedroom scent will promote relaxation, but it’s important that the fragrance isn’t so strong that it interferes with your sleep. Go for a subtle scent with hints of lavender, orange flower, or chamomile and spray a little on your linens for a bit of extra comfort at bedtime. Also, be sure to include a romantic candle to set the mood – complete with a sexy fragrance like musk, amber, sandalwood, or warm vanilla.
Any room could benefit from a little extra freshness. Indulge in the aromas of the seasons by bringing the outdoors in with organic bouquets of flowers and greenery. Not only will you be able to enjoy the summery scents making their way through your home, you’ll warm up your space with the inclusion of a little bit of nature.
Creating a signature scent
Mixing scents can be intimidating, and we sometimes make the mistake of choosing a fragrance with a single dominant element – and using it throughout the entire home. This can have the opposite effect, though, by drawing too much attention to the scent. Instead, find different – but complementary – fragrances to create a multi-layered signature scent that is deeply personal and impossible to replicate.
One of the best ways to effectively layer different fragrances is by using multiple methods of scent dissemination. Diffusers are best for subtle, all over fragrance, while candles emit a soft glow in addition to rich, more localized scent, which helps set the mood for an intimate event like a nice dinner or a relaxing bath. If you use room sprays, choose one with a very fine dispersion – and make sure you’re using a spray safe for fabrics so you don’t end up with stains. All can be cohesively incorporated into your home to create a unique scent experience.
For a little more inspiration to help you find the perfect fragrance, check out our list of best buys.